The earliest section of what later on became the Elm Tree Inn in Farmington was the 1655 house of William Lewis, an original settler of the town. His son built a new and larger structure, around the old house, and the enlarged building became a tavern and inn. By the mid-eighteenth century, it was operated by Phineas Lewis. Washington dined at the tavern, while on his way to Hartford, in 1780 and again, while on his way to Wethersfield, in 1781. The French general Rochambeau may have also stayed there with his officers when he was passing through Connecticut with his army in 1781. The facade of the building was later updated in the Georgian style and the tavern came to be known as the Elm Tree Inn, after the elm trees on the property, planted in the 1760s. The Inn continued to be popular into the twentieth century as it was a stop on the trolley line to Hartford. Mark Twain frequently dined there while he lived in Hartford, as did the cast and crew filming Way Down East with Lillian Gish in 1919. The exterior of the Inn was once surrounded by a long verandah, which has since been removed. The building is now subdivided into condominiums.
Colonial, Farmington, Taverns & Inns
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