A few years back, I discovered that the little cottage style home I owned had a unique history. It had been purchased as a kit from Sears and Roebuck. It’s a really long story how it all came about, but that’s not what this initial blog is all about. It’s about how I got started looking for Sears Houses in Ohio.
First, a little background about Sears Houses, for those of you who haven’t heard of this before. (If you have, skip this part). Between 1908 and 1940, Sears published specialty catalogs with house plans in them. To get the plans, you had to buy a specified amount of building materials. Sears would load all the building materials onto a railroad boxcar and ship them to your nearest train station. Youpicked up your order, and hauled everything out to your home site. Then, using the provided instruction manual, build your house. Sears had an entire sales and production department devoted to this whole deal. They called it the Sears Modern Home Department. That’s the condensed version. It was a lot more complicated than that, and If you want to know more, there is loads of information on the internet.
Back to that little cottage style house. Here it is!
It was built in 1929 and it’s an exact match to the Sears Jeanette shown in the Sears Modern Catalog at that time.
I studied up on Sears Houses a little bit, and then to my surprise, I discovered another one. And I could see it from my kitchen window. It’s a Sears Mitchell.
A little while after that, I spotted ANOTHER one up around the corner! A Sears Dover
Now I was really excited! My neighborhood must be full of Sears Houses, I thought. Well, it wasn’t. That was pretty much all of them, but it took me a little while to figure that out. But I was still fascinated them, so I did some more research, and started finding them in other parts of my town. When I ran out of houses to find in my own town, I started on the little towns and villages in my County.
Then I started driving around neighboring counties.
And then I started driving farther and farther.
All to find and take pictures of Sears Houses.
And that’s how it started. In 2006. I’ve been at it for a while now, and just decided to start a little blog about it. Since “the beginning”, I have located and photographed hundreds of Sears Houses. In Ohio.
I hope you’ll check back once in a while to see more of them. Maybe one of them will be yours!