215 E. Lime Avenue


Photo: 2003

Known Details

Block No: A

Lot No: 16

Landmarked? No

Construction Year: 1886

Architectural Style: Victorian

Contractor: John C. Anderson

Architect: Unknown

Style Altered? No

Location Changed? No

Owner(s): John C. Anderson, Lewis Jospeh Beer, Josiah Holcomb Gray, James Devine Cleminson

Demolished? No

Subdivision: Town of Monrovia

John C. Anderson purchased three lots, 16-19 in Block A of the Town of Monrovia Subdivision from the Monrovia Land and Water Company in 1888.  At this time, these lots on Lime Avenue were the northern boundary of the Town of Monrovia.  

Anderson, a contractor, built this six-room house for his wife and sons.  One of the sons, George, spent almost his entire life of 87 years in the house, and his mother stayed on in the house,  after her husband died, until she died.  George's brother and sister-in-law lived in the house several years until around 1924 they moved to 343 N. Ivy Avenue.

The California Water and Telephone Company attempted to acquire the property for use as a parking lot during the 1960's, but George Anderson would not sell.  

On George Anderson's death in 1974, the property was left to a charitable trust.  When the old family home could not be sold due to many years of deferred maintenance, funds were given by the trust to the Friends of the Monrovia Library to purchase the home and restore it as a project in connection with the celebration of our country's bicentennial.  After the restoration was completed under the leadership of the late Brice Tulloss, title to the house was given to the newly organized Monrovia Historical Society.  The house today is furnished as it would have appeared when the Andersons lived in it.

215 E. Lime is a Queen Anne style house with some Stick-Eastlake detailing.  The asymmetrical plan, decorative scroll work, and hip roof with front facing gable are Queen Anne elements, while the frieze of vertical siding and square chamfered porch posts are Stick-Eastlake characteristics.  The stairs to the porch are flanked by solid wooden balustrades, and the original scroll work porch railing has been replaced by one of simple square posts.  The house was enlarged around the turn of the last century by the addition of a bathroom, screen porch, and bedroom to the rear of the house.

The interior of the house has twelve foot ceilings in each of the original rooms and a broad central hallway.  The parlor, furnished with an Eastlake parlor suite, is connected to the dining room by massive pocket doors. An interesting feature of the dining room is the service window into the pantry.  The only items of original furniture in the house are in the dining room:  a settee with stick-and-ball design and two side chairs which were returned by the Moore sisters and have been refurbished.  The kitchen is dominated by a wood burning range.  The front bedroom has been turned into an office, while the middle bedroom features a bedroom site of birds-eye maple.  The rear bedroom, furnished as a children's room, has a four poster bed with canopy.

A portion of the original barn remains at the rear of the property, while two oak trees, planted long ago by John Anderson to support a hammock, now provide ample shade for the rear yard.