The History of The Four Dogs Tavern

The Building’s History

 

Four Dogs TavernThe Four Dog Tavern’s history bustling with commerce. Strasburg Road once was the main route between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia. Drovers, politicians and common travelers all traveled the route and often stopped at the Marshalton Inn, due to its prime location on Strasburg Road and central proximity to Lancaster and Philadelphia. The building that is now home to the Four Dogs Tavern was originally the stables to the Marshalton Inn. Often it was teeming with cattle, sheep, hogs and horses. At one time, the building was home to a series of shops, each located within the original stalls. Renovations in 1978 converted the structure into a restaurant named The Oyster Bar. In 1996, under new ownership, became the Four Dogs Tavern.

The History of Our Name

 

Four Dogs Tavern SignThe name “Four Dogs Tavern” is due to the print of four foxhounds that hangs just inside the entrance. The original was painted by Louis Godefroy Jadin (French, 1805-1882). Jadin was a painter of wildlife and French landscapes for the “haute monde” of the Second Empire and Napoleon III. He is best known for his paintings of dogs. It is believed that the painting of the four foxhounds was originally to be hung in a panel of three. The four foxhounds, named Marcano, Sereno, Lentenor and Nicanor, would be the central image. To either side was a pair of paintings of individual hounds. The hounds of the individual portraits were named Calypso, Sabro, Verone and Barbaro. The “Barbaro” painting inspired the name for the 2006 Kentucky Derby.