Posted in Business, Model/Display Homes, Montclair, Real Estate

Home Tour of Montclair – 1937

Oakland Tribune Oct 22, 1937
  1. 5335 Estates Drive
  2. 5664 Thornhill Drive
  3. 1731 Mountain Blvd
  4. 6025 Bruns Drive
  5. Liggett Drive
  6. 2645 Camino Lenada
  7. Montclair Realty Offices- 6540 Moraga Ave
  8. Emge and Stockman Offices – Mountain and LaSalle
  9. Winder & Gahan Office – 6500 Moraga Ave

C.W. Leekins – 6054 La Salle Ave

Home Tour of the Hills District

Prominent real estate companies and builders in Montclair held a an “open-house” week during of the Oakland National Home Show held October 22- 30, 1937. Oakland Tribune Oct 22, 1937

The following is a list of the sponsors:

  • C.W. Leekins – builder
  • Montclair Realty Company
  • Herbert A. Richardson – builder
  • Emge and Stockman Realtor
  • Winder & Gahan – developers

C.W. Leekins Sponsored

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937
  • 2645 Camino Lenada
  • C.W. Leekins – builder
  • 1937
  • $7250
Oakland Tribune 1964 – $32,750
2645 Camino Lenada St – Google Maps
  • 5335 Estates Drive
  • C.W. Leekins – builder
  • 1937
  • 1731 Mountain Blvd
  • C.W. Leekins – builder
  • 1937
  • $6750
1731 Mountain Blvd – Google maps

H. A Richardson Sponsored

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937
  • 6025 Bruns Drive
  • H.A. Richardson – builder
  • 1937
  • $13,000
Oakland Tribune Oct 17 1937
SF Examiner 1985 $279,500
6025 Bruns Court Google Maps

Montclair Realty Company Sponsored

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937
  • 5664 Thornhill Drive
  • F.H. Slocombe – Architect
  • L.A. Larson – builder
  • 1937
  • $6850
Oakland Tribune Aug 1937
Oakland Tribune 1938

Emge & Stockman Sponsored

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937

Winder & Gahan Sponsored

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937
Posted in Buildings, Early Montclair, History, Montclair, Real Estate

One of the Oldest Buildings in Montclair…or is it?

A while back I was doing a simple search on buildings in Montclair. I came across this article (posted below) from 1962, with the attached photo. It was about the destruction of building that was to be replaced with a new $125,000 building. The new building was called the Eberhart Building.

The Eberhart Building today – Google Maps

The Eberhart Building is still standing and is located at 2070 Mountain Blvd.

Oakland Tribune Jan 30, 1962

Of course I needed to find out more about the building that was now just a pile of rubbish as seen in the photo above.

The photo above shows the building as it looks today. In researching the address I find that the real estate firm Winder and Gahan first occupied the site in 1938.

According the article from 1962 – In 1921 a group of real estate men stood with “high hopes” in front of a small spanish style stucco building that looked completely out of place in the open fields of the Montclair DIstrict.

There was just a building with a sign “tract office” on it, the open fields and a dusty, narrow road in in front of it.

Oakland Tribune Jan 30, 1962

Montclair in 1921

This is probably how Montclair looked when that group of men stood in from of the building “with high hopes”. I just don’t think they were standing in front of the same building that was demolished in 1962, as noted in the article. Unless it is the one on the right and they moved it and changed the style of it?

Sales offices of real estate broker and home builder
Cos Williams 6501 Moraga
Photo c1921 by Cheney Photo Advertising F-2830
Oakland Public Library, Oakland History Room.

The small building on the left of the above picture is the office of home builder Cos Williams. The street going up hill is La Salle Avenue. The address was 6501 Moraga Avenue.

Oakland Tribune 1925

New Real Estate Firm in Montclair

New Winder Offices in Montclair
6500 Moraga Avenue
Oakland Tribune Sep 24,1933

In 1933 A.H. WInder opened an office at the corner of Moraga Avenue and La Salle Avenue. The address was 6500 Moraga Avenue.

Winder was the exclusive sales agent for the Forest Park extension and Shepherd Canyon Park.

