195 Main Street, New London NH

Current Use

  • 1975 - present - Peter Christian's Tavern
  • Gourmet Garden


  • 2000 - Peter Christian's Tavern and Artisans
  • 1996 - Peter Christian's Tavern, owned by Tom and Kathi Brown and Russ and Kathie Sarles
  • 1976 -1996 - Peter Christian's Tavern, owned by Murray and Karen Washburn
  • 1972 - 1976 - Edgewood Inn, owned by William P. Cooper (1932-2012) and Barbara (Burnett) Cooper
  • 1969 - 1972 - Edgewood Inn, owned by Pete and Lynne Billings
  • 1963 - 1969 - Edgewood Motor Inn, owned by Lansing Bailey and Norm Leger
  • 1957 - 1963? - Edgewood Inn owned by Ruth Dodge Noonan and her father, Irving Dodge
  • April to November, 1957 - Edgewood Motor Inn acquired by Mr. and Mrs. W. J. Flanders of Lexington, MA
  • 1956 - 1957 - Owned by the Clifford Horning family who then bought the College Inn
  • 1947 - 1956 - Edgewood Inn, owned by Forrest W. Sampson (d. circa 1980?) and Frances (Abell) Sampson (1913-1968)
  • 1944 - 1947 - Edgewood Inn, owned by Forrest Loverin (1908 - c. 1979) and wife, Gladys (Pressey) (Carson) Loverin (1902- c. 1989)
  • 1922 - 1943 - Edgewood Inn, owned by Charles Bool (1883-1943) and Florence E. Walker Bool ((1888-1939); the Bools had a tea room with the Inn by 1931
  • by 1900 - 1922, owned by William Orr - divided into 3 apartments
  • 1893 - 1900 - Frank W. Knowlton (1855-1930) and 2nd wife, Elzina M. Smith (1854-19??); his mother-in-law, Rhoda Smith, below, lived with them
  • 1883? - 1893 - Mrs. Rhoda Maria Smith (1823-1911); took in summer boarders by 1888
  • 18?? - 1883 - Marcus Sargent (1801-1885) and Ann (Severance) Sargent (1806-1883)
  • after 1859 - Gage Woodward (1809-1890) and Betsey (Jones) Woodward (1812-1890); Gage is described as building the "Frank Knowlton House"
  • c. 1799 Stephen Sargent (1775-1856) and Sarah (Perley) Sargent (1779-1862), resided in red house ... (see below)

Building History

Stephen Sargent and his wife "Sally" (Sarah Perley), married in 1799 and lived "in a red house which used to sit nearly opposite William S. Messer's present dwelling."[1] In Lord's description of a walk around New London in 1800, Stephen is described as "at Frank W. Knowlton's," meaning the 1899 owner when Lord's history was published.[2] A cabinet-maker by trade, Stephen served in the War of 1812. Sally's mother, Apphia Perley, was living with them when she died in 1825. Two of their children, Marcus and Charles Seamans Sargent, had residences on Main Street, and Marcus later owned this house.

Gage Woodward and his wife Betsey, are described in Lord as buying a little red house at the mouth of Burpee Hill Road from Marcus Sargent in 1859, residing there until Gage built the Frank Knowlton house.[3] He then went to the "Merrill Robie place" (at 299 Main Street). This implies that the earlier Sargent house on the site was destroyed or taken down before Gage erected the current house. Marcus Sargent (son of Stephen and Sarah, above) with his wife, Ann, bought the house of Gage Woodward and resided here until Ann's death in 1883. They had earlier lived across the street in at what is now 200 Main St. (Maplewood Farm Inn). Marcus Sargent and his wife, Ann Severance Sargent, married in 1829. Marcus built the William S. Messer house (200 Main St.) and "resided there for a time," then kept store at Scytheville for two years, and then "returned to the hill and purchased the Gage Woodward house, where he resided until after the death of his wife, January 25, 1883."[4] In 1883, Hugh Clough may have lived here briefly.

The next owner that can be determined with certainty is Mrs. Rhoda Maria Smith, the widow of William Plummer Smith, a mason who died in 1872 in Manchester. "Auntie Smith" as she was known, moved to New London in 1877 but seemed not to be at this site until after 1883. Four of her 8 children lived near her (Orra dying at her home in 1879 of pneumonia); the others were Cornelia, wife of Gen. Joseph Clough; Elzina who inherited the house with her husband, Frank Knowlton; and Reverdy, who lived across the street. Elzina and Frank were married in 1893, and Mrs. Smith lived with them until they moved around 1900. The Knowltons are believed to have added a second story to the house, as well as a new kitchen and dining room, and added the barn.

William H. Orr owned the property about 1900 (his name appears on the Hancox maps of 1911 and 1915). He divided the structure into three apartments.

In 1922 Charles Haddon Bool (c. 1881-1943) and wife Florence (Walker) Bool acquired the property and turned it into the Edgewood Inn. He built an annex to the structure and added several rooms to the building. By 1936 they had room for 20 guests and had added a sunroom to the front of the building. There were also porches on both the east and west sides of the building and "garage accommodations in connection with the house."[5] The Bools, both of whom were born in Nova Scotia, had three daughters and a son. After Charles' death in 1943, the property was sold to Forrest and Gladys Loverin. (Gladys was the daughter of Fred and Josie Pressey.) The Loverins owned it for about three years when it was acquired by Forrest and Frances Sampson who made other improvements.[6] They owned the Inn from 1946 to 1956.[7]

The Clifford Horning family had the Edgewood briefly, selling it in April of 1957 to Mr. and Mrs. W.J. Flanders of Lexington, MA and moving to the College Inn.[8] The Flanders seemed to have only stayed a short while, as Ruth Noonan and her father, Irving Dodge of Lexington, MA, were operating the Inn by November of 1957. Ruth leased from the Flanders for a short while until the sale was completed. "Extensive changes have neen made in the kitchen and interior remodeling and redecorating will be done."[9] Ruth also owned the Candy House at this time.

Lansing Bailey and Norman Leger acquired the Inn in 1963. Bailey sold the inn to Pete and Lynne Billings of Salisbury, MD in April of 1969.[10] Bill and Barbara Cooper acquired it in 1972. The Coopers made the "White Elephant Lounge" providing a spot for good music. Since the Murray Washburns acquired the inn in 1976, the structure has served as a restaurant known as Peter Christian's Tavern. In 1979 Robin Chase was the manager, succeeding Tom Mills. The building included Artisan's Workshop (there since 1975). At this time, the inn rooms were converted to apartments. At about the same time, Gary Robinson started "Mrs. Robinson's" in the tavern building.

Photos & Images

Peter Christian's Tavern

  1. ^ Lord, p. 144
  2. ^ Lord, p. 54
  3. ^ Lord, p. 542
  4. ^ Lord, pp. 380-381
  5. ^ A Description and Business Directory of New London, July, 1936, p. 30
  6. ^ Spiller
  7. ^ Celena Todd Scrapbook #3, page 51
  8. ^ Celena Todd Scrapbook #8, p, 43
  9. ^ Celena Todd Scrapbook #3, pp. 10 and 56
  10. ^ Celena Todd Scrapbook #24, p. 18