The photos below are not for the weak-kneed. And if you have a special affinity for Sears Houses, well, please look to the right of the screen and click on something else. Fast.
Still with me?
The Sears Verona was a big fancy Colonial and and in my travels, I haven’t seen too many of them. The Verona had about 2,000 square feet and featured many spacious rooms and fine accoutrements, such as coffered ceilings, a breakfast nook, a butler’s pantry, grand entry hall, large sunporch and a living room that was 375 square feet, or about half the size of many of Sears best-selling bungalows. This was one of their best homes.
To read about the large collection of Sears Homes in Northern Illinois, click here.
To read about my great Aunt’s exhumation in Lake Mills, click here.
Not a bad price for 2000 square feet!
Close-up of the Living Room shown in the 1921 catalog.
The dining room shown above looks a little spartan (1921 catalog).
The Verona was featured on the cover of the Sears Modern Homes catalog in 1923.
And it was such a happy home!
And there's a Verona in Cleveland, too!
Even the flower boxes still remain on this beautiful Verona in Cincinnati, Ohio.
One of my favorite finds of all time: This perfect Verona in Norwood, Ohio. The photo was taken in 2003.
The Verona was an incredibly spacious home.
And here’s where it gets ugly. And graphic. There was a Sears Verona built at Grayslake sometime in the early 1920s. Grayslake was the site of Richard Warren Sears summer estate. In 1906, the Chicago architecture firm of Nimmons and Fellows was commissioned to build a home for Mr. Sears. From what I can glean, this Verona was built on the estate in the early 1920s, to serve as a caretaker’s home.
Thanks to the magic of Facebook, Bob Brown (of Chicago) contacted me and shared an amazing story, shown below.
The long driveway leading into the estate was “Sears Boulevard.” This Verona was the home of John and Ruth Mogg, and they were the caretakers of the Sears Estate.
The Moggs took care of the property, which included the large horse stables, the grounds, and the boats on the docks of Gages Lake. The Country Squire Restaurant was located on the southwest corner of the property and recently closed. Mrs. Mogg passed away sometime in the 70s but was very active with the Grayslake Historical Society. John Mogg was a volunteer fireman with Grayslake.
From 1975 - 1984, I was a member of the Grayslake Fire Department. In the summer of 1980, this Verona was offered for sale. The price was $1.00, but the buyer had to move the house. No one came forward.
Rosemary, this old house was in great shape. It was used for the Jaycees Haunted House in October 1980, and then, I’m sorry to say, we used it for practice fires for our fire department. If I’d known then what I know now, we would have found a way to save it.
Many thanks to Bob Brown for providing this history on the property and also for the amazing photos below (from 1980).
Sadly, this grand old Verona, located on Richard Sears summer estate, was burned down in 1980. The property owners attempted to sell the house for $1, but there were no takers. (Photos are copyright 1980, Bob Brown and can not be used or reproduced without written permission.)
Poor Verona. Poor old house. (Photos are copyright 1980, Bob Brown and can not be used or reproduced without written permission.)
There are no words. It's a sad, sad sight. (Photos are copyright 1980, Bob Brown and can not be used or reproduced without written permission.)
To hear Elvis Presley sing “Burning Love” click here.
To learn more about Sears Homes, click here.
To read about Addie Hoyt, click here.
To buy Rose’s book, click here.
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