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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

450 North California Avenue

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Inventory photo Photo taken 2015


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

Physical appearance:   This streamline moderne styled house has a flat roof, round corners and a porthole window at the second floor. Abstracted classical detail decorates the entry and a regency finial graces the side gate.

The exterior walls are stucco on frame. In 1954, a 14 x 19 foot second story addition was completed, and in 1983, some restoration and alteration occurred at the rear of the second story.

Significance:  This is a very fine example of an important style which is relatively rare in Palo Alto. It was built for Burl W. Brant and his wife Pamela; he was the sales manager of the Sutter Packing Company.

From 1940-44, the owners were William B. and Marcella Wolken. Wolken managed the Island Club at the Golden Gate International Exposition, originated the Stanford Bowl, and operated the food concessions for football games at the University of California, Stanford, and San Jose State College.

Maxwell A. and Floy Bloomfield owned the house from 1946 to 1976*. A graduate of the New York University School of Business Administration, Bloomfield was the representative of Van Raalte Co. in the West.

* They are listed as the owners on the 1985 revision of the inventory sheet.

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This house was built in 1937 and is a Category 2 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The architect/builder was William F. Klay. The property measures 60.14 by 139.94 feet.

Sources: Polks City Directory; Palo Alto Times 4/3/37, 10/14/44, 12/14/79; Assessor's Books; interview 1985, William Klay


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