White Horse Tavern
See also: Oldest buildings in America

The White Horse Tavern, constructed before 1673 in Newport, Rhode Island, is one of the oldest tavern buildings in the United States. It is located on the corner of Farewell and Marlborough streets in Newport.


Frances Brinley constructed the original building on the site in 1652. In 1673, the lot was sold to William Mayes, and the building was enlarged to become a tavern. The building was also used for large meetings, including use as a Rhode Island General Assembly meeting place, a court house, and a city hall. William Mayes, Sr., obtained a tavern license in 1687 and William Mayes, Jr., a well-known pirate, operated the tavern through the early eighteenth century. The operation was named "The White Horse Tavern" in 1730 by owner Jonathan Nichols. During the American Revolution, Tories and British troops were quartered there around the time of the British occupation and the Battle of Rhode Island. After years of neglect as a boarding house, Newport's Van Bueren family donated money to the private Preservation Society of Newport to restore the building in 1952. After the restoration, the building was sold and once again operated as a private tavern and restaurant. As of 2008, it still remains a popular drinking and dining location.


Building Activity

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