Old St. Andrews



The St. Andrews Coffeehouse



The "Old St. Andrews Coffee House
St. Andrews Bay Pilot, June 27, 1878
In the month of December, and the year 1783, stood away off in Penobscot, State of Maine, an Inn. A Mr. Andrew Martin surveyed this Penobscot Tavern, and a rising desire took possession of Martin's mind to become possessor of that same Penobscot House. It was a convenient little Hotel—and our speculating Andrew of 95 years ago, thought how good it would be to have that same "Penobscot House" standing in St. Andrews. St. Andrews, at that time, was sparse in its number of buildings and its population, and the addition of the Penobscoter to the edifices would be an acquisition too valuable to be disregarded; consequently, a bargain was effected, and John MacPhail was employed to raze to its foundation the Penobscot Hotel, remove, and raise it in St. Andrews. Thus reads the account:

Dec. 1783. Andrew Martin to John MacPhail, "Estimate of the value of the St. Andrews Coffee House," with the expense of removing it to St. Andrews, To the House taken down at Penobscot (30 pounds), To Freight from there to St. Andrews, 13 pounds, 10 shillings; To Taking down 3,000 bricks, 6 pounds; To freight of do. [sic] 2 pounds, 10 shillings; To 1,000 feet seasoned Boards, 2 pounds, 10 shillings; to Freight of do. [sic] 1 pound, 10 shillings; To 4 window frames, cases and sashes glazed, 4 pounds; to 1 pannel [sic] door, 1 pound. [total 61 pounds] "To be settled" (inside).

On the back it reads—"House Account settled."

Now, the question arises—why did Andrew Martin take such an interest in the Penobscot Hotel more than in any other, for there were several others in different parts of the State of Maine, far more attractive and convenient? For this very reason—It was called the "St. Andrews Coffee House;" and Mr. Martin loved St. Andrews, and the very name of the Hotel attracted him; and, without changing its name, he changed its location; to him no other name sounded so alluring; he yielded to its influence, and hence the curious can now walk down towards the water, past Mr. Clark's bakery and store (the old Getty stand) and a gentle rap, or a loud knock, at Sandy Donald's residence, will have the door opened for you, and you can walk in, into the "Old St. Andrews Coffee House." It is in good condition to this very day—the rooms are cozy-looking—low ceilings. The kind lady-occupant told the writer a few days ago, that—"there is not a warmer house in the town;" and her veracity is unquestionable.

Almost 100 years have passed away, and there stands the Old Penobscot Hotel, (St. Andrews Coffee House) in its primitive stability. What changes, since John MacPhail rendered his account of sixty one pounds to Andrew Martin for removing the now Andy Donald tenement from Penobscot! We have the House, the circumstances, the changes, all interesting as they are, to the mild, serious reflection of meditative minds until next week, when other "Jottings" will demand new attention.