The tavern opened around 1750. It was initially used as a recruitment center for Loyalists fighting for the British in the American Revolutionary War. It was also famous for being the place where George Washington established his temporary headquarters in November 1783. The tavern was later owned by local butcher Henry Astor, the patriarch of the notable Astor family.
In 1813, the tavern relocated uptown to Third Avenue and East 23rd Street, where it survived into the 1830s. A modern tavern of the same name operated at this location from 1996 to April 2015. using the same bull’s head logo as the original establishment.
- Barron, James (October 17, 2013). "Unearthed: A Possible Stop Along the Revolution". The New York Times. The New York Times Company. Retrieved 5 November 2018.
- Penhirin, Sybile (April 27, 2015). "Dive Bar Bull's Head Tavern Closed After Nearly 20 Years in Business". DNAinfo. New York Public Radio. Archived from the original on 19 October 2015. Retrieved 5 November 2018.