Days of Yore
 
as recounted by

Bill Day

 

 

Taverns
It is difficult to believe that Haddonfield once had taverns that were the centers of activity in town.

When one delves into the history of the old village this fact become apparent.

Four inns existed here during and after the Revolutionary War years around 1777 and even a fifth was built.  It was the Edward Gibbs Tavern, which stood on the corner of east Kings Highway and Gibbs Alley (Mechanic Street).  The original building still stands with the date 1777 high on the chimney.

On the corner of Kings highway and Potter street was the original Indian King, so named by Hugh Creighton in 1759 when he married to widow of the innkeeper, Uriah French.

The Estaugh Inn about 1760 stood on the west side of Tanner street near Kings highway.  The building at No. 8 Tanner street has the original foundation of the early inn.

As late as 1788, the Perry Webb Tavern was flourishing at the site of the old American Legion building, on the corner of Ellis street and Kings Highway.  The first reliable date of a tavern license was granted to this establishment in 1733.

The Indian King at 233 east Kings highway was built in 1750 and was in operation until the late 1800s.  The state of New Jersey purchased it and has restored the Old Inn and it is now a historic landmark.

When Haddonfield voted “no license” in 1973, that meant the end of the taverns.  Just think what our town must have been like during the busy War years about 1777, and later when the stage was established between Camden and here.

The Inns were the center of all activities and Dolly Madison just couldn’t wait to get into town. (Data for this was from the book “This is Haddonfield” from the Historical Society.)


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