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History of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present online

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the distance of ten miles," requiring such as
had negroes "to keep them at home under
strict discipline and watch, and not let them
come to town on any pretense whatsoever
without a written pass," and when they came
they were to leave town one hour before sun-
down "on pain of being imprisoned." Free
negroes were to get a pass from a justice of
the peace, in order that they might not be
restrained from their daily labor. Suffice it
to say that the colored people of a later day
in York are a different people.


Adam Miller, who was recommended to the
governor by the Lancaster Court in 1741,
kept the first public house in York.

Baltzer Spangler soon after opened a tav-
ern, and at his place the first flections were
held, at which the whole county voted.

There were eighteen persons licensed in
1765, to keep " public-houses of entertain-
ment" in York. It will thus be learned, that
at a very early date there was an abundance of
them. No attempt is here made to give a
list of all the most important ones. A few

of the old-time taverns are mentioned, some
of which will be remembered by the older
class of our readers.

The Globe Inn and Stage Office, on South
George Street near the square, was taken
charge of by Thomas McGrrath, in March,
1820. It was first kept by Robert Hammers-
ly. The same building is now the residence
of the he'irs of Mr. MoGrath. Thomas Mc-
Grath subsequently removed his tavern to
"Rupps Corner" in Center Square, where he
did a large and successful business. It was
the best hotel of its day in York. Gen. La Fay-
ette stopped there on his visit to York.

The Sivan Tavern was located on North
George Street near the bridge. It contained
eleven rooms for guests, and had a pump in
front of the door. For many years, it was
owned by Samuel Weiser, and was sold by
him in 1815. In front of the tavern, on the
' familiar sign post, was the image of a swan.
Gotlieb Ziegle's tavern on George Street
j was a popular inn for many years. In April
i 1819, Clement Stillinger took charge of it
j and put up the sign of ' 'Gen. Jackson. "
I The Sign of the Black Horse was a sub-
stantial stone tavern which was located on
the site of the wholesale business stand of
Jacob Stair on West Market Street. Col.
Samuel Spangler was the first proprietor, in
1808. John Koons succeeded in 1818, when
he gave notice that he "always kept at com-
mand an elegant hack, gig and horses to
\ hire." In 1819 Jesse Evans began to run a
mail and passenger stage from this tavern to
Oxford and Gettysburg. Joseph Worley was
next proprietor and Jacob Stair became his
successor in April, 1823. He kept it for a
number of years, when it went by the name of
the "Golden Sheaf Inn."

The Union Inn was opened April 1, 1820,
by Patrick McDermott. It was located on
the corner of George and Princess Streets.
Jacob Shultz, Sr., resumed the business of
tavern-keeping at his old stand known as the
"Cross Keys," on the corner of Market and
Water Streets, April 1, 1820. He was fol-
j lowed by Thomas Smith. This hotel was
; kept in the building now owned by Jona-
than Owen. Smith had a lumber yard near
his hotel, and at Eib's Landing.

Black Bear Inn, with the sign of Com.
Perry, was kept from 1800 to 1820 by
George Brickie. During the latter year
Jacob Cramer became proprietor. It was
located on East Market Street.

The Golden Plough. — On the Ist of April,

1820, Jacob Shultz, Jr., moved from the

j " Cross Keys Tavern " to the " Sign of the

Golden Plough " in the stone]house on 'the



corner of Main and Water Streets. It was
used as a store by Samuel Nes, and before
that by Robert Hammersly as a tavern.
Francis Jones built the house in 1770, and
for many years afterward kept a tavern in it.
The building is still standing.

The Sign of the Lamb, or Peter Wilt's Inn
was located on East Market Street, opposite
the present site of the Presbyterian Church.
In 1819 Robert Wilson advertised that " old
Bob was on the spot at his house, opposite
Wilt's Inn." He said " he had cryed all his
life without weeping." W^ilson was one of
the popular auctioneers of that day, and was
the founder of the town of Loganville.

Sign of the Bird in Hand was a public inn
on the corner of King and Beaver Streets,
kept by Thomas McAleer as early as 1810.
He was proprietor as late as 1825. It was a
popular resort for Irishmen, who were about
that time employed in digging canals and
making turnpikes.

