St. Andrews Coffee House, 1784
June 27, 1878
Jottings on the Street, No. 4
Leaving the ancient Lochary dwelling; next beside it, in social proximity, is the residence and neat store and bake-shop of Mr. Donald Clark.
Formerly, say 40 years ago, and previously and subsequently to that period, Mr. Samuel Getty kept a tavern here. The well-filled store of the present proprietor was at that time used as a liquor shop and barroom, with demi-johns, decanters, tumblers, glasses, long-necked bottles---some labelled Old Rye, Pale Bandy, Irish Whiskey, London Porter, Brown Stout, Port Wine, Sherry, Cherry Brandy, New Rum, Old Jamaica, and Old Tom, with all the other etceteras of fancy cordials, etc., etc., which go so largely to make up what is called a respectable liquor shop, were in tempting array at “Sam Getty’s.” Mr. Getty also kept entertainment for travellers and others, and good stabling.
In fact, it is only doing justice to the deceased, to say that he always treated his guests well-was always kind and affable—and was quite popular as a landlord. We now come to—
The “Old St. Andrews Coffee House”
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 what same Penobscot House. It was a convenient little Hotel—and our speculating Andrews of 95 years ago, thought how good it would be to have that same “Penobscot House” standing in St. Andrews.
SA, at that time, was sparse in its number of building sand 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 SA,
To the House taken down at Penobscot (30 pounds), To Freight from there to SA, 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 seasons 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 Sa, 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, part Mr. Clark’s bakery and store (the old Getty stand) and a gentle rap, or a loud know, 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 Martine 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.
St. Croix Courier
Shire town Items
Town Buys Historic Bill
A three-day auction sale was held last week at the residence of the late David Clark. There was a fine collection of old mahogany furniture and old-fashioned dishes, most of which brought good prices. The original copy of a memorandum of the sale and removal of the old Coffee House from Penobscot to St. Andrews in 1783 was bid on by the Mayor for the town. This interesting old building was unfortunately destroyed in the disastrous fire of 1930.
St. Croix Courier
News Notes from SA
Shortage of Ice: This part of the country is experiencing a severe shortage of storage ice for domestic use. Even with the great number of electric refrigerators in use today large numbers of householders till use natural ice. George Higgins, the local ice merchant, supplies over 150 accounts with block ice during the summer season. During the last month he has been buying up any surplus stock wherever he can find it. Finally he has had to call on the artificial ice plant in Saint John for assistance. With so much ice available in Chamcook Lake in the winter it would seem like a wise move to establish a large ice house at the lakeside and save the expense of trucking it to town to be stored. In the spring and summer the ice has to be dug out of the sawdust and trucked again to the consumer. By having a storage supply at the lake it could be sluiced into the icehouse easily and then the one trucking and handling would give it to the consumer directly from the lakeside.
Happy Corners—Some little time ago we were asked by Mr. Walter DeWolfe of St. Stephen if we could tell him where “Happy Corners” was located in St. Andrews. It seems that in the year 1819 Mr. DeWolfe ancestors (Stevenson’s) came out to this country and spent the night at a house called “Happy Corners.” Mr. DeWolfe has this information in a diary. The next day they continued on to St. Stephen and eventually settled there. After making a great many inquired among the older residents of SA, without success, we have at last been enlightened by Mrs. James Ross. “Happy Corners” was a small house just behind the old Coffee House. Both the Coffee House and Happy Corners were destroyed by the disastrous fire of June 1930. The present home of Frank Henderson is on the site of the old Coffee House. How or why the adjacent building was called Happy Corners remains unknown but Mrs. Ross can vouch for the location of the house as her own family lived in it at one time.