- About Us
- Contact Us
Grice House Museum
The James and Jane Grice House is an L-shaped, one-and-one-half-story home illustrating two generations of construction represented by a wood-framed and clapboard-sheathed section built about 1875 and a fieldstone section built in 1884. Vernacular in design but reflecting a subtle Gothic influence, the home features balanced fenestration created by rounded arch windows, both a front and back porch, a back storage ell, and intersecting gable roofs with eaves lines interrupted by steeply pitched secondary gables. Inside, a hardwood floor, wood baseboards, and plaster walls and ceilings finish the rooms.
The Grice House is associated with several generations of the Grice family who were significant to the development and continued growth of Harbor Beach and reflects a level of craftsmanship and local style significant to the architectural heritage of Michigan. Although Sand Beach, now Harbor Beach, lost its position as the Huron County seat after a fire destroyed the courthouse in 1864, it continued to grow as a community based on lumbering, agricultural, and maritime industries. James and Jane Grice, immigrants from England, came to the village of Sand Beach in about 1874 and constructed the frame portion of the house. James owned a shingle mill in the town; the Grice home was located on his farm property. After a fire destroyed the mill in 1881, the family moved to the nearby community of Verona, but James and Jane's son, Joseph remained, acquiring the farm property and constructing the stone portion of the house. Joseph served as foreman of the Breakwall project at Sand Beach. Three generations of the family lived here until the last descendant, James Grice died in 1960. The City of Harbor Beach purchased the property.
Donations throughout time have stocked the lakeside museum in Harbor Beach with a cross section of artifacts and lifestyle. The living conditions were sparse by today's standards. However, the Grice House was the beginning of a strong settlement of Great Lakes people. Review their lives here at the Grice House.
Your tour will include a mid-nineteenth century kitchen, parlor, sewing room, and bedroom. In addition, a room has been set aside for history of the Great Lakes, a room devoted to early industry of the area, and a room for display of military items.
The second stop on your tour is the barn, which houses farm implements and other items used in the olden days.
The last stop is a one-room school building build around 1920, and added to the Museum grounds in 1988. Enjoy the scrapbooks and other items in the school, furnished with desks, books, and the stove so common in one-room country schools of yesteryear.
The Grice House Museum is next to the Harbor Beach Marina on the north end of the city. Tours for the museum are available from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Hours are Noon to 4 P.M Tuesday through Friday and 10 A.M to 4 P.M Saturday and Sunday.