The property now occupied by The White Inn, once the exclusive domain of Indians, came into the hands of Dr. Squire White early in the 19th century. He was the first medical doctor to settle and practice in Chautauqua county. In 1811 he erected a wood frame house on this site.

After a fire destroyed the home, Dr. White's son, Devillo, built a more substantial structure in 1868. The University Room and several rooms on the second and third floors are part of the original 1868 structure. The wrought iron fence surrounding the property dates from this period.

The property stayed in the White family until 1918, when Miss Isabel White, the last remaining White family resident, sold the property to Murray Hill Bartley of Westfield, New York. Mr. Bartley expanded the property considerably, and in 1919, opened the hotel to the traveling public.

Located on scenic Route 20, The White Inn flourished and became a gathering spot.  In the 1930's, Duncan Hines discovered The White Inn, and was so impressed with the restaurant that he included the Inn as one of the 50 finest establishments that became his "Family of Fine Restaurants."