The beauty of the former Colonial Tea Room on the Court Square is now ready to be viewed by the public after a major restoration project of two years.
An open house is set for 6:30 until 8:30 p.m. on Saturday night, the July 29 and again on Sunday, the July 30 from 1:30 until 3 p.m.
The restoration project has been under the direction of owners Tommy and Adam Crews of Huntingdon.
“Everyone is invited to attend the opening of the Colonial Tea Room,” said Tommy. “For many it will be a step back into history for a time.”
Plans are to use it as a venue for weddings, teas, parties, showers, etc.
It all came about when Adam read in the Carroll County News Leader about the possibility that the building was about to be razed because of its condition. He immediately talked with this father about the possibility of restoring it.
“I immediately shared with my dad that I felt the beauty of the Court Square would be destroyed if there were only a bare lot at that location,” said Adam.
As equal partners, the two decided to purchase the building from Felix Perry.
All three levels of the building, basement, main floor, and upstairs, have been restored.
“People have been so interested and supportive by stopping by and sharing many stories from the past during the completion process,” said Tommy. “Even though the building has been restored, many memories remain in this 107-year-old building for many Carroll Counties. Stop by and share some of these memories and step back in history for a bit.”
Colonial Tea Room Historical Facts
The Colonial Tea Room, built in 1910, is the oldest brick building on the Court Square. Over the years, many businesses have been located within its walls. But according to many locals, the most remembered was the Colonial Tea Room, managed by Ms. Ruth Woods, who was Gus, Johnny and Ginger Radford’s aunt.
“Ms. Ruth” always had white cloths and fresh flowers on the table, and often served fresh vegetables, according to waitress Ms. Aline Sullivan. She recalled shucking fresh corn and shelling peas after the lunch hour during the summer for the next meal.
It was known as a classy, popular restaurant with delicious food on the Court Square. The basement housed luggage for those buying tickets from Mr. Woods to ride the greyhound bus to other locations. Part of the plane that Jackie Jenkins crashed in Huntingdon after buzzing the school and town, landed on the roof of the Colonial Tea Room.
Housed on the top floor was the Modern Beauty Shop which had the name written on the door. It was owned and operated by Louise Lyles, Melissa Peterson’s mom. It was the place where many got their hair fixed.
Also on the top floor, Governor Gordon Browning and Hance Lassiter shared a law office. Gov. Browning’s private library was also located there. The story goes that Gordon and Hance would work in their law office in the mornings, go downstairs to eat lunch at the Tea Room. Afterwards they would walk outside and sit on Hoyt Rich’s bench next to his taxi stand. There, they were said to discuss politics and solve many political issues with the locals much of the afternoon.