Leopold & Mary Lederer Residence


The Redlands Area Historical Society, Inc.
2011 Heritage Award

Leopold & Mary Lederer Residence
407 Brookside

Leopold and Mary Lederer immigrated to the United States from Austria in the 1880s. In the 1910 US Census they are listed as residents of “Craftonville.” Their daughters, Julia and Emma were born in California. The family lived on Crafton Avenue. Leopold was an orange rancher.

Emma married James A. Fair, a native of Illinois. James worked in the oil fields for Standard Oil until a work related injury forced him to find other income. James, Emma, and their daughters Lois and Marilyn moved to the Crafton Avenue home and James managed the family groves. In the meantime, the Lederers had contractor William Farnsworth build a modest single story Craftsman bungalow valued at $5,000. Leopold, Mary, and Julia soon relocated to the new home at 407 Brookside Avenue.

Brookside Avenue reflected a mix use from almost the beginning. The median divided street served as a major entrance into the city. The U.S. Post Office, Cortner and Emmerson funeral homes, the Mutual Orange Association, apartments, medical and dental offices, and churches combined with single family residential, including one and two story homes reflecting the Arts and Crafts movement, Spanish revival, and English country cottages with uniform setbacks. Neighbors to the Lederers included Carl Hales, Smiley Library children’s librarian Zora Lang, and long-time Redlands High School choral conductor Wilbur Showalter.

The bungalow influenced by the simpler Arts and Crafts movement found great favor in the west in a shift from the often ornate Queen Anne style of the 19th century. One could hire an architect, check out pattern books or purchase a complete bungalow house kit from Sears or other suppliers.

The Lederer home is a classic bungalow with a low pitched, cross gabled roof with unenclosed eaves and exposed rafters and horizontal siding. A partial width porch set off to the right is supported by tapered square columns and pedestals. On the west side of the house is a small gabled extension typical of a breakfast nook. Double sash windows are found throughout the house. Simple rectangular louvered vents are centered at the crest of each roof gable. To the right of the double paneled and glazed front door is a singled pane wood cased fixed window with two wood double hung windows on either side. To the left of the door is a fixed window with a single sash. Set away from the foundation is a newer ornamental, cut-stone planter feature complete with an orange tree, and a matching planter for the Orange Tree Dental signage.

Leopold continued to be involved in the orange business despite the move to Brookside Avenue. Julia Lederer established herself as a vital part of the operation of the Gold Banner Association, beginning her career for manager C. M. Brown at the Central Avenue orange distributor in 1906. She retired in 1949 following a long and successful career. Mary Lederer passed away in 1936 and Leopold in 1939. James, Emma, and daughters Lois and Marilyn joined Aunt Julia at the Brookside home. They lived there until the late 1940s when they relocated to 826 Brookside.

The home at 407 Brookside was rented for several years. Marilyn Fair Burchill inherited the house, and at one point, Marilyn and her late husband, George, lived in the home. The house was converted into a dental office in 1992. Since 1998, Doctor Rodney M. Collins has maintained a successful dental practice in the 1927 built home.

The Redlands Area Historical Society proudly presents a 2011 Heritage Award to Marilyn Burchill for the faithful stewardship of her family home and to Dr. Collins for adhering to the best principles of adaptive reuse.

8 June 2011