Welcome to the 1956 “Parade of Homes” sponsored by the Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City! We’ll take a look at ten of the fifty-five houses featured in the ninety-six page “plan and guide book” published in conjunction with the house tour. While tracking down the houses via Google Street View, I was surprised to find how little they had changed over six decades; most were essentially intact (at least on the exterior). All contemporary images are courtesy of Google Street View. Let’s get started…
Your Future Home!
An “undeniably smart” ground-level entrance foyer distinguishes this split-level house.
Looking very much like it did in the 1950’s, the house still retains its quirky foyer window!
This split-level house is located in “a development dedicated to happy living, quality homes, moderate prices.”
Aside from shutters and a new door, the house remains much the same as when new.
Likened to a French farmhouse in the guide book, this ranch house is “all air cooled of course”.
Expansion into the attic space brought the addition of two dormer windows; otherwise the house is unchanged on its exterior.
The numerous attributes of this contemporary ranch house included sunken living and dining rooms, mahogany and driftwood paneling and a flagstone entry floor.
Sadly, the house appears to have been replaced with a newer dwelling.
The copy suggests that this house “combines the charm of the early Kansas Farm House with today’s answer to functional and efficient living.” I’ve seen a lot of old farm houses in Kansas, and none of them have anything in common with this place. Maybe the unusually-proportioned and widely-spaced lathe-turned posts are the “farm house” part.
New garage doors and skylights – otherwise nothing has changed!
Another “French” design, this house boasts an “All-electric G. E. colored kitchen”.
Built in reverse from the sketch shown in the guide book, this house has had more alterations than some of the others. The exterior has been clad in wood shingles and dormer windows have been added.
This cozy ranch possesses birch cabinetry and paneling.
Looking great today with no significant changes!
The styling of this split level is “truly contemporary without being extreme”.
Apparently the verticality previously expressed in the window spandrels was extreme; they have been subdued and are now painted the same as the surrounding siding.
This contemporary ranch came packed with “extra features”.
Vinyl siding now covers the original vertical board-and-batten cladding but otherwise the house has hardly changed.
A “French” split-level complete with wrought-iron porch.
The wrought iron has yielded to a new Tuscan column at the entry and Neo-Victorian turned posts anchoring the balustrade. The house also now sports vinyl siding.