The Gordon Van Tine #140, A Big House For Little Money

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According to the 1913 Gordon Van Tine catalog description, house plan number 140 was a big house for little money.  Let’s have a look at a couple of the number 140’s along with the actual blueprints and see!

Gordon Van Tine

The Gordon Van Tine No 140 was first offered in 1911. This catalog image is from my Gordon Van Tine catalog from 1913.

 

And this is how it began, a couple of weeks ago someone posted on a facebook page that they were told their house was from Wardway. I told him to send me photos and I would identify it for him as well as send him a catalog image of his home. He sent photos right away to my facebook page. He sent ten photos and I could see that he had blueprints for a Gordon Van Tine house. However, I couldn’t make out the number because all I had were small thumbnail images in my message box. I recognized the house photos as a number 140 because I had recently located a 140 and it was fresh in my memory. I asked him if the number was 140 on the blueprints and he said yes…140. Well, that confirmed that! I sent him a link to the #140. His reaction was a big smiley face and “that’s it!” His “Wardway” home was actually a Gordon Van Tine 140. Mystery solved!  So, we continued to chat where I learned that it was built in 1913. He emailed the images so I could see them in full size.

Gordon Van Tine number 140, New York

A 1913 Gordon Van Tine number 140 in Dansville New York! Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 Front Elevation Blue Prints

Blueprints for the front elevation. When Jeff emailed me the photos I asked if I could share them with  Dale Wolicki. Dale emailed me right back and said that it was rare to see blueprints from the plan book era! Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140, Right Elevation

Let’s circle around the house and compare the photos with the blueprints! That bump out is the dining room. That is not in the plans but would be an easy addition while under construction. There’s probably a small window seat there. A place for your herbs! Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140, Right Elevation Blueprints

Gordon Van Tine 140, right side elevation. No bump out. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 in Dansville New York

The back view of the Gordon Van Tine 140 in Dansville New York with an after market addition. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140, Rear Elevation Blueprints

The rear elevation of the blueprints shows what we can see because of the addition. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 left side, Dansville New York

The left side of the Miller’s Gordon Van Tine 140 in Dansville New York. The side door is the cellar/basement door. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140, Left Side Elevation Blue Prints

The left elevation of the blueprints for the Gordon Van Tine 140. See the stairs leading to the basement and the stairs to the second story as well as the turn in the stairs going to the second floor? Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Now that we have walked around the exterior of the Miller’s Gordon Van Tine 140 let’s have a look inside!

Gordon Van Tine 140 Living Room and Hall

Here is a view looking from the living room/dining room entry to the entry hall and stairs.  The stair newell may be seen here.  Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 Living Room and Hall View, 1916 catalog

How cool is THIS? The same exact view by chance! This is from my 1916 Ready-Cut Gordon Van Tine catalog, pg 60.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 in new York Living Room view

This view from the hall and entry shows the living room and the dining room. The blueprints will show this as well as the catalog floor plan. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 First Story Blueprints

The first story blueprints show many things we have seen on our walk around. No dining room bump out, but like I said, an easy modification when under construction. The basement/cellar door from the exterior and the stairs passing over that. Make a mental note of the three white rectangles and the “X” in the hall. Then we saw the living room and dining room photos and you can see that in the blueprints as well. Blueprints are fun to read. I only wish I could see these clearly. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine Door Hardware, 140 in New York

This is the door hardware found in the Miller’s Gordon Van Tine 140. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this photo which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine Hardware 1912, The Crescent Design

This page of hardware shows the same hardware in the Miller’s Gordon Van Tine 140. The Crescent Design. This image is from my 1912 Gordon Van Tine Building Material Catalog. This was a popular hardware design and several houses have it. Not just kit homes, lots of houses from the early 1900’s! I’m not sure who Gordon Van Tine’s source for hardware was.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 Second Story Blue Prints

I don’t have any photos of the second floor to show but have a look at the blueprints for the second story. I will point out the roominess, no wasted space in this home. Keep in mind this is 1913. The dormer is placed over the bathroom. This gives head-room and light to the bathroom. No need for a dormer on the left side which saves on construction cost. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 Cellar Blue Prints

Let’s take a virtual tour to the basement/cellar via the blueprints. It appears that they possibly purchased a furnace with the house. I’ve not seen any evidence and Jeff didn’t mention it. It was an option, though. Per the 1913 catalog page for the Gordon Van Tine number 140, for an additional $84.00 in addition to the $709 material cost, one could purchase a Fire King Furnace. Remember the white rectangles I pointed out in the first floor blue prints? And that “X” in the hall? Those are the recommended placement spots for the heat vents. Maybe Jeff will look in to that and get back with me. The exhaust is vented through the chimney, that is shown in the blueprints as well. There’s access to the basement from the kitchen in addition to the outside. That would make it easier to get to the furnace and more comfortable in those New York winters! Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image  which may not be used without his permission.

