A historical site about early London coffee houses and taverns and will also link to my current pub history site and also the London street directory
THE JERUSALEM COFFEE-HOUSE, Cowpers court, Cornhill.
George and Vulture Hotel (Jamaica Coffee House on left hand).
Cornhill, is one of the oldest of the City news-rooms, and is frequented by merchants and captains connected with the commerce of China, India, and Australia.
"The subscription-room is well-furnished with files of the principal Canton, Hongkong, Macao, Penang, Singapore, Calcutta, Bombay, Madras, Sydney, Hobart Town, Launceston, Adelaide, and Port Phillip papers, and Prices Current : besides shipping lists and papers from the various intermediate stations or ports touched at, as St. Helena, the Cape of Good Hope, etc. The books of East India shipping include arrivals, departures, casualties, etc. The full business is between two and three o'clock, p.m. In 1845, John Tawell, the Slough murderer, was captured at [traced to] the Jerusalem, which he was in the habit of visiting, to ascertain information of the state of his property in Sydney." —
The City, 2nd edit., 1848.
The coffee house is named in various trade directories, being the Jerusalem & East India coffee house at one stage, in 1822; with an address of Cowpers court, Cornhill. Harper & Bell are the licensees in 1822; with William Harper & Co in 1832 and 1836. In 1843, is noted Ind & Smith, ale & porter brewers, Romford, & at the Jerusalem coffeehouse. In 1848, we have Horatio C A Hardy, and by 1874, this is Harper, Boulton & Co.
The 1829 Robsons directory places Harper & Bell, at the Jerusalem Coffee house, Cowpers court, Cornhill
Some little distance along Cornhill, eastwards, is Cowper's Court, at the end of which is a building formerly used as a newsroom and meeting place for all persons in any way connected with shipping — a kind of off-shoot or "tender" to Lloyd's. This still retains the name of the "Jerusalem"; but years ago it was called the "Jerusalem Coffee-house," and no doubt it was at some time either a tavern or coffee-house.
It was an important trysting-place for ship-owners, captains, merchants, brokers, and all others interested in maritime affairs. They have now shifted their quarters to the new Shipping Exchange in Billiter Street.
Below in the cellar, approached by wide stone steps, is one of the modern wine rooms owned by the " Bodega " Company.
Also, see the pub history pages for the Jerusalem coffee house
Lots of references are made to two sources on the
Edward Callows, Old London Taverns &
John Timbs, Club life of London Volume 2
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