A south central Pennsylvania town with beautiful scenery.
The area is nestled between the Appalachian Front to the west and Dunnings Mountain of the Ridge and Valley Region to the east!
The best crowd was Lulu Belle and Scotty from Chicago with almost 9,000 paid listeners who were hanging on top of trees, on top of buildings and automobiles to see the show. Musselman’s Grove was also home to the Annual Claar-Walter Reunion which was started in 1901.
Doc & Chickie Williams and daughters, Peeper, Puch and Pumpkin
Musselman’s Grove located in Klahr at one time was home to some of the most famous Country Western music stars in the 1940’s. Doc Williams and the Border Riders and his wife, Chickie would rent the Grove and bring big name stars to the Claysburg area.
Bet you didn't know that Musselman's Grove was featured in
Esquire Magazine, a nationally well-known magazine in 1959?
Smokey Pleacher who was from Claysburg and a local CK graduate was a regular at Musselman's Grove. Smokey was a comedian and singer and a local legend. He also performed nationally including in Nashville at the Grand Old Opry.
Grandpa Jones in Center
During the 1960’s other entertainment venues began to erode the markets for Musselman’s Grove. By the early 1970’s, the Grove was limited to family reunions and a special occasion every once in a while. Today the Grove sits idle. However, it has made its mark on history through the years, and until a few years ago, if you used Mapquest for directions, the directions to and from Claysburg, PA showed Musselman’s Grove as the originating point.
A lot of songs were sung, a lot of people were entertained and a lot of wonderful food was served at Musselman’s Grove. Musselman's Grove had the potential to be a Branson, Missouri if it had been nurtured. Somewhere along the way, Musselman's Grove left its mark on history!
Musselman’s Grove was in its heyday in the 1940’s and 1950’s. Traffic would get so heavy on Route 220 coming to Musselman’s Grove that it would cause a traffic jam! Coming up the Klahr valley during an event was a traffic jam in itself.
Tex Ritter and his horse
Doc Williams & the Border Riders & Smokey Pleacher
Lulla Belle & Scotty
Drew a Crowd of 9,000
to Musselman's Grove!
Watch for more information on our Claysburg P.A.S.T. Show on:
Musselman's Grove - Music and Memories on
Saturday, June 25, 2022
Excerpted from bottom right of Esquire Magazine painting page - 1959 about Musselman's Grove. Also, note that the painting on the left was done by a now famous painter, Tom Allen. His paintings have sold in excess of $25,000 years ago. Anyone know where this painting is now? We do not!
Doc who was a longtime star of WWVA, Wheeling, WV brought in named starts like Grandpa Jones, Hank Snow, Ernest Tubb, the Carter Family with Mother Maybelle, Minnie Pearl, Roy Acuff and Hawkshaw Hawkins.
Musselman’s Grove Entertainment
It's time for another history day in Claysburg, PA!
Going back as far as oral stories have been passed down in the area, our ancestors had a knack for playing instruments, singing and entertaining. Whether it was a fiddle, banjo, dulcimer, mandolin, horns of various types, drums and even kazoos, the Claysburg area has been entertaining since the first settlers arrived. A lot of these talents were brought from the Mother Country of the arriving immigrants and passed down through the years. Others were taught, trained and cultivated to become performers some more natural than others but all doing well.
Probably the initial form of singing and playing instruments came from church services after the settlers arrived. Other forms of entertainment began developing. As a matter of fact, Claysburg can boast of one of the oldest town bands in the state. It is now the Claysburg American Legion Band. People needed a way to be entertained before travel became easier.
Local places like Musselman’s Grove, Mayberry Claar Grove and Barnhart’s Grove provided them with local talented people some of whom moved on to be quite successful through the years.
Claysburg has always had more than its fair share of talent. Raw talent needs cultivated and natural talent can always be improved. However, when it is time for a show in Claysburg whether it is a church play, a school play a community theatre event, a parade, community days entertainment, minstrel shows, art shows or a special celebration, the people of Claysburg always come through with stunning performances. When it comes to performing, many of us cannot play an instrument or carry a tune, but we still have talents.
People have volunteered to carry flags in parades, to tell jokes in a minstrel or variety show or to act in stage plays. We all have special talents, but when you look back through the years at Claysburg’s shows, parades or celebrations, we have had an overwhelming amount of talent.
We have also been blessed with leaders in molding and shaping our performances whether musical or non-musical. Take a look at this section, have a laugh, revive a memory, put a smile on your face and remember, Claysburg is a talented place!
In Esquire magazine was a spread about the popularity of Country Music in 1959. It featured a painting of Musselman's Grove by Tom Allen. Allen became a well-known artist.
The article notes Musselman's Grove, attending by siliently approving Amish. These were actually local Upper and Lower Claar Church of the Brethren people in their drab, black garb of the time back then.
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