 

 

Gordon Van Tine Fire King Furnace, 1912

This is one of two furnaces offered in 1912 by the Gordon-Van Tine Company. They offered this Fire King and a smaller furnace, the Fire Queen. No, really! LOL. As far as I can tell from my building materials catalogs, 1912 was the first year Gordon Van Tine offered furnaces. And, they pushed them on every house plan in their 1913 catalog! They may have included the placement in the blueprints for that reason…assuming or hoping, the buyer would purchase one. I have even seen a testimonial for a Gordon Van Tine number 515 in West Allis, Wisconsin  in which they evidently purchased a furnace! Perhaps there’s one lurking out there in someone’s basement and they will let us know. Wouldn’t that be fun? Hey, it wouldn’t surprise me … ever moved one? Those puppies are HEAVY. There’s a member of the Sears Homes Group who has a Sears Indestructo Furnace from the 1930’s that STILL works. He just fired it up the other day he said. Why not? Right?

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 Blue Prints

If you see something like this in your blue prints you probably have a Gordon Van Tine home! Not Wardway. 🙂 That’s okay, it happens. Gordon Van Tine supplied Montgomery Wards kit homes for several years so that’s possibly where that mistake came from, as I explained to Jeff in our chat. But, now the mystery is solved! The “0” just can’t be seen but it is most definitely a Gordon Van Tine 140. Special thanks to Jeff Miller for sharing this image which may not be used without his permission.

 

Gordon Van Tine 1913 Number 140 House Only

Let’s take a look at a Gordon Van Tine number 140 in Massachusetts that I found a few months ago using a testimony in my 1913 catalog. It’s circled in the first image.

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 in Lee Massachusetts

I was lucky to be able to capture this image via google street view. I kind of made google driving and bing aerial (I found Sears Magnolia #8 this way, not kidding)  to look for kit homes “famous”.  HOWEVER, nothing beats a real photo, especially one taken with an actual camera. Beggars can’t be choosers, though. If you live near Lee Massachusetts and can take some photos of this house and send them to me I will not only credit your work but I will pay you twice what I get for each blog I publish! (I kid about the pay, I don’t make anything when I write a blog. I just do it to help others identify their homes)

 

Gordon Van Tine 140 in Lee Massachusetts

This Gordon Van Tine number 140 still has its original siding! It was built in 1912! This one has had the porch partially enclosed. I love their porch with the wicker rockers. Pretty house.

 

Gordon Van Tine

As you can see, no dining room bump out like the Miller’s Gordon Van Tine 140 in New York. And, notice the exterior…same as the catalog image! “You will notice that the house is covered with narrow lap siding up to the top of the first story windows. Here there is a belt course around the entire house, above which it is shingled.” 104 years later. How about that? I’d be willing to bet a blog’s pay that under the vinyl siding of the Gordon Van Tine 140 in New York that you will find this same siding!

 

Gordon Van Tine Plans, Specs and Costs from 1913

Díkwíí bą́ą́h ílį́ ? You ask. That’s Navajo for how much does it cost…I taught on the Navajo Reservation for 10 years BTW. This 1913 catalog image shows us what the buyer received and the cost. Blueprints, all elevations as well as each floor including the basement. Complete specifications as well as a materials list. The cost of plans and the policy. $1.00 for the number 140. And, a millwork certificate for reimbursement of $25 on your millwork and materials order. Include the materials for $709 and the cost of $84 for the Fire King Furnace plus the things not included such as cement, plaster, bricks, and labor for carpenters they estimate you can build this home for $1551. In today’s dollars, that would be $37,870.88. You might want plumbing and  electrical fixtures so figure that cost in too. And, you need some land.

 

Now that you have seen TWO authenticated Gordon Van Tine number 140’s maybe you know where one is? If so, drop me an email at searshomes@yahoo.com or contact me on facebook here or here.

Was this a big house for little money?  Feel free to leave a comment below.

***** UPDATE!!!
Blog and ye shall receive!   I was messaged this morning via facebook about a Gordon Van Tine 547 in Brandon Iowa and when I went to investigate I immediately found this Gordon Van Tine 140.  Serendipity strikes again 🙂

Gordon Van Tine 140 in Brandon Iowa

I found this likely Gordon Van Tine 140 in Brandon Iowa when I was investigating a Gordon Van Tine 547. I also found a few other homes.

Gordon Van Tine 140 in Brandon Iowa

I found this likely Gordon Van Tine 140 in Brandon Iowa when I was investigating a Gordon Van Tine 547. I also found a few other homes.

The credit for me blogging again goes to Dale Wolicki.  I’ll try to hang with it despite the negative people.    🙂   Rosemary Thornton was my original inspiration.

There will always be haters.  Haters just gonna hate!

When they go low we go high-er.

 

 

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Tulsa Oklahoma Houses by Mail, Sears Homes, Wardway, Aladdin and more

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

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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: searshomes@yahoo.com
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8 Responses to The Gordon Van Tine #140, A Big House For Little Money

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