And my quest continues……..to locate and identify houses purchased as kits through mail order catalogs.
About once a week, I hop onto Zillow and check out the new listings in various cities around Ohio, in the hopes of spotting one of the Sears Roebuck models I recognize. (No, I don’t know them all.)
Several weeks ago, I saw a listing for a house in Dayton that I was pretty sure was a Sears Fullerton.
And today, I was in Dayton, and decided to stop by for a closer look. I knew from the photos on the real estate listing that the house was vacant, so I took the opportunity to get some close up pictures of the outside. From my exterior examination, and the interior photos on the realtor website, I am now 99.9% sure this is a Fullerton, purchased as a kit from Sears Roebuck in 1924. (Year of build is from the Montgomery Co Auditor)
Here are the documenting details of the exterior.
The front porch pillars of the Fullerton have large brick bases with square wooden posts above. The posts have an inset. At the base of the large brick bases is a smaller brick detail that accents the front stairs. The original front door has ten window panes.
See that back plate on the front door knob? That’s the Stratford Design hardware that was included with the kit for the Fullerton.
Here’s a close up of the Stratford Design front door assembly. I’ve seen this door plate in person before, and am always surprised at how large it is.
Now, let’s move inside. No…..I didn’t go inside….but I’m going to show you some of the pretty awesome pictures that the Realtor took.
First, let’s have a look at the additional catalog page that Sears showed in their 1925 Modern Homes catalog.
Check out that living room view to the stairway.
I have no idea why Sears would even suggest that you paint the woodwork white, when if you didn’t, it would look like this.
The realtor was kind enough to take this awesome photo of the stairway, too.
From the two photos above, you can see the quality of the lumber that Sears provided for their kit houses. The lumber used for this house is 90 years old, and still in remarkable condition. Sears was always promoting their quality.
I can hear the Modern Homes salesman YELLING at us about the quality of their lumber now.
Here’s a photo showing the lovely two panel interior doors with the Stratford Design hardware.
Check out the bathroom!
Here’s the floor plan of The Fullerton as seen in the 1925 catalog. I used this floor plan illustration to match up the window arrangement from the outside. That is another way to determine if the house is from Sears.
Windows match on the left side. There is an addition on the back of the house that is not original.
Windows and side entry on the right match. From this angle, you can also see that the furnace chimney is in the right place.
Another detail of The Fullerton that I didn’t mention before is the small single pane window in the dormer. That also matches the catalog illustration.
The back of the house showing two upstairs windows that match the floor plan and the downstairs addition.
The house has a two car garage at the rear of the yard. Sears sold kits for garages as well. The garage has an entry door with the Stratford Design hardware as well. It is possible, though, that the door came from the back of the house and was reused on the garage at some point. The back door would have been removed from the house when the addition was put on, and there is a newer door there now.
So if you are looking for a house with “good bones” that will last for another 90 years or so, here’s your chance!