Eight charming five-room homes of Spanish and Mission architecture were built by Willis F. Lynn on Nicol Avenue. Five of the houses were sold before they were completed. The last three went on sale on June 14, 1925.
Each house has:
Breakfast room or nook
Dining room with built-in buffet
Hardwood floors throughout
Automatic water heaters
Priced at $5950.00 in 1925.
Lynn Homes on Best Avenue
Another group of homes went on sale on November 15, 1925. Located on Best Avenue between Brookdale and Trask. The houses have an attractive and varied style of architecture.
Each of the homes has six-rooms, a garage, and a laundry room.
“The Pines” was the beautiful home and the surrounding gardens of Mr. & Mrs. Philip E. Bowles. The house was built in 1910, and it stood at what is now No. 2 Bowling Drive.
Mr. and Mrs. P.E. Bowles on a garden path at The Pines
In 1909, Philip E. Bowlespurchased 51 (58 acres in some publications) acres of land in “Claremont Hills,” adjoining the Horatio P Livermore Homestead. Bowles was the president of the First National Bank of Oakland and a Regent of the University of California from 1911-22.
The house and grounds had an entrancing view of the bay and all of the surrounding country.
The view from “The Pines.”
The Bowles Home
He signed a contract for the erection of a residence to cost $31,000. The Architect was L.B. Dutton. He engaged an expert landscaper. Who designed the grounds of the estate by following Bowles’s own plans.
The home was built in the Italian Villa style with twenty-two rooms and a full basement. It had six master bedrooms, dressing rooms, five bathrooms, three sleeping porches, a library, a drawing-room, and a conservatory.
Inside the home
The home was surrounded by a veritable forest filed with quail and dotted with miniature lakes stocked with large rainbow trout and a well-stocked bass pond. There was a Japanese Tea garden with pools containing rare goldfish, golden carp, and unusual aquatic plants. There was also a tennis court, a swimming pool, a large garage, and a horse stable with a trotting park.
Mr. Bowles purchased from all of the worlds, he bought the best. The Rhododendrons were especially lovely.
The swimming pool and bathhouse.
A garden path
Architecture & Engineer
In 1911 the home was featured in January issue of Architecture & Engineer of California Magazine. It states the architect was L.B. Dutton. Architecture & Engineer of California Jan 1911, pg. 204 –
High Society at The Pines
Many dances and social events were held at The Pines.
In 1912 the Bowles daughter Amy married Hiram Johnson Jr., the son of Governor Hiram W. Johnson. The wedding was held at The Pines.
The extension grounds surrounding the Bowles mansion were transformed into a fairyland
On January 20,1926, Philip Bowles died at the age of 67.
The city of Oakland Park board was urged by Mayor Davie to purchase land and home for $700,000, for a public playground or park. That fell through.
In May of 1927, a year after Philip Bowles died, Mrs. Bowles sold the entire estate to a group of men from southern California, and they hired the York Company, Inc. of Oakland to handle to development and the sales.
The York company subdivided the land and called it Claremont Pines. The name Claremont Pines came from the nearby district called Claremont and the name of the Bowles Estate.
Claremont Pines Placed on the Market
In about 1927 or 1928, Andrew Williams of the Andrew Williams Store, a local grocery chain, purchase the home, which was located at No. 2 Bowling Drive.
After spending two years remodeling and adding new furniture including expensive Persian rugs, Williams put the home up for sale in 1932
Bowles Hall – UC Berkeley
In 1928 in memory of her husband, Mrs. Bowles donated $250,000 to the University of California to be used to build a dormitory for men, wholly and appropriately furnished, on or near the University campus, in Berkeley. It is known as Bowles Hall.
In 1938 the main house was destroyed by the wrecking and sold off piece by piece. A sad ending to a home that was just 28 years old.
The was a caretaker house located at the front gates of the estate. It stood at the portal through the high metal-spiked fence around the estate. The five-room bungalow, which formally served as the guardian of the estate, was used as the tract office from 1928- 1948.
It was at this little cottage where the streetcar once stopped.
In 1948 the cottage was sold to Charles Ray Jr. of 1028 85th Avenue, and he will be placing it on the lot next to his.
The 1928 Model View Home is situated at the “Top of the World” in reality the topmost peak in Montclair Highlands, overlooking several counties as well as affording a magnificent sweep of the entire bay and part of the Pacific Ocean beyond.
Montclair Highlands Commands Ones of The World’s Finest Views, and Only 15 Minutes From Downtown
Montclair Realty – 1928
Combining modern features in fixtures with a marine view, the Spanish themed home with certain additions, designed by Hamilton Murdock, an Oakland architect.
The “1928 Model” View Home “The Home Electric.” All the latest features of proven merit – the things you have wondered about are used in the “1928 Model” home, including Oakland Tribune Mar 25, 1928
Quartz-Lite – window glass
Colored plumbing ware
Screen Test for Children
In November of 1928, they held a movie screen test for children in the “1928 Model View “ home. The screen test was under the direction of the Sherman Clay Company.
The “1929 Model View” Home
For a few weeks in 1929 is was renamed.
The “1928 Model View” home is located at 1949 Asilomar Drivein Montclair. It was one of the first homes built in the hills directly behind the business district of Montclair. The area was called Montclair Highlands. The 1928 Model View Home was built just up the hill, the lone home to the left of the arrow.
The house has 4 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms and last sold in 1974. I don’t have a present-day picture.
1928 Model View Home
Hamilton Murdock – architect
Elmo Adams – builder
Howard Gilkey – a landscaper
Paul Pause – owner
1949 Asilomar Drive
The Callahan House is the bottom in the photo below.