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Rehabilitation

In 1985, the State of Florida purchased The Grove from the Collins family for $2,285,000. Under the terms of the agreement, Gov. and Mrs. Collins lived the remainder of their lives at The Grove.

Mrs. Collins died in 2009, preceded by Gov. Collins in 1991.

In 2009, the Florida Department of State, Division of Historical Resources, began rehabilitating The Grove for eventual use as a public museum and event venue.

Rehabilitation efforts at The Grove continue the legacy of preservation established by Mrs. Collins, who, for more than a half-century, dedicated her life to preserving the mansion and its grounds. Work by the State on the project follows standards for historic preservation set by the Secretary of the Interior, with the ultimate goal of achieving LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold certification.

Once completed, The Grove will become one of only a handful of historic properties in the United States to achieve LEED Gold certification.

Brick repair work during first phase of restoration at The Grove (2011)

Brick repair work during the first phase of rehabilitation at The Grove (2011)

Image Number: DG00363

Interior brick wall prepared for restoration at The Grove (2011)

Interior brick wall prepared for rehabilitation at The Grove (2011)

Image Number: DG00387

Division of Historical Resources Site Manager Dr. Robert Krause examining brick foundation structure on Grove property (2011)

Dr. Robert Krause examining brick foundation structure at The Grove (2011)

Image Number: DG00361

An Architectural Gem

The Call-Collins House at The Grove, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1972, is a well-preserved example of Greek Revival architecture. The house reflects a Georgian-inspired floor plan, characterized by balanced proportion.

Despite minor alterations, the architectural design of The Grove has retained the character envisioned by Richard Keith Call.

The only substantial additions to the home during the Collins era were the Florida Room and an adjacent modern kitchen on the north facade of the home.

Scaffolding in place during exterior masonry repair (2011)

Scaffolding in place during exterior masonry repair (2011)

Image Number: DG00366

Frontal facade of Call-Collins House, The Grove (2011)

Frontal view of the Call-Collins House, The Grove (2011)

Image Number: DG00372

Archaeological Findings

Archaeological work has unearthed many artifacts on the property including toys, glass bottles, dishes, and other household items.

Archaeologists found a set of dog tags belonging to Second Lieutenant Joseph G. Azat of Pennsylvania in the cistern.

Research by Dr. Robert Krause confirmed that Azat trained at Eglin Air Force Base west of Tallahassee (ca. 1943) and may have visited The Grove during leave time. He was likely drawn to the Capital City by the presence of the Florida State College for Women.

Late 19th century glass bottle found during excavation of cistern well at The Grove (2011)

Late 19th century glass bottle found during excavation of the cistern well (2011)

Image Number: DG00378

Dog tags for 2nd Lt. Joseph G. Azat (Kingston, PA), found during excavation of cistern well at The Grove (2011)

Dog tags for 2nd Lt. Joseph G. Azat (Kingston, PA), found during excavation of the cistern well (2011)

Image Number: DG00377

Early 20th century chinaware (repieced), found during trenching and excavation at The Grove (2011)

Early 20th century china ware (re-pieced), found during trenching and excavation (2011)

Image Number: DG00376

Painted ceramic artifact piece found during excavation of cistern at The Grove (2011)

Painted ceramic artifact piece found during excavation of the cistern at The Grove (2011)

Image Number: DG00369

The Legacy of The Grove

The history of The Grove spans nearly the entire period of U.S. control over Florida. The structure has been home to two governors, a hotel, silkworms, servants, slaves, at least one eccentric handyman, and several remarkable women. Numerous descendants of Richard Keith Call have called The Grove home, and many more grew up on the grounds.

For generations of Floridians and residents of Tallahassee The Grove was a social institution.

Through the efforts of the Florida Department of State, Division of Historical Resources, The Grove will continue to enrich the lives of citizens of the State of Florida.