Town of Monrovia

The Town of Monrovia Subdivision was made up of lots 35-45 of  the Santa Anita Track (shown in the picture to the below), owned by  Elias J. Baldwin,  and a sliver, owned by L.L. Bradbury, of the western  section of Rancho Azusa de Duarte.  William N. Monroe had  previously purchased from Baldwin Lot 43 in order to build a home for  his family.  Other Santa Anita lots were purchased individually from  Baldwin by Edward F. Spence, John D. Bicknell, James F. Crank, and J.F.   Falvey.  These men and Monroe all had known each other from business  and society connections in Los Angeles.  Spence was a former mayor of  Los Angeles, Bicknell a former judge, and Monroe had served on the Los  Angeles City Council.  Crank, like Baldwin, had been a railroad builder,  but he lived in Pasadena, not Monrovia.  Jeremiah F. Falvey had been  the foreman of Baldwin’s Rancho Santa Anita.

Together these men decided to combine their lots under the business name of the Monrovia Land and Water Company. They understood that the completion of the Santa Fe and Southern Pacific railroads to California would bring in many new people looking for homes and investment opportunities, so buying up land for a new community seemed a good move. 


The combined lots Falvey, Spence, Bicknell, Monroe and Crank formed the Town of Monrovia Subdivision. (Please map to the right.) Engineers John Quinton and John Flanagan plotted out sixty acres, with the center at Orange (now Colorado) and Myrtle Avenues. 


They divided the property into Blocks A-Y, and each block was subdivided into twenty-four 50 by 160 foot lots. The boundaries for the Town of Monrovia Subdivision were Magnolia Avenue on the west, Lime Avenue on the north, Charlotte Avenue (now Canyon Boulevard) on the east, and Walnut Avenue on the south. East and west running streets were given the names of trees: Lime, Lemon, Orange, Olive, and Walnut. North and south running streets were given the names of flowers and women: Magnolia, Primrose, Myrtle (Monroe's daughter), and Charlotte (now Canyon). 


The Town of Monrovia Subdivision was recorded in Los Angeles by Judge Bicknell on May 21st, 1886. The Town of Monrovia Subdivision was itself subdivided almost immediately as the Monrovia Land and Water Company sold most of its holdings very quickly. The lucky buyers were the ones who turned around and sold their purchases for a substantial profit. Most of the buyers who held onto their purchases for speculation saw land values dwindle to a fraction of their 1886-1887 value. Consequently, there is almost no biographical information in this data base for many lot owners. 


They purchased land here (but often erected no buildings), lost it quickly, and were never heard from again. Sometimes their names do not even appear in the tax records, and many lots owners are listed as “Unknown.” Other lots were sold for taxes (SFT), and the original owners walked away. Other owners had kindly friends make the tax payments for them. This type of tax information will be recorded on the specific lot history page. By 1886, Monroe was already living in Monrovia, though not in the Town of Monrovia Subdivision, and Spence's home was in the planning stages. Falvey had a citrus orchard in Monrovia, though he may have stayed in his residence on Baldwin property. 


Additionally, Spence and Monroe had brothers who also lived in the town and their nieces and nephews attended local schools. The Monrovia Land and Water Company set up its office on Myrtle in the Town of Monrovia Subdivision. The fact that three of the five investors in the new town actually had business interests, homes, and extended families in residence may be considered a large reason why Monrovia survived the economic depression of 1888, when many other boom towns in the area dried up.

133 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

B

21

No

1908

Commercial

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/3

Description

Lot 21, Block B in the Town of Monrovia Subdivision lay unimproved until 1908 when Byron Clark built a two-storey house that would be a boarding house that provided furnished rooms for renters.  The structure kept its function asa  boarding house until it was torn down in the late 1950s.


The Sanborn maps show a two-storey, rectangular structure which is very common for commercial structures of that time.  It was wood frame and had enough rooms to rent to ten people.


By 1921, Margaret Clark had died, and her husband moved to Anaheim to live with one of his daughters.  They sold the business and the property, and the boarding house became the Ak-Sar-Ben Rooms in 1924.  The owners then added a small dwelling at the back of the property by the alley with an address of 133 1/2 E. Lime Avenue.



