A Sears House under serious restoration

A couple of weeks ago, my husband and I went on a day trip to South Bend, Indiana, to get some parts for the classic car we bought earlier this year.


Our 1962 Studebaker Lark

Yep, that’s it above.  A 1962 Studebaker Lark.  You don’t see one of these every day.

It’s a great old car, but it needed a bit of tinkering.  Like…….we put the original motor and drive train back in.  ( The previous owner had replaced them with something else, but gave us the originals when we bought the car. )

And then it needed…….well…….lots of miscellaneous parts.

So where does one go to buy miscellaneous parts for old Studebakers?  You go to the point of origin.  South Bend, Indiana.

After a four hour (plus) drive, we arrived at stop number one, Tommy Karkiewicz’s place, where old Studebakers go to die.

Fortunately, Tommy also has  loads of original parts he salvaged from his Studebaker graveyard, so we were able to get what we went for.  Original wheels.

We only needed four wheels…….Tommy had plenty to choose from.


Tommy and Frank

After a nice visit with Tommy and his wife, we headed off to our next stop, Studebaker International, for a few more things.


So……now it’s like, 3:00 PM, and we have a four (plus) hour drive home.  But, like with any day trip we make, Frank always, always, makes sure I get to see at least ONE Sears House.  And since we were in South Bend, the house I got to see was one that had been on my Sears House Bucket List for a long time.


The Magnolia.


The Sears Magnolia in South Bend was mentioned in Houses by Mail, the Field Guide to houses from Sears, Roebuck, which was published in 1986, so Sears House lovers have known about this home for a long, long time.


Excerpt from Houses by Mail

This Sears Magnolia was for sale not too long ago, and was in need of some major renovation and repair.  Here’s a link that shows a load of photos from when it was listed.

Sears Magnolia in South Bend real estate listing info

Oh happy day for this Sears House researcher, because when we got there, we discovered it was undergoing major renovation, kinda like our Studebaker Lark.


Sears Magnolia- 325 W North Shore, South Bend, Indiana

There were quite a few construction workers on site, and it was great to see somebody giving this fabulous home the love and attention it needed.  Here’s a few more photos of the exterior work in progress.



We also made time to get photos of two other fabulous Sears Houses while we were there, an Alhambra, just down the street from this Magnolia and a Preston, a few blocks away.


Sears Alhambra- 221 North Shore, South Bend, Indiana


Sears Preston at 204 Peashway St., South Bend Indiana

I’m looking forward to a return trip to South Bend in May of 2017, hopefully, to attend the Studebaker Driver’s Club International Meet, and get photos of the Magnolia when it is complete.   And Tommy’s wife wants to go Sears House hunting with me!

I guess I should mention that Ohio also has a Sears Magnolia in Canton.  While I haven’t traveled there to see it yet, fellow researcher Andrew Mutch has.  Here’s his recent photo.


Sears Magnolia at 424 19th St NW, Canton. Documented with a mortgage record dated 7/17/1923. Photo courtesy of Andrew Mutch.

Thanks for following along.



2 comments on “A Sears House under serious restoration

  1. Fabulous! Your day, the Magnolia, the other houses, Frank (what a peach!), and the Studebaker 🙂 And, you, dear mentor and friend. Thanks for giving us something to follow, and thanks for bringing me along.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Cindy, what a fun day (and nice wheels)! So glad the Magnolia is getting some attention.


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