• February 28, 2004

Second Owners Drop By

A blast from our house’s past

Restoration Diary,

I was working in the yard today when I was surprised by the daughter of the Santos, the second owners of our house. I was thrilled to meet her, her son, son-in-law, daughter and granddaughter. They had come from a restaurant in the area and she had asked them to drive by the house.

All of her childhood memories are wrapped up in this house. She lived in the house until she was married. That fact was interesting to learn because I had been told by neighbors that the Santos had rented out the house and never lived here. She shared a few amusing stories about her childhood, her family and the neighborhood.

She thought her family had purchased the house in the 1940′s. She recalled that this area was considered one of the elite neighborhoods in Los Angeles during that era. She seemed saddened by the current state of this area and not entirely convinced when I told her that things were getting better and that people were buying these old homes to restore them.

She told me that when she was young the house was painted white and that later her father put on the asbestos siding. I just smiled. Her family had enclosed the front porch with glass.

I couldn’t wait to take her inside. She seemed very surprised. I imagine all the woodwork was painted white when she lived here. I showed her the kitchen and asked her where her family had placed the stove? The kitchen looked very different to her than the way she remembered it. She didn’t recall the built-in cupboards being there. She thought that the stove was placed along the wall between kitchen and back porch where one of the built-in cupboards is now. Hmmm, another mystery to be figured out. She said that there was a table in the middle of the kitchen and her family used to eat there.

What we have been referring to as the den was a library. The family also used it as another bedroom at times. Her bedroom growing up is the room we are using as our master bedroom.

She asked me if I had found Ray and Roy’s names in the cement outside? I haven’t and I suspect that the cement has been removed or covered over by the slab of concrete that is currently our backyard. Ray and Roy were the grandsons of John Welsh who built this house.

She was excited to see Lulu because her son had given her a female corgi two years ago that she named Baby Girl. Her son thought it was an interesting coincidence that we both owned corgis.

She spoke of photographs taken on the front lawn after her wedding. I want to stay in touch. I would love to see some old photographs of the house. She and her family were so nice. It was a pleasure to meet them. I don’t think they realize how exciting this was for me.

It just occured to me that we are the 4th family to own this house.

Comments { 1 }
  1. jmo

    That is such a neat story. And only another bungalow-ist can recognize the self-restraint you showed when told about the origin of the asbestos siding…H, you are classy, classy, classy all the way :)


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