131 E. Lime Ave,

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

B

20

1921

Victorian

Book & Anderson

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/2

Description

James Elam Hunter purchased Lot 20 in 1888.  The size of the Lot was 50 x 100 feet and backed on to an alley.  No value was given in 1888, but in 1889, it was valued at $150.  Tax records show the property bouncing among Hunter, J.E. Coffin (a merchant from Whittier) and Sherman Smith, losing value steadily, until Anna Kate Collins bought it in 1904 and built a house valued at $850 on it.  


However, the permit records at City Hall show two permits for July 1921, one for a house and another for a garage.  The contractors are Book & Anderson. Adding to the confusion is the 1920 census record,  which shows Kate Collins and her daughter living at a house at 131 N. Myrtle Avenue.  Possibly Kate had major changes done in the 1904 house and that accounts for the permits in 1921.


As can be seen by the Sanborn map, the house had a small front porch, a back porch for doing laundry, and a small bay window on the east side of the house.  It is likely that the house had three bedrooms as the 1920 census, there are three people living in the house: a boarder, Kate Collins, and her daughter Catherine.


In 1921 there are two permits, one for a house and another for a garage.  The second house is very small and has the address of 131 1/2.  The one-car garage is at northeast corner of the property next to the alley. 


There is no demolition permit, but it is likely the house came down in the early 1950s when other houses on the block were torn down for a parking lot.

225-225 1/2 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

19

No

1888

Victorian

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/4

Description

Levi Jackson Newlan owned this property from 1888 until 1907.  He built a  house, valued at $300 on the property in 1888 and lived in it with his  two sons.

The Sanborn maps show the house as being a small  structure with a front porch and a bay window facing east.  Given the  period of time in which it was built and the other houses built at the  same time which still stand, it is likely that the house was a wood  frame structure with modest Victorian architectural features.  There are  no permits for the house and the Sanborn maps show little change in the  house.

Levi and his son Charles A. were blacksmiths, and his  other son, Eugene Frank,  was a harness maker.  According to records,  Eugene Frank did not stay in Monrovia very long, so the house was  occupied by just the two others until Levi Jackson Newlan's death in  1906.  After 1907, his Charles sold the property to B.A.P. Eaton, a  retiree, who only owned his for two years, selling it to David S. West  in 1910.

David West lived less than a block away at 127 E. Lime  Avenue, and he rented out his new property over the years to many  people.  Sometime after 1927, an additional dwelling was built on the  lot with the address of 225 1/2.  Since there are no permits, it is  difficult to determine exactly when it went up.  However, there is a  1939 Monrovia directory entry for someone living at 225 1/2 E. Lime  Avenue, so the second dwelling went up sometime between 1928 and 1939.

There  is no demolition permit for this property, but it was probably razed in  the late 1950s or early 1960s when the houses on Lots 17-20 were torn  down for a parking lot to serve the utility company in the next block.

334 S. Myrtle Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

B

15

No

1911

Commercial/Public

Unknown

Unknown

Yes

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/3

Description

Though James J. McLachlan was the first owner of the property, but he didn't actually own it until 1889.  In the 1888 tax records, the owner of this lot is unknown, but the  value of the land reflects its prime position as a corner lot on the  northeast corner of South Myrtle and East Lime Avenues.  It is assessed  at $800, and the value after equalization is $300.  The tax assessor’s  book has no tax listed, but indicates the property has sold, but not to  whom.  The 1889 tax records show Lot 15 (as well as 13 and 14)   belonging to James McLachlan.  The lot’s value has dropped to $600,  reflecting the bursting of the land boom bubble.  The taxes due on the  property are $3.90, but the property is sold to H. Hart.


The  earliest subdivision map shows the following.  The lots on the north,  east, and south sides of Block B (the 100 block of East Palm, the 200  block of South Ivy and the 100 block of East Lime) all have north-south  orientation.  The dimensions are 50 by 140 feet deep.  The back of each  lot ends at the alley that bisects the block horizontally, east/west.


However,  lots 10-15 were divided so that they fronted on South Myrtle.  Their  dimensions are 53 ⅓ by 150 feet.  The Sanborn maps show no structure on  Lot 15 until 1913, and that structure is the Renaker Funeral Parlor.  It  is unclear from the maps and directories what direction the front of  this building faced when it was first built in 1911 because Sanborn maps indicate there were entrances with addresses into the building from the Lime side of the mortuary.  


