William Brook Home


The Redlands Area Historical Society, Inc.
Heritage Award 1990

William Brook Home
850 West Palm Avenue

The gracious two and a half story, ten room home at 850 West Palm Avenue was built for Rev. W. Brooks, originally from Ohio, by T. P. Minor. Rev. Brooks, his wife Adelia, and their four children resided at the home from 1901 thru 1915. Each of their children went on to become responsible members of the community with Miss Adelia becoming a teacher at Kingsbury School. Rev. Brooks died in Los Angeles in 1924 at the age of eighty-nine and was returned to Redlands for burial at Hillside Cemetery. His son, Dr. Raymond Brooks officiated at the funeral.

This classical box style home has a low hipped roof with projecting eaves. A gabled dormer is located at the front center of the roof. The dormer contains two large square windows with diamond shaped panes. There is a set of paired windows on either side of a hexagonal window directly beneath the dormer. The windows in both stories of the house maintain the diamond shaped motif in their upper lites. There is a boxed bay section projecting over the porch and is supported by decorative brackets. The first story has a veranda style porch indented across the front of the house. The porch is supported by four columns and is enclosed by a railing with turned balustrades. The house is built over a full basement and is covered with shiplap redwood siding.

Many families occupied the home since the Brooks family left in 1915. From 1915 to 1923 the house was owned by Margaret Houghtling. Edward Hammer, a dentist, and his wife Ida were the next residents. Mr. and Mrs. William Haupt lived there in the early thirties, and John and Minnie Brewster were the occupants from 1936 to 1939. Edward and Dorothy Price lived there until 1944. Ernest and Loletta Ohmstede moved into the home in 1955 and lived there until 1980. During this time they made many improvements to the home and grounds.

Hugh and Anna Lee Keegan bought the house in 1987. The Keegans were attracted to the house by the country feeling of the area. The rooms are bright and airy and provide a lovely setting for the display of Anna Lee’s collection of antique quilts. The orange grove along with the other fruit trees on the property are maintained by the Keegan children. The Keegan’s have recently repainted their home and have plans to remodel the kitchen area and install a new upstairs bath.

We commend the Keegan’s for their dedicated commitment to the preservation of this fine historic home.