Readers’ Comments


  1. Jeanne

    I think my home in Andover, Massachusetts is a Sears Kit Home (an American Foursquare).

    It was built about 1910. Sadly, I had to sell it last June because I moved to NE Pennsylvania, but I’d like to know how to positively identify it as a Sears Kit Home.

  2. Michael Marks

    Hi Rose.

    Hope you’re doing well. This is Michael Marks from the Texas Standard, the daily, statewide radio news show.

    I’m interested in learning more about Sears homes in Texas for a possible story. I found your site, and wanted to see if you had some time tomorrow or Wednesday for a conversation. My schedule is fairly flexible, and I think the conversation would take around 20 minutes or so. Is there a time that works for you?

    Let me know if you’ve got any questions or concerns.

  3. Amanda

    Hello – I love your site! Our home is a Gordon-van Tine #603 and I see that you have a picture from the catalog of that model. I have been searching for a jpeg of this catalog page so that I can print and frame it. I would like to hang the picture in our home to give some character / history to the house. Is it possible to get an electronic copy of that photo? Thanks!

  4. Valerie

    I am so excited to find your website. I have been researching my home in St. Petersburg, FL and found it in the 1926 Gordon-van Tine book, it’s house No. 616.

    It did have a fireplace installed in the living room when it was built. I had many questions as to what other alterations had been done to the floor plan over the years, now I know!

    We are planning an update and restoration, many horrible decision in decor done in the kitchen and bathroom. I would rather have had the original rooms and worked from there.

    Hope to take it back to it’s former glory and put a small addition on the back. This will help me make historically correct decisions so it looks like it was always there! If you would like a photo email me and I will send you one.

  5. Jim Donovan

    I bought a house from a neighbor’s estate and updated a number of items.

    I came across a Sears Homart Automatic Water Heater Repair Parts List, Installation, and Operating Instructions book in very good shape.

    Hate to dispose of it. Is there anywhere that might be interested in this?

  6. Richard Vestal

    I have a Sears home in Williston, ND – came in by rail and was installed in 1906. I haven’t found my home in a catalog though – I wondered if I could send you a picture if you would be able to identify the model and direct me to where I might find a catalog with this model in it?

    Thanks so much!

  7. Suzanne

    Hello all … am pleased to have found this site. I am the happy owner of a Winona over on the Eastern Shore of Maryland. Have been restoring this little bungalow for past two or three years. Fortunately most of its elements, architecture and parts were still intact. Original light fixtures were in storage or mis-hung here and there. Original bathtub and bath fixtures still remain. Anyway … I look forward to sharing enthusiasm and technical details with others.

  8. Suzanne

    Mine is the three-bedroom model.


  9. Patrick

    I have an American Four Square that I’ve been unable to find online thus far. I’ve been told it was built in 1918 out of a Sears Magazine and would love to find the original listing to frame. It is two stories with a 4 column porch covering the entire house. We think there were 6 bedrooms upstairs originally and there are 6 fireplaces total. It’s an absolutely beautiful house and I’d love to share pictures. Thank you for any help you can provide.

  10. Suzanne


    Yes, I agree. It would be wonderful to be able post pictures of our homes and see images of others’ homes. Is this a possibility, Rosemary ?

    ~ S.

  11. Gemma

    @Patrick — Have you been to the County Clerk’s office to get the original information?

  12. Sears Homes

    Hi Suzanne,

    If someone wants to send me photos, I can post them on my website. If you send me photos, please include a line that says, “I give specific permission to Rosemary Thornton to reprint these images on her website.”

    You can send them to [email protected]



    Hi Rose. Heard the Podcast and I am fascinated. My grandmother who is now 101 still lives in the Sears home they built in 1937.

    Beside her house, is my great grandmother’s Sears home, built in 1936. I am sure my grandmother must be one of the oldest living people in her Sears home, for now 82 years.

    She would be happy to talk about it, and I am happy to send photos, I do not believe these homes are currently on your registry. If you are interested, please contact me via email. Thank you. Valoree

  14. Mary E. Meyer

    I just ordered your two books on Sears homes and I would like them autographed!! We live in a Sears home, Hazelton model. Thank you very much.

