As I wrote a couple days ago, Ms. J, daughter of the original owners of Bungalow ‘23, sent me some pictures of the house from the late 1920’s and early 1930’s. I’m including some photos taken yesterday to show some of the physical changes to the house over the past 70 years.
Changes I’ve spotted from the front of the house include replacing the screen door and windows with glass ones, trimming off the tips of the bargeboards on the end of the eaves, filling in the voids in the support braces, and removing a pine tree. Posing behind the tree is Dr. Widen, the original owner, with his two oldest daughters.
The side view of the house shows a couple major changes. The first is the extension of the tuckunder garage to accomodate longer cars. The second major change is how the back stoop was enclosed to become part of the kitchen. Notice that in the old photo there is only one window above the garage and in the current picture there are two. I don’t have any photos (yet) of the inside of the house, but I suspect that the original kitchen had a built-in booth in the nook where that single window is.
The above pair of pictures of the back door then and now show how the kitchen was expanded to capture the area of the back stoop. When the rear addition was put on the house by the previous owners in 2002, a new rear door was added as well as a deck that covers the staircase shown in the “then” photo. In that old photo, the woman in white is Mrs. Widen, original owner.
This pair of photos is the most dramatic because it captures the change of the 2002 addition. Pictured in the “then” photo is the playhouse that Ms. J told me still exists at another house in the area. I think the resemblance between the playhouse with it’s large windows and gable ends and the addition with similar features is a striking coincidence. Also, the upper level windows seen in the “then” photo still exist– the frames and trim were left in place and converted to built-in bookcases in the upstairs hall. In the older photo, Dr. Widen sits with his oldest girls. The blond girl on his left is Ms. J with whom I’m corresponding.
Lastly, here is a comparison of the neighborhood then and now. Ms. J told me that there was nothing south of the house for many years. The “then” photo shows this if you look beyond the sandbox and fence. From the “now” photo you can see that the house styles across the street are 20-30 years newer than ours. It’s fascinating to think that this part of the city was once the far reaches of the suburbs.