Sign of the Golden Sheaf was a tavern
opened by George Keller, April 1, 1820.
He was followed by Peter Wiest, Henry
Hantz and Martin Carl, and was long a pop-
ular stopping place. This building is now
used as a hardware store by Charles Kline-

Eyster's Hotel was built nearly a century
sgO' by Daniel Ragan, who married Ruth
(Collins) Worley, widow of J. Worley, a
grandson of Francis Worley, who was one of
the commissioners to survey Springetsbury
Manor in 1722, and afterward became one of
the first English settlers west of the Susque-
hanna. Ragan and his wife were strict
members of the Society of Friends, and at
the time of the "York monthly meetings" their
home was a stopping place for prominent
persons of the Quaker faith, who came from
a distance to attend these meetings. In 1854
Capt. John Myers purchased this house and
kejit what was known as "Myers' Hotel" until
1860; was succeeded by Frederick Myers,
Marshall & Smith, W. T. Williams, and Elias
Eyster. Jacob H. Bear is the owner, and his
banking establishment is in the building.

The States Union was built in 1820, and
for a long time was called the "Green Tree
Tavern." Charles Strine, was for many
years the proprietor. A large swinging sign,
had painted on its center the representation
of a green tree. Few places were better
known to wagoners during the first half of
the present century than this tavern. Farmers
from a distance, who took their grain and
produce to Philadelphia and Baltimore,
brought with them, on their return, goods and
merchandise which were unloaded and stored

j in a warehouse adjoiuing this tavern, under
the special supervision of Mr. Strine. In the
large yard to the rear of the building, and on
the street in front, large numbers of the

I "covered English bed" wagons* could be seen
at the close of each day. Some were farmers
and some regular teamsters, who wagoned as
a business from Philadelphia^andj Baltimore
to Pittsburgh, Wheeling, and other points
along the navigable Ohio Eiver. Each
wagoner had with him his "bunk" on which
he slept. In winter, this was spread out on
the floors of the hotel, which then was full of
lodgers. In summer they slept in the wagons
in the ojaen air, in the barn or in the house.
The horses, as was the custom of those days,
were compelled to endure the cold of mid-
winter, by being tied to the rear or sides of
the wagon during the night, and eat out of
the "feed box," which was a necessary ap-
pendage to every wagon. If it had not been
for the profits obtained from the sale of the
"ardent," and that possibly at 3 cents, or a
"fip" a glass, one would wonder how the hotel
man made any money in olden times. The

' teamster always had with him his horse feed.
All he had to pay for was what he ate. An
economical teamster would go from the vicin-
ity of York to Baltimore with a team of four
horses, and return, after having spent only
fifteen shillings. He stopped by the wayside
to ask the time of day, if he wished to know
it, and used a hickory stick for the cane as
he trod wearily along beside his faithful
horses. His sons, or grandsons, possibly to-
day are sporting the best American lever, or
swinging a gold-headed cane, as the result of
their ancestor's industry and economy. The
scenes and incidents here described occurred
before the time of railroads, as it was then
that the Green Tree Inn, under "mine host"
Strine, was known far and wide. The goods
stored in his warehouse were loaded on other
wagons, and conveyed westward to waiting

I merchants. Henry Hantz became proprietor
for a time, and then removed to Wrightsville,
where he died. Daniel Witmyer, Jacob Strine,
son of the early proprietor, Frederick Kline-
felter succeeded in order named. Eli Kindig
is now owner, and Oliver Deardorff proprietor.
Tlie Hotter House.— Beiore the year 1800,
Mr. Reed kept a hotel in the building now
known as the "Motter House." Thomas
Smith followe*d and was the proprietor at the
time of the disastrous flood of 1817. It
was known as "Smith's Tavern" until 1821,
when Jacob Hantz became the owner and

t proprietor. He did a large business for
twenty-one years in succession, until 1842,

I when he became the sheriff of York Coanty.


Michael Hoke who had just retired from the
office of sheriff, then took charge, and was
some years afterward sucoeeded by Charles
Underwood. It then came into the hands of
Daniel Hotter, after whom the hotel has
since been called. He died while there.
Israel F. Gross purchased the entire interest,
and for about eighteen years did a prosper-
ous business. In 1882 it was sold to Messrs.
Henry J. Gresly and Edward Smyser, when
Mr. Landis becarae proprietor. Mr. Hamme
succeeded April 1, 1885.

The Pennfsylvania House was first used as
a private residence, and was owned by Henry
Wolf. In the year 1863, Eli H. Free bought
it of Mr. Wolf and opened a hotel, which
has since been known by its present name.
The next proprietor was Robert Kunkel, who,
after conducting it for a time, sold it to the
German Mannaechor of York, and in 1869 it
came into the hands of the present owner,
Frederick Hake. It was enlarged in 1873.
In this building, some years ago, Barnum's
so-called "Feejee chief" died, and one of his
"cannibals" forgot himself, and began to
talk, telling the bystanders that he would
not act cannibal any longer for $1 2 a month.

