On Tuesday, March 21 (2023), at 3:30 p.m. (Central time) I'll be doing a short interview on a local St. Louis radio station, KTRS 550 AM, which is also available through streaming, and through their app. I'll be on the Heidi Glaus Show w/Josh Gilbert, to talk about Sears houses in the greater St. Louis area. UPDATE: Here is a link to hear the 17-minute interview on their Sound Cloud online resource.
Where Are The St. Louis Area Sears Houses?
My blog is meant to be seen in its web version, because I have all kinds of key links in the right side bar of the blog. But, if you're viewing it with a phone or tablet, you may be given the truncated view made for portable devices, and you'll miss all of those good resources on the side. You can scroll down to any blog post on your phone or tablet, to select to switch to the web version, but I thought I'd make a post today that gives a few key items from the side bar, that you might want to use, if you are looking for Sears houses in the greater St. Louis area.
|This blog post also gives general background information on what a kit house is, and isn't.|
Click HERE to access this blog post.
Here are just a few of my favorites from that list, that I wrote blog posts about over the years, in a variety of communities in our area:
|An authenticated Sears Elsmore in Overland|
|An authenticated Sears Lewiston in Webster Groves|
|An authenticated Sears Randolph in Webster Groves|
|An authenticated Sears Maplewood in Glendale|
|An authenticated Sears Cedars in Kirkwood.|
|An authenticated Sears Brookwood in University City|
|An authenticated Sears Winona in Affton|
|A probable Diana model from the Gordon-Van Tine kit house company, in Affton. |
GVT was based in Davenport, Iowa, but had a kit house fabrication lumber yard in St. Louis, on Goodfellow. Click HERE
|Another Gordon-Van Tine house, their No. 535 model, in St. Charles.|
|An authenticated Sears Walton in Ferguson.|
Click HERE for Google Streetview
|An authenticated Sears Walton in the city of St. Charles|
|A probable Sears Silverdale in Old Monroe, Lincoln County|
|A Sears Rodessa on Odell, in the city of St. Louis: HERE|
We have found three Rodessa examples in the city (all on the comprehensive list).
|An authenticated Sears Hillsboro, in the city of St. Louis|
|This is an example of one of the custom houses designed by a Sears architect, and financed through Sears. Usually, Sears helped arrange the construction, as well. This one is in South St. Louis, as were a number of others, though there are others in Ladue, Kirkwood, Webster Groves, and Sunset Hills. You can read about them in this blog post, and about other custom houses designed by Sears architect L. J. Steffens, in this blog post (examples of Steffens' custom and customized designs, are found in the city of St. Louis, in Kirkwood, in University City, and in Ferguson.)|
|We have a few examples of kit houses by the Aladdin Homes company, in the area.|
This example of the Aladdin Capitol, is in the city of St. Louis, on Odell: click HERE
|Montgomery Ward sold kit houses under their Wardway brand, and the Gordon-Van Tine company was the fabricator for their kits. This Wardway Florence is in the city of St. Louis.|
|The Lewis Homes company was very active in the early 1920s, and we have found three examples of their homes in the area. This is an authenticated Lewis Marlboro model, in Webster Groves. Click HERE.|
If you're interested in taking a little day trip about 90 minutes from the St. Louis area, take a drive to Carlinville, Illinois. In Carlinville, there is a well-known neighborhood full of 1918-era Sears houses, bought by Standard Oil, to be constructed as housing for their employees, after they purchased the Carlinville Coal Company in 1917 (more info in Tom Emery's article about the history of Carlinville, here
). This neighborhood is referred to as The Standard Addition
. If you can't drive there, you can "Google drive" up and down the blocks where the Sears houses are, using Google maps Streetview. Here's the neighborhood:
|If you put your "Google car" down right here, you'll be at the corner of North High Street and Burton Street, right where that red marker is. Check the guide, below, for the addresses and names of the Sears models.|
Carlinville resident Dayle Haynes put together a handy chart, showing the addresses and model names of the Sears houses that line the streets of this neighborhood. You can consult the online 1918 Sears Modern Homes catalog
to see what the models look like.
|Thanks to Carlinville resident Dayle Haynes, for this excellent resource.|
Wood River, Illinois
A little closer to St. Louis, in Wood River, Illinois, there remain a number of Sears houses in a neighborhood identified in this excellent article by Nichol Allen
. The homes here in Wood River were also part of the Standard Oil purchase of 192 Sears houses. Standard Oil owned a refinery in Wood River, and then added the coal mine in Carlinville, in 1917, and built 24 of those 192 kits, in Wood River. More of the houses in Carlinville retain something close to their original look, whereas quite a few of the Wood River houses have had significant changes due to re-siding and other modernizations. The majority of the houses are located on South 9th Street. You can start your Google-driving journey here
|Find the article here|
RESOURCES and ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
|Visit this blog post to learn about the researchers in our group, and what we do. |
You'll also find a list of many U.S. communities where sizable concentrations of Sears houses are located.
|Looking for more information from other resources? This blog post has links to online versions of many of the original, historic catalogs for Sears and the other kit house companies. In addition, at the end of the post, there is a list of books and reproduction catalogs that we suggest for further reading.|
|To learn more about who we are and what we do, visit our research team's website, SearsHouses.com|
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