The first  structure was owned by Charles Taylor (known as C.T.) Renaker.  In  1887-88, his father, James John Renaker,  had a funeral  home/furniture/stationery store first in the Badeau Block, at the  southeast corner of Colorado and Myrtle and then at 627 S. Myrtle.  J.J.  Renaker died in 1904, around the time the funeral parlor burned down,  and C.T. constructed a new building for the mortuary business, including  an apartment on the second floor for himself, his mother, and his  brother Leslie.


For decades, the address for the funeral home was  given only as the corner of Lime and Myrtle.   It wasn't until 1926 that  the city directories began to list an address, 334 S. Myrtle Ave., for  the Renaker Funeral Parlor.  Specifically, the following addresses are  all associated with the structure the Renakers owned on Lot 15.

  • 101 E. Lime

  • 103 1/2 E. Lime (likely Mrs. J.J. Renaker's address as she lived upstairs over the mortuary)

  • 107 E. Lime Ave.

  • 109 E. Lime Ave.

  • 111 E. Lime Ave.

  • 342 S. Myrtle Ave.

By the late 1930's, the address for the mortuary is 334 S. Myrtle and Lot 15 still has that address today.


The first permit for this building is in 1914 for a sewer, but the permit is issued to to the 111 E. Lime address of the building.  Another plumbing permit was issued in 1927 for the same address.  It is most likely that this entrance was for the bodies and where cadaver preparation was done, so the plumbing would need to located at that interest.  


There is no permit for demolition, but there is a construction permit indicating Lot 15 has been combined with Lot 14 to make a dress store, an Anita Shop, a chain of dress stores which existed through the 1950's and early  1960's.


Since 1957, the structure has had numerous owners and  morphed through numerous businesses/

127 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

B

Lot 19

No

1902

Victorian

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/3

Description

Lot 19 was undeveloped until 1898 when Adeline Wright built a small house.  Sanborn maps indicate the house was made of wood.  The style of the house would have been a plain Victorian with little ornamentation.  The map shows the house to be small


There are no permits for the property, so it is unknown if there were alterations to it.  There is no record of when the house was torn down, but it probably was razed around 1953 when the house to the west at 123 E. Lime was demolished for the California Water and Telephone Company and its parking lot. 



119 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

B

17

No

1907

Victorian

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/3

Description

Lot 17 stayed empty until 1907, when John T. Renaker built a small, rectangular-shaped house.  He never intended to live in it as he was a member of the Renaker family that owned a mortuary just down the block from Lot 17.  Death being a regular occurance in any community, the Renakers stayed busy.  For a period of time, they also had a furniture store.


In 1907, the house was valued at $500.  Though the property increased in value, the house did not.  In 1913, there is a permit taken out by Renaker to hook the structure up to a sewer.  Renaker rented out the house to different business owners who ran their businesses from the house.


In 1908, the building was used by Arthur Pomeroy for his real estate business.   Later in 1913, Leslie Renaker (brother of John T) had a furniture store there.


There is no demolition request for this house, but it was probably torn down in 1954 when the house to the west, 115 E. Lime Avenue, was torn down so that the California Water and Telephone Company could be built.

223 E. Lime Ave.

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

18

No

1909

Unknown

Unknown

No

Yes

Yest

Town of Monrovia

1/4

Description

John C. Anderson owned the property from 1888 to 1901.  After that, the property had four owners:  Mary Sergeant for two years; L.S. Calvin for one year; and A.W. Morgan for two years.  Cy Hall bought the property, valued at $350, in 1909, and is assessed $50 for a small structure in 1911-1912.  The next year, he built a large house valued at $300.  The following year the value increased to $1400.



The residence zone for Lot 17, along with Lots 18, 19, and 20, was  changed in 1960, as the first step in tearing down the houses on those  lots.  In 1962, a Planning Commission Architectural review states that  Lot 17 was 50 x 160 feet.  It did not conform to building code or zoning  ordinances,  and was at least 50 years old, as if age were some kind of  crime.