The Lafayette House, on South George
Street, is a very old hotel, originally kept by
Sheriff Andrew Duncan, who had, in 1826
and later, as a sign, a full-size representation
of Gen La Fayette in uniform.

The Farmers' Hotel was first opened by
the present owner of the building, George
W. Reever.

The Avenue Hotel was started by John
Peeling in 1882.

The Central Hotel was formerly known as
the "Wheatfield Inn," for a long time kept
by Daniel Eichelberger, and later by Charles
Underwood. It is now kept by Mr. Kohler.
The first lot taken up in York was the one on
which this hotel stands.

Metzel's Hotel was long known as "The
Turk's Head," and kept by Thomas Metzel.
For many years it was kept by his widow.

The Ginder House, lately called the Mar-
shall House, was originally named after Sher-
iff Ginder, who once owned it.

The St. Cloud, near the depot, has long ex-
isted with different names.

The Washington House, on East Market,
ias been well known to the traveling public for
half a century. Daniel Webster, Henry Clay,
Presidents Zachary Taylor and Andrew John-
son stopped at it. It was formerly kept by
John Koons. For many years it was fash-
ionable for city people during the summer.
James Kindig kept it for many years. It is
now kept by Mr. Wilhelm.

The National House, corner of Market and
Beaver Streets, was built by Z. Durkee, and
long known as the White Hall. It is the
largest hotel in York. Some of its early
proprietors were John Welsh, Daniel Ahl,
Daniel Miller, Hodges, Rhinehart, Maish,
and Mrs. West. It was called "The Tre-
mont House" for a time by one of its propri-
etors, who came from Tremont, Schuylkill
County. When it was purchased by Freder-
ick Stallman, its present owner, the name
which it now bears was given it. The great
English novelist, Charles Dickens, stopped
at this hotel in 1841, and said that he was
here served with the best piece of roast beef
while on his visit to America. During the
Revolutionary war, and many years later,
Peter Dinkle kept a store on this site. He
was an ardent patriot, and furnished sup-
plies to the army. The following is one of
his bills presented to the board of war:
Dr. The State of Pennsylvania with Peter Dinkle
of York Town, for Belts, Scabbards and
Pouches, delivered to the following captains
of York Co. Soldiers in the Army and
April 1. To Capt. Philip Albright, Col.

Miles' Battalion £6 4s Id

July 12. To Capt. Charles Lukens, 1st Bat-
talion Militia 3 18 6

" 16. To Capt. John Wright, 1st Battal-

lonMilitia 3 18 6

" 16. To Capt. Michael Smyser, 1st Bat-
talion Militia 1 7 8

" 22. To Capt. Samuel Nelson, 5th Bat. 10

" 33. To Capt. George Long, 1st Bat. . . 18

Aug. 8. ToCapt.WilliamMcClellan,3dBat. 40

July 33. To Capt. John McDonald, 1st Bat. 4 17 1

Amount 19 17 11

The following is a receipt from one of
these captains:

York, July 16, 1776.
Received of Mr. Peter Dinkle 13 shot pouches at
4s 6d per pouch, for the use of my company.
£3 18s 6d. John Wright,

The following relic is worthy of insertion
here :

To Congress,

Dr. ToJohn Kerlin for sixty-seven suppers
for Captain Smyser's Company of Malishiah on
their way to Trenton. Certified July 31, 1776, by
Michael Schmtser,




The men of York performed their part well
at home and on the battle field during the try-
ing years of the Revolutionary war, which lin-
gered on with its terrible hardships to the
American soldiers, with alternate victory and
defeat, in ever memorable battles, until the
surrender of Lord Cornwallis to Gen. Wash-



ington, at Yorktown, Va., on the 19th of Oc-
tober, 1781, caused hostilities to cease, pro-
ducing universal joy. This news was received
at York with great rejoicings, business was
suspended, bells were rung, and a great bon-
fire built.

