Sunday, February 21, 2016

Sears Windsors in Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, and Bethel, Connecticut

white sears windsor pittsburgh pa
Probable Sears Windsor • 515 Walnut St., Pittsburgh, PA (Blawnox)
(Photo courtesy of Google Maps)
In early January (2016), fellow researcher Karen DeJeet came across this beautiful house in the Pittsburgh area.  We haven't been able to authenticate it, but it sure looks like a Sears Windsor, with a very nicely enclosed front porch area.

The Windsor was offered from 1922 through 1933, according to Houses By Mail, though, in 1918, an almost exactly-the-same model, The Carlin, was built on several lots in Carlinville, Illinois.  Dale Haynes, a resident of Carlinville, who lives in a Roseberry, I believe, can explain the differences -- but, I can't!

catalog image sears modern home windsor model
From my Sears Modern Homes Catalog
(you can also see it here, in the 1923 catalog.)
sears windsor in pittsburgh pa
Side windows look great, as does the little porch, in the back.
(Click to enlarge.)
first floor layout sears windsor
The Windsor's First Floor layout
second floor sears windsor
... and, the second floor layout
Karen has been finding us some real gems this year. We all just loved this Windsor!
sears house pittsburgh pa windsor

Another Windsor, this time in Cincinnati, Ohio (Disneyland for Sears Researchers)
A month or so ago, I, along with friends and mentors in all things Sears Homes related, Cindy Catanzaro, and Andrew Mutch, began checking out the mortgage books for Cincinnati, Ohio... going page by page in every volume, looking for the names of Sears trustees, to help us find the names of the owners.  One of the listings that I found, in series 7, volume 54, was for a man named Otway Yeazell, and his wife, Matilda. As usual, I was armed only with a lot number and a subdivision name, so I got busy searching for them using  Sure enough, there they were, at a house on Barvac Avenue... and, their house looks, also, to be a Sears Windsor.  This one has only the left portion of the front porch, closed in.

Mr. and Mrs. Otway Yeazell in the 1940 census, I believe.
sears windsor cincinnati ohio
1539 Barvac Avenue, Cincinnati, Ohio
Authenticated Sears Windsor 
This is the information card,
shown on the Hamilton County auditor's website.
It lists the first owners up here in the left corner of the card.
1539 barvac avenue sears windsor
The bump out on the left side, is unexpected. It is not standard for this model. 
1539 barvac avenue sears windsor 

The funny thing was, that Andrew had already found a mortgage listing for the Yeazells -- I had found both the 1930 mortgage listing, with Sears trustee E. Harrison Powell, and then also the 1935 mortgage release. Andrew, however, had found the Yeazells somehow through the newspaper, and had even posted a picture of the house, back in November, I believe.   Then, after both of us posted the same house, we also realized that Otway Yeazell  was one of the names in a several-column Cincinnati newspaper article that Cindy had found, naming quite a few men who had just signed to have Sears homes built:

otway yeazell 1930 newspaper

Andrew has found a cute Windsor in Yonkers, New York, with a mortgage, and has found numerous others in Michigan, Cincinnati, D.C. and Maryland... I'll let him tell you about those along the way in the stories on his blog, Kit House Hunters.

A Windsor in Bethel, Connecticut
Another of our fellow researchers, is young Nigel T., who is a whiz at buzzing around towns on Google maps, and finding houses (like the three Arlingtons I wrote about in January)..  Armed with the list of names submitted to Sears Archives (no addresses given, just names of models folks think that they may own), Nigel has found us quite a few of those homes, which we are delighted to be able to add to our growing National Database of Sears Houses.  Nigel found a Sears Windsor, in Bethel, Connecticut:

sears archives sears windsor bethel ct
21 Judd Avenue, Bethel, Connecticut • Probable Sears Windsor
sears archives sears windsor bethel ct
We don't have this home authenticated, but it looks good to be a Windsor.
The Sears Windsor also resembles a larger model, the Sears Westly. You can read about, and see photos of, several Westly models at this post of Sears Houses in Ohio.  If you have a Sears Windsor or Westly (or any Sears or kit house, of course!), please feel free to leave a comment, or contact me via my contact form.  Thanks for visiting :)


  1. The first house is really spacious and well- designed. I love it

  2. I actually think Nigel's Windsor is the best looking of the 3 but only because I despise enclosed porches no matter ho tastefully done. It also has the original porch and balcony railings and the 5 piece eave brackets. The blue house although authentic irritates me that they done away with the original porch columns from what I can tell. This house is a reverse floor plan so the bumpout on the right would add a few more feet to the kitchen. The white house has a pretty color scheme and probably the most catalog perfect image house which isn't seen that often but the enclosed front porch and lack of balcony altogether makes me cringe. They all have additions in the back which aren't usually that distasteful as long as they aren't huge or ugly like my house.

    1. I know how you feel about those enclosed porches, Dale! I don't mind them if they are done as beautifully as the white house shown here, but what I would really love, is to see the inside of these houses, to see how that has been kept up :)

  3. These are good examples. I have quite a few pictures of the Windsor in my photo files that have been remodeled, almost beyond the point of being recognizable. It's nice to see some with the original details.

    1. Cindy, you have so many good photos in your photo files :) I love seeing them.


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