Updated! To read the latest and see contemporary photos of the house, click here
There’s a Sears Avondale somewhere in Greeley, Colorado and that’s remarkable for two reasons.
One, Sears Homes aren’t that common in the “Far West” (as that area was known in the early 1900s), and two, of the 370 models offered by Sears Roebuck, the Avondale was one of their finest homes. The Avondale in Greeley was built by W. H. Senier, a member of one of the pioneer families of Greeley.
Scroll on down to see an actual photo (from 1916) of this Sears Avondale in Greeley.
To read more about Sears Homes, click here.
This photo first appeared in the 1912 Sears Modern Homes catalog. It's a great photo and you can see that - when built in 1910 or 1911, Mr. Senier's house had stained glass windows. This was an upgrade, and it's likely that the home's interior had some fancy upgrades as well.
A clearer photo of the Avondale, from the 1919 Sears Modern Homes catalog
This "bungalow" was the Sears Avondale, replete with stained-glass windows.
Nice inside, too.
And here's a real-life example in Effingham, IL.
And one in Tulsa, Oklahoma. (Photo is courtesy of Rachel Shoemaker, and can not be used or reproduced without written permission.)
And a very fine Avondale in Litchfield, Illinois.
And a two-story Avondale in Elmhurst, Illinois. This was built as an Avondale (one-story) and enlarged in later years. Thanks to Dr. Rebecca Hunter for finding this house and showing it to me. I would have never have found it on my own.
Catalog picture of the Sears Avondale from 1919.
The Avondale was a popular house for years. It's shown here in the 1910 catalog.
If you’ve any idea where our Greeley Avondale might be lurking, please leave a comment!
To learn more about how to identify kit homes, click here.
To read about the results of Addie’s autopsy, click here. (Addie’s sister – Anna Hoyt Whitmore – lived in Denver for 50 years.)
* * *
There’s an Avondale hiding here in my hometown of Springfield, Ohio, too, according to the 1920 catalog. The ones with the enclosed porches sure give it a different look. Those will help me in my search. Of course, if it’s had a second floor added I will never find it.
When I look for kit houses, I always look in the area of the railway lines first and work my way out from there. The older houses are often close to the rail lines. Most of these old towns grew up from the rail lines and expanded out as transportation methods improved.
You’re exactly right, Mark. And I look for certain street names, such as tree names (Elm, Oak and Chestnut), names from the Great War (Pershing Street and Vimy Ridge) and pre-Great War presidential names (Roosevelt, Coolidge, Harding). Street names tell you a lot about when a neighborhood was developed.
If you see curvilinear (curvy) streets and cul-de-sacs and girls’ names (Nancy Court), you’re in the wrong place!!
There’s one in Wyoming, Ohio too! I know, I know, Wyoming (Ohio) is the mecca of Sears kit homes!
I bought a sears avondale, actually from documents we’ve received we believe it was built by the architect who then sold the design to sears. Happy to supply a photo if you’d like. It is in Riverside, Illinois. Original porch too, not enclosed!
My husband and I purchased an Avondale in about 6 years ago. It is located in Lewistown, Missouri and was originally built by my husband’s great grandfather in 1913. It was owned by the family until about 20 years ago. The majority of the woodwork and built ins are still intact and unpainted! The floor plan is very close to original. It is our plan to move it and bring it up to date as a retirement home. It looks exactly like the post card of the Avondale taken at the Illinois State Fair in 1910.
I’m living in an Avondale located in Hagerstown, MD. Didn’t pay $2176 though!
My husband grew up in this unique home.
We now own it 1910 Avondale #151.
We just replaced all the windows in the home last year, but until they were all orginals. At one point about 20 years ago. When my mother in law owned the place. They had a tour of home from the Sears collection.
Our was on the tour. I love this house and now that i see the original floor plans its so interesting..
I came across the Greeley Avondale owner’s name in a testimonial in one of my catalogs and could not find the house at all.
I researched the owner like I always do and checked the addresses I found for him. I think it is gone and buildings are now in that area, if my memory serves me correctly.
I live in an Avondale in Coatesville, PA but it was built in 1906-07 – almost all original, only 3 windows replaced.
It can’t be an Avondale then. The Avondale wasn’t offered until 1911. It made its big debut at the 1911 Illinois State Fair. You can find the postcards of it all the time. Sears didn’t even offer homes until 1908.
The Avondales with the second floor dormers, like the Greeley testimonial house for example, are probably #201’s aka the Hawthorne. What do you think?
The Greeley house in particular, look at that wall below the eaves, it runs around the entire house.
It raises the height of the house which I assume makes room for the second floor. The Avondale doesn’t have that.
Rosemary, I’m back. I’m trying so hard to find that testimonial house above, the Hawthorne. And have been for awhile. HOWEVER, it is not in Greeley.
That particular house was built by August M Schiller in West McHenry, Ill. according to his tetimony in the 1912 and 1913 catalogs. That same not quite finished house.
So frustrating 🙁
The only addresses I can find are “farm.”
In 1920 the enumerator was at North Johnsburg Road and Wilmot Road in McHenry prior to his stop. I went to that area and looked around. It is still somewhat rural so maybe the house is still there.
