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In 1920, "The Chateau" was built as a summer home for Ernest and Maude Goff, and their children. The family, originally from Saginaw, Michigan, made its fortune in iron mines there, and in lumber in the Pacific Northwest. The 250 acres of land now Chateau St. Jean vineyards were initially planted with white grapes. Prohibition curtailed grape growing, however, and the family opted to grow prunes and walnuts instead.
When Chateau St. Jean was established in 1973, the decision was made to preserve the Goff legacy. "The Chateau" was fully restored and opened to the public. It has since been listed in the National Trust for Historic Preservation.