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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

628 Middlefield Road

Inventory photo Photo taken January 25, 2016


The following is from the Historic Buildings Inventory as revised in 1985:

Physical appearance:   Somewhat larger than many one-story five-room (plus sleeping porch) houses of a modest type, it is notable for the exceptionally low angle of the roof-pitch, central blocky chimney (echoed in entry-porch columns), very wide overhang of the eaves, and the bold yet geometrically simple emphasis of detail. The extensive fenestration on the south side is unusual. Its interior was finished "to taste" of the owner when built.

Significance:  The characteristic individual departures from Beaux Arts conventions associated with the work of John Hudson Thomas, an important California architect, appear in this small residence, and it is recognizably a modest cousin of his more celebrated designs. The original owners were Leslie A. Reed and his wife Pauline (1916-17).

They were followed by Sublette W. and Leslie A Reed and Lena Newland (1923-28; Newland was a carpenter).

From 1934 to 1942, the owners were Stanford Professor Orson c. and Grace Shephard. Thomas L. Sherlock, a landscape architect, occupied the house between 1956 and 1962. His successor was a Lockheed engineer, Harry E. Moore (1962 to 1972).

The Charles Chang family took the house in 1979.


628 map
May 29, 2010 photo Location map

This house was built in 1916 and is a Category 2 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The architect was John Hudson Thomas, and the builder was George C. Bertsche. The property measures 49 by 150 feet.

Sources: Palo Alto City Directories; Palo Alto Times 3/25/16; John Hudson Thomas Archive


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