Gloucester Co NJ - History & Genealogy  


Currently The Red Hen (a family Restaurant)

formerly TAVRO13 [see old photos and reviews]
[TAVRO13 web site]
formerly Swedes Inn (Restaurant, Cafe & Bar)

aka Washington Tavern, aka Old Swedes Inn, aka The Ford Hotel

1301 Kings Highway, Swedesboro
Swedesboro NJ
(856) 467-8413

Swedes Inn, Swedesboro NJ
The then Swedes Inn, now TAVRO13 - photograph taken September 2005 by Janice Brown

My thanks to Herbert Rambo, who informed me that the Old Swedes Inn [later TAVRO13, and in 2020 The Red Hen] history goes back further than I originally thought. He states "It was founded as Rambo Tavern in the early 18th century on land leased from Trinity (Old Swedes) Church."

According to its web site the original Swedes Inn, a traditional colonial style building, was built in 1771. Originally licensed as a tavern in 1771, this beautiful building has changed hands and names many times throughout the 1800's and 1900's. For many years this Inn was known as the Washington Tavern.
   This building is refered to it as a "dry goods store" in the fall of 1800. It was licensed as a tavern in 1806. George T. Ford became the proprietor between 1864-1869 when he rebuilt and refitted it--and the hotel bore his name. His son, Harry T. Ford was born in the hotel in 1872 and carried on his father's business.
   Swedesboro, established in the 1600's by Swedish settlers, is the home of many other local landmarks including the Trinity Episcopal Church, the Stratton House and the Hatton House.
   The Old Swedes Inn (now named SWEDES) is on the County Register of Historical Landmarks and is listed on the map of historic sites in Gloucester County.
   The original structure is hand pegged construction and features a fieldstone exterior (visible from the front door.) Other historic items to look for are: the 100 year old hammered tin ceiling in the dining room, and the mahogany mirror and original ceiling fans in the porch. An art deco block glass bar with neon back lights dates back to 1930's.

Mark Beltz bought the Inn in June 1979 after it had been closed for 35 years. He spend nearly a year renovated this building inside and out. This labor of love resulted in the opening of the Old Swedes Inn and Winery in September 1979. In March 2001, Mark revamped the dining rooms to create a more contemporary look. Each room sports warm colors, hardwood floors and artistically crafted accents that make fine dining a casual and friendly experience.
  When you visit, watch for the ghost of the inn. If you see her, let me know!

In 2011 the inn was closed and put up for sale. It was purchased by Constantine Tzitzifas, a Wenonah-based businessman. After extensive renovations, the inn has been reopened as 'Tavro13' and includes both a new look, and new dishes.

See more current photographs of the Inn and surrounding shops
(see disclaimer at bottom of page for use of these photographs)
all taken September 2005 by Janice Brown
Sign in front of Swedes Inn
View of Swedes Inn from the north
Swedes Inn, a historic restaurant in Swedesboro NJ
Swedes Inn, Swedesboro NJ
View of original stonework at Swedes Inn
View across the street from the Swedes Inn
View looking north from Swedes Inn, Swedesboro NJ
View from Swedes Inn looking south, Swedesboro NJ
July 2007 Photographs below showing new sidewalk cafe

NOTE (Disclaimer): All of these photographs are the personal property of the webmaster, Janice Brown. They may NOT be used for any purpose without her express WRITTEN permission. One exception, is that the current owners of the Swedes Inn may use the photographs for any of their specific publications.

George T. Ford
, son of Thomas and Rebecca (Paul) Ford, was for many years engaged in farming and butchering at Paulsboro, N.J. and later at Swedesboro. Besides owning and operating the Ford Hotel, he was one of the leading citizens, and he served as a member of the Board of Freeholders. He died October 29, 1893 at the age of sixty-eight years. He was married three times, his second wife, Elizabeth Miller being the mother of his son Harry.
Children of George T. & Elizabeth (Miller) Ford:
1. Harry T. Ford, b. in the Ford Hotel January 20, 1872. He attended local public schools, later became a pupil in Miss Halsey's private school at Swedesboro and completed his education in Dixon College at Carlisle, PA. On his return home he became his father's assistant in the hotel, and also attended to the business of the farm. For a short time he conducted a livery. He married September 19, 1894 to Wilhelmina C. Rode, a daughter of William Rode of Swedesboro. They had one child, Helen Thompson FORD, b. July 1898 in Swedesboro NJ. Henry Ford was a Republican, and belonged to the Heptasophs fraternity.
2. Mary M. Ford, married 17 Nov 1892 to Dr. Oliver Grimshaw of Swedesboro. Dr. Grimshaw was born in Woodstown NJ 18 Dec 1860, son of Hugh and Rebecca (Pierson) Grimshaw. His grandfather (also named Hugh) was born in England and moved to Gloucester County in the beginning of the 19th century (from Pittsgrove, Salem Co.) locating at Mullica Hill, but soon afterwards removing to Harrisonville. When Oliver was a year old his parents became residents of Mullica Hill, where he attended the local schools. In 1878 he began teaching, attending Hahnemann Medical College in Philadelphia where he graduated in 1890. Following graduation he moved to Swedesboro NJ. Oliver and Mary T. (Ford) Grimshaw had two children, Marion (b May 1895) and Edith (b Oct 1897) and lived in Swedesboro NJ. Dr. Grimshaw was a Republican, and a member of the board of education of the Swedesboro district.

U.S. Census > 1860 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Greenwich
Augustus Sailer 28 M School Teacher 2000 NJ
Isabella Sailer 35 F NJ
George F. Ford 35 M Butcher 700/600 NJ

U.S. Census > 1870 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Woolwich
Ford George T. 44 M W Inn Keeper 3000/1000 NJ
Ford, Elizabeth 29 F W Keeping House NJ
Ford, John 32 M W Justice of the Peace NJ

U.S. Census > 1880 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Swedesborough > District 103
Ford, George T. W M 54 Hotel keeper NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Rebecca W F 78 mother keepting house NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Rebecca, W F 34 sister at home NJ NJ NJ
Ford, John W M 47 brother Justice of the Peace NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Mary W F 10 dau NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Harry, W M 8 son NJ NJ NJ
Hopkins, Julia W F 30 servant Ireland Ireland Ireland

1900 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Woolwich > District 169
Ford, Harry Head W M Jan 1871 29 Married 6 yrs NJ NJ NJ Hotel Proprietor
Ford, Wilmenia wife W F Oct 1875 24 married 6 yrs 1 ch 1 living NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Helen J. dau W F July 1898 1 single NJ NJ NJ
Ford, John, uncle W M Dec 1836 63 single NJ NJ NJ Justice of the Peace
Ford, Rebecca Aunt W F Apr 1848 52 single NJ NJ NJ Housekeeper

U.S. Census > 1910 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Woolwich Twp > District 142
Ford, Harry T. Head M W 38 m1x 15 yrs NJ NJ NJ Farmer
Ford, Wilelminia C wife F W 34 m1x 15 yrs 1 ch 1 living NJ NJ NJ
Ford, Helen T. dau F W 11 single NJ NJ NJ
Green Charles servant M Black 27 m1x 2 yrs VA VA VA
Green Louise servant F Mulatto 20 m1x 2 yrs VA VA VA

1920 United States Federal Census > New Jersey > Gloucester > Swedesboro > District 189
Ford, Harry T. Head M W 47 Married NJ NJ NJ Keeper, boarding house
Ford, Wilhelmina wife F W 44 married NJ Germany NJ, Asst keeper, boarding house

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