I bet you are wondering what this has to do with the building at 2070 Mountain Blvd. Trust me it will all make sense soon.

Oakland Tribune

In 1936 A.H. WInder and J. J. Gahan formed a new firm called “Winder & Gahan Corporation”.

Winder & Gahan Offices
6500 Moraga Ave
Oakland Tribune 1936

New Location Announced

With the expiration of their present lease at 6500 Moraga Avenue,” states A.H.Winder, “we will build a new office on the on the recently -acquired site, using a frontage of 72 feet on Mountain Boulevard”

Oakland Tribune Oct 1937
Oakland Tribune Oct 24, 1937

In 1937 the real estate firm of Winder and Gahan announced the recent purchase by the firm a piece of land (Block “H”) in the heart of the business district, near the intersection of Moraga Avenue and Mountain Boulevard.

Block H” 2070 Mountain Blvd
Alameda County Parcel Map

The Heart of Montclair Business Center

Winder & Gahan moved into their new office at 2070 Mountain Boulevard in November of 1938.

The new building at 2070 Mountain Blvd.

It would eventually be the home of Eberhart Realty. I am not sure exactly when they moved to 2070 Mountain Boulevard .

My Research

Montclair from 1935
L84-20-HJW Geospatial Inc,
Pacific Aerial Surveys, Oakland CA,
Courtesy East Bay Regional Park District.

The above picture shows “Block H” is a an empty piece of land. In 1938 Winder & Gahan would build their new offices there. That small building would be there until 1962 it was destroyed by a bulldozer as noted in the first article I posted above. That would make the building only 24 years old.

Maybe they moved the other building that is in the photo from 1921 and updated and enlarged and added stucco. What do you think?

Google Maps – 6466 Moraga Ave

I think the building on the right is the oldest building in Montclair. It is in the photos from the 1920s. It was the first home of the Montclair Realty Company. More on that later

The End

Posted in History, Oakland Tracts

Sather Park – Photos from 1914

Sather Park – 1917

Sather Park Tract is now known as Lakeshore Highlands and Trestle Glen.

I have shared a few of the photos from an album entitled “Lakeshore Highlands” that was prepared for Frederick Law Olmsted who was hired by Walter H. Leimert .

The album is from the archives of Olmsted at the Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site and Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service.

Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903) is recognized as the founder of American landscape architecture and the nation’s foremost parkmaker. Olmsted moved his home to suburban Boston in 1883 and established the world’s first full-scale professional office for the practice of landscape design. During the next century, his sons and successors perpetuated Olmsted’s design ideals, philosophy, and influence.

I believe the photos were taken by Cheney Photo Advertising Company.

The album can be viewed here: Album 1 – Lakeshore Highlands Job #5945 –

Sather Park – June 1914

Now Lakeshore Highlands and Trestle Glen

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site

Sather Park – June 1914

Now Lakeshore Highlands and Trestle Glen – The “Glen” (a.k.a. Indian Gulch)

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

View Southwest from between Wesley Avenue and Radnor Road – June 1914

Looking at Wesley Avenue and Lakeshore Blvd, Lake Merritt and downtown.

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

View North Between Excelsior and Beacon Avenues – June 1914

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

View Northwest from Between Hillgirt Circle and Haddon Road – June 1914

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

View Southwest towards Haddon Hill – June 1914

You can the see what is now the corner of Lake Park Ave and Grand Avenue. The future home of the Grand Lake Theater.

Looking North from Hillgirt Circle North and Hillgirt Circle South – Haddon Hill – Today Prospect Avenue and Hillgirt Circle – June 1914 –

You can see Santa Clara Avenue, Grand Lake Avenue . The future location of the Grand Lake Theater , Lakeview School and the MacArthur Freeway

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

Looking Northwest from Haddon Hill Towards Sather Tract Entrance – June 1914

Looking towards the Trader Joe’s parking lot and the Trestle Glen Road. You can see Rand Avenue and Mandana Blvd.

C 1914
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.
LAKESHORE HIGHLANDS OAKLAND,
c 1918
Lake Shore Highlands; Wickham Havens –Sather Tract, formerly –Leimert, Walter H
Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.
Map of HADDON HILL
c1914

Courtesy of the United States Department of the Interior,
National Park Service, Frederick Law Olmsted National Historic Site.

I will talk more about Sather Park later.

The End

Posted in Model/Display Homes, Montclair

Silver Windows – Piedmont Pines

Oakland Tribune Jan 1937

“Silver Windows” was a display home in the Piedmont Pines section of Montclair. The home opened for public to see in 1936. The home was designed by F. Harvey Slocombe. It is on Darnby Drive.

Windows, from which one glimpses the bay through lofty pines are not the only feature of this new show home.

Oakland Tribune Dec 06, 1936
Oakland Tribune Dec 06, 1936

Sunlight through “Silver Windows”

Oakland Tribune Dec 13, 1936
Oakland Tribune Dec 13, 1936
Oakland Tribune Dec 1936

From the curved window in the living room you could see all of Oakland , plus two bridges,

Oakland Tribune Dec 1936
Oakland Tribune Dec 1936

The kitchen with its floors curving into the wall, eliminating dust gathering corners was of special interest to the women visitors. The kitchen was “all-metal” with a gleaming sink, drain board, work board and cabinets. Oakland Tribune Mar 19, 1937

Oakland Tribune Feb 14, 1937
Oakland Tribune Dec 1936

Silver Windows Today

Google maps

Links and More:

Posted in Montclair

Playhouse at Montclair Park

Most anyone who grew up in Montclair played at the park. The park was always full of kids.

If you played in the park during the 1960-1980s you will remember the two story playhouse. It was built in 1960 and was located by the swing-sets.

It was demolished after a couple of fires in the mid to late 1980s. It is rumored that the fires were caused by teens or someone smoking in the house.

I really enjoyed playing in small playhouse. I would pretend I lived there and that best friend lived next door.

Built in 1960

In 1960 the Montclair Junior Women’s Club of Montclair held fundraisers and worked with the Oakland Recreation Department to finance a playhouse for the park in Montclair.

Oakland Tribune Apr 1960
Oakland Tribune 1960

Opening Day – September 1960

The 120 square foot playhouse incorporated such features as kitchenettes with running water and toy stoves and refrigerators It had a living room with built-in play television sets and a circular metal stairway leading up to the sleeping balcony and sundeck in each unit.

The exterior of the structure was covered with heavy wire to create the illusion of a closed building. Bright colored squares of orange, yellow, turquoise and white decorate the front of the playhouse.

Oakland Tribune Sep 1960

The playhouse was designed and constructed by members of the Oakland Parks and Recreation Department

  • Bert Trubody
  • Robert Savattone
  • Paul Mortensen

They name is “Merrivilla”

Oakland Tribune Sep 19, 1960
Montclarion 1960
Montclarion 1960
From Beth Reynolds
March 1964 from Mary Jo Losso
Jan 1973 from Mike Shuken

Not to be confused with a Dollhouse for Diane

The was also a playhouse located in Pinto Park/Carl B. Munck School play yard. It was built in honor who Diane “Dede” Dobson who lost her life during the Columbus Day Storms of 1962

Swiss Chalet at Pinto Park
Oakland Tribune Apr 1963
Oakland Tribune Apr 1963
Oakland Tribune August 1964

I will add more photos as I find them

The End

Posted in Buildings, History, Oakland, People, Streets

Alden Farm

Official and historical atlas map of Alameda County, California. Compiled, drawn and published from personal examinations and surveys by Thompson & West. Oakland, Cala. 1878.
Res. & farm of P.A. Finigan, Brooklyn Tp.

The Alden Farm (Alder Farm) once stood on the land where Holy Names University is located today.

In 1874 Charles Low owned the property. A barn was located where Tobin Halls and the university’s gymnasium are today. He built a house for his family on the site where Brennan Hall stands today. You can see a map of the campus here.

Oakland Tribune May 1877
Oakland Tribune Nov 28, 1877

In 1877 Peter A. Finigan (Finnegan) purchased the property from Low and built a second house near where Cushing Library is today.

SF Examiner Jun 30, 1877

In 1884 Thomas Magee of Thomas Magee & Sons Real Estate Firm purchase the farm. I bet Magee Avenue was named after him.