229 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

20

No

1909-1910

Unknown

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/1

Description

The 1888 tax record lists Mrs Martha Ward as the first owner of this  property, valued at $300.  The next year the property had dropped in  valued by half, and the tax records list the owners as the real estate  firm of Spence, Bicknell & Crunch.  In 1890 and 1891, tax records  show the owner as E. Bunnell, and then Martha Ward returns as owner from  1892 to 1895 when the property was sold to W.A. Crandall.  By then, the  value of the property was $75.

The Crandalls also owned Lot 21,  but they didn't do anything with Lot 20 until 1909 or 1910 when they  built a small dwelling valued at only $50.  By then the value of the  property itself had climbed to $450.  They used the property as a rental  and lived in their own home next door.


The 1907 Sanborn map shows  the first dwelling, a  very small one, toward the back left of the  property.  Over the years, many renters lived in the house.  The  1913-1914 Monrovia Directory lists  Clyde F. Stevenson living here, then  in 1916-1917,  Lloyd and Lillian M. Parkhurst were the renters.  Mr.  Parkhurst's profession is given as a nursery worker at Pioneer Nursery.   The directory for 1919-1920 lists Miss Wava Mowrey and P. Clara Mowrey  as residents here.


Mrs. Crandall kept the property for sometime  after her husband died.  Eventually, the property was sold to William H.  Beebe and his wife.


In the early 1960's, the California Water  & Telephone Company acquired the property at 229 E. Lime with plans  to turn into a parking lot.  For its employees.  The utility company had  already purchased the three lots to the west of this address.  In 1963,  the Lot 20 was re-zoned for parking, and the house was torn down  because it was old, and because it was a house in an area zoned for  parking, it was not in compliance with the Zoning Ordinance.


There  are no pictures of the house, but its outline on the Sanborn maps show  it to have been a very small, narrow structure.  It was most likely a  simple, wood-frame house with a shotgun format.  A shotgun house is one  with a front-facing gable, one room in width, and two more rooms deep.


The pictures on this page show the large amount of space Lots 17-20 cover.

217 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

17

No

1904

Craftsman

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/4

Description

The 1888 tax record shows J.C. Anderson as the first owner of Lot 17, which was valued at $300 at that time.  He held on to the property as its value dropped until 1901 when the property was sold to Mary Sergeant who owned it for two years.  She did not improve the property and its value stayed at $75 for the two years she owned it.  We were unable to find anything substantial about her.


By 1904, the value had increased to $150 and  Cora M. Graves purchased it and built a house on it (see 1907 Sanborn map) valued at $400.  In 1906, Mabel Menefee bought the property which had increased in value to $350.  The address of Lot 17 became 217 E. Lime Avenue.    The 1913 Sanborn map shows an additional small dwelling  with an address of 217 1/2.  This structure may have been torn down as  there is a building permit, dated 1949, issued to Miss Menefee for a  residence at the 217 1/2 address.


The 1927 Sanborn map shows a substantial dwelling at the back of Lot 17.  It also shows the neignborhood before the houses on most of the other lots were torn down to be replaced by a parking lot.  The rest of the  parking area is made up of Lots 18, 19, and 20.  The houses on these lots were  also town down.


As far as tenants who lived at 2117 E. Lime Avenue,  the 1908-1909 Monrovia Directory  lists C. Frank Jackson, a lineman for the Monrovia Telephone and  Telegraph Company, as renting 217 E. Lime.  The 1911 Monrovia  Directory lists Mabel C. Menefee as living at 217 E. Lime.  Later  directories list her as an office nurse, working for Dr. J.K. Sewell.   Ms. Menefee may have rented out a room of her house, a not uncommon  practice, as the 1916-1917 directory lists Anna J. Sewright living at  the address but only one for year.


In the 1926-27 directory, a Miss Estelle M. Nelson, a clerk McBratney's is listed as living at this address.  Mabel Menefee may have moved to the back house, but she lived on Lot 17 until the end of her life in 1950.


The residence zone for Lot 17 was  changed in 1960, as the first step in tearing down the house.   In 1962, a Planning Commission Architectural review states that  Lot 17 was 50 x 160 feet.  It did not conform to building code or zoning  ordinances,  and was at least 50 years old, as if age were some kind of  crime.  The house was razed and it and the most of the other lots became a parking lot.


Because there are no pictures of this dwelling, the exact  architectural style is not known.  But because a dwelling appears on the  1907 Sanborn map, it might be surmised that the house's architecture  was similar to those on the rest of block which appear at the same time  and are still standing. 


