History of Bea McNally's
Been going to that restaurant for years, but was wondering if anyone knew the history, as far as names, food specialties, successes? I understand the actual building was moved from the corner to the current location. Thanks in advance.
This Facebook group has lots of great info on various buildings in town. I do not believe the building was ever moved as far as I know.
It opened as Bea's in early 2013. Prior to that it was a Charlie Browns restaurant.
Search the Hotel Clarendon in the group or even a google search. There is a ton of fun information about it.
Of course there is always the Hackettstown Historical Society as well.
On July 27, 1872 Thomas Shields, Jr. obtained, by fore¬closure, the former home of Sam¬uel Morgan Lozier. This old house stood at what is now 160 Main Street. He had the Lozier house moved to 109 Grand Avenue and rented it as a dwelling for some five years.
In 1878 he greatly enlarged this house and made it into a hotel property, and at the same time built the large livery stables in the rear of the hotel. Shields operated the hotel himself until 1881 when he rented the property to Sam¬uel Frome who was very successful at the ho¬tel business.
John A. Staats, a Washington man, purchased the business in 1884 and in turn sold out to Thomas S. Robbins in 1886 who operated it until 1891.
During the 1890's Jacob C. Allen and Hiram H. Van Duzer took over the management of the Clarendon and tried to operate it as a "Temperance Ho¬tel" but the scheme was not successful and they soon gave it up.
Next came Joseph McCracken who man¬aged the hotel and livery stables until 1900. Clifford Waterman, McCrack¬en's son-in-law, managed the hotel for two years and was followed by Christopher Staats. In 1904 the manager was John Sanderson, who in turn sold the business to Monte Guerin in 1906.
The property was owned for many years by the Fields family of Schooley's Mountain and in 1900 a large addition was built in the rear of the original hotel, doubling the size of the building.
Stewart White who had operated a cafe on Main Street, opposite Liberty Street, for many years, tried the hotel business in 1912 and ran it until 1923 when the business passed to James A. Brown. In 1926 it was under the man¬agement under a William Gansmullcr and he operated the hotel until 1930 when Clarence Vescelius took over and renamed the hotel the "Hackettstown Inn." He spent considerable mon¬ey in modernizing the dining room and kitchen and ran a first class house until 1936 when he sold to Jean Bonnell.
The new bar and snack room together with the coffee shop were built out from the main building around 1920. Frank Phillips followed Bonncll as proprietor in 1939. After a few years Mr. Phillips died and the hotel was run for some time by Mrs. Phillips until she sold out to Cox and Drake who stayed here for one year, and then sold to Carl Paul in 1946. He stayed but one year and then sold to the Putz brothers, Ernest and William, in 1947.
The Putz brothers prospered for many years. In 1956 they built an addition¬al dining room, "The Redwood Room". For several years there was a gift shop included there. The late Richard Harpster, a well known newspaper reporter, noted in 1996 that the Putz brothers would never vacation at the same time. One year when Ernie was visiting Germany, Willie hired a stained-glass artist to build a window for the front of the bar room with a portrait of Ernie's face in stained glass. That window remains. Problems arose when, in November, 1970, the Putz brothers sold their shares in The Clarendon Corporation.
In 1974 United Jersey Bank proposed to raze the hotel and build a parking lot. It was saved, operated for a few years off and on, and then was closed for some time until it was reopened in 2003 as Charlie Brown's Restaurant. They closed in 2009. After extensive interior renovation, it opened again as Bea McNally's,
Interesting history. I can't believe it was moved to that location.
Thanks for posting wcguy.
The 3rd Floor "Red Room" at Bea McNally's. We have done many investigations in the building over the years. Never had a dull evening!
I thought Charlie Brown's opened earlier than 2003. I thought it opened in 2000 or around there. If i'm mistaken feel free to correct.
You are correct Patrick O, the date is wrong. I first moved here at the very end of 2000 during the week between Christmas and New Years. Charlie Browns was already here, and later in the year I attended a Hackettstown Chamber after hours meeting there. That had to be 2001.
I know the family who owned it in the 70’s and 80’s. They said it was haunted by a little girl that was raped and killed there. She used to play games with them and rearrange all the silverware, Throw glasses, shake pots and pans in the kitchen. Customers would see her running around. They didn’t want to scare the customers so they pretended she was real.
I seem to remember in the early '90's a group bought it and did extensive renovations. One being the removal of the beautiful (I think) oak booths in the bar area and replacing them with tables. That made me very sad. Many a Saturday night my husband and I stopped for a drink and sat in those booths. They were not there long. In fact I bought a gift certificate for my son and his wife for dinner and they were gone before they could use it. Lost my money on that deal.
I just dug out a post card of the Clarendon hotel from my family photos.We owned property in Lake Tranquility and every summer we traveled from NY to stay at the hotel.I was told by my mom that we started going in the late 50's.I remember going to the movie theater on Main st and seeing The Nutty Professer in 1963.I was 6 at the time.I also remember a diner on main street.I loved the hotel.Even as young child I was fascinated with the hotel.I remember the front desk and staircase.I even remember our room with the tiny sink.Those were wonderful times that I still reminisce about from time to time.
How nice to have such found memories of our town.....and the Clarendon hotel, Tom Lovari.
We had our wedding reception at the Clarendon in 1995, September. It closed shortly after if my memory is correct. I remember thinking "that was why they included a complete carving station at the buffet, free of charge...cause they were getting ready to close up shop". It was sad to see it go.
What a great memory. I do love historic places. And, go figure, you can't remember being scared out of your wits. Since you weren't haunted.....sounds like a very happy place!!! Wish they would integrate the old name into the business, it is nostalgic.
Was it a funky green color or is that a pale blue --- hard for me to tell?
Does the stained glass window still exist?
Yes Bug3. The window is still there, and you can see his face painted on the window as you drive past the front entrance. Does anyone know if they are still doing walking tours this year? John C?
Do you mean the haunted house walking tours near Halloween? I was one of the guides last year and the President of the Historical Society hasn't contacted me yet this season about doing it again. Since we may still have to be masked up then it could be very difficult to hear and be heard so I'm not sure how it's going to go. Perhaps John has been in contact about it though...
I was there back in 1999 for a thanksgiving dinner, believe it was Charlie Browns for a few years before 99. Cool building, had some good meals over the yrs there!
I just received the Hackettstown Historical Society Newsletter. The Lantern Tours and open House that are normally on the last weekend before Halloween have regrettably been cancelled.
My understanding, from Hackettstown Life posters, is that it’s the same group that operates OMG Burger on Schooley’s Mt. and the Long Valley Brew Pub.
It's owned by the same guy who does long valley brew pub and omg burger.. So expect more of the same, but it is also going to be a catering hall? Don't look for anything exicitng from this, but the food will be good enough to go.
OMG Burger is terrible and overpriced. More of the same for this location I guess. How the owner of OMG is still in business and can buy Bea’a baffles me.
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