Skip to main content

The National Road - Pennsylvania - Brownsville to Washington


The National Road travels through the heart of Centerville. (Adam Prince)
As you exit Brownsville and continue further west, the next town along the National Road is Centerville.  The heart of this small town is located along the original routing of the National Road located just north of modern US 40.  The town, which was founded in 1821, was a central stopping point for stagecoaches between Uniontown and Washington.  Because of its location between the two cities, Centerville was a very prominent location in the early days of the National Road.  Because of its location there are several historic former inn and taverns within or just outside of the town's limits. 

The former Riggle Tavern in Centerville.  (John Grable)
One of these historic former tavern's is Riggle Tavern located just west of Centerville.  The tavern was owned by Zaphania Riggle, who would own numerous taverns along the pike in Washington County.  The tavern that bears his last name was burned under his ownership; however, it was immediately rebuilt.  Mr. Riggle transferred ownership of the tavern in 1845 to Peter Colley. (1)

The former Stephen Hill's Tavern, now Century Inn, located in Scenery Hill. (The Bee Family)
Further west, you will come across Hill's Tavern.  The building, which was constructed in 1794, is located in Scenery Hill.  The Village of Scenery Hill is definitely worth a stop while traveling the National Road.  Scenery Hill is a popular tourist destination and is home of many quaint restaurants and antique shops.  Hill's Tavern is now named 'The Century Inn.'  The Inn can lodge up to 19 guests and also can dine and entertain up to 150 patrons in five separate dining rooms.  Across the street is 'Zephanie Riggle's House of Entertainment.'  The intriguingly named inn can also lodge up to nine guests.  Tragically, in August of 2015, a devastating fire heavily damaged the Century Inn.  Fortunately, the fire occurred on a Monday night when the inn and restaurant is closed.   In April of 2017, it was announced that reconstruction of the Century Inn was underway and that they hope to reopen the inn and restaurant in the fall of 2017.

The Century Inn also is home to a rare framed flag of the Whiskey Rebellion.  The Rebellion was a Southwestern Pennsylvanian farmers revolt on a federal excise tax on liquor.  It was quickly dissolved by President Washington without any fighting.  Fortunately, the flag was saved during the August 2015 fire.  The flag is the only known surviving flag from the Whiskey Rebellion. 


The Flag of the Whiskey Rebellion.  (Mike Austing)


Site Navigation:
Sources & Links:
  • Mike Austing
  • The Bee Family
  • John Grable
  • (1) Grable, John, "Additions to web page." Personal e-mail. May 2, 2005.
  • The Century Inn

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Hetch Hetchy Valley; Hetch Hetchy Railroad, abandoned Lake Eleanor Road, and the Wapama Fall Bridge

This June I took a trip out to Yosemite National Park upon receiving my COVID-19 Day Use Reservation.  My destination in Yosemite National Park was out in Hetch Hetchy Valley.  I sought to hike to the Wapama Fall Bridge which took me through some of the path of the former Hetch Hetchy Valley Railroad and abandoned Lake Eleanor Road.



Part 1; Hetch Hetchy Valley, the Hetch Hetchy Railroad, and reservoir roads

Hetch Hetchy is glacially carved valley similar to Yosemite Valley which is located on the Tuolumne River of Tuolumne County.  Hetch Hetchy Valley presently is impounded by the O'Shaughnessy Dam which was completed during 1923 as part of a project to deliver water and hydroelectric power to the City of San Francisco.  Before being impounded Hetch Hetchy Valley had an average depth of approximately 1,800 feet with a maximum depth of approximately 3,000 feet.  Hetch Hetchy Valley is approximately three miles long and as much as a half mile wide.  Hetch Hetchy Valley is located dow…

Mineral King Road, the White Chief Mine, and the unbuilt California State Route 276

Back in July of 2016 I took Mineral King Road east from California State Route 198 to Mineral King Valley within the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Sequoia National Park.  This June I revisited Mineral King Valley and made my way up to the White Chief Mine.


Mineral King Road is a 24.8 mile rural highway maintained by the National Park Service and as Tulare County Mountain Road 375.  Mineral King Road originates at California State Route 198 in Three Rivers near the confluence of the Middle Fork Kaweah River and the East Fork Kaweah River.  Mineral King Road climbs from a starting elevation of 1,400 feet above sea level to 7,830 feet above sea level at the White Chief Mine Trailhead in Mineral King Valley.  Notably Mineral King Road is stated to have 697 curves.


Mineral King Road has an average grade of 5.1% but has several stretches between 15-20% in places.  Pjammycycling has a detailed breakdown on the grade levels over the entirety of Mineral King Road.

Pjammycycling on Mineral King R…

California's Rogue Sign State Route Shields

While recently revisiting Yosemite National Park I took a couple minutes to capture some of the California Sign State Route shields posted by the National Park Service ("NPS").  None of the NPS shields were actually posted on roadways maintained by Caltrans but were clearly intended to create route continuity with the Sign State Highways.  This phenomenon is not exclusive to Yosemite National Park and can be found on numerous roads not maintained by Caltrans throughout California.



Part 1; Route continuity over who maintains the route

In the very early era of State Highways in California the Division of Highways didn't actually field sign the Auto Trails or even US Routes.  The responsibility of Highway signage fell to the California State Automobile Association ("CSAA") and Automobile Club of Southern California ("ACSC").  The Auto Clubs simply signed Highways on roadways that best served navigational purposes.  These navigational purposes often didn&#…