With only 27 in his pocket, Joseph Spenker landed in Stockton in 1868. Ten years later, including the ranch now known as Jessie’s Grove, he had over 1500 acres of some of the nicest land in the Central Valley. He met Anna Schlieman, a stunning girl, at a Stockton wedding in 1870 and got married to her the following day. Otto and Jessie, their two children, were raised in the house that Joseph built for his family in 1906. In 1888, Joseph established his first vineyard, and throughout the years, he added more acres. Some of our most cherished wines are produced by many of these vines, which are still in use today.
Jessie vetoed any and all plans to alter the Oak Grove in the late 1940s and early 1950s. The magnificent Christian Lady passed away in 1952 after living through two world wars, witnessing women obtain the right to vote, lending a helpful hand, and running three sizable ranches. Jessie had reached the age of 77. Jessie modeled her life after her father’s honorable example. Jessie was a genuine San Joaquin Valley pioneer woman.
The 1870s structure that houses the wine tasting facility on Turner Road had its outside painstakingly conserved while inside structural improvements were done as needed. Other noteworthy structures include a 1905 two-story house and an 1870 barn in the oak grove where our museum is located. The authentic historic setting has been preserved by not adding any new structures.
They recently refurbished and established a second tasting area at Olde Ice House Cellars in Downtown Lodi in addition to the winery on Turner Rd.