I love living in Ohio. It’s a place where everywhere you turn, you might spot a Sears House.
I love having good friends, too, who will turn the car around every time I say “Hey! There’s a Sears House!”
That’s what happened yesterday. After a long day shopping with my two best gal friends……Flea Market…..Estate Sale……Antique Shops…….Ice Cream Shop……..we were finally ready to head home.
And then we turned a corner.
And there it was. A Sears Argyle.
And this wasn’t just any Sears Argyle. It was one we could go inside! A charming little place called “Ashlynne’s Attic” in Fairborn.
My gal friends headed inside to check things out while I took some outside photos, so by the time I went in the charming owner had the scoop. She already knew it was a Sears House, but didn’t know which model or details about the Sears Modern Home program. While we chatted, she kept right on with her work fixing up an old chair for her shop.
She let me wander around and take lots of pictures of the original features of the house, and was proud of the fact that so many were still in place, even if some were a bit worn.
I have lots to share, but first you need to see the catalog image and details of the Argyle from the Sears Modern Home catalog.
The house was built with the rooms reversed. Sears offered that on many of their home designs. Notice it is mentioned just to the right of the box that shows the cost of the model.
Here’s the floor plan. Remember when we start looking at the house in Fairborn to visualize it as a mirror image, with the Living Room, Dining Room and Kitchen on the left side of the house, and the 2 bedrooms and bath on the right.
Here’s a comparison of the catalog and the real house. Sorry the angle of my photo wasn’t quite enough. I was standing in the middle of a four lane road and had to hurry.
The Argyle had a lot of windows on the bedroom side. Two of those were small windows in closets. The house in Fairborn doesn’t have those, but I have seen them omitted in other Argyle models around Ohio.
Here’s the bedroom, bathroom side of the house.
The other side of the house has the correct window placement, but one of the small windows by the fireplace has been covered over. It was like that when the current owner purchased it.
The photo above shows a lot of the original Sears details of this model, like the triple brackets at the porch peak, two sets of double brackets further down, and the decorative barge boards.
Researchers will use these features to help document that the house is actually from Sears Roebuck and not one of the pattern book homes that were so similar. We also check out the window arrangement to make sure it follows the floor plan, but in this case I really didn’t need to do that, since we got to go inside!
The house has the original front door. (That’s me reflected in the glass. )
Check out the original Sears door hardware that came with the house kit. It’s the Stratford design. The interior doors have the same.
Here are some photos of the interior doors and trim boards.
The owner let me sneak down to the basement to looked for stenciled lumber. We didn’t find any for sure, but we did see some faint markings that might have been. The wood had darkened just enough to obscure them.
What was interesting about the basement, though, was the way the house was placed on the foundation. The owner is pretty sure the house is one of the homes that was moved from the old city of Osborn to just outside Fairfield in the early 1920’s. From the looks of the basement wall construction, it is possible she is correct in that assumption. In the 1950’s, the 2 cities were combined and renamed Fairborn.
Here’s some info on that if you are interested. Dayton Daily News Archives
I do have a mortgage record attached to a parcel in Osborn that I haven’t been able to pin down. Additional research will need to be done to see if it might be for this Argyle.
I know this is getting long……..but here’s a few more outside photos showing off some of the details.
My gals and I decided we loved the landscaping, especially the blue balloon flowers that contrasted so nicely with the color of the house.
Take a trip to Ashlynne’s Attic in Fairborn. We did!