Magee added a second story to the house that Finigan built.

During the early years the Magee’s would spend winter at their home in San Francisco and summer on Alden Farm. After the 1906 earthquake and fire they made their home permanently at Alden Farm.

Alden Farm was considered one of the premiere showplaces in Oakland. Many social event and weddings were held there over the years.

Oakland Tribune Jul 04, 1900
Oakland Tribune Jun 04, 1911
Oakland Tribune Jul 08,1922
Oakland Tribune Aug 10, 1924
Oakland Tribune Apr 24, 1932

Many Fires

Oakland Tribune Sep 08 1904
Oakland Tribune 19, 1931
Oakland Tribune Aug 1945

Fire Destroys Alden Farm

Oakland Tribune Mar 01, 1953
Oakland Tribune Mar 01, 1953
Oakland Tribune Sep 16, 1953

Holy Names University

Oakland Tribune Feb 04, 1955
Oakland Tribune Oct 06, 1955

Deaths of the Magee’s

More Info
Posted in East Oakland, Elmhurst, Oakland Tracts, Tract or Subdivisions

Toler Heights

Toler Ranch

William Pinkney Toler (1829-1899) and his wife Maria Antonia (1836-1926) owned 330 (349) acres of land in the foothills of Elmhurst. Maria was the daughter of  Hermenegildo “Ignacio” Peralta. William and Maria were married in 1853.

The Ranch was on the foothills road between Elmhurst and San Leandro , later known as Foothill Blvd and is now MacArthur Blvd. The ranch was close to both the Talbot Farm and the Dunsmuir Home.

Oakland Tribune Oct 08, 1888

Toler Ranch Sold

After her husband’s death Mrs. Toler sold the ranch to the Realty Syndicate for $110,000-$120,000. The land was then subdivided and placed on the market.

Oakland Tribune Mar 26, 1906
SF Call July 30, 1906
Oakland Tribune Jan 1906

Map of Toler Heights – 1907

Shows block and lot numbers, measurements, land ownership, etc. Covers area bounded generally by Stanley Rd. [i.e. Ave.], Wise [i.e. 99th] Ave., Foothill [i.e. MacArthur] Blvd., and Hillcrest Ave. [i.e. Seneca St.]. Panel title: Map of Toler Heights, Elmhurst, Oakland. Oriented with north toward left. Cadastral map. http://oskicat.berkeley.edu/record=b11188562~S1 c1907

Opening Day 1907

Toler Heights went on sale in 1907. A group of Investors owned the property and it the Southwest Securities Company was handling the sales for them.

SF Examine 1907
SF Examiner Oct 27, 1907
S F Examiner Oct 18, 1907

Change of Ownership

In 1910 the Henderson & Tapscotts Company purchased Toler Heights. The made a lot of improvements to the tract. Opening day in was held on May 22, 1910

Looking towards Thermal Street and 90th Avenue
Cheney Photo Advertising Company c1910
Previously sold on eBay

The photo above might be showing the Silva Ranch on Foothill Blvd

Oakland Tribune Oct 31, 1920

Opening day was on of the most successful day in residential property sold. Oakland Tribune May 24, 1910

Oakland Tribune May 24, 1910
Oakland Tribune May 22, 1910
The corner of MacArthur and 90th Avenue
Cheney Photo Advertising Company c1912
Previously sold on eBay

The Piedmont of East Oakland

SF Examiner
SF Examiner Aug 30, 1914
SF Examiner Aug 30, 1914
Oakland Tribune Mar 19, 1916

Another change in ownership

In the 1922 the property is for sale via an auction. Sales way down. Oakland Tribune May 28, 1922

Oakland Tribune May 28, 1922
Along Foothill Blvd
Oakland Tribune June 04, 1922
Oakland Tribune June 08 1922
Oakland Tribune 1923

New School – May 1928 – Now Barack Obama Academy

Oakland Tribune May 23, 1929
Oakland Tribune May 23, 1929
Toler Heights School – Now Barack Obama Academy
9736 Lawlor Street

Location

Toler Heights Google Maps

More Information on Toler Heights


More to come – Toler Heights Homes

The End