April 29, 2017

A Sears Osborn That Will Make You Say "Wow"

Sears Homes of Chicagoland reader Debbie Krone emailed me to say a Sears Osborn was listed for sale in her hometown of Villa Park.

It's difficult to see the exterior due to the landscaping, but the inside will make you say "Wow!"

326 S. Princeton, Villa Park. Photo courtesy of Debbie Krone.

Sears Osborn. The house in Villa Park is reversed so the dining room porch is on the left side of the house.

Photo courtesy of Debbie Krone.

The dining room porch (likely enclosed at build time), the living room fireplace, and the entry to the front porch. Photo courtesy of Debbie Krone.

The original back patio (enclosed). Sears said that the Osborn was "for the lover of nature" with its many patios. Photo courtesy of Debbie Krone.

Let's go inside! Photo courtesy of Debbie Krone.

Photo from Realtor site.

Wow! Original moldings, trim, fireplace, bookshelves, colonnade. Photo from Realtor site.

Illustration of the Osborn living room from the Sears Modern Homes catalog.

The dining room. Original china closet, ceiling beams, windows and doors. Most Osborns today have been stripped inside. Photo from Realtor site.

The dining room on the Osborn floor plan shows the ceiling beams and the china closet.

Another view of the china closet. Per the floor plan, the left doorway leads to the kitchen and the right doorway leads to a hallway. Photo from Realtor site.

The same china closet shown in the Sears Building Materials catalog.

Debbie says that the two cabinets in the upper right corner are original to the house and were painted white when the kitchen was renovated. Photo from Realtor site.

The china cabinet in the kitchen has the middle glass ("glazed leaded sheet glass") sold by Sears in their Building Materials catalogs.

Debbie writes in an email, "As far as I know, this is only the second time this house has been for sale. The people who remodeled it bought it from the daughter of the original owner and builder.... The daughter, I think her name was Elizabeth, who was quite elderly (90?) told me she was born in the house and that the house was built in 1912 by her father. She lived in the house her entire life."

The facts somewhat correspond to this oral history.

The house was built by Emil Schlehahn. With his wife, Elisabeth, he immigrated to the United States from Germany in 1911. Emil worked as a tailor and owned his own shop in Elmhurst. 

I don't believe the house was built in 1912--it wasn't even offered for sale by Sears until fall of 1914.

However, Emil built the Osborn sometime before 1918. 
That year, he was living in "Ardmore" (a former name of Villa Park) when Elisabeth died. 

In 1920, he married his second wife, Erna. Daughter Elizabeth was born in 1922.

The Osborn in 1924. Photo courtesy of Bill Smith.

Emil died in 1936, and Erna remarried and lived in the house until her death around 1970. At some point, Elizabeth moved into the house.

Elizabeth died in 2007, and the estate sold the house at auction in 2011. 

The Sears Osborn in Villa Park was under contract in eight days.


SearsHouseSeeker said...

No surprise it sold so fast! What a beautiful. This is the best example of the interior of an Osborn that we have seen, I think.
Sears House Seeker

Heather said...

Gorgeous! The Osborn has always been my favorite.

Anonymous said...

There’s one for sale near Pittsburgh


Anonymous said...

Article about an Osborne


Unknown said...

I believe a hone I am buying is an Osborn, has a few variations...but the identical columns in front and dips in the porch facade brickwork. Same basic interior as well...

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