Samuel Henry Rapsey opened the Golden Lion Inn in premises in Bank Street, East Maitland, opposite the sale yards and formerly kept by Sergeant Lee on 1st July 1848. (This was the Blue Bell Inn formerly the Cottage of Content).
Samuel Henry Rapsey died on 28th February 1849 aged 47.
In October 1849 a publican's license for the Red Lion Inn was transferred from Eliza Rapsey to her husband Thomas Thorne. By November Thomas Thorne was advertising 'Splendid' household furniture, gig, horse, harness and dray to be sold by auction as he was retiring from business and departing from the District.
William Cannon was granted a publican's licence for the Red Lion Inn in April 1852. He announced in July 1853 that he was transferring his business to the house formerly conducted by Thomas Thomas under the sign of the White Bear Inn, West Maitland and which would in future be carried on under the sign of the Gold Diggers Arms. He thanked customers for their liberal patronage during his time at the Red Lion Inn.
George Saywell was granted a publican's licence for the Red Lion in April 1853.