  15. Sears Homes

    Thanks for the lovely comment! I often come to this page just to read the encouraging words. Each and every jot and tittle brings me comfort.

    Thank you!

  16. John Burnside

    Hi Rose. I’m here in Bay City Michigan and routinely drive past my favorite Aladdin home; The Shelburne.

    The original model they used in the 1937 catalog is located at 66 Salzburg and looks pretty much the same, except for the addition of a garage and room above.

    I have a ‘then-and-now’ picture, but seem unable to load it up here. Google maps shows the street view of 66 Salzburg for you to see it.

  17. Cliff A Strain

    Hi Rose,

    I am emailing you from a kit house much further south than most of your readers, Port Aransas. I was hoping to attach a picture of the museum.

    It has always been considered a Sears kit house built in 1919 and delivered to our island after being assembled on the mainland by barge or assembled here.

    It was commandeered or purchases by the U.S. Lifesaving Service in 1919 after a hurricane destroyed their station in 1916 and survived every hurricane following, including Harvey.

    I am hoping this will arouse your curiosity and visit our website and determine if it is a Sears house. No visible marking in the rafters can be found.

    The house was moved 3 blocks from it’s original location to avoid demolition. We have a picture in 1921 of the house standing with almost no other “town” surrounding it after the 1919 storm.

    I would be happy to purchase a book that had the model in it. I could not see it in the Sears Archive.

    Cliff Strain
    new Museum Director

  18. Patti

    Hello. I stumbled upon your website trying to find out more about my home.

    It turns out I own a Sears modern home #126, built in 1911. The back porch has been enclosed and the front porch has been replaced with wood.

    The windows appear to be original to the home. I find it odd though, that the plans I see all show the living room as being on the opposite side as the home I have.

    Is there a site/place that would have additional interior pictures of this model home? I would love to learn more! Thank you for all of the information you are sharing!

  19. Travis

    Hello Rose,

    My family and I purchased an early craftsman home in Nova Scotia Canada last year.

    While it may not be a sears kit home I wonder because there are stories of this house having the lumber delivered by train. The house has all of it’s original Douglas fir trim and there is not a Douglas fir for 2000 miles around Nova Scotia.

    It was supposed to have been built in 1911.

    There are a few examples in my town that do match Sears plans but ours is a little different with regards to the front porch and dormer.

    The interior is in excellent condition with original plaster and built-ins. The interior is very similar to the Vallonia. If you are interested in taking a look – send me a note and I will give you the address to google earth it.

    The exterior wood shingles have been covered with plastic and fake shutters and gutters added – I promise to bring back the exterior in the next few years!

    Another hint that it may have come as a kt is that the original windows (under the aluminum storms) are the cross pattern on the first floor and square on the second floor.

    They are very well made and I cannot find similar examples in our area.

    We love this well built house and would love any info on it.


  20. Travis

    Hi Again Rose,

    I should have done a little more reading before I sent a message regarding my house in Canada. I see that my house does not match any plans exactly but is very close to a later model of Sears home. I also read that you were backing away a little from this line of work. I say – nice work and follow your passions!

    Best wishes,

  21. Dale Wolicki

    Travis, Canada had its own pre-cut housing industry. Nearest to you was Aladdin Canada in Toronto and Petersboro, and Halliday Homes in Hamilton.

    Look in the basement joists and attic rafters for part stampings. Eaton of Toronto offered House Plan catalogs from which you could purchase blueprints.

    Les Henry is the authority on Canadian Kit Homes, and author of “Catalogue Houses, Eatons and Others.”

    Your local library may have copy but if you google “Les Henry Catalogue Homes,” you’ll find good information.

  22. Susan O

    Hi there! I lived in a Sears home for several years, the Oakdale model. If you search it, the one I keep finding first is the actual home my sister owns.

    I am in love with the detailing. I insisted that we redo the windows with historically accurate new windows (saved lots of money in heating).

    This note is not about her home, but about a project I am currently working on. My husband and I have determined that real estate investment is a good thing for his carpenter mind and my interior design mind.

    As such, I would like to improve ugly homes to follow the charm, charcter and (hopefully) economy found in many Sears home designs.

