Window Inspiration

We’ve always enjoyed walking the neighborhood and contemplating the many layers of history here in Alameda. It’s also always interesting to see how past and current homeowners have responded—or not—to the history of their homes. Sometimes inspiring; sometimes perplexing.

One neighbor at the corner of NE 32nd and Mason has been busy putting things back like they were almost 100 years ago when this Dutch colonial was built by Portland homebuilder Frank E. Bowman.

Constructed originally for $6,500 for H.B. Oakleaf and his family, the home changed hands across the generations and along the way stylistic “updates” and maintenance began to change the look of the home’s exterior. Aluminum siding was put up over the original cedar shake siding. Wooden windows were pulled out in favor of the dreaded aluminum slider windows. Wooden trim, sills and lentil molding were removed. Much of the original charm seen in this photograph — which ran in The Oregonian on September 6, 1914 — was slowly drained away.

Fast forward to this summer, when Alamedans Steve and Teresa Goodman made good on a long-time goal: replace the aluminum windows with traditional wood windows; remove the 1960s siding and restore the exterior to more traditional cedar shakes.

That’s 36 windows to be exact (wood clad, low-E, double-hung, double glazed and argon filled windows) and if you look closely, complete with lintel molding up top and wooden sills below. Steve and Teresa have been thinking about this since the 1980s, and as Steve says, “better late than never.”

So, if you are looking for a little inspiration about the value of restoring your home to its more traditional roots, walk by 32nd and Mason and take stock. Nice work, Steve and Teresa.

September 10th Post Script: An interested reader wanted to see what it looked like before. I’m sure Steve won’t mind if I share this picture, which he took…

9 responses

  1. I’m Steve’s sister and grew up in this house alongside him. It’s great to see how they have brought it back to what I remember. It blends back perfectly into the neighborhood. I don’t miss that 1967 aluminum job one bit! Great job, “kids”!!

  2. Keith, I tend to agree with you. The original photo looks like clapboard to me. Perhaps Steve can chime in here and share what they found when they removed the aluminum and why they went with shingles. Also note: I updated the post with a “before” picture. Also, be sure to see another photo of the house and read about Steve’s growing up years there in the bio I prepared a couple years back.


  3. Definitely cedar shingles originally. The Oregonian picture’s resolution doesn’t allow that detail to show. We made one change – it was a 5″ reveal and we went to 7″, for a couple reasons. The house has been the coral green for 96 years (which is on Miller Paint’s ‘Historical Palette’). We will change that color to another historically correct (I hope) for colonial houses. Much darker and not green.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: