OLD WASHINGTON (Drinks & Businesses)

By James Croggon, The Evening Star, August 14, 1910 [p. 10]

Many of the residents of Washington over sixty years ago who were addicted to the use of strong drink other than spirits used porter, ale and cider before the introduction of the lager beer saloons. Cordials and wines were dispensed in the confectioneries, and light drinks with refreshments attracted the patronage of some.

Before 1820 there was the Columbian garden, on the east side of 8th street north of Market space, conducted by Burkhart & Koenig, which tradition says was very popular with the young people. The next place of the kind was that of A. Favier, on 19th street, south of the Avenue, some ten or fifteen years later, William Horton had a mineral water depot on the Avenue east of 6th street. The porter and ale houses or cellars attracted the custom mostly of the old English families, but many others followed their example and "'arf and 'arf," a mixture of porter and ale, was a popular drink, while "porterie" and "aleree" pleased children.

In the twenties Robert Charlton, a grocer on the Avenue, west of 9th street, conducted a porter cellar. Frederick Shuman conducted a porter and ale cellar on the Avenue, east of 6th street; James Torrence was on 15th street, south of F street, and William Watson on the south side of the Avenue, west of 21st street. Capt. Michael Bulley was popular in the same business at the corner of 8th and K streets southeast, and was succeeded by his son, A.F. Bulley, who was in business down to the civil war times. The retailing gradually went to the taverns, and through the agents of breweries families obtained supplies by the bottle.

The saddle and harness business was represented here by a few persons in the the twenties. William Young was on 12th street, north of the avenue, and Henry Johnson on the north side of F between 13th and 14th streets. At that period the saddle bag was in common use by the horsemen and the carpet bag by the pedestrian. So few trunks were in use that it could scarcely be said that the trunkmaking business was carried on. The usual trunk was a round top, long box covered by the hide of a cow with the hair on, and thus there were trunks like "Joseph's coat of many colors" brindle and spotted no two alike, and yet could easily be identified.

It is unnecessary to say that such trunks would not stand the handling in these days, and yet there are some extant, railroad men having handled a few in the last few years which were held together by rope or strap.

In the forties there was much doing in the saddle, harness and trunk line, though in the latter many trunks came here as cases in which merchandise was packed. Daniel Campbell had been for some years established on the Avenue between 4-1/2 and 6th streets, and later came into prominence through the introduction of an improved style saddle which was used by many in the Mexican war. C.J. Fisher & Son were then on the south side of the Avenue between 12th and 13th streets, but later went out of business, the father becoming a Treasury clerk and the son becoming a popular auctioneer. Owen Summers, on 7th street, opposite the east front of the Interior Department, was there many years, having much patronage from the country people who came in by the 7th street road. Later F.A. Lutz was on Pennsylvania avenue east of 6th street, and for a time the firm was Lutz & Beall. Thomas Fitman was on the south side of the Avenue at 6th street, but later entered the consular service.

The square on the north side of Pennsylvania avenue between 9th and 10th streets was occupied, in part, by the watchmaking and jewelry business in the teens of the century. John Galt about 1820 moved up from Alexandria, where he had been in business since 1804, and was here many years. The business descended to his sons, M. and W. Galt, and was carried on there several years, but is now located adjoining The Star office. Robert Keyworth, better known as Maj. Keyworth, for he was prominent in old-time military affairs and also in city councils, occupied a store adjoining Galt's. Seraphim Massi, one of the three brothers of that name, was also adjoining, and farther west was John Latruite, whose specialty was watches and clocks. On the south side of the avenue, opposite Brown's Hotel, Charles H. Wiltberger, an old citizen of Capitol Hill, was a silversmith and jeweler. In the thirties he was the city register. Silverplating was followed by S. Lancaster on the north side of F street between 13th and 14th.

In the forties Messrs. Galt, Keyworth and Massi, watchmakers and jewelers, were at their old stands, and in this decade, Samuel Lewis was a leading silversmith on the south side of the avenue between 10th and 11th streets, and afterward moved to the north side between 12th and 13th streets. Near the latter place was J. Montandon, who was succeeded by C. Lesiardi. Chauncey Warriner was on the north side of the avenue between 2d and 3d, and after near Brown's Hotel. Mr. S. Masi had a second establishment near the corner of 4-1/2 street and the Avenue. On the south side of the Avenue between 12th and 13th streets was John Reese. William Voss long kept opposite a well known watchmaking and jewelry establishment. On 7th street at the corner of H was Joseph Marsoletti, who was better known in the musical world, at one time being the leader of one of the best bands of the day, that of the Washington Light Infantry. Joseph Huggins was then on the south side of F street between 12th and 13th as watchmaker, and later on the Avenue near 11th street. On the Avenue between 4-1/2 and 6th streets was C.W. Heydon & Co. and S. Eddy.

In 1820 W.J. Stone was an engraver on the north side of the avenue between 12th and 13th streets, and Benjamin Chambers was in the same business on the south side of the Avenue between 10th and 11th streets.

By 1840 there were several engravers and copper-plate printers. J.B.N. Throop was engaged in the business on the Avenue between 1st and 2d streets. On the Avenue between 2d and 3d Smith & McClelland had an establishment and afterward the firm dissolved, William Smith going to the Avenue near 11th street and David McClelland to the old medical college at 10th and E streets. O.H. Throop was at 10th and E streets. Benjamin Chambers had moved to the east side of 10th street between D and E streets, and he was interested as well in the improvement of ordnance, a specimen gun being mounted in front of his home.