Monday, July 17, 2006

A House in a Box...

...or perhaps I should say a boxcar.

Sunday's L.A. Times had a fascinating article on the popularity of do-it-yourself house construction kits in California in the early 1900s. The homes were ordered from catalogues and shipped to the recipient by boxcar...in 12,000 pieces!

President Richard Nixon was born in a kit home his father built in nearby Yorba Linda. If I remember correctly, it was constructed from a Sears kit.

The article mentions that Walt Disney and his brother Roy built Pacific Ready-Cut homes near their studio in 1928.

The Pacific Ready-Cut Catalogue reproduction referenced in the article can be found here. The author, Rosemary Thornton, has also written a book on Sears houses.

An interesting bit of history from our nation's past.

2 Comments:

Blogger Robin B said...

Laura:
There are the most beautiful homes in Savannah and San Francisco that are Sears kit homes. We even have some here in the Oakdale area. Often there are twins right next to each other.
Robin

2:04 PM  
Blogger Laura said...

That's fascinating! There was a picture in the paper (but not online) of a Spanish-style home that looks similar to some I've seen in Long Beach. The article mentioned Long Beach is one of the cities where Pacific Ready-Cut homes were built, so I wonder if they are kit homes too!

2:19 PM  

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