July 17, 2018

Montgomery Ward Homes: As Welcoming Today As 88 Years Ago

As much as the public obsesses over Sears kit houses, there are thousands of Montgomery Ward houses all over the country that are overlooked. Montgomery Ward sold high-quality homes that are still as welcoming today as they were 88 years ago.

Today we feature two Wardway models in the Northern suburbs.

Wardway Kenwood in Northfield

1549 Winnetka Rd., Northfield. Photo from Realtor site.

Montgomery Ward Kenwood.

This house in Northfield is a perfect match to the Montgomery Ward Kenwood, except it is lacking a clipped gable roof (a design option). The original front door and screen door remain.  The double window in the front has been replaced by a bay window, likely after initial construction.

The Kenwood has a triple window in the living room. Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Wardway Drexel in Deerfield

1044 Chestnut, Deerfield. Photo from Realtor site.

Wardway Drexel.

There have been many changes to the exterior of the house, but, believe it or not, this is an authenticated Wardway Drexel.

We see the original Montgomery Ward front door, but the vestibule has been streamlined. I think I prefer the new version.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Photo from Realtor site.

Dante Mitrovi took out a mortgage for $5050 from Wards in November 1930 to build the Drexel. Dante was a Yugoslavian immigrant.

I'm not clear whether Dante ever lived in the house or whether he built it as an investment. Either way, by 1940, Dante and his family were living in Chicago.

Dante at age 72, volunteering as a coal miner at the Museum of Science and Industry. He was never a miner in real life; he worked for the railroad.


Architectural Observer said...

Both are beautiful houses. The Wardway kits do seem to have gotten lost in the shuffle and that is a shame because Montgomery Ward / GVT produced some really nice ones. It's rare that I think alterations enhance the beauty of a house, but I agree with you that the modifications to the Drexel in Deerfield were a definite improvement!

Unknown said...

I recently purchased a home and was told from the get go that it’s a sears Home. Only problem I am finding is it was built in 1947. It’s a 2 story cape cod, has the original Sears kitchen sink with the S.R. And pattern number underneath. Has original Ash floors throughout the main floor, except of the kitchen it has maple. Pine floors throughout the upstairs. Finder block foundation. 12-12 pitch roof with two dormers off the front and one larger dormer off the back of the house to make a decent size hallway in the upstairs. I cannot locate any stamping or stencil numbers or letters on the Lumber. Everything screams Sears Roebuck Home but the 1947 is what concerns me.

Sears Homes of Chicagoland said...

Sears sold one-story Homart Homes around that time.


Could also be a kit house from another company.

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