Built in 1892 by the Duke family of North Carolina, the Raleigh Inn was a grand hotel that sat near one of Raleigh's natural springs.
The Inn itself offered numerous amenities to guests, including electric lights, call bells, bath and toilet rooms, sewers, wire screens over windows, telephone access, and more.
The springs were promoted for good health, and citizens from Memphis and beyond traveled there for healing, relaxation and recreation, as pointed out in the Inn's 1903 brochure, which boasted the spring's healing powers for a wide range of ailments.
Eczema, ulcers, sore throat, tonsilitis … gout, rheumatism, scrofula, summer complaint, neuralgia of stomach, nausea, gravel, cystitis, catarrh, teething, and diseases of young children … cardiac weakness, dropsy, liver complaint, chronic diseases … jaundice, malaria, anaemia and catarrhal conditions of the abdominal organs … nasal catarrh … boils … torpid liver, constipation, dyspepsia … dysentery … biliary colic, malaria, anemia, sick headache.
The 1903 season would be the last for the Inn. The hotel closed and was converted into the Maddox Seminary for Young Ladies, and a few years later was used as a sanitarium until it burned down in May 1912. The four-story wooden structure was destroyed, but three of outlaying spring houses remain.
Today, the vacant land where the Inn once stood is at the corner of James and Water Street. The Raleigh Springs Conservancy is interested in incorporating the land into its holdings for future preservation and conservation efforts.