This home, originally the 1931 Beck House, was converted into a Byzantine Catholic Church in 1974. The property was sold to the current owners just over one year ago, and they have worked tirelesslyto restore it as a beautiful single-family home again.
Prominent features of the house include the huge arched, peaked window in the front and a working bell tower above the roof line that echoes a similar bell tower on the northeast corner of the property. These towers, as well as the stucco fence enclosing the courtyard, are additions made by the Byzantine Church and retained by the current owners for their unique charm.
The property is entered through an arched gateway, leading to a front courtyard. Along the walkway are a fountain and an outdoor fireplace – perfect for entertaining. The massive front door is original to the home, and evokes a feeling of entering a mission building. Notice the niches, also original to the home, built in the entryway walls.
During the restoration process, Michelle Lieberman and her husband Lew Aguilar have uncovered original coved plaster ceilings and hardwood floors, and have meticulously restored the home. In some cases where replacement was necessary, they have painstakingly worked to match the original features
Like so many streets here in the Colony, Zeyn Street is named for one of the original vineyard colonists. When John P. Zeyn retired from farming and subdivided his land, Anaheim gained much of the “Northpark District,” the area north of Pearson Park. Wilhelmina Street is named for his daughter “Winnie.”
This honeymoon cottage for Fred Backs, Jr. and his wife, Jessie Melrose, the children of Anaheim pioneer families, was built in 1903. This home is situated in the Melrose/Backs National Register Historic District, and is itself listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
The house originally faced Adele Street, but was turned one quarter in 1911 to match the adjacent home to the south belonging to Mrs. Backs’ parents. To enhance family interaction, both houses had connecting walkways and French doors facing one another. The decorative Victorian-style fretwork in the front parlor is not original to the house. However, since evidence existed of a decorative element here, similar existing woodwork from the senior Backs house was copied for use here. Note the windows throughout the houses: there are a total of 42 diamond panes. A southern addition was built, most likely in the late 1920s, that served for a time as a separate rental property with its own entrance. In the adjoining wall of what is now the dining room, notice the top of the original kitchen window frame rising above the beautiful built-in cabinetry, as well as the wood stove vent in the ceiling.
Keith and Judy Olesen, the owners since 1986, have been active in historic preservation efforts for over 15 years. They have maintained this home’s unique character which, as would not be unexpected for the time period, is a blend of Victorian and Craftsman elements.
A charming oriental-flavored Craftsman home, this house dates to 1911. The house was custom-built next to the Melrose/Backs compound, which is not surprising as it was originally the home of Judge Homer Ames, a law partner and friend of Richard Melrose. After serving as Anaheim’s City Attorney from 1912 to 1925, Ames was appointed to the Superior Court.
This home is a one-of-a-kind design, not seen anywhere else in the city. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The delightful red front door with its Craftsman hardware is sheltered by an almost flat gabled portico supported by heavy brackets. The pronounced horizontal feel is accentuated by a belt course just at windowsill height that separates the narrow clapboard siding above from the wider shiplap below.
The inside of this home is frankly dramatic, as surprising as it is intriguing. The current owners have adopted bold coloration and decorating that is wonderfully unique and adds immeasurably to the enjoyment of the house.
Scott Rummage and Charles Coy discovered this house about four years ago, and have attended to every detail, preserving the old while embellishing both the interior and grounds with a contemporary flair. The home has been recognized with an Anaheim Beautiful award.
has been featured in numerous magazines, and was Anaheim Beautiful’s Sweepstakes Award Winner in 1999. It is also one of the first participants in the Mills Act Program.