Detective Joseph H. Grous | Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad

Age: 63
Served: 11+ Years
~1900 – ~1903 Campbell County Constable
~1911 – ~1918 Newport Police Department
~1919 – December 8, 1919 Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad

Joseph Grous was born October 10, 1856 in Kentucky to German immigrants, Felix and Thelma (Shineker) Grous. He started raising a family in Indiana during 1883 and boarded for a time in Riverside, a neighborhood of Cincinnati. During 1887 he moved the family to Newport and eventually fathered six children.

Joseph became a Constable in Newport before 1900 and served at least until October 11, 1903, when his second son, Arthur Grous (17), died of a lung disorder. Thirteen months later, he lost his only daughter, Myrtle Grous, to pulmonary tuberculosis on November 11, 1904.

Constable positions, being political, are often tenuous between elections. It is probably for this reason that Constable Grous went to work at a steel mill by 1906. During 1909, he was elected Vice President of the Sons of German Pioneers Society. By 1910, he had been promoted to Foreman at the steel mill.

He went back into law enforcement as a Newport Patrolman before September 10, 1912 and continuing to 1918. He then joined the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad as a Detective.

On December 8, 1919, Detective Grous was on the C & O Railroad trestle leading to the bridge over the Ohio River when he was struck by a freight engine. He suffered a fractured skull and multiple injuries. He was carried across the bridge to Cincinnati where his death is recorded.

Detective Grous left a wife, Margaret “Maggie” Grous and his remaining children; Joseph F. Grous (36), Edward Grous (35), Harold Grous (28), and Leo G. Grouse (21). Detective Grous was buried in Evergreen Cemetery on December 10, 1919.

This line of duty death was rediscovered 94 years after the fact by Cincinnati Homicide Detective Edward Zieverink, Greater Cincinnati Police Museum Historian. If you have any information, artifacts, archives, or images regarding this officer or incident, please contact the Greater Cincinnati Police Museum at

This narrative was created November 3, 2014 by Cincinnati Police Lieutenant Stephen R. Kramer (Retired), Greater Cincinnati Police Historical Society President with some research provided by Cincinnati Homicide Detective Edward Zieverink, Greater Cincinnati Police Museum Historian. All rights are reserved to them and the Greater Cincinnati Police Historical Society.