Historic Markers Across Florida



Avondale



Marker ID:  
Location: on Bahia Vista St a block west of US 41, Sarasota, FL
County: Sarasota
Coordinates: N 27° 19.378    W 082° 31.833
  27.32296666    -82.53055
Style: Free Standing **
Waymark: WMQM8G
 



Text:

Side 1
In December 1913, Oscar and Alice Burton joined real estate developer and future Sarasota mayor Arthur B. Edwards (1914-1915 and 1920-1921) and his wife Fannie in selling the land south of Hudson Bayou to the Sarasota Improvement Company. In 1915, the area, recorded as Avondale Heights Subdivision, was advertised as "a place for families of average means." To promote the development, a modern bungalow valued at $1500 was to be given away. The same advertisement offered 75 choice lots for $250, with an easy payment plan of $50 down and monthly payments of $10. Even with the special promotions, Avondale Heights developed slowly.

In 1923, Irving Bacheller, Edward Brewer, and Fred Woolley purchased the underdeveloped lots. In 1924, the Bacheller-Brewer Corporation re-platted the subdivision as Avondale, enlarged the lots, and widened the streets in an effort to make the area more upscale and exclusive. A painting by noted Chicago artist Gibson Catlett promoted Avondale as a place to "Come and Enjoy the Golden Sunset of Sarasota." During 1925, Avondale experienced impressive land sales and gained recognition as a premier subdivision in the Sarasota area.


Side 2
The real estate whirlwind known as the Florida Land Boom and the new management contributed to the improved sales. Most of the lots were sold by the end of 1925 with the exception of the larger ones along Hudson Bayou. In an effort to attract wealthy residents, Bacheller-Brewer decided to market the remaining estate-size lots with a model home. Thomas Reed Martin, well known Sarasota and Chicago architect, designed a Mediterranean Revival style model home located at 1903 Lincoln Drive. The house, constructed in 1926, fell victim to the real estate bust and stood vacant until its sale in 1929 to Homer Galpin, an attorney and former Illinois state senator from Chicago. Added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1992, the house features a two-story central core flanked by one-story wings and represents the high-quality home construction the Bacheller-Brewer Corporation promoted in Avondale.

Today the neighborhood boasts of some Colonial Revival style homes dating from the 1930s, but most of the homes appear tone from the 1950s and 1960s.

Sarasota County Historical Commission