Home > Uncategorized > The Sears Silverdale in Headache, Illinois

The Sears Silverdale in Headache, Illinois

Well, that’s what my husband calls it. In fact, it’s Hettick, Illinois, a small town in central Illinois, about 60 miles north of St. Louis, Missouri.

When I told Hubby about the find, the West Virginia filters on his hearing translated Hettick into “Headache.”

The Silverdale is an interesting house, because it looks like every early 20th Century farmhouse on every rural route in the Midwest. In my travels, I’ve probably seen dozens of them, but discounted most of them, because it’s so hard to positively identify them.

Do you have a Silverdale in your town? Please send me a photo!

Edited to add: Judith (see first comment below) noticed that this house in Hettick, IL is actually a better match to the GVT version (#167)! I hope to add more-better photos in a couple days! Thanks so much to Judith for pointing that out!


The Silverdale as seen in the 1921 catalog.

The Silverdale as seen in the 1921 catalog.


1916 catalog

The Silverdale also appeared in the 1916 catalog.


The Headache House (well, Hettick, actually).

The Headache House (well, Hettick, actually).



Judith (see comment below) discovered that the Gordon Van Tine #167 was a better match to the house in Hettick, IL. The smaller window (next to the front door) provides a good clue that this house in Hettick probably is *not* the Sears Silverdale, but rather the Gordon Van Tine model.


Another view

Another view of the Silverdale in Hettick.


Floorplan 1921

Floorplan for the first floor.


Second floor silverdale

Second floor of the Silverdale. Note, there's no livable space over the kitchen. Back in the day, the room over the kitchen was considered uninhabitable, due to heat and smells that wafted from the kitchen below.


house hosue testimonial

There are more than a few Silverdales around.


house house house

Mr. Egan and Wife seemed to be pretty happy with their Silverdale.



Typical hinge found in Sears kit home. This was found in the Silverdale in Hettick.



An old glass window (with diamond muntins) has survived the remodelings.


To read about the Sears Homes in Carlinville, click here.

To learn more about why I was in Hettick, click here.

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  1. Judith Chabot
    December 13th, 2014 at 02:50 | #1

    Rose, have you seen the GVT No. 167, Silverdale almost-duplicate?

    I just discovered it a week or so ago. It has the same footprint as the Silverdale.

    Just about the only difference between the GVT and the Sears #110/Silverdale, is the existence of a small, half-size window on the left side of the house, near the front, just around the corner from the front door (off of the front porch).

    Look! The “Headache” house has that little window, instead of the full-size window that the Sears version has. Looks like it could be a GVT, eh?

    Was this house built in the pre-ready-cut era, so there is no marked lumber to help clear this up? I know that you’ve pointed out the existence of the Sears hinges present in this “Headache” house, though I’ve seen these same hinges in a 1907 non-Sears all-brick St. Louis home I lived in — probably supplied by Sears at some point over the years, or during construction.

    What year is this Hettick house? Here is the link to the catalogue page of the GVT: https://archive.org/stream/GordonVanTineStandardHomes0001#page/n93/mode/1up

  2. December 13th, 2014 at 12:24 | #2

    @Judith Chabot
    Judith, I think you’re right!

    I think it’s a GVT #167! I’ll update this post in a couple days - I hope! :D

  3. Judith Chabot
    December 13th, 2014 at 12:28 | #3

    And, you know what else I just noticed! The front porch roof on the Sears model, is a 4-part roof.

    The front porch roof on the GVT 167 is a 3-part roof… just like this house has. So interesting!

  4. December 13th, 2014 at 18:55 | #4

    @Judith Chabot
    You’re right about the roof. I missed that completely. Good observation, and an important detail!

  5. December 14th, 2014 at 12:46 | #5

    That’s okay Rosemary, this blog is over two years old. I can explain that!

    What people don’t realize, especially neophytes, is that not all catalogs have been available to researchers.

    It hasn’t been until recently that catalogs are becoming available on line!

    Some of us have spent years collecting and a lot of money on catalogs
    and we do the best we can with what we have available at that time.

    This blog
    is over two years old and that online copy was just recently uploaded. Not very
    many people have access to the very early years of Gordon Van Tine and Wardway

    The Sears 110/Silverdale and the GVT 167 are the same house, arrangement
    and measurements. The only difference is that smaller window (with the diamond muntin) on
    the GVT and the pedimented porch on the Sears.

    I suspect that it was a pattern that both GVT and Sears borrowed. I could dig out all of the pattern books and look or Dale might know.

  6. December 14th, 2014 at 12:50 | #6

    The Sears 110/Silverdale was offered in 1908 and the GVT 167 I can account for
    1910-early 1916. Maybe Dale knows.

    (I have GVT 1907 and then have a few years missing.) The first GVT pre-cut catalog was published in 1916 and it’s not offered in there or after that.

    Until recently, when these catalogs started being uploaded, some researchers have only had access to reprints which really limits what you can identify.

    What is available for early Gordon Van Tine and Wardway as far as reprints is pretty much nil.

    There is a wonderful guidebook available for Wardway homes that Rosemary and Dale published. But, the only GVT reprint is a 1926 catalog.

    Anyone could have identified this as a Silverdale given what was out there over two years ago!

    Rosemary identified this using what was available at that time.

  7. Judith Chabot
    December 14th, 2014 at 22:01 | #7

    Rachel, it would be very kind and helpful of you to pull out your pattern books and help us with this one.

    I’m sure there are other folks who have similar homes from this era, who would be excited to find out what plan book their home might come from.

    That would be very thoughtful, helpful, caring, and giving of you.

    And, of course, that way, anyone who thinks they may have a Silverdale, might either come upon this blog post and realize either that they really have a GVT 167, or that they have one of the similar plans that you could share with us.

    Thank you so much for your offer to expand on this for everyone.

    And, of course, Rose knew not to take this exciting information as an insult.

    Just as you say, Rose identified this using what was available to her at the time. Now that something else is available to show that the ID may be in error, it’s great to have the correction made.

  8. December 14th, 2014 at 22:55 | #8

    @Judith Chabot
    Actually, I saw this house in February 2010, and just held onto those photographs for a couple years!

    It was in an area that was surrounded by Sears Homes, so I assumed (and we know what that word really means!) that it was the Sears Silverdale.

    IMHO, written history is a sacred trust, and getting the facts right is more important than worrying about someone getting insulted! Besides, that’s what family is for!!! LOL.

  9. December 14th, 2014 at 22:57 | #9

    @Rachel Shoemaker
    Dale’s pretty good about catching my boo boos, but I think he might have missed this one, too and heaven knows - it’s easy to do.

    Rachel, were it not for your “aggressive collecting of catalogs,” I still wouldn’t have a copy of that 1913 GVT catalog! Thanks for sharing it. :D

    When you showed me your catalog collection the other day, I was speechless! What a treasure trove!

  10. December 15th, 2014 at 01:01 | #10

    @Judith Chabot
    Absolutely! I’ll keep an eye out for it as I pour through books.

    They can also post in the SEARS GROUP on facebook and I will help them if I can.

    I posted three more authenticated Sears 110’s aka Silverdale’s in the group last night and pointed out the likeness and differences in the two models.

    But, keep in mind you can’t see what someone posts when you have them blocked ;)

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