    There is a rash of badly (understatement) designed second story additions to bungalows in the Chicago area. I would like to avoid being one of them.

    Might you have any Sears sources that highlight two-story homes such as might fit any additions to the bungalow style? I would love to incorporate details I have not yet thought of. Thank you! -Susan

  23. Ann

    I wish you would reconsider letting your books all go out of print.

    You don’t have to deal with the fulfillment yourself these days, you could use a print-on-demand service such as Createspace and let Amazon handle everything.

    Or contact the University of Georgia press person who expressed an interest in reprinting your books.

  24. Joyce Phipps

    I am the owner of a Sears Roebuck home in Centenary, S.C. I am in process of doing a little remodeling.

  25. Morgan Finn

    Dear Rosemary,

    I would so love a blueprint for the Rodessa.

    I have written a novel about three women who build one from a kit in 1943 Ohio.

    But I need a few construction details to lend authenticity. I hope you can help me.

    Morgan Finn
    [email protected]

  26. DON

    When did the power house in Standard City (Macoupin County) shut down?


  27. Jessie

    Hi, I bought a kit home, built in 1947 outside of Milwaukee. I know it can’t be a Sears home because of the war it was built but do you have any suggestions on who could have built it?

    I don’t see any markings other than numbers that must have told the builder where to put that piece (2b, 7a, etc). No company name. It’s a cape cod.

  28. Cynthia Heckroth Curry

    My great-grandparents (Gomory family) immigrated through Ellis Island and settled in Pittsburgh, PA. There, my great-grandfather, assisted by other relatives living on the block, built a Sears Kit home. It still stands today at 1701 Renton Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA . My father was born in the upper left bedroom back in 1930. We recently went to the home and spoke with the current homeowners. They allowed us to take pictures of the house. My father lived in the house with his mother and grandparents until the early/middle 1940’s.

    Today, at 89, my father lives near Philadelphia.

  29. Rick Booth

    The home that astronaut John Glenn grew up in is a museum now. Built in 1923-4, it has been said by local tradition that it is a Sears house.

    It is actually built very specifically to be a boarding house with a separate staircase entrance for the boarders who have four separate bedrooms and a common bathroom on the second floor.

    As a volunteer historian at the museum, however, I’ve been unable to find evidence of a house model like this one ever offered by Sears. You can see the house online at

    I was wondering if you could offer an opinion as to whether it might be an actual Sears house or not, given its boarding house design. Thanks for your books and expertise!

  30. Bergie

    Is it possible to buy the actual blueprints/plans from these historical homes? I love the looks, but am hesitant to reinvent the wheel with an architect if these can be had on the open market. (Not to mention an architect recreating the home would be expensive!)

  31. Dale Sheldon

    Hi Rose! I’m looking into building The Atlanta four unit Apartment complex here in California, partially as an experiment to see what it would be like to build a Sears honor bilt in 2020, and partly as an investment. Do you happen to know if the original blue prints and instructions exist somewhere? I will have to make some changes of course to stay to modern construction codes, like our earthquake codes here, and I may change the interior layout slightly for more modern expectations.

  32. Susan Rohlfing

    People are under the impression that there is a small house in Black River Falls, WI that is a Sears Kit House. How can this be proven?

  33. Cecil Rock

    Dear Rose,
    I appreciate history and those that document it. I am currently helping work on a home in Echo, Oregon. There are several Sears Homes there according to the locals. This home is similar to a Van Jean but built in 1919. The porch large with 4 columns and it is elevated.

    I’m looking for thoughts on its real origin. I believe there is at least 5 homes that look to be Sears built in a two block distance from each other.

    Just trying to document history for the community as well.

    Thank you.

  34. joyce ott

    How do you know if your bungalow is a Sears Home?

  35. larry nichols

    I believe we have a Verona. I was told by the previous owners that it was built in 1911 but have not been able to find out if it was offered in in that year. Could anyone tell me if the Verona was one of Sears kits available in 1911?

  36. David Bishop

    There is an ARDARA Sears house in Norwich, CT in the Laurel Hill section of town. I have the Sears ad and a photo of the house. How do I submit them on this site?

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