In March of 1886, the Board of Supervisors created a new school district. That took from portions of the Piedmont, Peralta, and Fruitvale districts and representing about 44 children. The new district was called the Hays district, in honor of the late Colonel John Coffee Hays. The superintendent appointed the following residents of the area as trustees:
Requests for bids to build the school were made in July of 1886.
The completed school was small at only 32×36 feet, with just one classroom. It was Gothic in design with a graceful looking bell tower. It had two entrances, one for the boys and the other for the girls each entrance having a 6×6 vestibule. The sash bars of the windows are all horizontal, after the style of the school buildings in Europe. The building cost about $2,500 and took about two months to build.
The dedication of the school was held in October 1886. It was attended most of the families that lived in the area. Opening remarks were made by Judge EM Gibson and WH Mead. Some of the families in attendance:
Entertainment provided by the students from the school under the direction of their teacher Miss Lucy Law. The following students performed:
The school was closed in around 1913 and the building was demolished. It was probably due to building the Oakland, Antioch and Eastern Railway later known as the Sacramento Northern. For more on the Sacramento Northern please go here. The East Bay Hills Project
Natural beauty abounds in the 150 acres of wooded, rolling hills that comprise the Oakmore District or Oakmore Highlands. The Walter H. LeimertCompany laid out the subdivision with wide paved streets and ample sidewalks. See Oakmore Highland History
The Leimert Bridge during construction and in 1926, Photo by Cheney Photo Advertising
The original subdivision was bordered by Sausal Creek and Dimond Canyon. During the initial sales period, good design was promoted through a model open house program called the ‘Oakmore Home Ideal’ where buyers could visit a custom home designed by local architects Miller & Warnecke.
Later, in 1934, The Leimert Company teamed with the Oakland Tribune and Breuner’s FurnitureCompany to furnish a demonstration model home that drew 8,000 visitors in a three week period.
The following year another Breuner’s furnished house was nicknamed “Golden Windows” to highlight the expansive use of glass on the view side of the home and the commanding views from the subdivision.
The homesites front on along Harbord Drive for about a half mile or more. The lots were priced at $27.00 per foot. A forty foot lot would cost $1075.00, with a low down payment and easy terms. Sold by the Claremont Pines Corporation and later Michell & Austin.
Oakland Tribune June 1932
Holy Names Centra High School was built on Harbord Drive and opened in 1934.
In December of 1933, the first display home opened at 4339 Harbord Drive. The home had eight rooms with two baths and a 14 x 32-foot rumpus room and “pleasing features galore”. The home was priced at $6850 and was recently sold in 2016 for $1,360,000.
In September of 1934, another display home was opened at 4347 Harbord Drive. The green and white wood and brick cottage and two bedrooms and a den or nursery and a large playroom. The house was priced at $6500, with just $75 down payment and $75 a month. The house recently sold for $825,000 in 2012.
Misc. ads for homes
The stone pillar is still there at the corner of Broadway Terrace and Ostrander Street
This is not about race. It about when Oakland city planners decided to market Oakland as “The White City”. As a suggestion to future designers and builders. It was not intended to be used in public, just circulated among builders and planners of the city. I get the thinking behind the slogan and can almost picture Oakland with the sun shining on the buildings. The was not the first time the slogan of a White City was used. The Great White City
This was in 1914.
‘White City, Oakland Plan
Years ago in about 1914, a noted architect(of the time) while looking back at Oakland from a ferryboat “he spoke of it as “The White City”. What he saw was the new shiny white buildings of Oakland, turn golden in the sunlight. Oakland on a “sunny day, the blue sky, and white buildings, turned golden in the sun, remind one of the mystical cities of Maxfield Parish” Oakland Tribune Oct 1916
Style as Artistic Feature
In 1914 a plan to further the beautification of Oakland and designed to make Oakland more striking from the bay. Members of the Oakland Commercial Club, A.S. Lavenson, vice-president of the club, and city planning enthusiast and H. A. Lafler of the same organization. Oakland Commercial Club, Oakland, 1913;
Their idea was to suggest that builders in the future especially in the taller buildings use white material. Oakland, as a “white city” situated before the hills in an elevated position could be remarkable sight. A great mass of white buildings, with tall spires or tower, like many of that time “give semblance of, will it is declared, Oakland truly wonderful” Oakland Tribune Sept 1914.
Already the from the bay the new City hall City Hall, the new federal building, and the Central Bank building Central Bank Building and other tall buildings in white, present a remarkable site all standing out from brown hills and their surroundings “like great monuments to progress” Oakland Tribune Sept 1914