Jan 17, 2018 | By Samuel Trotman
While covering the Brimfield antique show I have the pleasure of staying in the Red Lion Inn. I thought it only appropriate while covering one of the oldest antique shows in the country that I should stay at the oldest hotel I could find; there’s nothing like being immersed in vintage from sunrise to sunset.
Some time around 1773 the Red Lion Inn began as a general store in Stockbridge on the road that connected Boston to Albany, which soon evolved as a stagecoach stop, tavern and Inn, under the sign of the red lion (a general sign of hospitality in England). The original Inn only had eight rooms and a tavern and changed hands many times during the 1800s. In 1884, the Inn was enlarged again and could now accommodate more than 100 guests. The wife of the owner at this time, Mrs. Plumb scoured the countryside in search of fine antiques to furnish the Inn.
In 1896 the Inn almost completely burned down. The Berkshire Courier in Great Barrington reported that “Mrs. Plumb’s noted collection of colonial china, pictures, wearing apparel and furniture, the largest of its kind in the country, and the delight of everyone who went to Stockbridge, was saved and the inn was rebuilt and opened less than a year later. Now The Red Lion Inn is one of the only continuously run inns in the country from the 18th century. The inn is completely decorated in antiques including cabinets in the halls to house the spill over of antiques. My room was even complete with a Victorian collage in the corner, which is the perfect and suggested way to antiquate any drab corner.
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