Here’s something that doesn’t often happen — one of my neighbors flagged me down the other day to tell me that one of her coworkers grew up in our Retro Ranch! Even more exciting than hearing that piece of news — he had pictures of the house from when it was brand new for Jim and I to have. I was beyond excited to see these photos. They are almost unreal because there is absolutely nothing around the house — no fully grown trees, no grass, no sidewalk and the road is even still dirt!
Just looking at the house, I can see that my suspicions about which parts of the house have been updated is correct. The living room window — currently two narrow crank outs and a huge picture window — used to be three even panes of glass. The dining room window — now two small crank outs and a fixed window — used to be one solid fixed pane window. Of course I know the bedroom windows were all replaced — we did that ourselves.
If you zoom way in on the photo, you can tell that the front door used to be a double door (what I expected — I have original plans too!) with two very skinny windows and perhaps some very cool handles — maybe with large square reflective backplates.
Man what I wouldn’t give to have that car parked in the front yard!
There’s another awesome car parked where the chain link fence and pine tree currently stand and the screened porch that we affectionately refer to as the Tiki Lounge — still under construction. The back of this photo says “View of porch which we will love enclosed with glass and screens — in time.” They did get the screens up but never any glass.
Then there’s this shot — proof that the top of the chimney has been re-bricked (the bricks on the chimney now do not match the roman brick on the house). This is before the oval patio was poured. The back of this photo says, ” From the sliding glass doors it will go out on a patio someday.”
Here’s a shot of the back corner of the house — where today the raised bed victory garden stands on the left. You can see the neighbor’s house in the distance.
There were only two interior shots in the stack of photos I received. Both are of the construction of the fireplace. The back of this photo says, “Fireplace and oak wood paneling in family room.”
You can see that the house is still under construction on the inside at this point. I’m confused about the date on these photos — our house is listed as a 1962 ranch in the city’s documentation, but here the photos say 1960. I had a chat with Pam about this and she wonders if they were not completely done with the inside and everything until 1962. That’s possible, or the city has the year listed incorrectly.
I learned from my neighbor that the man who built this house was a builder by trade. He built this house for his family to live in. His son — the one who works with my neighbor — often talks fondly about this house and what care his father took in building it. I asked my neighbor to see if the original owner’s son would like to talk to me about the house, or come for a visit and am awaiting a reply. Oh how I would love to hear tales of a childhood in this lovely retro ranch of ours — and all the details of how it was furnished and what was on the floors. I’m keeping my fingers crossed but until then, these pictures are such an amazing piece of the history of our house that I’m glad to have.