Naglee Park Home Tour

Yesterday’s Naglee Park Home Tour turned out very well. There weren’t the huge crowds that the Santa Clara tour gets or even last year’s Hanchett Park Home Tour. But it made for a much nicer experience walking around a beautiful neighborhood in beautiful weather without having to stand in line, or push through crowds to see the homes. That might be a disappointment in terms of fundraising, but I had a ticket numbered around 500, so they still likely collected over $10,000, to be used for improvements to the San Jose Woman’s Club clubhouse.

The show highlighted homes built by the prolific architecture firm of Wolfe and McKenzie (with one by McKenzie alone, after the partnership split up). According to local architectural historian George Espinola, who lectured near mid-day, the firm designed over 1000 (2000? I need to write these things down) local buildings, including many residences, and were one of the main direction-setters in San Jose’s residential architecture in the early 20th century. Their homes can be seen in Naglee Park, Willow Glen, Hanchett Park, and scattered around the rest of Northern California as well. Espinola’s book, Cottages, Flats, Buildings & Bungalows, reprints a design catalog published by Wolfe and McKenzie in 1907, with additional notes on where the buildings were actually built.

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