This is located in Jackson Township, on the Rock Island Railroad. It is six miles east of Allerton and eight miles west of Seymour. Before there was any thought of a town, D. M. Thomas was living north of the railroad track and Ellis Shriver and Lemuel Kemple south of it. Mr. Thomas built a dwelling in 1876, and a store, which he yet occupies, in 1878. The railroad authorities consenting to make a station here, the three parties above-mentioned agreed to lay out a town on Mr. Thomas’s land, in 1879. Afterward, Mr. Thomas decided to sell lots entirely on his own account, and Mr. Shriver and Mr. Kemple laid out the village of Grainville, south of the track. Mr. Thomas has sold several lots, but the greater portion of the village is south of the track. Though the place is half the time spoken of as Grainville, and is so known on the county records, the station has been named Harvard and it is desired to make that the future name of the place. The postoffice of Grainville was established before the station was made, D. M. Thomas having been appointed August 15, 1876. F. M. Allen was appointed in 1881, George Michaels in 1883, and March 1, 1886, D. M. Thomas was re-appointed.
The first lot sold was by Mr. Thomas, to J. E. Whiteley, who started a lumber yard and still carries it on. Next came Allen & Prince, and established a general store. Prince has been sole proprietor of the business since 1881. J. J. Otto started a hardware store south of the track, and after passing through several hands it is now the property of J. D. Johnson. Seth Lewis, of Seymour, started a lumber yard, and other embarked in various branches of business, and are not now here. Moss & Farnsworth began a furniture store which is now owned by William F. Moss. William Bowen has a blacksmith shop. D. C. Campbell runs the Grainville House, which was burned in 1884 and has been since rebuilt.
The Methodist Episcopal people built a church in 1882, at a cost of $700, and hold services every alternate Sunday, led by Rev. R. W. Matheny, of Allerton. The Protestant Methodists and Baptists contributed to the erection of the church, and by understanding hold services at favorable times in it. Rev. Mat. Sexsmith comes here for the Protestant Methodists. The Baptists have no minister at present.
Harvard Lodge, No. 30, I. O. O. F., was organized in February, 1884, and meets every Saturday evening. The present membership is thirty-five.
John Lewis Post, No. 99, G. A. R., was mustered in 1884, and has thirty-six members.
The nearest school-house is three-quarters of a mile distant.
Transcribed from the Biographical and Historical Record of Wayne and Appanoose Counties, Iowa – Originally published 1886, Inter-State Pub. Co., Chicago, IL