Historic Preservation: Tweed’s Tavern

Tweed’s Tavern

unnamed-8The Tavern, a historic building, circa 1780-1830, was restored to replicate its original architecture several years ago. The club maintained the landscaping of woody, perennial, annual plants, shrubs and spring daffodils. We decorate with our garden greens and dried arrangements during the Holidays. This year we planted three new beautiful Itea virginica in the Spring.

Kitchen Garden:

In the Spring of 2019, the Countryside Garden Club designed a garden that grows aromatic herbs, vegetables and lovely flowers used during Colonial times for medicine, cooking, and fragrance in a plot alongside the deck of the Tavern.

Countryside members tend and maintain the garden for the public to enjoy during the Spring, Summer, and Fall. We encourage individuals visiting the Tavern to snip a few herbs while they are there.

The climbing hops and the okra plant which produced a few okra this year were of special interest to individuals. The aromatic herbs and lovely flowers caught the attention of groups who attended meetings in the Museum. Information and a plot of the garden is available now for the public who visit the Museum and use the Exhibit Building for meetings.

**The following is a list of some herbs being used for the Colonial garden that will be published in the pamphlets to educate our public. 

Parsley (Petroselinum crispy), in Colonial times, seasoned foods (not garnished foods as it does today) and was a health tonic. Parsley was used as a dye, producing a green color.

Sage (Salvia officials) enhances the flavor of game meats and stews, staples of Colonial times. Sage was also used a medicinal herb.

Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) seasons lamb, game, and stew dishes and was grown as a culinary herb. It was known as an herb of remembrance, added to wedding cakes or pudding.

Mint(Mentha piperita) was grown for its refreshing scent and culinary purposes; mint tea remains a popular herbal beverage today.

Thyme (Thymus vulgaris) also known as lemon thyme, was always grown in the Colonial garden. Thyme was another herb that was always in the Colonial family’s medicine chest.

Dill (Anethum graveolens) is grown to flavor stews and pickles, and also for its healthful properties. It was used by Colonial Americans as a soothing herb and to treat hiccups.

Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla) flowers were brewed into a tea to treat stomach complains and help with cold and aches. A sugary syrup made with the flowers was thought to treat jaundice and dropsy.

These plants and some flowers used by Colonial Americans were located outside the kitch kitchen door for use in the kitchen and medicinal purposes. The committee has much work to do before the planting!

The Native Holly Tree (the Botanic name is Ilex opaca ‘ Satyr Hill’) was panted on September 10, 2019 at the Exhibit Building next to Tweed’s Historic Tavern. Because of the size of this native Holly tree we needed a professional to do the planting for us. Also due to the drought in September our professional landscaper needed to call in a back hoe to do the digging of the hole. The club faithfully watered the tree daily throughout the prolonged dry spell. We expect to see this tree flourish and become a landmark for this historic site at the home of the Hockessin  Historical Society.

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