From 1910 to 1922, the Sinclair Inn Museum building was owned by Bill Edwards (Big Bill to his friends). At this time the name Sinclair Inn had long passed into disuse and the building was known as the Farmer's Hotel. More than any of the building's other owners, Edwards was a bit of a showman. This is the man who owned the famed Jack the monkey and Pat the horse who could shake hands. One of the other things Edwards did to attract people to his building was to have a chalk board on the side of the building. Each day he would write quotes, sayings or thoughts of the day on the board. This board was called Morning Milk.
Those of you who have been walking up St George Street in Annapolis Royal in the past two months may have noticed that a modern version of the Morning Milk board has appeared on the side of the Sinclair Inn Museum. Made by Ken Maher who works at the museum, this board has been used in much the same way as the original. With a seemingly endless supply of quotes, Ken has been keeping pedestrians entertained with things written on the board. As it was in Big Bill Edwards time, if we can get you to stop and read, we have a better chance of getting you through the door.
The men sitting on the bench in the archival image are essentially sitting in the location where the Morning Milk board was found. Since this picture was taken in 1930 (eight years after Edwards sold the building) the panel had disappeared. It is nice to see that the tradition of having a bench in this location was carried on into the next owners. Our plan for next summer is to have our own version of the "liar's bench" appear at the side of the museum.
All for now,