Hunter Valley Inns & Hotels
The Crown Inn
Henry Kesterton had been proprietor of the
Bush Tavern at Black
Creek in the early 1840's.
By 1846 he held a publican's
license for the Crown Inn at Anvil Creek. In October of
that year the newly erected Inn with full trade and land
attached was advertised for sale. Applications were to be made
to John Mackay or Mr. R.J. Want in Sydney or to
Helenus Scott at Glendon.
By November of 1846 Henry Kesterton had decided to swap his
public life for a life in the bush. He announced his retirement
as Innkeeper preparatory for a 'sojourn in the bush'. His
beloved wife Emma had died on the 12th November 1846 aged 32
years after a painful and protracted illness and Henry was left
with a family of five young children to raise . Auctioneer
Jeremiah Ledsam was to auction the Inn on the 10th of
December 1846 at 11am. He advertised it as an important and
extensive sale with property of superior description with
articles as were deemed indispensable in a well regulated and
The Inn was situated half way
on the road from Singleton to Maitland and doing a first rate
trade. It contained eleven rooms and four acres of gardens. A
paddock of 20 acres with a never failing supply of water was
also part of the property.
As well as the stock in trade
of the Inn, there were the bar fixtures comprising every article
in the line and a first rate Beer engine. Also for sale was
Kesterton's second hand Stanhope Gig, cart, horses and colts. A
large and splendid assortment of household furniture consisting
of Cane seated chairs, telescope tables, dining tables, Dee
tables dressing tables table covers horse hair sofas chiffonier,
side boards, decanters cut and plain glass, cruet stands, pickle
stands, chest drawers, books, pictures, sporting plates,
bedsteads, wash hand stands furnished, feather beds, blankets,
counterpanes, bed covers, horse hair mattresses, wool
mattresses, oil cloths, carpets, fenders, fire irons and Kitchen
The license for the Crown Inn was
transferred from Henry Kesterton to
Hector McLean in December 1846.
McLean moved to the
premises with his young family soon afterwards. Hector McLean
had previously been publican at the Harp Inn at Stoney Creek and
he did not remain long at the Crown.
1847 his 13 year old son John McLean had a lucky escape from
serious injury when his younger brother poked a stick at the
horse John was riding, which immediately started off at speed
throwing him off. He fell on his head 'with some violence'
however managed to walk into the house where he fell
unconscious. His alarmed parents requested advice as to do what
to do and John's head was shaved under the impression that the
patient was suffering from 'concussion of the brain'.
Dr. Michael McCartney was
then sent for and arrived two days after the accident when he
found the boy entirely out of danger.(2)
In June 1847
the Crown Inn at Anvil Creek and the
Union Inn in
Newcastle were advertised for sale by Helenus Scott of Glendon. It
was said to be in full occupation at this time.
1847 McLean had transferred the license to William Holden (3)
William Holden remained at the Inn for only one year
before transferring the license to Frederick Williams in July
1848. A few months later William Holden was granted a hawkers
Frederick Williams remained at the Inn for
three years. During this time he began a business partnership
with Maitland coach owner
Samuel Smith. Together they took out a license for the
'Sociable' carriage which ran between Morpeth and Singleton.
Frederick later moved to Singleton where he returned to his
former occupation of butcher and storekeeper.
William Clift son of Samuel Clift took over the license for
the Crown. He was still there in 1854.
Notes and Links:
(1) Maitland Mercury 5 December 1846
Mercury 13 March 1847
(3) Maitland Mercury 5 June 1847