Ardsley Heights is part of Bella Vista Park and is now considered part of Ivy Hill. The streets of Ardsley Heights are Park Blvd, East 28th Street, Bay View Avenue, Lake View Avenue Elliot Street, and East 34th Street.
Ardsley Heights went on sale in October 1912 by the Realty Syndicate.
Adjoining F.M. Smith’s home
Directly across from the Home Club
Twelve Minutes by car from Broadway
The above photo shows the house at 1011 Bay View Ave. It was built in 1915.
The above photo shows the house at 985 Bay View Avenue –
View from Ardsley Heights
Showing the Home Club (later the German Pioneer Home) and the Smith Cottages (Home for Friendless Girls). The German Pioneer Home was demolished to make room for Oakland High School.
F.M. “Borax” Smith set this land and another piece of further down on Park Blvd aside for his own private estate. The area at the top of Dimond Canyon and included two creeks where Smith could hunt and have picnics.
In 1919, 25 acres of the Smith Reserve was sold to the Oakland-Piedmont Council of the Boy Scouts of America, for camp for the scouts. It was calledCamp Dimond was in use from 1919-1948.
In 1948 the Oakland Public School district took over the land and built Joaquin Miller Elementary and Montera Junior High Schools.
Smith Reserve Goes on Sale May 1926
“Smith reserve is the most beautiful tract of land opened by the Syndicate Company”
Oakland Tribune May 23, 1926
In July of 1926, two months after the subdivision was open, the Realty Syndicate reported nearly $250,000 in sales. It was also reported that a bus transportation system will be put into operation, connecting with both local and San Francisco electric lines. -Oakland Tribune, July 18, 1928.
Bus Service to Smith Reserve
Admiring Smith Reserve
In an October 1928 edition of the Oakland Tribune noted actress, Miss Grace Valentine acclaims. Miss Valentine was staring at the Fulton Theatre.
“Smith Reserve the most beautiful home-park that she had ever seen in the Eastbay”.“If I were a permanent resident of the East Bay I would certainly wish to make my home in this beautiful park”