QUEEN'S ARMS ST PAUL'S CHURCHYARD
Garrick appears to have kept up his interest in the City by means of clubs, to which he paid periodical visits. We have already mentioned the Club of young merchants, at Tom's Coffee-house, in Cornhill. Another Club was held at the Queen's Arms Tavern, in St. Paul's Churchyard, where used to assemble: Mr. Samuel Sharpe, the surgeon; Mr. Paterson, the City solicitor; Mr. Draper, the bookseller; Mr. Clutterbuck, the mercer; and a few others.
Sir John Hawkins tells us that "they were none of them drinkers, and in order to make a reckoning, called only for French wine." These were Garrick's standing council in theatrical affairs.
At the Queen's Arms, after a thirty years' interval, Johnson renewed his intimacy with some of the members of his old Ivy-lane Club.
Brasbridge, the old silversmith of Fleet-street, was a member of the Sixpenny Card-Club held at the Queen's Arms: among the members was Henry Baldwyn, who, under the auspices of Bonnel Thornton, Colman the elder, and Garrick, set up the St. James's Chronicle, which once had the largest circulation of any evening paper. This worthy newspaper-proprietor was considerate and generous to men of genius: "Often," says Brasbridge, "at his hospitable board I have seen needy authors, and others connected with his employment, whose abilities, ill-requited as they might have been by the world in general, were by him always appreciated." Among Brasbridge's acquaintance, also, were John Walker, shopman to a grocer and chandler in Well-street, Ragfair, who died worth 200,000l., most assuredly not gained by lending money on doubtful security; and Ben Kenton, brought up at a charity-school, and who realized 300,000l., partly at the Magpie and Crown, in Whitechapel.
Club Life of London Vol. II