History of Granville
(in Bradford County PA)
By Ruth Kinney
Retyped by Linda Selub & Christine Keel
The Granville Store and I.O.O.F. Hall
Typical of the rapidly vanishing country grocery store, The Granville Center store was a mass of empty shelves at the Auctioneer’s last "sold" on June 12, 1962. This is the first time in 72 years that the entire stock had been sold from the store.
The building was originally constructed by the Odd Fellow Lodge No. 687 between the years of 1888-1889 with the late Philander Warren and William Wright as the main carpenters. The Opera House, one of the last remaining in the area was built in 1892 after the original building was very heavily damaged by a severe windstorm.
The general store was first operated by John Duart and Fred Landon about the year of 1890. Other consecutive owners were Levi Towner, Edward Larcom, Taylor and Manley, Frank Bassett, Harvey Heald, Victor Laun and Howard J. Smith. Howard Smith, an employee of J. H. McClelland in Troy for years, resigned this position to purchase the store in the Center in May of 1923. In January of 1927 J. Roland Smith purchased the business of Howard and continued to operate it until his retirement in 1946. The business was sold by the Smiths to Donald Andrus family who continued it until selling to Lester Allen in 1962.
It was always a typical country store with the usual varied stock of groceries, hardware, clothing, candy and other supplies. Until the last few years it was heated with an old-fashioned pot-bellied wood or coal burning stove and in the winter the customers and residents of the area would gather around it for the customary cracker barrel talks and discussions of the day.
A harness shop in the building was operated by Horance Heald and his son, Harvey for many years. This shop was known as the Fuller and Heald Harness shop at one time.
There was a barber shop operated by Harold Gibson in the back part of the building that is now used as the voting rooms. Mr. Gibson closed his shop in the early 1930s and moved to Binghamton, N.Y. where he was employed by a milk company for many years.
The home talent plays that were staged in the Opera House over the Memorial Day Holiday became a family tradition over the many years. The last show being held on Memorial Day evening in 1960. The Opera House though silent now holds for the older residents many fond memories of those golden days. Mrs. Anna Taylor was the directress of these plays for many years.
The post-office for the Center was in the building for many years until it was discontinued around the year of 1918 and a rural delivery route out of the Summit was started in the township. William Packard and Carlton were two of the mailmen in the early years of this route.
Granville Center, Pa., from the Leroy Road.
|Tri-Counties Genealogy Sites||Granville Township Page||Kinney Table of Contents||Tri-Counties Online Research Library|
Published On Tri-Counties Site On 10/30/99
By Joyce M. Tice