Is my 1915 Foursquare a kit home?

Questions, answers and advice for people who own or work on houses built during the 20th century.

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House buffs

Post by subetterly »

What a wealth of knowledge.....Thanks for the photo of the door hardware. Our hardware is much simpler - just a brass plate with a double row of raised trim.

I'm inclined to think it isn't a kit home, rather it's a Foursquare of the period with a lot of design elements similar to the kit homes of the period. It's odd how these myths get started and why people (like the neighbors and previous owners) think it was a kit home. The main reason I was hoping it was a kit was so I could see what it originally looked like. We don't know what the porch was like, for example.

The roof is extremely problematic. Quite a few slates are broken. Quite a few have fallen off. And some genius drilled through the last row of slates to hang the rain gutters from straps. So if you put any pressure on the rain gutter (like leaning a ladder) it cracks the slate. And all the metal ridge caps, which are decorative and functional need to be replaced. Remarkably we don't think the roof is leaking yet.....

I love this forum :D

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kit house?

Post by aed »

Hi! I know what you mean about the myths. When we looked at our house 18 (!) years ago, the daughter of the owner said that she thought they had a Sears home, but we never gave it much thought. I just started looking into the idea again last month--curiosity got to me & I was also looking for new hobby :) . This is a great forum and I know you will find a wealth of knowledge & support here.

We're still trying to authenticate our Aladdin (Richmond model, circa 1916), and the kit house research makes for some interesting & enjoyable reading. Re: your roof--ours is not slate, but we had to replace 2/3 of it the year after we moved in--a wild wind storm here one Spring just sheared off the shingles & blew them into the street. The same wind also uprooted two very large trees down the block & tossed them into the roadway. When we replaced our gutters & soffits last year we had them build fascia boards on both the front & the back. Our gutters were directly attached to the roofing with those clips also.

Keep researching your house & let us know what you find (I, too, am curious about the front porch :?). Below is a pic of our humble little house & porch. I spend a lot of time on that porch in the Summer & Fall, & personally I think everyone should have one! ~ Anne

"A man travels the world over in search of what he needs and returns home to find it" ~ George Moore

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Location: Columbus, Ohio

Post by theobald »

There's several houses in our neigborhood with a similar window arrangement, including our house. Ours is kit house, but I don't know about the others. Here's a picture of the one's in our dining room.


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Location: ohio

Post by nathanaelgreene »

hello, i would like to look further into sears, alladin homes for my brother is there a web-site or book out there with information on them?
Rescue, Restore and Reuse.

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Post by asiedydd »

nathanaelgreene wrote:hello, i would like to look further into sears, alladin homes for my brother is there a web-site or book out there with information on them?
Here's both: from Rose Thornton, THE Sears Homes expert, occasional OHW contributor and author of a reply posted earlier in this thread!

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Joined: Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:22 am

Re: Is my 1915 Foursquare a kit home?

Post by ajt »

I came across this thread while trying to discover something about the origins of my own 1920 house in Princeton. Mine is not a foursquare, but it looks like subetterly and I have identical trim on our stairs and windows. So, subetterly, I'm curious: Did you ever learn more about the origins and construction of your foursquare?

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