This 1912 Four-square style brick house was designed by the Swedish architect Edward Benson. He had designed many homes between 1890 and 1931 in the Edgewater area. His last office was located at Clark and Foster, which is now the Northside Federal Savings building. The house was built by a local general contractor Robert Christiansen. He was also this home’s first resident. This was a home built for a large family, as there are four bedrooms plus a maid’s quarters with a separate bath on the 2nd floor.

From the sidewalk you will notice that the façade has been changed from the typical American Four-square house. In 1940 the McDonough family rehabbed many parts in the home, and completely changed the front by removing the front porch. There are before photos inside.

James and Marie Juhasz owned the house for a year or so before Francis and Eunice Kane bought the home in 1951, and moved in with their two children, Billy and Betsy. Sister Susanne was born two years later. Francis owned and operated “Schmit-Kane Plumbing & Heating Supply Co.” across from Gethsemane Garden Center from 1940 till his death in 1995.

In the entryway, notice the newly discovered mosaic floor tiles. They had been hidden by vinyl tiles for many years. The cherry wood walls in the first entryway were added two years ago. The second entrance hall was renovated at the same time by painting the walls stripping the wood and replacing the paint encrusted windows with art glass. The closet was added in 1941.

In the living room, you can see on the floor, towards the windows, where new wood was added to compensate for the porch removal and new bay windows. We assume that all of the oak woodwork throughout the house was painted white at that time in order to modernize the home. Some of that wood has been stripped over the last 20 years. The fireplace was stripped to discover a lovely quarter sawn oak pattern. The antique green tiles had been covered with plastic fake marble and are now in their original condition.

The living room is connected to a second parlor, which has become a TV room. In 1940 a bookcase was installed here, taking space from the back of the closet. This room also connects to the staircase to the second floor and a hallway leading to the powder room.

The powder room was also redone in the 1940s and again, by Francis’ wife Eunice, in the 1950s. It is retained in the retro 1950s style with grey ceramic tile and retro wall paper with pink accents which match the pink sink. A vintage light was installed above the sink.

The dining room has a beamed ceiling and large bay windows facing south. Two windows over the corner cabinets facing the rear of the home used to hold stained glass, but were closed and covered with drywall for at least 50 years. Now they are open, bringing much needed light into the room. There was a built in China cabinet along the wall beneath the double windows, but it has been removed. The walls in the dining room were covered with large green and white hydrangea wallpaper. A leftover roll was discovered the attic.

When the kitchen was remodeled, an extra opening was created to the left of the doorway. The 1950s design was updated by the owners in 2001. This included the removal of a pantry and back stairwell that led to the maid’s room. With the additional space, there was room for a central cabinet workspace with a butcher block counter. Remodeling the kitchen included a slate floor, cherry cabinets and granite counter tops. Two windows facing the building next door are decorated with Betsy’s stained glass floral designs.

Exit the back doors to the new porch/deck built in 2010, designed by local architect Phil Casagrande. This lovely porch has become the main place to entertain and relax for Betsy, Gerhard and all of their friends. The gas fireplace makes this area usable nine months out of the year. You are welcome to stroll around the yard and check out the garden.