Around 1763, Jacob Wirt and Henrietta Wirt constructed a two story wooden tavern here. During the 18th century, taverns offered dinner, drink, and a comfortable bed to weary travelers. A decade later, Jacob died and left his property, including the brick store (George Washington House), to his heirs. By the mid-19th century, the tavern was demolished and German immigrant Francis Gasch built a home and shop for his cabinet and coffin making business on this lot.
George Washington frequently traveled on this road to Baltimore and Philadelphia and was familiar with the Indian Queen Tavern. In a letter to Elizabeth Willing Powell, dated March 26, 1797, he observed that although Spurrier's Tavern in Jessup was frequented by travelers, "the lodging is bad—the eating is tolerable; better for lodging and eating. At Bladensburg nine miles beyond, a good house is kept by one Ross (sign of the Indian Queen)."
Related albums • See other albumsStar-Spangled Banner National Trail
Related locationsMD, Prince Georges Co, Bladensburg
Related peopleJacob Wirt