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      LIBERTY AND LIBATION AT THE LION small black logo
STORY AND PHOTOGRAPHY BY CHRIS POH
The mere fact that a bunch of rebellious fellows gathered at one tavern to engage in some spirited civil disobedience that ultimately led them to march on another tavern in order to liberate their compatriots, who were being held by federal marshals, is reason enough to want to raise a glass at either end of this trail of historic subversion. Sadly though, the Sun Inn in Bethlehem Pennsylvania, the site of the incarceration, does not currently have the license to serve strong drink to the public. But McCOOLE'S RED LION INN in Quakertown, Pennsylvania continues to function in that capacity much the same as it did in 1799 when John Fries provided guidance and direction for, what had become that most cherished of American customs, another tax rebellion.


     Thanks to James Mann -  www.jamesmannartfarm.com      
A painting of the Fries Rebellion in Quakertown, PA by James Mann as seen in American Public House Review
THE CONFRONTATION - ENOCH ROBERTS' TAVERN IN QUAKERTOWN - MARCH 6 1799
A PAINTING DEPICTING THE FRIES REBELLION BY JAMES MANN



Ironically Fries had served well as an enforcer of Federalist tax policy as a member of the militia that helped to put down the Whiskey Rebellion in 1794. Now on the other side of insurrection, he rallied the German population of northeastern Pennsylvania against what was deemed an unnecessary and discriminatory levy. The House Tax was also commonly referred to as the “Window Tax,” because part of the assessment was based upon the size of windows and number of glass panes in each dwelling. The revenue generated by way of this rather creative bureaucratic formulation would be used to finance a possible war with France. The only casualties of the whole affair, since the potential conflict with the French was averted, would be a few unlucky government appraisers, forty three jailed rebels, and the tax payers who were never reimbursed.



An historical sign describing the Fries Rebellion posted outside McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review
CLICK HERE FOR MORE OF THE STORY ABOUT THE FRIES REBELLION OF 1799



Unfortunately for John Fries and two of his fellow co-conspirators, John Gettman and Fred Hainey the seed of legitimate protest planted in Quakertown yielded only the hanging tree. On May 23rd, 1800 the three men were scheduled to be executed for treason at a location opposite the Red Lion Inn. It was only by way of a presidential pardon issued by John Adams that allowed the three to continue to view earthly events through Pennsylvania’s over assessed window panes.



Horse and Carriage in front of McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review
DONNA ZUMMO OF KNIGHT EAGLE CARRIAGE TOURS PULLS UP IN FRONT OF McCOOLE'S RED LION INN IN QUAKERTOWN, PA



By the end of the Civil War the Red Lion Inn had added quite a few additional windows. Two major expansions had turned it into a bustling hotel and eatery.



The bar at McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review
McCOOLE'S COMFORTABLE BAR RE-DONE TO PERFECTION



The parlor room at Mc Coole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review

The dining room at McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review
THE ELEGANT PARLOR

A WARM DINING ROOM WITH AN HISTORIC SPIRIT



Today the businessmen, politicians, and travelers that once viewed life at this important American crossroad from the upper windows and balcony are gone; but the longstanding tradition of gracious hospitality continues to flourish beyond the threshold of the front door.



A cozy nook in the corner at McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review

The fireplace at McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review
A COZY CORNER NOOK

THE HEARTY FIREPLACE . . . OF COURSE



Extensive and imaginative renovations have fused together the best designs of eighteenth and nineteenth century craftsmanship to create a space that rivals any historic tavern in the country. And, as it was when John Fries fomented a bit of revolution, it remains a place where people can proudly assemble to remember the past, celebrate the present and carefully consider the future.

www.mccoolesredlioninn.com
The taps at McCoole's Red Lion Inn in Quakertown, PA as seen in American Public House Review








McCOOLE'S RED LION INN

4 SOUTH MAIN STREET

QUAKERTOWN, PENNSYLVANIA 18951

(215) 538 1776

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