Historic Bars

 

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Our Historic Bars series is in a fresh round of old and historic watering holes around the country, but we here at PreservationNation found ourselves getting a bit nostalgic for the favorite bars of yesteryear. Indulge us for a moment, and come along for a stroll (or stagger) down Memory Lane as we revisit the five most popular bar features from the past year.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Julia Rocchi

Julia Rocchi

Julia Rocchi is the director of digital content at the National Trust. By day she wrangles content; by night (and weekends), she shops local, travels to story-rich places, and walks around looking up at buildings.

 

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During Prohibition, a grocery store on the upper level was a front for a basement-level speakeasy, called Menotti’s Buffet. Today, you can order cocktails upstairs at Townhouse or in the basement at Del Monte Speakeasy.

As you might imagine, it wasn’t easy to get into Menotti’s Buffet during Prohibition -- and I mean that in many senses of the word. First, you had to know that the speakeasy even existed there in the basement of a Venice, California, grocery store. Plus, you also had to know the bartender. And then there was the part about actually getting down to where the alcohol was served. That required going through a trapdoor and into a tiny two-person, rope-operated dumbwaiter.

But in its 100 years, this bar -- the oldest bar in Venice, and one of the oldest in the greater Los Angeles area -- has always kept the party going.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser is the Los Angeles-based Field Editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys writing and thinking about history, art, architecture, and public space.

[Historic Bars] Chicago’s Southport Lanes

Posted on: July 16th, 2015 by David Weible No Comments

 

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Southport Lanes sits less than a mile from Wrigley Field on Chicago's North Side.

If this blog is any indication, the bar enthusiast of today exists in a world of nearly boundless choice. Trendy speakeasies, prim and proper cocktail lounges, back yard biergartens, and the deep confines of dives beckon in an endless siren song of booze-sodden bon humour.

But if you ask me, there’s nothing better than a corner bar where the beer is cold, the bartender knows your name, and you call the next game of pool by stacking your quarters on the edge of the table.

And while sanctuaries like this have largely gone the way of the affordable apartment in places like New York and D.C., Chicago may still be the capital of the genre.

If you’re looking for an example, Southport Lanes (SPL) is a good place to start.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

David Weible

David Weible

David Weible is a content specialist for the National Trust, previously with Preservation magazine. He came to D.C. from Cleveland, Ohio, where he wrote for Sailing World and Outside magazines.

[Historic Bars] Mr. Henry’s in Washington, D.C.

Posted on: July 9th, 2015 by Katherine Flynn 4 Comments

 

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Mr. Henry’s has inhabited the same building on Capitol Hill since 1966.

As any District resident will tell you, Capitol Hill isn’t all C-SPAN and suits. Once you venture beyond the iconic dome and staid office buildings into the surrounding neighborhood populated by restaurants, shops and row houses, you’ll find plenty of eclectic charm, not to mention a historic bar or two.

Mr. Henry’s is one of the oldest and most beloved of these establishments. Operating continuously in the same location since 1966, the watering hole is well-known for its rich jazz history, as well as its friendly atmosphere and weekend brunch buffet (which, sadly, was discontinued earlier this year under new management.) The walls of the first floor are lined with Victorian-inspired paintings and art that have remained largely untouched over the years.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn is an assistant editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys coffee, record stores and uncovering the stories behind historic places. Follow her on Twitter at @kateallthetime.

[Historic Bars] Flat Tire Lounge in Madrid, Iowa

Posted on: July 2nd, 2015 by Lauren Walser

 

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Flat Tire Lounge is in an old Quonset hut originally used by the railroad. It now features a new 800-square-foot deck.

A pint of beer after a summer afternoon bike ride? Yes, please.

Flat Tire Lounge in Madrid, Iowa, can deliver just that. This bike-friendly bar opened in 2011 as the vision of a group of local friends.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser is the Los Angeles-based Field Editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys writing and thinking about history, art, architecture, and public space.

[Historic Bars] Calaboose Grille in Owego, New York

Posted on: June 25th, 2015 by Jamesha Gibson

 


The Calaboose Grille is located in the former Tioga County jail in Owego, New York.

You walk into a small cell. You hear the rough roll and clink of the cell door as it slams shut behind you. Is this the end of the line? Is it a surreal “Locked Up Abroad” (or in Owego’s case, “Locked Up in a Small Town”) experience?

No. You’re just having a good drink and a good time at the Calaboose Grille.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Jamesha Gibson

Jamesha Gibson

Jamesha Gibson is an Editorial Intern at the National Trust. She is passionate about using historic preservation as an avenue for underrepresented communities to share their unique stories. Jamesha also enjoys learning about other cultures through reading, art, language, dancing, and especially cuisine.