John Pritiskutch Reproductions

History of Lebanon County - Groves Brothers' Homestead

The following is reproduced from the 1875 Atlas of Lebanon County, Pennsylvania

The writer is indebted to Mr. J. W. Grove for the particulars embodied in this sketch. In 1737, Peter Grove took out a warrant for a piece of land in Bethel township, and built a house near where the Mennonite Church now stands. In the following year, having made quite an opening in the forest, he proceeded to erect a dwelling for his family. He was, however, unfortunate for some time, in the years from 1738 to 1740, his house was burned to the ground. Undaunted by misfortune, in 1745, he proceeded to erect another, and more substantial one, which is still standing, and which, together with the farm to which it belongs, has never passed out of the possession of his descendants. In the year 1775, the Mennonite Church near by, was built on land donated by Casper Sherrick, after a son, of whom Sherricksville was named. This was one year before the Declaration of Independence, and is, consequently, 100 years old, and in good condition, a type of the substantial way they done things a century ago. The house is 130 years old. In 1765, Peter Grove purchased the old homestead, where the Grove Brothers now live. In 1814, John Grove, son of Peter Grove, and father of the present owners, built the saw-mill which is still standing. This was during the war with England. One year later, in 1815, the grist-mill which is still in use-as is the saw-mill-was built; and in this mill, in a roughly hoarded room, which looks as it did 60 years ago, and within a short stones throw of where the Grove Brothers have erected an elegant and costly brick mansion, of beautiful design, Mr. J. W. Grove, one of the present proprietors, was born in 1816. The ensuing year, the house was built, which stood until replaced by the mansion spoken of above. Lands have been added, and now the estate contains nearly 700 acres, and presents a far different aspect from what it did in the days of Peter Grove. On the estate is a graveyard, among the oldest in the county. It is said, many Indians are buried in its limits. The early settlers came many miles to deposit their dead here. It is probably 150 years old. The Grove Brothers own extensive properties in Columbia county, and are interested in the iron trade; also in the South Mountain Railroad, in which Mr. J. W. Grove is one of the Directors.