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Pecan Tree

The picture above shows one of the many hundred pecans that were planted in "The Groves" around 1919.

Groves History - "A City amid the Groves"
Asa Groves


Asa E. Groves, a pioneer Port Arthurian and the editor of the paper that is now the Port Arthur News, gave his name to the subdivision that would later be Groves, Texas. Many assume that the city's  name is derived from the fact that Asa Groves also arranged for Griffing Nursery to plant hundreds of pecan trees amid the acres he and his partners developed. Real estate salesmen called it "The Groves" and declared that there was nothing like it in the Gulf Coast country. It was said that "man builds cities but nature decides location."

One of the old tales in the area's early history recounts a group of rice farmers drilling for water on a site where Groves Elementary School stands today. To their great dismay they struck oil at about 800 feet, so they filled in the well and went elsewhere for water. It is possible that if the group had realized the value of their discovery Groves, instead of Beaumont, would have had the distinction enjoyed by Spindletop today.

Rice farming was the main occupation of the few settlers in the Groves area around the early 1900's. In 1919, Wiley Choate, then employed by Griffing Brothers Nursery, supervised the planting of 2,500 pecan trees that  made Groves one the most beautiful communities in this area.
Groves Subdivision
In 1929, the first elementary school was opened. Today there are three elementary schools, and a middle school. Groves is a part of both the Port Neches and Port Arthur Independent School Districts. The Groves Public Library has been in operation since 1930.

The Post Office was established in 1927. The first store was built in the 6100 block of Jefferson in 1920. The Lions Club, Chamber of Commerce, Volunteer Fire Department, and other groups were organized in the early 1940's. Also, on September 28, 1940, the City ushered in the modern convenience of running water with its initial $180,000 water system. There was even a festival to celebrate access to treated water.

The power to annex adjacent territory without its consent was not granted to Groves by its citizens until the charter change election of November 7, 1961. By that time, however, nearly all the land which surrounds the original Groves city limits had been annexed by Port Arthur or Port Neches. Thus Groves' boundaries and physical size are fixed.

The planting of the famous pecan trees has made Groves one the most beautiful communities in the area.
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