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"M. Root" Tavern sign
(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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Wooden tavern signs, hung high on a tall post in front of the building, signaled a stopping place to travelers and townsmen alike. Note the symbol used is the shield, a patriotic decoration signifying the time of the new republic. Coach riders or lone horsemen could water and "oat" their horses and usually slake their thirst and satisfy their appetite at these inns or "ordinaries." Local residents counted on taverns for news of the outside world as well as for food and drink. Tavern fare was unpredictable, depending upon the time of day, the time of year, and the skill of the cook.
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