Skirting the Question: Determining Detroit’s Oldest Bar

Hey folks. I promise there will be more detailed posts soon, including a catch-up on my shifts at Ye Olde Tap Room, Tommy’s Detroit Bar, and Abick’s Bar. In the meantime, here’s a piece I did for the fine folks at Model D Media. Please note that there’s a lot more to determining the provenance of old bars than meets the eye, and it’s nearly impossible to expect stellar record keeping for 100+ years.

That said, my best guess at the moment is Two Way Inn. I say this simply because the site was built AS a bar, and has, so far as we can tell, always functioned as a bar. Stonehouse and Tommy’s are technically older buildings, but if we accept the important “must have been built as a bar” criterion…then go ahead and say Two Way.

Feel free to disagree in the comments!

Here’s the article: What Exactly is Detroit’s Oldest Bar, Anyway?

See you at the bar.



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Mickey Lyons Written by:

Mickey is a Detroit-based author and researcher on Detroit Prohibition history. Her upcoming book, City on a Still: Detroit During Prohibition, is in the works. In the meantime, she spends her days trudging through old bars and buildings and sifting through old newspapers.

One Comment

  1. Gary Sinar
    December 10

    Good for you Mickey, that you have found a respectable research avocation – one that really lets you “sink yourself” into your work. I am hoping that a stint in my employ did not drive you to drinking for a living.!
    Best of luck in your searches and the occasional “cold one” to help quench your thirst – for knowledge or otherwise.

    Anxious to see your book once you “belly up to the bar” with a handbook for guidance as to the best bars to “belly up to!!”

    My best,

    Gary J. Sinar

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