Then, there is an Avondale testimonial in 1913 for W. H. Senier of Greeley Co., I believe his name might be Winfred Howell.
His house was also a farm. Once again no luck. I have been searching for it as well on more than one occasion. With this information, names and location, hopefully someone else can find them.
Rachel, I sent Rose a couple emails to pass on to you.
Using the info you had I found an obituary for W. H. Senier of Greeley Co.
The obituary states that he had a farm on the east side of Greeley at the end of 5th Street and 4th Street road. I believe strongly – based on the satellite views – that the house is there.
August M. Schiller’s farm was called “The Schiller View Farm”. He bought 93 acres on Lake McCullum in 1912. The House is facing the Lake at 4707 W Shore Dr. McHenry, IL 60050.
I checked the assessor info. No photos 🙁 http://www.mchenrytownship.com/property_search/property2012.cfm?pin=09-07-155-021
Darn! Sometimes assessors have photos.
You can get a good aerial view here http://www.mchenrycountygis.org/Athena/ enter the address or parcel number 09-07-155-021
Thanks Mark! I have some others I should message you info for.
Rachel, the 4707 W. Shore Dr. address puts you at the mailbox when you search using Google. The real address may be 4702 but its hard to tell.
I would be glad to share info with you.
Ask Rose to give you my email address. I have found a couple other testimonial houses but I haven’t saved much of the info.
If you let me know what you are looking for I may be able to point you to the house or tell you if I have looked for it before.
I don’t know as much as you and Rose about the details of the houses or have the luxury of having the catalog images on hand.
I rely on the pictures you and Rose share to do most of the searches. I love the old houses but I enjoy taking the trip back in time and finding out about the people that built the homes and their way of life just as much.
Correction! 1909 it appears, according to a postcard of the Avondale I have from the fair .
I think HBM says 1911. 🙁
The Avondale house IS still standing in Greeley, Co.
I just went to look at it last week. The owners do not want the address to be published. The house is in quite a state of disrepair. There is no stained glass.
I live in Greeley, just want to find out where it is though.
Sarah, the newspaper printed an article a few weeks ago. I posted the link here for you but my comment was not posted.
Rachel, I don’t know what happened to your comment. The only comments I don’t post are the ones filled with bad words or spam.
I wish I knew what happened to your comment! 🙁
Thanks, I already read that article, it’s how I found out about the house.
Can the other Sarah tell me the address or maybe the general direction by chance?
I’m just really curious..
It’s approximately 118 East 4th Street Road, back in an industrial area in a cul-de-sac. I never could peg and exact address. Not that I see in my notes anyway.
Awesome, thanks so much!
We have an Avondale with some upgrades in Harrison Township, Michigan. 39285 Winkler. How do I post the pictures of our home?
Diane, you should join us on Facebook and post some photos there! Just look for “Sears Homes.”
My husband and I have an Avondale in Toledo, Ohio.
We are searching for pictures of what the original kitchen looked like and aren’t having any luck.
I would love to send you a picture of it.
We live in an Avondale purchased in 1914. It looks like the one pictured in the 1910 catalog.
We’re in Evansville, IN.
I live in an Sears Avondale bungalow in upstate New York. Mine was built 1929 and has been renovated. We love it. If I could find a kit today I’d build the same house in the mountains.
Love these Sears homes.
I live in an Avondale model, located in Lancaster, Pa.
In fact there are very very many Sears homes here in Lancaster.
There are at least six on my street. My home sat empty for 36 years, we have updated the house, while maintaining the original layout and wood work.
Schiller’s Sears Hawthorne is at 4708 W Shore Drive, Mchenry, IL 60050.
It’s waterfront and sits at an angle. You can see it from bing aerial view. Google street view shows the back only.
It has had some “modifications” but the chimneys are still there and the left side is a match.
There is one here in Eunice, Louisiana.
Bringing my daughter to an eye appointment, I inquired about the home, and was informed it is an Avondale Model (built in 1908). It certainly is a statement in style with beautiful stained glass windows, which look like the Bungalow Style.
We just purchased an Avondale built in 1945 on 15 acres in Alden, New York, Hinden off RT 20. If you would like a photo, please feel free to email.
The Avondale is a very attractive house and I like the floor plan. Are there any Blue Prints for this house available.
I live in what I believe is an Avondale/Hawthorne. The floorplan is nearly identical to the Avondale but we do have two dormers and a staircase adjacent to the hallway. I can’t find any diagrams/photos of the Hawthorne to see what it looks like, though. Can anyone point me in the right direction? Thanks!
I found some, only ours doesn’t have the L-shaped stairway, it has a straight stair going adjacent to the hall (space taken from the dining room). Does anyone know if that was an option or if we just have a modification?
Look at 1300 E. Lincoln Hwy, Coatesville Pa 19320: Pictures on on Zillow. This has been my home since 2008 and seems to be a fine Avondale. It was built 1909-1911.
We have an Avondale. 311 n olive St Elmo I’ll. Beautiful
We have an Avondale for sale here in Akron, Ohio on a nice tree lined brick street.