The Edwin Grover Biography

  When I started on the Grover project, I had no idea what would be involved in collecting documents and records or how many interviews I would have to conduct to get at the essence of Edwin Osgood Grover and his family. So, once I had accumulated  a fair amount of details on Edwin, Mertie, Eulalie, Nan, Frances, Hester and Graham, it became obvious that much of it did not fit into a documentary. There is so much you can say with film, but the rest needs to go into a book. Books are more flexible in terms of content, and they tolerate footnotes and appendices, forewords and epilogues. Movies don't: they require a compelling uninterrupted story. I was lucky that Joy Wallace Dickinson, a seasoned Sentinel journalist and author of the Central Florida Flashback in the Sunday Sentinel, as well as my wife and daughter agreed to be my editors and help with the intricacies of making a book. The book will cover the expected content of a biography, but also cover the unfortunate times of John Andrew Rice at Rollins, the founding of Mead Botanical Garden, and  some history of Hannibal Square and our African American neighbors who contributed so much to Winter Park over the years. Barbara Buchanan Parsons contributed a section on the Grover daughters, Frances

and Hester after Edwin died and her recollections of Eulalie as a never tiring reader of children's books to her young neighbors. Also, Mary Seymour's account of the Animated Magazine is reprinted in the appendix. Grover's defense of the "Professor of Books," published in the Boston Evening Transcript can also be found in the appendix.

  The "Business of Making Good" Documentary

Starting in early 2014, I have been interviewing Rollins faculty, residents of Winter Park and a few fortunate people who knew Edwin Grover and his family personally. I've rummaged through the Grover collection at the Olin Library archives and got help from libraries and historical societies in New England, Illinois, North Carolina. I haven't been able to travel to Maine and see Bethel and Boothbay Harbor for myself, but hope to be able to do that sometime in the near future. A small group held a screening of the first cut of the movie in November 2015. The DVD was completed in March 2017 and is now available at the Winter Park History Museum at 200 W. New England Ave. and at the Rollins College Miller Family Bookstore.

       Ed Gfeller 2016

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