History of the
Reverend Samuel Willard proprietor and first Minister of the town of Groton was
the first owner of the land on which the Inn stands today. The town of Groton
was probably named for the ancestral home of John Winthrop's family. The main
building was the home of Rev. Samuel Dana. He was dismissed from the church and
town for preaching a warm defense of George III. During King Phillips war, forty
homes were destroyed by the Indians, the Dana House among them. The home was
later rebuilt and successfully defended in 1694. One of the of the five houses
not burned was Richardson Tavern, which was erected in 1678 and a section of it
was rolled up to the Inn and attached.
1714, the towns third meeting house was moved and became part of the Inn in
1754. Use of the building as a Revolutionary tavern dates to the period 1765 to
1770. Innholders in that period were captain Jephthal Richardson and Captain
Jonathan Keep. He named the tavern “Captain Keep 's Tavernstand .''
were Captain Keep's brothers, Isaiah and Joseph, who were landlords until 1798.
After that the history gets a bit confusing. Apparently, in 1798 Joseph Hoar
sold Emerson Tavern (then called “Mr. Hoar's Hotel “). To acquire the inn,
Mr. Hoar ran the Inn until 1843, except in 1836 when Moses Gill and his
brother-in-law, Henry Lewis Lawrence, were landlords.
The Inn then became a Temperance House under Mr. Thomas Treadwell Farnsword until 1852. Daniel Hunt was the Keeper of the Inn from 1852 to 1884 when it was known as “Hunt's Tavern''. James Minot Colburn took over in 1854, naming the Inn, “Colburn’s Tavern”.
The list of historic personages who left their names in the Inn 's register is impressive. It includes President Ulysses S. Grant, Longfellow, Luther Burbank, Andrew Carnegie, Henry Ward Beecher, President Grover Cleveland and Alice and Eleanor Roosevelt. William Howard Taft stayed at the Inn on Election night in 1908.
1797 to 1847 the Inn was the meeting place of St. Paul's Masonic Lodge.
the Inn is owned and operated by George Pergantis, also Master Chef at the Inn.
Born in Greece in 1930, on the island of Andros, he worked as a furniture maker
and then was 3rd Captain on a Greek ship. He married and had three sons. He has
been renovating the Inn since 1977. Opening day of the Inn was December 15,
1990, which marked a new era in the history of the Inn.
Mr. Pergantis hopes the Inn will be as it was in the past to the citizen of Groton and neighboring towns. A meeting place for friends to enjoy, whether to have a family function or a quiet dinner or overnight stay in one of the hand hewed pine canopy beds made by George himself.