To purchase a print of this drawing by author/artist
Lee Pantas, visit
Cherry Orchard Studio
Grove Park Historic District is located in an area that adjoins the Grove Park
Country Club golf course and extends on either side of Charlotte Street. This
district also includes part of Kimberly Avenue that runs along side the golf
course in a northerly direction, and is overlooked by the majestic
Grove Park Inn.
The Grove Park neighborhood was designed and developed by St. Louis entrepreneur
Edwin Wiley Grove with the help of Chauncey Beadle, landscape designer and later
superintendent of Biltmore Estate and is a superb example of early twentieth
century planned residential development. Grove wanted his development, like
every other real estate venture he engaged in, to be exciting and innovative.
Some of his ventures, such as the Grove Arcade and the Battery Park Hotel, were
on the cutting edge of design and planning and his Grove Park Inn stands today
as a monument to Grove’s vision and genius.
The early phases of Grove Park were laid out by Chauncey Beadle and have
curvilinear streets, large tree canopies, stone retaining walls and a grand
entry park. There are many architectural styles represented and these include
Shingle, Neo-Classical, American Foursquare, Colonial Revival, Tudor Revival,
Georgian Revival, Bungalow, Italian Renaissance, Queen Anne and Chateauesque.
Many nationally known and historically important architects worked within the
Grove Park neighborhood. These included Richard Sharp Smith, Ronald Greene,
Henry I. Gaines and James Gamble Rogers. Local Asheville developers E.A. Jackson
and W.H. Westall also contributed to Grove Park’s growth, buying and developing
many lots in the 1920s.
Especially notable in this lovely neighborhood are the large number of deciduous
and evergreen trees. Stonework in retaining walls and stairs are found
throughout and many of the houses are on terraced grounds.
Directions & Self-Guided Tour
Like the Montford and Chestnut Hill historic districts, Grove Park is easily
seen by car, and a self-guided tour is presented below. To reach Grove Park take
Charlotte Street north to 324 Charlotte Street where you will see Mr. Grove’s
Real Estate Office on the left. Another way to see this historic district is to
take a tour on one of two replica trolleys. See
Asheville Tours for more information.
E.W. Grove’s Office (NRHP) 324 Charlotte St.
This building is a small one-story rubble rock structure with rough-faced ashlar
covering. It features a tile-on-gable roof. It was constructed around 1909 and
is said to have been used by Grove when he was building the Grove Park Inn and
developing the Grove Park neighborhood. The building was designed by Richard
Sharp Smith and is the only structure of its type in the area. Grove left the
building and the adjacent park to the City of Asheville. Note also the handsome
stone gates to the right, entrances into the park. Continue on Charlotte Street
to 337 where you will see the beautiful St. Mary’s Parish Church just ahead on
Mary’s Parish, Grove Park (NRHP) 337 Charlotte St.
Described in the year of her founding in 1914 as a “Wayside Shrine in the
Mountains of Western North Carolina,” beautiful little St. Mary’s Church has
attracted countless visitors over the years. Designed by Richard Sharp Smith and
built in 1914, the church is English Gothic in style and cruciform in plan.
Constructed out of red brick with steeply pitched gable roofs, the building is
like those dotting the hilly landscape of County Durham, Northumberland and
Cumbria in northern England. The English cottage-style Rectory, also designed by
Smith, was built and set in beautiful landscaped grounds. The landscape
architect was the famous Frederick Law Olmsted, architect for Biltmore Estate
and designer of New York’s Central Park. International attention was brought to
St. Mary’s by the writer Gail Godwin when she immortalized the church in her
novel Father Melancholy’s Daughter.
From St. Mary’s Parish, return down Charlotte Street and turn left onto Sunset
Parkway. Continue on Sunset to the end where you will turn left onto Glendale
Road. Look for 50 on your right, the Edgar Fordtran House. It is up on a hill at
the intersection of Ridgewood Street, behind ivy covered stone walls.
Edgar Fordtran House (NRHP) 50 Glendale Rd.
This Tudor Revival style house was built in 1936 for Edgar Fordtran for $30,000.
It is constructed of cut ashlar stone with stucco infill as part of the
half-timbering in the front gable. This lovely building features outstanding
chimneys and a decorative wrought iron front door. The landscaping is especially
noteworthy and includes a winding drive, stone retaining wall and large wrought
iron gates. This residence was the ASID Designer House for 1994. Continue on
Glendale Road to the stop sign and turn left onto Macon Avenue. Look for the
Ralph Worthington House on your left.
Ralph Worthington House (NRHP) 41 Macon Ave.
This handsome house was built in 1920 by Ralph Worthington and is a wonderful
example of the quality of the houses that abound in the Grove Park District. The
ASID Designer House for 1992, it is an excellent blend of Colonial Revival and
Spanish Revival styles of architecture. It was operated as a boarding house from
1942 to 1959 but is now a private residence.
Continue on Macon to Charlotte Street and at the stop sign take a right onto
Charlotte Street. Turn left onto Evelyn Place just beyond the park. Immediately
on your left, just past the intersection of Gertrude Place, is the J.R. Oates
J.R. Oates House (NRHP) 90 Gertrude Pl.
Built in 1913 for J.R. Oates, a local banker, the house was designed by the
architectural firm of Smith and Carrier. It is an excellent example of the
Prairie style of architecture. A striking two-story house with smooth stucco and
a cross gable roof with wide overhanging eaves. According to the portfolio of
Richard Sharp Smith, the building was designated as “fireproof.” It is
noteworthy also for the superb craftsmanship of the interior as well as the
exterior spaces, including the beautifully landscaped grounds. Directly across
the street on Evelyn Place is the Reuben Robertson House.
Reuben Robertson House (NRHP) 1 Evelyn Pl.
This elegant house was built for Reuben Robertson in 1922 and was designed by
New York architect James Gamble Rogers. This is an excellent example of the
Colonial Revival style of architecture.
Continue on Evelyn Place to 107, The William Bryan Jennings House, which will be
on your right.
William Jennings Bryan House (NRHP) 107 Evelyn Pl.
William Jennings Bryan, famous orator, statesman, politician and presidential
candidate spent many summers in this house. Built in 1917, it was designed also
by Richard Sharp Smith, and is a refined example of a Colonial Revival style
house. Exceptional details include paired columns and pilasters on front stoop
and dentil molding beneath the roof lines. After viewing the Jennings House,
turn right onto Kimberly Avenue and continue on up Kimberly.
Kimberly Avenue is one of the finer residential streets in all of Asheville,
bordered on one side by the Grove Park Inn golf course and one the other by
grand houses from the 1920s. The Avenue is a favorite for local walkers and
joggers and the views of the Grove Park Inn and nearby mountains from the
tree-lined street are outstanding.