By Willard Flanders – (Sept. 1897 – Jan. 1995)
Of the many interesting historical blocks in Boscawen, this old Tavern on the north side of the Church is worthy of mention. Just when it was built and by whom, is a question. We first find David Ambrose as the owner who was succeeded by Justin S.(Sam) Ambrose who operated the Tavern. It was a regular stopping place for the stage coaches. The Tavern was a large square Colonial house and the barn was across the street, which a few of us remember as having a cupola and weathervane representing a running horse.
The name Keneson(Charles Kenison) has been mentioned as selling it to John E. Rines in 1891. He was born at Gilmanton N.H. April 24, 1837.
John Rines operated a brickyard, which flourished until his death December 1902. He ably served as County Commissioner and as Selectman of the town and in various other positions of honor and trust. He was a public benefactor.
In 1910 Dr. A. C. Alexander, Trustee of the Estate, sold it to Francis H. Rowley, D.D., President of Mass. S.P.C.A.. Dr. Rowley renovated the house and barn, making sleeping quarters upstairs in the barn. He then leased it to G.F.D. Paign, a member of Paign Furniture Company of Boston. He was a Civil War veteran and a man of much influence. Paign brought to Boscawen a different style of living, than most country folks are accustomed to. He had a large Peerless Touring car with a black chauffeur dressed in livery. The Peerless in those days considered one of the best automobiles, known then as the three P’s, Peerless, Peirce Arrow and Packard.
Servants in the home consisted of a cook and laundress. Servants occupied the rooms in the barn.
Paign had traveled extensively in the Orient, capturing much of that life with a camera. He became a regular attendant at church services and was a benefactor in many ways. He gave slide programs of travels had shades made for all of the windows of the church to make his programs successful. They did much touring and took the Pastor and his wife with them. It was a policy to always have pennies in his pocket to give the kiddies wherever they stopped. A penny in those days would buy a piece of candy and for many a kid a penny was hard to come by.
In 1912 Dr. Rowley occupied the house and this time instead of an automobile, a horse and stylish cut-under carriage was used. Mrs. Rowley always drove and enjoyed caring for the horse. The Rowley’s were a great asset to the town and he was frequently called on as a speaker for many occasions.
In 1927 Edwood Webster(Edward Webster) bought the house and sold it in 1936 to Frank Beede, President of Beede Electrical Company of Penacook. In 1950 Beede sold it to William Cook. The old tavern has had some changes over the years. While it was owned by John Rines, the house was rebuilt, giving it a hip roof as we see it today. The fire demon has also brought about some changes.
Finally, it can be said, the old Tavern and its distinguished owners have had a good moral influence in the community.