Eichler's Early Years: 1949-'50 The First Subdivisions - Page 3

50 years later, we return to the manors and gardens that embellished the great Eichler home prototype

AronsonsBefore the Aronsons moved in, their Eichler on Channing Avenue played host to an estimated 10,000 visitors, drawn to the opening of Green Gables Addition in May 1950. As a model home only two blocks from Eichler business offices in Edgewood Shopping Center, the model also served as a convenient playground for the media. In fact, House Beautiful made it the focus of its extensive feature in the November 1950 issue on pace-setting design called Making a little go a long way.

The Aronsons didn't overlook that fact when they were in contract. "We added to the sale that since it was a model, and it had all that traffic, we wanted some consideration for all those marks on the asphalt tiles, and some water stains," recalled Jean Aronson. "I wanted it in proper condition. And they took care of us."

In the years that followed, Jean and Steven Aronson considered moving to a larger Eichler, but resisted and added a second bathroom instead. Meanwhile, Muriel and Bill Mickel relocated from Redwood City to Palo Alto in 1959, but didn't give up the faith. They're in the midst of celebrating 40 years of contentment in—you guessed it—their second Eichler home.

Recently the Mickels returned to Atherwood, where they stirred up some old stories and paused for a few new photographs. The neighborhood didn't look much different, they agreed, and the memories seemed as warm as ever.

"I miss that used brick fireplace in the middle of that glass wall," Muriel pointed out fondly. "It was just gorgeous, the best part of the house. "You know, it's moments like this when I realize we owe Mr. Eichler a great deal of thanks," she continued. "I'm so very grateful we didn't spend the rest of our lives in one of those little concrete boxes."


 

Where to Find Eichler's 11 Original Subdivisions

These 11 early subdivisions, sequenced by the dates their homes first reached market, comprise Eichler's building in 1949 and 1950. To plot an expedient tour route, consider this sequence (from south to north): 1, 6, 2, 7, 3, 4, 10, 8, 11, 5, 9. For a print-out with detailed street directions, plug in your desired town and street info into the Yahoo! Maps.

TurqPixel 1. SUNNYVALE MANOR I April 1949
Location: Sunnyvale - N. Bayview at Maude Avenues
Architect: none
Central heating

TurqPixel 2. SUNNYMOUNT GARDENS May 1949
Location: Sunnyvale - Dawn Drive at Sunnymount Avenue
Architect: none
Central heating

TurqPixel 3. UNIVERSITY GARDENS Sept. 1949
Location: Palo Alto - Kendall Avenue near Barron Park
Architect: designer named 'Castor'
Central heating

TurqPixel 4. STANFORD CITY December 1949
Location: Palo Alto - Ramona Street at El Dorado Avenue
Architect: none
Central heating

TurqPixel 5. STANFORD GARDENS January 1950
Location: Menlo Park - Evergreen Street at Stanford Avenue
Architect: designer named 'Castor'
First radiant heat Eichlers

TurqPixel 6. SUNNYVALE MANOR II Feb. 1950
Location: Sunnyvale - Morse and Arbor Avenues
Architects: first Anshen & Allen designs
Radiant heating

TurqPixel 7. EL CENTRO GARDENS April 1950
Location: Palo Alto - La Jennifer Way - a Latin cross cul-de-sac
Architects: Anshen & Allen
Radiant heating

TurqPixel 8. GREEN GABLES ADDITION May 1950
Location: Palo Alto - Channing Avenue at Greer Road
Architects: Anshen & Allen
Radiant heating

TurqPixel 9. ATHERWOOD
November 1950
Location: Redwood City - Atherwood Avenue south of Woodside Road
Architects: Anshen & Allen
Radiant heating