Archive for 'Centre County'

Boalsburg Tavern (1819)

Boalsburg Tavern

Back in 2009, when I visited the Boal Mansion and Columbus Chapel in Boalsburg, Pennsylvania, we drove by an old Georgian-style stone building called Duffy’s Boalsburg Tavern. Looking it up now, I discover it was built in 1819 and was first owned by Col. James Johnson. It operated continuously until the building was damaged by fire in 1934. Within three years, it was restored and reopened. Harry Duffy purchased it 1946. He named it Duffy’s Tavern and ran it until his death in 1961. It is part of the Boalsburg Historic District and is included in the Historic American Buildings Survey.

Boal Mansion (1789) and Columbus Chapel (1909)

Boal MansionBoal Mansion

I visited Pennsylvania a few weeks ago and went to a number of historic sites, starting with the Boal Mansion and Columbus Chapel, in Boalsburg just outside of State College. Nine generations of the same family have lived in the house and the museum displays a wide variety of objects acquired over two centuries. In the fourth generation, George Jack Boal married Malvina Amada Buttles, whose brother-in-law was Theodore M. Davis, an Egyptologist who discovered the tomb of the great grandparents of King Tutankhamun. Objects from the tomb are on display in the house. In the fifth generation, Colonel Theodore Davis Boal married a French-Spanish heiress, Mathilde de Lagarde. She was a descendant of Josephine, the wife of Napoleon Bonaparte, and the museum has a lock of Napoleon’s hair on display. Mathilde’s aunt, Victoria Montalvo, was married to Diego Columbus, a direct descendant of Christopher Columbus. Mathilde inherited from her aunt the Chapel from the Columbus Castle in Spain. In 1909, the Chapel interior, which includes Columbus’ desk and two pieces of the True Cross, was moved to the Boal estate and placed inside a new building by Col. Boal. The museum also has exhibit rooms containing displays of farm implements and weapons. › Continue reading…

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