Robinson’s Tavern Today

In 2017, I wrote a post, “The Mine Run Campaign Comes to Locust Grove,” that offered historical and modern views of the former Robinson’s Tavern intersection along modern Route 20. Today, a reader responding to that post expressed disappointment that I didn’t include a modern image of Robinson’s Tavern itself. I told him I’d try to get one up later today, so here it is:

Robinson Tavern modern

The building, which dates back to circa. 1814, used to sit next to the Orange Turnpike.

RT Next to Road 0

In this photo (above), which comes from the Orange County Historical Society, the state historical marker stands in the front yard of the building. The tavern’s old well is visible behind it immediately to the right in the photo.

RT Next to Road 02

The building’s prime location at the intersection (above) made it desirable for development. In 1994, the tavern was moved about 250 yards north in order to make room for a store on the corner. The area has since grown into a small shopping area that consists of a couple strips malls.

Today, the tavern little resembles the structure that George Gordon Meade used as his temporary headquarters when he first arrived on the battlefield on November 27, 1863—but the building does still exist.

(Now time for the shameless plug:) For more on the history of Robinson’s Tavern, check out my new book on the Mine Run Campaign, The Great Battle Never Fought, available on Amazon and from publisher Savas Beatie.

Layout 1

The second and third photos are both courtesy of the Orange County Historical Society.

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5 Responses to Robinson’s Tavern Today

  1. I always thought it was Robertson’s Tavern …

    • Chris Mackowski says:

      Union troops almost all universally referred to it as “Robertson’s Tavern,” most likely because that’s the name Union officers used in their official reports. However, the tavern was owned by John Almond and his wife, Mary Ann Robinson Almond. Mary Ann’s stepmother, Elizabeth Robinson, also lived there. I’ve not been able to find out where the alternative name came from, but it was widely used postwar and is still widely used today. The roadside state historical marker uses “Robinson’s,” though.

  2. Todd Berkoff says:

    Chris – thanks for these photos. I had never seen the tavern in its original location.

    Mr. Epperson, you are correct. Seems like Chris has Robinson on the brain for some reason.

    • Chris Mackowski says:

      See note, above. “Robinson” was the maiden name of the woman who owned the tavern at the time of the battle.

  3. Well, somewhere between the Tavern and Saunders (Sanders?) Field there is the house of somebody named Apperson. I’ve often wanted to knock on the door and tell him how to spell the name correctly, but never had quite that level of gumption. 😉

    (Seriously, there is—or was; they may have moved—a family named Apperson just west of the Park boundary.)

    Chris, having read your book on the region (“Dark Close Wood”), I should have known you had it right …

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