Fourth of JuUi, 1788.- To celebrate the adop-
tion of the Federal constitution, the borough and
county of York became patriotic, and July 4,
1788, was a great and notable day in York, the prog-
ress of American liberty being appropriately cele-
brated by a grand procession and banquet, with
speeches and a series of toasts of almost unending
length. The names of the orators have been lost
in oblivion, but a copy of the toasts offered on the
occasion has been preserved; and as they show the
zealous spirit in which our forefathers enjoyed their
new-born freedom, wo quote the entire list:

By the bearer of the flag of the United States-
May our powers explore every inlet of the habitable
globe, our flag ride triumphant on every ocean. May
impartiality wield the sword of Justice and impetu-
osity the sword of War.

Flag of Penns5dvania — The State of Pennsyl-
vania — may she hold the federal balance, and be-
come the arbitress of the continent.

Magistrate's Flag— May Justice with the sword
protect her scales, may nothing hut righteousness
turn the beam, and may she write on Sophistry,
what convulsed Belshazzar, "Thou art weighed in
balance and art found wanting."

Farmers' Flag — Perpetual laurels to the men
who have "beaten the sword of civil dissension into
a plowshare," who have sown the seed of good
government — may it'spring up without tares, and
may each revolving harvest witness its increase.

Masons' and Bricklayers' Flag — May the com-
ponent parts of the Federal edifice be "squared by
the plummet of impartial justice, inseparably at-
taclied by the cement of citizenship.

Clock and Watch Makers' Flag— May virtue be
the mainspring of our Government; patriotism keep
its works in order. May the popular voice wind up
its chain, and may its hand point to the public good.

Bakers — May an oven "seven times heated," be
the fate of him, whose only objects are the "loaves
and fishes."

Stocking "Weavers — May he who first broached
the formation of a new government, have a wreath
of laurel twisted around his brow, and a garland of
honorary flowers wove for his reward.

Tailors — May Fate with her shears cut the thread
of that man's life. Fame dishonor him with the
name of Goose, and Society baste him, who en-
deavors to Cabbage from this country.

Coppersmiths and Founders— May we be brazed
together by a love of country, as by borax and
spelter, and riveted by an energetic government.

Potters — As often as the wheel of time revolves
this day, let gratitude tell of the heroes, who were
proven as by fire; let a tear of remembrance fall
for such as were cracked.

Rough Carpenters — May his head be divorced
from his body with the broadaxe of Justice, who
does not square his conduct by tl»e rule of Right.

House Carpenters — The new political mansion —
May its apartments be commodious; may three
rafters be added to the ten which already support
its roof; and may its lights be great and many.

Blacksmiths — May the thirteen States be welded
into one united empire, by the hammer of concilia-
tion on the anvil of peace; and may the man who
attempts to blow the coals of discord be burned by
the sparks.

Nailers — May our government be well pointed
at and have a good head.

Brewers — May he be choked with the grains, or
drowned in his ale, whose business it is to brew mis-

Painters— The new Constitution in its true col-
ors; neither caricatured nor flattered, and may the
brush of investigation correct the glare of light
given by its friends, and the profusion of shade
thrown on it by its enemies.

Glaziers— May the Pane remain forever un-
cracked, that threw light on the subject of our late
war, and may the rays of truth be drawn to a focus
by the glass of genius.

Saddlers— A curb bit, and a transverse rein to
the importation of foreign luxuries; and may the
man who denies his encouragement to home man-
ufactures, be stirruped round the world.

Hatters — May he who twangs the bow of tu-
mult, be stripped to the pelt, then dipped into a ket-
tle of blacking; may his head be brought to the
block, and their union constitute his character.

Shoe and Boot Makers — May we wax a great
and happy nation; be bound by principles of
mutual regard, actuated as by one soul, and may our
prosperity as a people last until the end of time.

Breechers Makers and Skinners — May he be
shorn against the grain, smoked and welted, who
has not brains to know that the bands of the old
government were loosed.

Tobacconists— May the leaves of anti-federalism
be twisted together, and fastened by thorns, or be
rolled into tubes, and end in a puff.

Wagon Makers — Three more spokes to our new
wheel; a federal band for its tire, a willing people
for its axis, political wisdom to set it in motion;
and may its progress never be retarded by the lock-
chain of opposition.

Saddle-tree Makers — As we are chips of the same
block, branches from the same tree, may we be
glued together by a general efficient government.

Blue Dyers and Stampers — May Fame stamp
immortality on their names, who have died for our
I country.

! Tanners and Curriers — May every limb of that
I man be hacked, may he be leathered through soci-
j ety, and have his hide completely tanned, who is
! mean enough to curry favor.

Weavers— Forever honored be the names of

those, who, rejecting even the thrumbs of the old

web, have cut it out of the loom, and wove another

to clothe the political nakedness of their country.

