Gruwell and Crew General Store

Under construction
Also known as: West Branch Heritage Museum
109 W. Main St., West Branch, Iowa


South (Front) Elevation

The museum is currently (as of this visit) closed for renovations and repairs.

Photo taken by J.R. Manning in August 2013



Street View 

Heritage Museum, 109 West Main Street 

As it Appears on a sign in the window

This wood-frame building is one of four storefronts that remain as reminders of the early commercial era in downtown West Branch. It was constructed in 1894 by two prominent businessman: Mayor S.C. Gruwell and J.C. Crew, a dry good store owner.

Originally leased for a music store, it underwent several changes of ownership and commercial uses. In 1960 it was sold to a local physician, Dr. R.G. Stuelke, who leased it for use as a variety store.

Eventually deeded to the West Branch Heritage Foundation to house a museum, it retained most of its original features. The exception was the front steps that were added during the 1964-65 museum conversion.

The storefront was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1987 as an example of a well-preserved small town commercial structure.

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on September 9, 1982
Reference number
Area of significance
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
A - Event
Property type
Historic function
Specialty store
Current function
Period of significance
Significant year

Update Log 

  • May 1, 2017: New Street View added by Bill Eichelberger
  • August 14, 2013: Essay added by J.R. Manning
  • August 14, 2013: Updated by J.R. Manning: Updated Status and Added Photos