Hunter Valley Inns & Hotels

Freemason's Arms/ Queen's Arms

West Maitland


The Queen's Arms was situated in High Street West Maitland and was formerly known as the Freemason's Arms.

In 1843 an inquest was held at the Queen's Arms  by the coroner John Skottowe Parker on the body of West Evans, a carpenter and ticket of leave holder who had died at the Hotel after his clothes caught fire.

Innkeeper James Young, knowing West Evans to be a harmless type of person had allowed Evans to sleep in the tap room overnight when he became too drunk to walk home. During the night Mrs. Young who was in the next room was awakened by a disagreeable smell and Evans groaning. When Young went to investigate, opening the tap room door the body of Evans rose up in a flame. James Young immediately procured a blanket and threw it over the man to extinguish the fire and sent for Dr. Harrington however Evans died the following day. Mr. Young was commended by the jury for his highly praiseworthy and humane conduct.

Perhaps James Young made a habit of praiseworthy conduct. On a cold winter's night in July 1844 he had admitted to his house an aboriginal man Martin who had called about 11pm saying he was 'murry cold' and wished to sit down in the kitchen. Mr. Young let him in and returned to bed. An hour later he was awakened by the Chief constable who had found Martin down the street with the kettle and the key to Young's kitchen door in his possessions. Although Martin had stated he would have returned the kettle he was apprehended and taken to Court where James Young then stated on his behalf that he did not think the prisoner had any intention of stealing the kettle and he had no doubt that Martin would have brought it back again.

In March 1848 the Queen's Arms  was advertised for auction.

The property had a frontage to High street of 70 feet with a depth f 608 feet. The Inn had been conducted for ten years by James Young. The building itself was said to exhibit an extensive respectable external appearance with internal rooms so neat in their appearance as to render them highly comfortable. It was in the centre of some of the leading mercantile establishments in the town.
The Ground floor consisted of
1 Tap room 21ft by 15ft 9 in
1 Bar Room 10ft. by 10 ft
1 Store room 13 ft 6in by 10 ft.
1 Back Parlour 19 ft by 19ft
1 Bedroom 9 ft 6 in by 10 ft.
1 front Parlour 15 ft 6 in by 13 ft. 6 in
2 bed rooms each 9ft 6in by 10 ft Hall 13 ft 6
The Second Story
1 front Sitting room 21ft by 15 ft 9 in
2 Bedrooms each 7ft 9 in by 10 ft
Twelve rooms
Kitchen 14 feet by 14 feet
Abutting the kitchen was a large brick building containing the laundry 14ft by 14ft and a bake house 24 feet 6 in by 14 ft. Also included was a 3 stalled stable.

James Young still held the publican's license in 1849.

Patrick Fitzgerald was granted a license in April 1854.     



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