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Checking In With History

The mill also shelters two atmospheric restaurants. A country-chic, slightly formal restaurant specializes in fish and game.

To reach the lower-level tavern, guests walk past the skeleton of the mill's water wheel and into a candlelit space with a massive stone fireplace, rustic wooden tables and weathered mill equipment.


The General Warren Inne near Valley Forge, Pa. (David Campli - General Warren Inne)

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"The artifacts in the tavern are all the things that were too heavy to move when we excavated," jokes owner Charlie Puttkammer.

17 rooms with private baths; $115-$175. 313 Johnsonburg Rd. (Route 519 north), 800-746-6467,www.innatmillracepond.com.

• William Penn Guest House, New Castle, Del. Stories that Pennsylvania founder William Penn slept at this skinny 1682 townhouse may be apocryphal. But in the inn's stately parlor, bubbled glass windows offer glimpses of New Castle Green, where Penn came to participate in a land ceremony adding the Delaware counties to his holdings.

The simple yet comfortable spot teems with Ye Olde Atmosphere. Colonial-era portraits deck the walls in the parlor, and in the paneled dining room, a Hobbit-size green door goes, well, nowhere. Up a narrow staircase, guest rooms have wide-planked floors and quilt-covered bed. Ask for No. 2, with a view of the 1732 courthouse.

Founded by the Dutch in 1651, this burg nestled against the Delaware River was deemed so picturesque and historic that the Rockefellers tried to convert it into a living museum à la Williamsburg. Town elders said no, but with its Colonial churches, cobblestone streets and 17th- and 18th-century residences, modern visitors may feel as if they've been zapped to a tricorn hat zone anyway.

Four rooms, one with private bath; $75-$95. 206 Delaware St., 302-328-7736.


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