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Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory

365 Lincoln Avenue

Professorville Historic District

Hoskins–Thomas Residence

inventory photo recent view
Inventory photo Photo taken August 14, 2015


The following 1981 revision is from the Palo Alto Historic Buildings Inventory.

Physical appearance:   This house represents an unusual fusion of Craftsman and Colonial Revival elements in an architectural statement of considerable elegance and sculptural interest. The handling of the second floor bow window is particularly fine.

Significance:   After coming to Palo Alto in 1893 to begin a Stanford faculty career in applied mechanics, Leander Miller Hoskins (1860–1937) purchased a lot in 1896 from J.J. Morris (Realtor). He an his wife lived at 1027 Bryant Street, and his parents, the James Hoskin's, came from Wisconsin to Mountain View (1898). In 1903, Leander Hoskins and his wife Minnie commissioned Gus Laumeister to build "an exceptionally fine home" (P.A. Times) for $8,000. Hoskins taught at Stanford until 1925. Meanwhile, his mother and his sister Luna (his father died in 1904) settled nearby at 1245 Waverley Street. He and his wife moved across from them at 1240 Waverley in 1921, after selling the first home to the Thomas's. Luna Hoskins, who was a co-founder of the P.A. Womens [sic] Club, lived until 1940.

Edwin James Thomas (1880–1951) and his wife Margaret purchased the house in 1921. Thomas was the San Francisco general agent for Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance. With help from their neighbor Robert Duryea, an engineer employed by the City, they installed a Japanese garden at the rear. Mrs. Thomas helped establish the Stanford International Club and third floor rooms were finished off to provide student quarters.

The present owners also have Stanford faculty ties. James H. Stone's father was professor of psychology from 1922–1954, and the Stone residences until 1943 were on the borders of the present Professorville District. He was on the faculties of Stanford (1947–1952) and San Francisco State University (1952–1980). Margaret H. Stone for many years served with the local Girl Scout organization and was an executive of the County Girl Scout Council. She continued to live there after Jim's death.

It was on the 1990 Holiday House Tour.

Note: There is a new owner.


Robert Brandeis street view over hedge
street view location
stairs map
Entry with centennial plaque Location map

This house was built in 1903 and is a Category 2 on the Historic Buildings Inventory. The builder was Gustav Laumeister. The property measures 145 by 200 feet.

Sources:  Palo Alto Times 7/17/03, 9/8/37, 4/12/40; Daily Palo Alto, 10/13/92; AAUW, ...Gone Tomorrow?; Professorville brochure; interview Aimee Belle (Thomas) Brenner


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