In September 2020, a group of enthusiasts from Bethlehem, Pennsylvania approached us to search for the Privy on the property. Privies were the outhouses used before indoor plumbing. These history diggers have a documentary series on PBS channel 39, and they will feature the tavern in their next season.

While searching with metal detectors for several weeks, they discovered interesting historical items on the property. Among the more fascinating are a revolutionary soldier’s button, a musket ball, a pewter spoon handle, a Revolutionary-era tent grommet, 2 Civil War buttons, a large penny dated to 1800, an Indian head penny (1859), and several 1890s pennies.

One of the most surprising discoveries was a British soldier’s button. We speculate this button was likely from a prisoner! Perhaps he was a well-fed, button-popping Brit!

These findings confirm that the tavern was used as a recruiting and training center during the Revolution (1770s+). But they also confirm that the tavern continued to be used through the Civil War era (1860s).

Timeline of findings in the ground near the Bonnell Tavern – September 2020

The History Diggers:
Damian, Badger, Jeff and Rick have spent many days searching and documenting their finds!