That would it an early Craftsman with Victorian  elements.

215 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

16

No

1886

Victorian

John. C. Anderson

Unknown

No

No

No

Town of Monrovia

1/3

Description

John C. Anderson purchased three lots, 16-19 in Block A of the Town  of Monrovia Subdivision from the Monrovia Land and Water Company in  1888.  At this time, these lots on Lime Avenue were the northern  boundary of the Town of Monrovia.

Anderson, a contractor, built  this six-room house for his wife and sons.  One of the sons, George,  spent almost his entire life of 87 years in the house, and his mother  stayed on in the house,  after her husband died, until she died.   George's brother and sister-in-law lived in the house several years  until around 1924 they moved to 343 N. Ivy Avenue.

The California  Water and Telephone Company attempted to acquire the property for use as  a parking lot during the 1960's, but George Anderson would not sell.


On  George Anderson's death in 1974, the property was left to a charitable  trust.  When the old family home could not be sold due to many years of  deferred maintenance, funds were given by the trust to the Friends of  the Monrovia Library to purchase the home and restore it as a project in  connection with the celebration of our country's bicentennial.  After  the restoration was completed under the leadership of the late Brice  Tulloss, title to the house was given to the newly organized Monrovia  Historical Society.  The house today is furnished as it would have  appeared when the Andersons lived in it.


215 E. Lime is a Queen  Anne style house with some Stick-Eastlake detailing.  The asymmetrical  plan, decorative scroll work, and hip roof with front facing gable are  Queen Anne elements, while the frieze of vertical siding and square  chamfered porch posts are Stick-Eastlake characteristics.  The stairs to  the porch are flanked by solid wooden balustrades, and the original  scroll work porch railing has been replaced by one of simple square  posts.  The house was enlarged around the turn of the last century by  the addition of a bathroom, screen porch, and bedroom to the rear of the  house.


The interior of the house has twelve foot ceilings in each  of the original rooms and a broad central hallway.  The parlor,  furnished with an Eastlake parlor suite, is connected to the dining room  by massive pocket doors. An interesting feature of the dining room is  the service window into the pantry.  The only items of original  furniture in the house are in the dining room:  a settee with  stick-and-ball design and two side chairs which were returned by the  Moore sisters and have been refurbished.  The kitchen is dominated by a  wood burning range.  The front bedroom has been turned into an office,  while the middle bedroom features a bedroom site of birds-eye maple.   The rear bedroom, furnished as a children's room, has a four poster bed  with canopy.


A portion of the original barn remains at the rear  of the property, while two oak trees, planted long ago by John Anderson  to support a hammock, now provide ample shade for the rear yard.

508 S. Ivy Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

J

11 & 12

No

1887

Victorian

Uriah Zimmerman

Luther Reed Blair

No

Yes

No

Town of Monrovia

1/1

Description

Among those who flocked to the new Town of Monrovia during the great  land boom of the Eighteen Eighties in Southern California was a young  architect, Luther Reed Blair.  Blair went into partnership with Uriah  Zimmerman, a building contractor, and the two men were responsible for  some of Monrovia's finest early buildings. The "Monrovia Planet": for  May 28, 1887 mentions that they had plans almost ready for the Orange  Avenue School, as well as the residences of M.S. Monroe, Jefferson  Patten, E.P. Large, and Dr. Stewart. 

 

Several months later the "Planet"  mentioned that Blair's personal residence was nearing completion at the  corner of Ivy and Olive Avenues.  Blair was active in Monrovia fraternal  circles as well as the business community, being a charter member of  both the Odd Fellows Lodge and the Masonic Lodge.


The general  stagnation after the collapse of the boom meant little work for those in  the building trades, and in 1895,  Blair sold the house to Andrew Ryder  and sought work elsewhere. The house was purchased in 1906 by Thomas  Wardall, who came to Duarte in 1878 and was prominent in that community before retiring to Monrovia.  Wardall was active in Monrovia real estate  during the boom, and again after the turn of the last century.


In  1910, the Wardalls moved into a new house in Wardall's Orange Grove  Tract, but retained ownership of the Blair House.  In 1927, the house  was moved sixteen blocks from its original location to 319 W. Duarte  Road, where it remained for nearly seventy years.  For over fifty of  those years, the house was owned by the Lisle family. When the last  family member to live in the house moved into a retirement facility in  1992, the property was placed on the market and the fate of the house  was uncertain.


