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Paterson River history

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Court House Hotel

Paterson Court House Hotel began in 1864 as the Cricketers' Arms Inn. After a huge flood on the Paterson River in 1875 came into the top floor of the Cricketers' Arms, Frederick Wilson demolished the hotel and used the materials to rebuild it on high ground beside the Court House. It opened in January 1876 as the Court House Hotel, "a commodious building of brick, two stories in height", with good stables for horses and sheds for buggies.[1]

> Paterson Court House Hotel 1885

Taken in 1885, the Court House Hotel is on the right, with the Post Office on the left (photo: Paterson Historical Society).

Paterson Court House Hotel

An early photo of the hotel. The writing on the side reads "Wilson's Court House Hotel" (photo: Paterson Historical Society).

In 1895 the Court House Hotel was extensively renovated and new verandahs added to both sides.[2] Frederick Wilson held the licence until at least 1900. The hotel remained in the Wilson family, with others holding the licence at various times until it was put up for sale in 1918.[3]

> Paterson Court House Hotel

Another early photo of the hotel, some years after the 1895 renovations, with Alfred Wilson as the licensee (photo: Paterson Historical Society).

There were two serious fires at the hotel, the first in 1931 which was reported to have destroyed the building, but its reconstruction was almost completed by October the same year.[4] The second fire occurred in November 1960 and it took the life of Mrs Lillian Young, the wife of the licensee. Her charred remains were found in a bed.[5]

Paterson Court House Hotel - first fire

Above and below: the 1931 fire at the Court House Hotel (photo: Paterson Historical Society).

Paterson Court House Hotel - first fire
Paterson Court House Hotel 1939

The Paterson Court House Hotel in 1939 (photo: Tooths Yellow cards).

Damage from second fire in November 1960

Damage from the second fire, November 1960, in which the publican's wife lost her life. The left section was not rebuilt.

See also

List and index of Paterson's hotels.

Tooths Yellow Cards for Court House Hotel.


1. Maitland Mercury: 6 March 1875, 6 (huge flood); 1 February 1876, 3 (reopened).

2. Maitland Mercury, 25 May 1895, 7.

3. Maitland Daily Mercury, 5 July 1918, 4.

4. Sydney Morning Herald, 8 June 1931, 8. Raymond Terrace Examiner, 22 October 1931, 4.

5. Sydney Morning Herald, 23 November 1960, 1.

Knight, Ken and Fred Scott. Pubs and Publicans in NSW 1860-1900. Society of Australian Genealogists, 2016.