Yesterday I came across this old image of Tudor Tavern at 15 Fore Street in Taunton, Somerset, England. It’s the building to the left of the shop with the “F. Mead” sign. For a contemporary view of the tavern, visit the English Heritage site. The Tudor Tavern’s “bones” date back to the 14th century. The initials TT and IT are carved into a panel attached to the front of the building. Between the sets of initials is the date 1578. Today the building is operated as a Caffe Nero coffee shop according to Wikipedia. Why would this tavern be interesting to our family? Well, for good reason. It was leased and operated for over thirty years, beginning in 1578, by our ancestor Thomas Trowbridge (1542-1619), a prominent wool merchant, and his wife Joan Hutchins. They remodeled it in 1578 and affixed their initials to it (apparently “J” and “I” were used interchangeably at the time).
For more illuminating information on Thomas and his family, visit this useful website: http://silvie.tripod.com/Trow1.html
By the way, I have discovered that the Trowbridge family history is extremely well documented. The below websites contain a sampling of the copious amounts of information available. The fourth site listed is the 1908 book, History of the Trowbridge Family in America, written by Francis Baker Trowbridge and published in New Haven, CT. Its copyright has expired so it is available for free for viewing online or downloading. Happy reading!