That uncertainty was put to rest on April 12, 1993  when the Blair House returned to Ivy Avenue after a sixty-six year hiatus.  The City of Monrovia, through its encouragement and cooperation, was instrumental in making the project possible, and the  home of Monrovia's pioneer architect will be restored to appear as it  did on his drawing board so long ago.


The pictures here show the house at its present location.  The house is privately owned and is in the process of being restored.

211 E. Lime Avenue

KNOWN DETAILS

Block No:

Lot No:

Landmarked?

Construction Year:

Architectural Style:

Contractor:

Architect:

Style Altered?

Location Changed?

Owner(s):

Demolished?

Subdivision:

A

15

No

1904

Craftsman

Unknown

Unknown

No

No

Yes

Town of Monrovia

1/2

Description

The first owners of this lot were Lewis Beer and Josiah H. Gray.  The value in 1888 was $300 and drops by half the next year.  From 1890 to 1895, the property was owned by Josiah Holcomb Gray, and, after his death in 1892, by his wife, Anna.  No owner is listed for 1896 and 1897, and Anna Grey had moved to Arizona where other Gray family members had settled.  None of the owners made any improvements on the lot.

By 1903, the property was in the ownership of Lizzie H. Anderson, widow of Charles S. Anderson, who also owned Lots 16, 17, & 18.  A dwelling is listed in the tax record of 1904 as being valued at $600.  Lizzie Anderson most likely built the dwelling as rental property as tax records show her as the owner until 1916, but city directories list other people as living there.

The structure first appears on the 1907 Sanborn map as a simple rectangle with a porch overhang running the width of the front of the house.  In the back are two lean-to type add ons, one with a door opening into it from the house.  This was most likely the bathroom.  The other was most likely a utility porch typical of houses at that time.  The 1927 Sanborn configuration is exactly the same except for a garage added at the back of the property next to the alley.  Other than the 1911 permit for the sewer hookup, there is only one other permit issued and that was in 1919 for an addition valued at $800.  This may refer to the garage as the Sanborn maps show no additions from 1907 to 1927.

Though no pictures exist of the house, it was most likely of wood frame construction.  It had medium width ship-lap siding. According to Steve Baker, Monrovia City Historian, the house was very simple with some Craftsman-type detail.  Elizabeth Anderson, a widow, who lived next door with her son, though comfortable, would not have built anything more elaborate for a rental that she didn’t plan on living in. 

The city directory for 1908-1909 lists Otis G. Smith, a salesman, his wife and daughter as living at 211 E. Lime Avenue.  In 1911, Wallace E. Hicks, a clerk for J.A. Fraulob & Co., rented the property.  The directory for 1913-1914 records George Conley, an employee for city waste, as living in the dwelling.

Sometime before 1919, Elizabeth Anderson sold the house to Thomas Quigley, a linotype operator for the Monrovia Daily News, and his wife Ada.   Quigley worked as a linotype operator for over 20 years, and as the Monrovia Daily News was only one block away at 115 E. Lime Avenue, it was obviously very convenient for him.  However, he still had a car;  the 1927 Sanborn map shows a garage at back of his property. 

The 1930 census records the value of the house at $5,000.

His wife gave piano lessons in the house. It is unclear when Ada Quigley died, but the last voter registration that she appears in is 1936.  Voter registration records show that Thomas Quigley continued living in the house until 1946.  After that, he returned to Michigan and died in 1949.

The city directory of 1953-1954 shows the Camp family living in the house.  Steve Baker’s family was acquainted with the Camps, so Steve was able to tell me that the they were renting the house until they moved into a house they had purchased on May Avenue.

No one is listed in the city directory for the address for 1955, so the house may have been demolished shortly thereafter.

There is a permit dated November 8, 1967, giving the owner of the property as the General Telephone Company.  The permit is for the demolition of a single family dwelling.  Another permit, dated 1968, is for a lawn sprinkler system and the owner still listed as General Telephone Company for a lawn sprinkler system. 

The property eventually came under the ownership of the church that owned Lots 13 & 14, and is now used as a parking lot for the church.

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