A Sears house in Arlington
Please Note: This tour has a rescheduled date (originally March 29, 2020).
This tour is also available on:
From 1908 to 1940, Sears Roebuck & Co. sold more than 70,000 of its prefabricated Modern Homes kits, affordable dwellings assembled on site that offered Americans of moderate means the chance to own an up-to-date house.
Arlington County, which saw a boom in growth during the 1920s, boasts a significant collection of these kit houses. After an introductory visual presentation at the Ripley Center, historian Dakota Springston leads a bus tour through historic Virginia neighborhoods in search of these distinctive and charming structures.
During the tour, the exteriors of approximately 50 Sears homes are viewed, representing some 50 different models that range from the single-story Sunlight to the magnificent 10-room Woodland. Springston also discusses the rail and trolley lines that provided transportation for Sears products, laborers, and residents; the rapidly growing communities in which these houses were built; and the agrarian communities they replaced.
Participants enjoy lunch at a local restaurant.
NOTE: Program begins in Room 3035 in the Ripley Center, 1100 Jefferson Drive SW, and continues by bus. On return, the bus makes one stop at a Metro station in Virginia before continuing to the Ripley Center.