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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Croom in Prince George's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

The Sears House

 
 
The Sears House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
1. The Sears House Marker
Inscription. It Came in the Mail! Sears Roebuck and Co. Mail order Homes. Simplex Sectional Cottages.

The mail-order home in front of you was purchased by Mr. Lowe Steed from Sears, Roebuck and Company in 1923 for $400. It is a quaint, three room, no-bath cottage. An outhouse could be purchased seperately for around $40. The house did not have plumbing or electricity and was heated by the kitchen stove when the Steed family lived in the house in the 1930s during the Great Depression.

Sears, Roebuck and Company sold more than 100,000 mail order-homes from 1908 to 1940. They had 447 styles to choose from. Some of these homes were very elaborate and built with high quality materials, providing everything one would need to live comfortably, while others were quite basic. The three types of homes offered were the "Honor Built" (top of the line), "Standard Built" and "Simplex." Customers could order a house to suit their life style and budget. The ability to mass-produce materials cut manufacturing costs and homes could be built faster and with less labor (the Simplex homes could be put together by one carpenter.) Your house would arrive at the closest railway station with everything you would need to build it: pre-cut timbers, shingles, paint, nails and even the kitchen sink.

In 2004, the house was moved to this location
"Goldenrod" home image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
2. "Goldenrod" home
from the Steed Farm located near Clinton, Maryland. It has been restored and furnished to resemble its original condition.

The GOLDENROD: This house is a "Simplex" sectional cottage; the model is the "Goldenrod". It was designed for resort communities, summer homes, and industrial housing. Although thousands of Sears homes were built in the United States, the Simplex models (Goldenrod, Skywater, and Double-Duty) are fairly rare. Not many of these houses were purchased because the public preferred the higher quality models. Most of those that were built did not survive over the years. Catalog #-55MH122
 
Erected by Maryland-National Capital Parks and Planning Commission.
 
Location. 38° 46.35′ N, 76° 42.717′ W. Marker is in Croom, Maryland, in Prince George's County. Marker is on Croom Airport Road. Touch for map. The Sears House is part of the Patuxent Rural Life Museums complex within the Jug Bay Natural Area of Patuxent River Park. Call park staff at 301-627-6074 to confirm hours of operation. Marker is at or near this postal address: 16000 Croom Airport Road, Upper Marlboro MD 20772, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. The Blacksmith Shop (a few steps from this marker); The Duckett Cabin
"Simplex" Portable Out-house, 4 ft. square. image. Click for full size.
By Richard E. Miller, October 28, 2007
3. "Simplex" Portable Out-house, 4 ft. square.
Price: $41.00 extra.
(a few steps from this marker); Blown to Atoms (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Charles Town (approx. 0.7 miles away); First Americans at Mount Calvert (approx. 0.8 miles away); Mount Calvert Historical and Archaeological Park (approx. 0.8 miles away); Chesapeake Beach Railway (approx. 0.8 miles away); The War of 1812 and the Chesapeake Flotilla (approx. 0.8 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Croom.
 
Also see . . .
1. Patuxent Rural Museums. (Submitted on March 17, 2008, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.)
2. Patuxent Rural Life Museums. P. G. Parks (Submitted on February 5, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.) 
 
Categories. 20th CenturyIndustry & CommerceNotable Buildings
 
The Goldenrod image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
4. The Goldenrod
Close-up of photo on marker
The Goldenrod image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
5. The Goldenrod
Book of <br>Modern Homes image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
6. Book of
Modern Homes
and Building
Plans
Sears, Roebuck & Co. Chicago
Close-up of catalog cover on marker
Blue Print image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
7. Blue Print
Close-up of image on marker
Constructing the House - 9:30 AM image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
8. Constructing the House - 9:30 AM
Close-up of photo on marker
Constructing the House - 11:50 AM image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
9. Constructing the House - 11:50 AM
Close-up of photo on marker
Constructing the House - 4:30 PM image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
10. Constructing the House - 4:30 PM
Close-up of photo on marker
Inside The Sears House image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
11. Inside The Sears House
Simplex Portable Outhouse<br>4 Ft. Square<br>$41.00 image. Click for full size.
By Allen C. Browne, December 26, 2014
12. Simplex Portable Outhouse
4 Ft. Square
$41.00
55P14
Shipping weight, 720 pounds.
Wall sections, 4 feet wide and 7 feet high to eaves, Side ventilator opening, diamond shape on each side. Contains tow comfortable, well finished seats, one for adults, one for children. this is a neat, attractive little building. Best-of-all Asphalt Roofing, Color, Black.
Close-up of image on marker
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on March 17, 2008, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland. This page has been viewed 3,235 times since then and 308 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on March 17, 2008, by Richard E. Miller of Oxon Hill, Maryland.   4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12. submitted on February 5, 2015, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland. • Christopher Busta-Peck was the editor who published this page.
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