In the summer of 1909, or at least by the time the State Fair in Springfield Illinois opened, Sears Modern Homes built one of their modern bungalows at the fairgrounds in the agricultural area along the racetrack at the fair. That bungalow was the number 151 and in 1918 was renamed the Avondale. There is some confusion as to when the 151/Avondale was first offered because of the rarity of the catalogs from the early years. I know for a fact it wasn’t offered by the 1908 8th edition but it was offered in the 1910 Modern Homes catalog. I collect anything Sears Modern Homes ephemera and have the souvenir postcards from the Springfield Illinois State Fair in my collection. I can confirm a 1909 date on two different post cards from dates mentioned in the letters and postage stamps that were issued in 1908-1909.
The Avondale bungalow was built on a pavilion and was furnished with Sears and Roebuck merchandise. I can see from my postcards that the merchandise must have been changed through the years which makes sense. And, on the ground level of the pavilion Sears Roebuck featured their farm implements. What a great marketing idea right? Order a kit home from Sears, furnishings and everything you need and buy your plows all in one order. Sounds easy to me! I’m not THAT old but I can remember shopping at the Sears store in Tulsa often as a child. I thought that is where everyone bought school clothes. I even attended “Sears Charm School” in the fall of 1972. I think my dad was trying to get the tom-boy out of me. 😉 I’m still a tom-boy, but that’s enough about me!
I hope you enjoy the images of a few of those postcards and remember that you can enlarge all images by clicking on that image.
This postcard shows the Avondale that was built at the Springfield Illinois State Fair. It is used and the inscription on the back references three upcoming travel dates all 1909. The stamp dates to 1908-1909. I learned the importance of buying used postcards in this purchase. I have a few more of this same postcard in much better condition but this is my favorite!
I love this postcard view of the Sears Modern Home porch. It looks so homey and welcoming.
This postcard shows a view the Sears Modern Homes Avondale living room. All of the furnishings could be purchased from the Sears merchandise catalog.
This postcard shows a view of the Sears Modern Homes Avondale dining room. Notice the furnishings are different?
These are interior views of the Tulsa Sears Modern Homes Avondale when it was on the market several years ago. The attorney who now owns the house sent them to me. I saw the house a few years ago and the bathroom is original and in absolutely great condition!
I have a brochure from the Springfield Illinois State Fair that gives several interior views. This is the bathroom view. Is that a perfect match or what?
Several years ago when I was new at this hobby Rosemary Thornton took a little google drive in Chelsea Oklahoma for me and found this Sears Avondale.
The Sears Avondale in Chelsea, Oklahoma. Thanks to Rosemary for getting me started. I am forever grateful for that little push and I often help her by looking for houses now! I’m always glad to help her out for all that she has done for me.
1921 catalog image for the Sears Modern Homes Avondale
The Sears Modern Homes 1921 catalog shows a few views of the interior.
I found this possible Sears Modern Homes Avondale in Ardmore Oklahoma and I would love to get better photos including the side angles like I show in the Chelsea house.
Last night I decided to check Mangum Oklahoma where I have found a few pattern homes and I immediately found this house on N Byer Ave. I am absolutely positive this is a Sears Modern Homes Avondale!
If someone could get me a few good photographs of this house on N Byer Ave in Mangum Oklahoma I would be so appreciative! The views I am showing are what I really need.
This postcard, also from the Springfield Illinois State Fair set, showed what the Sears Modern Homes Avondale would look like built on the ground and not the fair pavilion. Take a close look at those art glass windows and then the Mangum house. I believe those are a match! I would love close up photos of those windows!
This is the catalog view of the Sears Avondale in Mangum Oklahoma. Is that a match or what? This house needs some TLC and I hope knowing this now that someone will bring this house back to her former glory, a prize bungalow.
The Sears Modern Homes number 151-Avondale was offered 1909/1910 through 1924. It was one of their most popular bungalow models. Rosemary has featured one in her blog that is in Texas. There are at least four in Oklahoma and one way down in Texas! Is there one lurking in your neighborhood? If so please leave me a comment or email me at email@example.com.
You can see other wonderful homes and blog posts of both Rosemary Thornton and me on facebook if you click here.
Tulsa Oklahoma Houses by Mail, Sears Homes, Wardway, Aladdin and more
Oklahoma Houses By Mail by Rachel Shoemaker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
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