The History of English Grove Cemetery
In 1840, John Mathews started a business about eight miles southeast of Rock Port on the stage coach road between St. Joseph and Council Bluffs. He being an Englishman and the site located in a grove of trees, became known as English Grove. Mathews and his wife both died the same day, August 22, 1848 were buried beside the road. The third burial was a child who was sick and died as the family camped at English Grove. When the need for a cemetery arose, this place was selected as these graves were already here. It became known as the English Grove Cemetery. In 1872, the English Grove Presbyterian Church selected this site to build their first church building.
The History of the English Grove Presbyterian Church
The church began in the homes of Charles Curry, Robert Dunlap, John Dunlap, and Isaac Curry in 1854. Sunday School was organized in 1856, meeting in the Ely School, and on May 22, 1858 it became the old school English Grove Presbyterian Church South. A building, erected on this site in 1872, was repaired and refinished in 1917 with the addition of a basement in 1930. Twenty-eight ministers served this church, the oldest in Atchison County, which was closed in 1976 when it merged with the First Presbyterian Church of Fairfax. The building was razed in 1982.