Chicago Kit Houses

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Root Simple reader Nicole H sent me the Midwestern equivalent of the Pacific Ready-Cut kit home catalog I posted on Monday: the Chicago Wrecking Company’s 1913 A Book of Plans. They later, and wisely, changed the name of the company to Harris Brothers Homes.

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The catalog contains Wrightian styles like the one above.

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As well as the 1913 version of a tiny house.

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Need a barn? They’ve got you covered.

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Want to open a store? They’ve got a plan for that too.

The catalog contains customer testimonials such as this one from an early house flipper:

Dear Sirs:
We received the material for the house and was [sic] greatly pleased with the same. Everything was exactly as represented in your catalog and the lumber was of far better quality than I could have gotten here at a higher price.

Before we had the house nearly finished, a gentleman bought it and we realized a neat sum for our work. He now likes his cottage home so well he would not take double the price he paid me for it.
(signed). LILLY H. DAY

It’s interesting to see the subtle similarities and differences between these houses and the ones in the Pacific Ready-Cut catalog.

Between and Google Books, there’s a whole universe of copyright free literature to read.