John Swann Home


The Redlands Area Historical Society, Inc.

John Swann Home

220 Sonora Street


This small Victorian cottage is a representative example of the working-man’s home in early Redlands. Located in the Watrous 1st addition, one of the first tracts in Redlands, the house at 220 Sonora Street was built ca. 1896 by John Swann, a carpenter employed by Dr. Watrous. He built the house for himself as the first house in the tract. The Watrous 1st addition extended from Cajon Street to Myrtle Street and from Olive Avenue to Fern Avenue. Swann purchased the lot from Watrous in 1892 and the water connection was made in 1893.

The house has remained typical blue-collar housing having been occupied by Arthur L. Hunt, a post office carrier, from 1916 to 1920 and by Hunt B. Sargent, a barber, from 1923 to 1941. The current owner Beulah Babcock has made an attempt to permanently preserve the home by placing it on the City of Redlands Register of Historic and Scenic Properties which places deed restrictions on the property.

This Victorian cottage has a high hipped roof with an offset gable facing the street and gables on each side. The gables have decorative shingles and attic vents in a semi-circular shape. Chimney brick work is flared at the top. Siding is wood lap-board. Typical of the period, the front gable window is double hung with stained glass squares surrounding clear glass in the top panel. The front porch has three turned posts and a decorative valance and bracketing at the top. A striking decorative porch railing adds interest as do the two front doors leading into the house.

The Redlands Area Historical Society is proud to honor this unique example of Redlands’ Heritage and to commend the stewardship of the present owner.