In 1883 Major Thomas H. Hays purchased some land in north central Kentucky just south west of Louisville to serve as his new home. Far away from schools, he decided to build a small school house on a hill in his property. The school teacher he hired to run the school especially enjoyed the writings of Walter Scott through his Waverley novels. So she named the new building, Waverley School. Hays liked the name so he named the entire property Waverley Hills. However, over a century later the grounds would have a more ominous reputation as host to what remains of the Waverly Hills Sanatorium.