West Boylston, Massachusetts

Our mission is to preserve the story of West Boylston. The Historical Society invites you to explore our history with us.

The bigelow tavern

The building at 65 Worcester Street was originally the Bigelow Tavern.  The tavern was built in the 1770s by Deacon Amariah Bigelow for his son Abel, who was the first innkeeper.  Later the property was owned for a time by Ezra Beaman, West Boylston's founder and landlord of the other inn in town.  At that time his grandson, Ezra Bigelow (Abel's nephew) was the proprietor.  It was then run for years by the Temple family and then by the Spoffords - all Bigelow descendants.

When the center of town moved farther north, it became a private home, then Shepard's turkey farm.  When the Wachusett Reservoir was constructed, the 65 Worcester Street building was spared the fate of the Beaman Tavern and other structures in the town center.

Now the headquarters of the West Boylston Historical Society, the building is has taken on yet another identity.  Our collection of historic documents and West Boylston memorabilia are stored here.

Over the past few years, the main house has been refurbished by members of the Society.  Also a much larger project - the preservation and restoration of the ell attached to the tavern has been completed.  This involved a new foundation and extensive reconstruction.  We have created a true museum - with a library, a reading room, work rooms and display space.  The most valuable documents and artifacts are protected in a fireproof vault built in memory of Edgar Whitcomb.

We invite you to visit the Bigelow Tavern and the Jacob Winn Barn at our headquarters.


Then ....

The House at 65 Worcester Street:

At the time of this photo, the property is being used as a turkey farm.  Originally, the building was the Bigelow Tavern.  The porch is no longer on the structure and the barn has been replaced.

Click on the photo for a larger version.




And Now...

The building has been restored to its 18th century appearance.

Click on the photo for a larger version.

For a more detailed history of the tavern, read The Story of the Bigelow Tavern, available from the Historical Society.