Saturday, March 18, 2023

Sears Houses In St. Louis: 550 KTRS Radio, Heidi Glaus Show with Josh Gilbert

images of Heidi Glaus and Josh Gilbert and links to stream their show BIG 550 KTRS radio St. Louis Heidi Glaus show with Josh Gilbert
Direct link to stream KTRS Radio 550 AM, or get the app • Direct link to the show's info and archives 

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.

color image for a Sears House Seeker blog post listing Sears houses in the greater St. Louis MO 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:

Sears Elsmore model
An authenticated Sears Elsmore in Overland
Click HERE

Sears Lewiston model
An authenticated Sears Lewiston in Webster Groves
Click HERE

Sears Randolph model
An authenticated Sears Randolph in Webster Groves
Click HERE

Sears Maplewood model
An authenticated Sears Maplewood in Glendale
Click HERE

Sears Cedars model
An authenticated Sears Cedars in Kirkwood.
Click HERE

Sears Brookwood model
An authenticated Sears Brookwood in University City
Click HERE

Sears Winona model
An authenticated Sears Winona in Affton
Click HERE

Gordon-Van Tine house kit Diana model
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

Gordon-Van Tine house kit model No. 535
Another Gordon-Van Tine house, their No. 535 model, in St. Charles.
Click HERE

Sears Walton in Ferguson MO
An authenticated Sears Walton in Ferguson.
Click HERE for Google Streetview

Sears Walton in St. Charles MO
An authenticated Sears Walton in the city of St. Charles
Click HERE

Sears Silverdale in Old Monroe MO
A probable Sears Silverdale in Old Monroe, Lincoln County
Click HERE

Sears Rodessa model
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).

Sears Hillsboro model
An authenticated Sears Hillsboro, in the city of St. Louis
Click HERE

Sears custom designed house
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.)

Aladdin Homes Capitol model
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

Wardway Homes Florence model
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.
Click HERE

Lewis Homes Marlboro model
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.

Further Afield
Carlinville, Illinois
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:
The Standard Addition shown on a snippet from Google maps
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.
Dale Haynes' chart showing Sears house locations in Carlinville Illinois' Standard Addition
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.
image of heading of Nichol Allen's article about Sears houses in Wood River Illinois
Find the article here


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.

where to find blogs about Sears houses
Visit this blog post to find the kit house blogs of our researchers.

Sears Modern Homes FaceBook page
Follow us on Face Book • Sears Modern Homes page

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,

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