THE PECAN GROVE INN (FORMALLY THE JASTER HOME)
HISTORY OF THE HOUSE
The Jaster home was built in 1902 or 1907. There were two cornerstones found. Owners around that time were Thigpen, Wolters, Gillespie, and Otto Eichler. According to local people, Mr. Eichler constructed the home. The best long leaf pine lumber and cypress clapping was used. After buying the home, the Jasters did some extensive remodeling, removing the back staircase, and adding a bathroom with indoor plumbing. Two of the four Jaster children were born in the house.
The house was the first one in town with electricity. The large rock in the garden is where the generator was located. It served the church and the hotel/home, which Mr. Eichler operated. Cigar salesmen and general merchandise men normally stayed in the hotel. The house had only one bathtub--a large tin one. An outhouse was used for the toilet. House dances during the hotel era with an accordion and local bands were outlets for social and special occasions.
The Jasters had a café so named in those days. Wife, Ida, did her share of the work by growing fruits and vegetables. She sometimes made 900 quarts of her special canned goods, consumed in the cafe and at home. She also made as many as 42 pies in one day from scratch for the cafe and home. She also baked bread. In addition, she tended her large garden mainly by herself. She was some lady! They raised cattle, turkeys, geese, chickens, pigeons, rabbits, and a variety of pets at any given time. They also made their own wine in wooden barrels. All of the cooking and heating was done with wood until butane (now propane) came along. At Christmas time, a large cedar tree was decorated with oranges, apples, peppermint sticks and sugar cookies. Candles and oil lamps were used until electric lights came into existence.
RECENT HISTORY OF THE HOUSE
After purchasing the house, the Presses constructed a new foundation on the south side of the lot, and moved the house to its present location facing Augsburg Street. After the move was accomplished, they completely restored the house and added five bathrooms, an office and utility room. They did most of the work themselves, hiring trades for only the major renovations. They opened as a Bed and Breakfast named "The Pecan Grove Inn" on April 15, 2000, thereby reviving its original use as a place for public lodging.
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