Saturday, May 1, 2010

Historic Linwood Avenue Homes Tour

The historic Linwood Avenue tour of homes was last Sunday, and I was able to catch a lot of the places on the list.  The tour guide book alone was worth the price of admission! It was a day of intermittent rain and drizzle, so the pictures didn't turn out well, and I wasn't able to go back on a sunny day, so it is what it is.

Speaking of the weather, it had the effect of putting a few homeowners on edge, while others were more laid back.  This was also reflected in their inner sanctums. Some were set for maximum show with possible professional assistance, and others were more lived in, while still others were a combination of the two.

There was so much to see that I'll break this down into 3 separate posts. First of all. the district is very old and is still very beautiful, even though slumlords tried their best to drag it down.  This house here was my first stop.  It was built in 1893 for the Schaefer family.  The style is known as Queen Anne. Many of the homes featured turrets.

Across the street at134 is a beauty built in 1894 for the Muenschauers. The 3rd floor ballroom (!) has been converted to a separate living space.  The servants quarters were directly across the hallway.

Further down Linwood at 549 was another in like fashion, however the 3rd floor was a master bedroom - absolutely gorgeous (no pictures allowed).  The first floor was magnificently decorated, while the second was more homey and featured the original iceboxes in the 2nd floor kitchen.  This house also had a memorable whole room devoted to shoes :)

Then there was the duplex at 531-533, built in 1920.  The furnishings consisted mainly of an antique collection left largely in the "found" state, warts and all.  Only one side was open, but it had a lot of living space.

Another home at 293 Linwood, built in 1894, shingle style, was originally owned by Wilhem Willink, a name familiar to Clarence history buffs. Later on it became a tuberculosis treatment center. The current owners have converted part of the downstairs to an area for performance arts.

A few more houses (not on the tour this year) caught my eye, especially the top one - that one looks haunted to me.  One note on that - many of the owners said that there ghosts were friendly, while one flat out denied having any extra residents.  Maybe they just haven't shown themselves yet...

All seem to be in various stages of restoration, and all are proudly presented by their current owners, and rightfully so.

1 comment:

Jill said...

I wonder if any of the houses that are being built today will ever be featured in a 'Historic' homes tour a hundred years from now... if so,I wonder if they will give off the same feelings that the older homes that are around today invoke. Somehow, I just don't think so...