Mar 28, 2013

The Old '76 House

The Old '76 House is one of the countries oldest taverns, and holds a particularly interesting place in American history.  This is where American troops brought the redcoat Major John Andre for interrogation and imprisonment after he was caught aiding the infamous Benedict Arnold in his attempt to deliver West Point to the British.  Andre was tried, convicted and hanged atop a nearby hill, which is marked by a similar blue-and-yellow sign.  These signs are common sights throughout the Historic Hudson Valley.

Inside the tavern is decorated much as it might have been in colonial times.  The portraits of Andre and Arnold (or "The Spy" and "The Traitor", respectively) sit atop one of the mantles, the latter turned upside down as is customary with traitors.

The menu contains as much history and folklore as it does food items.  It lists its notable patrons throughout history, from George Washington and Alexander Hamilton up to Bill Murray and Rosie O'Donnell.  The waiters take pleasure in telling patrons ghost stories involving Major Andre's imprisonment as they make salads at the table.

Though this area is full of official historical sites and buildings, The Old '76 house is definitely a unique experience.

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