Sears 303 … Sometimes They’re in Your Own Backyard!

I’ve found what I believe to be a Sears 303, and in of all places, my own backyard. At least not too far from my backyard!
I have been google driving the streets of Oklahoma for several years now and making a list of houses to get photos.

This morning I decided to visit early Oklahoma towns I might have missed so I referenced the Sanborn Maps for a list of early Oklahoma towns. I came to Idabel. I don’t recall that I have “driven” Idabel and if I did it was a few years ago. I put Idabel Ok in my google search bar and first searched images before going to maps. And low and behold a house I recognize to be a likely Sears 303 appears.

No way!

Not in Oklahoma!

In a few seconds I had learned that this was the home of Thomas Jefferson Barnes, the first county judge of McCurtain County. Construction on the house began in 1911 and the architect that was given credit is Jewel Hicks.

At this point I just want to see what readers think. All I have for now are screenshots. All though, you can google TJ Barnes home Idabel Oklahoma and numerous images will pop up! I’ll go get my own photos, soon. VERY soon.

SMH_303_House Only

This is the Sears 303. It was only offered 1910/1911 ish. The house doesn’t appear in Houses By Mail, a field guide of all of the Sears models that were offered 1908-1940. Thanks to Rosemary Thornton we have an image that we can see!




Sears 303 at 302 SE Adams Idabel, Oklahoma Catalog front

This Idabel Oklahoma home sure looks to be a possibility doesn’t it? This google screen shot will have to do for now.



Sears 303 at 302 SE Adams Idabel, Oklahoma Catalog view

Is this a Sears 303 in Idabel Oklahoma? This is a google screen shot that shows the left side, the best I can do for now.


Sears 303 at 302 SE Adams Idabel, Oklahoma Catalog right

This view really seals the deal for me. I’ve got one other house that I think might be a Sears 303 but if it is this octogonal tower was omitted during construction. It leaves me wondering. THIS house however does not! Did the architect, Jewel Hicks, build a Sears 303 for TJ Barnes? Is Jewel Hicks the architect who designed the pattern that Sears borrowed for the 303?


Sears 303 at 302 SE Adams Idabel, Oklahoma Catalog back

The rear view of a possible Sears 303 in Idabel Oklahoma. No more google screenshots of this house….the next images of the house will be real. 🙂



A very special thanks to Rosemary Thornton who has the only KNOWN copy of this catalog image! I carefully studied and compared the fenestration of the TJ Barnes home in Idabel Oklahoma with this catalog image of the Sears 303 and I believe we have a match here! The question is, is this from Sears or a pattern? I would love to get inside to check the millwork out! In the meantime, the description calls for the Superba front door.  That’s the same door seen on the Sears 306 in West Chazy NY.   I’ll look for that door when I go for photos!

Is the TJ Barnes home in Idabel Oklahoma a Sears 303? Leave a comment with your thoughts!

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Creative Commons License
Oklahoma Houses By Mail by Rachel Shoemaker is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


About Rachel Shoemaker

I've been hooked on finding and or identifying mail order homes since 2008. I'm not picky, kit homes from Sears Modern Homes, Aladdin Ready Cut, Gordon Van Tine, Wardway Homes, all of the major companies as well as the popular pattern and plan book homes built from about 1900 and on. Could you be living in one of these homes? Send me an email:
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1 Response to Sears 303 … Sometimes They’re in Your Own Backyard!

  1. Pingback: Sears 303, Yay or Nay? | Oklahoma Houses By Mail

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