You’ve heard the old saying…….”You’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all”.
Not so with Sears Houses. With over 350 models offered over the 32 years that Sears, Roebuck sold houses as kits through their mail order catalog, there’s pretty much no way a researcher can say they’ve seen them all. Heck, with 99 of those models still not located anywhere, there is still plenty of opportunity to keep finding them.
But recently, my research buddy, Marie, and I made a day trip to the west side of Cincinnati. We’ve been talking about doing that route for a while, but the first time it came up, we had a bunch of rain, and the west side was flooded. Yikes. Then the second time, it was Halloween and we were afraid we wouldn’t get back in time for the evening Trick or Treat thing. But the third time, off we went!
One of the reasons we wanted to do the West side was because a fair number of models I hadn’t seen “for real” were located in Sayler Park. But along the way, we decided to take a quick ride through part of Westwood, a neighborhood in Cincinnati, which has train loads of Sears Houses! 62 to date are listed on our Master List of Sears Houses across the United States.
Most of the Sears Houses in Westwood are what we researchers call “common” models. Not that they aren’t important to our research, but they are mostly models that we find regularly in cities, towns, and villages all over our area.
But there is one house that has been looked at, checked over, and discussed by researchers for several years. One of the reasons we weren’t sure about it is that it isn’t easily viewed on Google Maps or in Auditor Photos because of the street trees and nicely landscaped lot. But now that I’ve seen it for real, I am 99.99% sure it is a Sears No. 2069, which is the same floor plan as the Sears Hollywood, but has different exterior features.
The house in Westwood was built reversed from the catalog offering, which was a common change at time of ordering your house kit.
After a bit of driving around Westwood and snapping photos of other Sears Houses on our path, we headed on towards Sayler Park. And what a treat! I had wanted to go to Sayler Park years ago with my friend Laraine Shape, but for some reason or other we never got around to it. Marie and I had a great time checking out the Sears Houses we already knew about, and, like always when we visit Cincinnati, we spotted a few more.
Here’s some photos of the models I had never seen before “for real”.
And just an FYI to other Sears House researchers…….The Tarryton is really narrow across the front in real life.
The Sears Carroll shown above is not documented with finance records, but I have heard through the Sears House grapevine that the current owner has stated it is a house kit from Sears, Roebuck, and they should know!
The next house we saw is a little sad. The landscaping hides the front view, and it needs some TLC, but it is a good example of the model, as it retains its distinctive front entry.
And a Parkridge! Without a pear tree. Just kidding.
The Parkridge model was not in the Houses by Mail Field guide for some unknown reason, so researchers have to look it up in on line catalogs instead.
After we had checked off all the houses on our list that we wanted to see in Sayler Park, we headed back north through the Village of Harrison, where we got photos of a lovely Sears Winona. The owner had just finished painting the exterior. I mean…….really just finished. He was loading up his equipment and tools in his truck when we pulled up. It sparkled!
We spotted a few more Sears Houses on our way home through Hamilton, and a couple of possibles.
All in all, it was a great day tracking down these houses I love. And it’s so much better when you have somebody to share the joy with. Like Marie.
Thanks for following along.