The American Dream of home ownership was fostered in the early 20th century by Sears Roebuck, Montgomery Ward, and other national companies through sales of their pre-cut and ready to assemble homes. In Greater Portland a few local examples of these kit homes have been identified and researched by Greater Portland Landmarks, including a concentration of homes in the 1920s-era Oakwood Heights subdivision near USM. This lecture by Julie Larry, Director of Advocacy at Greater Portland Landmarks, will explain the architectural styles popularized through kit homes, tell the story of the companies that sold houses through the mail, and pass along ways that you can help to locate potential kit homes in your neighborhood. Jointly sponsored by Greater Portland Landmarks, Tempo Art and USM Department of History and Polictical Science, this lecture is free and open to the public but requires advance registration at www.portlandlandmarks.org due to limited seating.
Building the American Dream by Mail: Kit Houses in Greater Portland