McClellan's Tavern is regarded as the first tavern in Hamilton. William McClellan, recently of the army, opened the tavern in about 1796 in one of the buildings in abandoned Fort Hamilton. It was a store as well as a tavern, and when Butler County was formed in 1803, McClellan became the first elected sheriff, operating out of his tavern. McClellan "came as a packhorse driver in 1792," wrote Alta Harvey Heiser in Hamilton in the Making. "As soon as the Indian wars were over, he opened his 'house of entertainment' in one of the fort buildings. It could not have been better located, standing as it did back from the river, in line with the main street on Ludlow's 1794 plat."
(See Fort Hamilton, Butler County Courthouse and Torrrence Tavern.)