Our History

The Franklin Club was organized in 1877 as a social club for young men home from college. The Club's first headquarters was in a single corner room on the 3rd floor of the Hancock building in Franklin at the corner or Liberty and 12th streets.

In 1879, the Franklin Club was granted a perpetual charter but the identity of the club became lost with the rise of another club, The Nursery Club in 1881.    The Franklin Club and The Nursery Club merged and became known as The Nursery Club until 1913.  It was then that the club changed its name back to The Franklin Club.  

The beautiful building at 1340 Liberty Street in Franklin, PA was originally built in the Queen Anne style as a private residence of Richard Terrell in 1887.   After construction was complete, the residence was purchased by George and Lizzie White for $8,000.   In 1889, it sold again to the Nursery Club.  Shortly thereafter, the grand ballroom was added (at a cost of $6,000) along with a billiard room, grand staircase and a large porch.  The warm and inviting 12'x16' fireplace in the Ballroom was constructed under the direction of S.C. Lewis, who headed the Eclipse Works just north of Franklin.

The Club celebrated the completion of the construction and re-decorating with a gala event of Friday, January 15, 1892.  The gala was covered by the Franklin Evening News  as follows:
        "At 8pm, the carriages began to roll up to the clubhouse which was highly lighted by electric lamps.... Towards 9pm, the rooms and halls were a moving mass of ladies and gallants... An evening of dining and dancing was enjoyed by 728 guests...."

Later on, bowling alleys, grill and dining rooms and kitchens to support them were added. Construction of these elements of the clubhouse was completed in 1908. 

The original hard Maple floors and Southern Pine trim in the ceiling remain intact, as does the stage which at the time added prominence to the orchestra which provided music for the weekend entertainment.

In 2007, the Franklin Club closed its doors; unable to sustain itself as a private social club.   The historic building was brought to new life by Franklin businessman Gary Baker in 2009. Significant investment was made in the structure and treatments of the grand building.  Locals and as well as frequent travelers from as far away as the North Hills of Pittsburgh enjoyed many meals and events.  During this time, the building was known as The Commons at Franklin.

In 2016, the building was purchased by Daniel and Hayley Merchant of Butler, PA.   It remains a preeminent dining and event venue serving the greater northwestern Pennsylvania region; hosting numerous wedding receptions, conferences and dinner parties every year.