The Grande-Grossman House is just one of the 12 historical houses that make up Corpus Christi’s Heritage Park dating as far back as 1851. Yes, you read that correctly! For over 160 years, the homes in Heritage Park’s have unmatched ethnic diversity that exemplifies the unique and vibrant culture of Corpus Christi and its surrounding areas. All 12 houses underwent renovations to improve conditions that put their original beauty on display for tourists from all over the world.
The Grande-Grossman house, in particular, is considered a hidden gem among the dozen.
In the late 1860s, the house was originally located on 709 Artesian Street, but was moved a mile southwest to its current location in 1982 to preserve it from demolition. It was built for the Mexican immigrant family of Benito Grande, who emerged as a prominent leader within Corpus Christi’s Mexican-American community after taking over the Grande family business following his father’s death in 1902. But in 1925, Grande and his family moved to Dallas, which paved way for Rebecca Grossman to acquire the house. Grossman later helped her oldest children immigrate from Russia and lived in the house until her death in 1952. Her family was responsible for the addition of a porch that currently surrounds three sides of the house.
The house was built with a two-story central hall, but renovations over the years have given it a bungalow-style feel. It features large brick piers along the outside of the house with stick-style brackets supporting the eaves. The front portion of the ground floor is divided into two areas: the heroes room and the maps room. The heroes room leads to the back of the house, while the maps room faces other houses in Heritage Park.
The second floor contains three rooms – two on the right side and an extended room on the left that is adjacent to the stairwell. From the deck, visitors can view the entire park area.
In 2015, the Grande-Grossman house was converted into the Corpus Christi Tejano Civil Rights Museum in a joint project by Texas A&M University Kingsville and the LULAC foundation. The focal point of the museum's mission is to educate the Corpus Christi community of the rich Tejano and Mexican-American culture rooted in southwest Texas.
The museum features six rooms in the house that are filled with artifacts ranging from historic maps, photos and art. Each month, it displays a collection of the work from a different Hispanic artist.
BONUS: Calling all ghost hunters! All 12 of the Heritage Park homes have been subject to suspected supernatural activity, and the Grande-Grossman House is no different. Visitors have claimed to experience a strange paranormal presence immediately after entering its doors, while artists working on their displays in the first floor rooms have reported hearing a quiet, raspy voice coming from the stairwell. On the second floor, staff members claim that the extended room contains the highest sense of paranormal activity that gives off feelings of anxiety and paranoia.
Come spend a day touring Heritage Park and experience everything the Grossman-Grande House has to offer!