I Tin-plate Workers— May the shears of liberality

and extended policy cut away local prejudices, and

j may the late heat of political disquisition only tend

j to melt the cement that is to solder us together.

Scythe and Sickle Makers— May the sickle of in-
dustry be filled with heavy harvests,until Time, with
I its scythe, shall mow down empires and ages.
j Butchers— As the matter is connected with the
bone, or one joint with another, so let us be united,
and may no cleaver ever disjoint us.

Gunsmiths — When the implements of war are req-
uisite to defend our country's rights, or resent her
wrongs, may coolness take the sight, and courage
draw the trigger.

Printers— May no government be so potent as to
restrain the liberty of the press; or so impotent as
not to be able to check its licentiousness.

Barbers— Hot curling irons and a dull razor to
the wig they once took upon them; may they re-
main as they now are, in the suds.

Turners— May the anti-federalists be "turned
from the evil of their ways," and be held no longer
in the vice of groundless opposition.

Coopers— May the new government prove abmd-
ing hoop to the States, and never suffer them to go
to staves.

Brick Makers— The materials which compose our
new constitution— may they sustain the heat of party


rage without a crack, and come out more perfect
from the kiln of faction.

Rope Makers — May the production of our trade
be the neclv-cloth of him who attempts to untwist
the political rope of our union.

Mathematical Instrument Makers — The political
compass, as it has been graduated by the finger of
accuracy; may it prove our guide in the winds of
legislation, and preserve its counterpoise however
shaken by the storms of foreign invasion or domestic

Joiners — The unanimity which augers that the
hatehet shall soon be buried.

Surveyors — May the needle of the new govern-
ment be magnetized by an honest love of fame,
and make the applause of the people its pole; may
the sight be taken by the pervading eye of genius,
the course be sloped by integrity, and may there be
no variations from national honor.

Merchants — constitution; may it prove
100 per cent better than the old one; may justice,
mercy and wisdom, be found in the invoice of its
excellencies; and may its net proceeds be in good
order at home, and respected in the councils of

Lawyers— A mild judge, a believing jury, a blun-
dering opponent, a good cause, a handsome fee, and
a federal client, to every advocate of our infant con-

Physicians— The political physicians, who, in
place of mending, have made a constitution; may it
retain its health and vigor, with the aid of medicine,
and may the quack undergo, at the same time, the
double operation of cathartic and emetic, who pre-
scribes bleeding.

Fourth of July, 1819. — During the first
half century of the American Republic, the
Fourth Day of July was celebrathd with un-
usual pomp and display in all towns in the
Union, and especially so in York, which had
done so much for the patriot cause. At
these annual celebrations, the patriots who
had engaged in the battles of the Revolution
always occupied a prominent position, and
were the most conspicitous jaersonages. The
Fourth of July, 1819, came on Sunday. The
"York Phalanx," an excellent military or-
ganization, commanded by Capt. Doudel,
met at the court house, in full uniform, and
attended religious services at the Episcopal
Church. Monday was set apart for the dem-
onstrations. The day was ushered in by a
discharge of artillery from the public com-
mon, the ringing of bells and the beating of
the revielle. At early dawn all the military
organizations of the town and vicinity parad-
ed, and afterward, with a large concourse of
people, assembled at Kraber's Spring, now
known as Brockie, home of the late Hon. J.
S. Black. There a feast was prepared by
ladies. After the dinner was partaken of, a
long array of patriotic toasts were proposed
and responded to. Dr. John Fisher was
president of the meeting, and Michael W.
Ash delivered the oration. He was a lawyer
of considerable ability, and a member of the
York bar. This anniversary was only a typ-

ical one, like many others that occurred,
both before and after this one.


Upon his return from his tour through the
Southern States, Gen. Washington visited
York, arriving here on Saturday, July 2,
1791. He came from Mt. Vernon through
Hanover. He was met by a delegation from
York at the present site of Nashville, in Jack-
son Township. With whom he remained
while in York, is not known. Major Clark,
Col. Hartley and Hon. James Smith, intimate
friends of Washington, were then living.
The following bill would indicate that there
was an illumination.

York, August ;-50, 1791.
George Fry:

Bot of Henry Pentz,
41 lbs of candles for illuminating the Court
House for the President of the United
States £2 18

He was doubtless received with great en-
thusiasm by the numerous patriots in and
around York, who had engaged in many
battles under him during the Revolution.

Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 113 of 218)