Faunbrook, known in recent years as a charming bed and breakfast inn in West Chester, was best known throughout its history as the home of Smedley Darlington, whose family had lived there from about 1867. Orignally built in 1860 for William Baldwin, the house is believed to have been designed by Samuel Sloan, the noted architect from Philadelphia.
Surrounded by extensively landscaped grounds, the property includes a number of water features and its lush plantings serve as a lovely backdrop for the many events that are hosted here on a regular basis. When I stayed here in 2008 with my husband, our host mentioned that some of the plantings on the property had come from the gardens at Longwood, which is very likely as daughter Isabel Darlington was an attorney who often performed work for the Dupont family.
Smedley Darlington had numerous business interests in the area and was involved in the creation of two local banks. Firework displays were hosted on the property, with special trolley cars running to bring guests for the festivities, The house was featured several times on the Chester County house tour, held annually from 1936.
Decorated with period pieces, the rooms of Faunbrrok are all named for Darlington family members, adding to tthe historic interest of the property.