This is one of three two-flats in a row permitted on June 27, 1907, which makes them a little newer than most of the homes on the street. The original owner was Oscar Anderson and the architect was A.E. Norman, who is responsible for many buildings in Edgewater. The building material is of interest, because it is concrete that was formed in molds to look like stone. In today’s buildings, this type of material is used extensively. Apparently, in 1905, these molds were available through Sears as were many home building supplies. As you view the three buildings together, notice that this building is missing its original cornice, which the owner hopes to replace. The buildings also have some decorative curved designs pressed in from the molds. At the top, just below the cornice in the center, is a design of an eagle. The stone like material is used on all four sides of the buildings. Along the sides is a raised banding of stone and then the bricks are layered in alternating rows of rough and smooth.
The cast concrete block machine was invented by Harmon S. Palmer in 1900. He founded the Hollow Block Building Company in 1902. The machine he designed was filled with concrete – a mixture of Portland cement, water, sand, stone and aggregate – by shovels full. It was then tamped down to compress the mixture. When the mold was ready to release, the sides came down and the block was set on a pallet to dry. The block machine had a variety of faceplates but the most popular was the rusticated stone, like these three buildings. Additional designs were available, such as shells, scrolls, wreathes and roping. This information is from the book “Twentieth Century Building Materials: History and Conservation” edited by Thomas C. Jester for the National Park Service.
The entrance hall to the building is in the traditional design. The front door opens into a small hallway with mailboxes. The wall covering is a raised pattern that replicates the original. The door to the second floor is on the left. You will be going to the second floor. Outside the apartment is a mirror and an area to hang coats. The apartment door opens into the dining room. Opposite the door is a bay with two windows and the chimney in the center. A lot of work is being done in this room, including stripping the oak wood that was painted and faux finished to look like wood. The built-in hutch in this unit is original. Sadly, it has been removed from the first floor unit. Note the vintage chandelier. The floors and baseboards and doors are original. The owner found the doors in the basement after he purchased the building.
While standing in the dining room, you can see the living room with the original crown moldings above each window. The owner of this building has also done research in the Hull Historical Molding catalog, which is a source for replicating early 20th century millwork. Just off the living room is a small bedroom. Towards the back of the dining room there is an angled entrance to the back hallway. Another bedroom is reached from this hallway and the door is at an angle. Next to that door is the remodeled bathroom with walk-in shower. There is a vintage feel to the black and white design.
Just outside the bathroom door is a built-in hutch with glass doors and three drawers below. This is original and shows the original finish of the wood either fir or oak. The floors in the hallway and kitchen and pantry are maple and have been refinished.
The kitchen is beautiful and in keeping with the vintage style, despite being updated. The cabinets are reminiscent of bead board in the natural wood finish. The floor is the original maple. The owner designed the island with seating which provides space for food preparation as well as eating. The counter is Corian. Off the kitchen is a walk-in pantry. There is also a door to the third bedroom. You will exit through the dining room.