For the first time since 1854, McSorley's Old Ale House in the East Village was forced to close it's doors.

Not Prohibition, not hurricanes, not even September 11th was able to shut down New York's oldest Irish tavern. What caused the closure?

Rats.

The Department of Health shut the place down Wednesday after a surprise inspection. A DoH spokesperson found forty two rodent droppings and “conditions conducive to vermin and pest activity."

Bar owner Matthew Mahar said he and his family were distraught over the closing, and have worked hard to fix the problems. Now they just have to wait for an inspector to give the approval to reopen.

The reopening will be delayed because government offices are closed for Veteran's Day.

McSorley's is known for it's nineteenth century-like atmosphere, that's been nearly untouched by time. They serve only two kinds of beer - Light or dark ale.  The sawdust floors, historical paraphernalia, and old newspaper articles that cover the walls give the bar it's old time charm.

You can try their famous raw onions with a cheese platter next time you're there.

It's boasted quite a few famous patrons over the years. They claim everyone from Teddy Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln, to Woody Guthrie, and Hunter S. Thompson have stopped by for a drink.