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418 Linden

This home was built by West Side Coal and Lumber for Philo and Elinor Larabee in 1961. Drawings of the home are not attributed to any person at West Side, but advertisements for West Side referred to the Weyerhaeuser Home Plans from Minnesota. Possibly this home was a Weyerhaeuser model modified by one of the home planners at West Side.

The home has several features that mark it as Mid Century Modern or International Style architecture. Clerestory windows are featured in the living room, study and dining area. A massive beam runs through the center of the home, forming the low peak of the gable roof. A pierced wall of brick lends privacy to a small front patio. The two bathrooms are original to the house, with original tile. The closets of each room extend up to the roof and have the original doors. The wood burning stove in the study is original to the house. The drawings by an unknown builder at West Side Coal and Lumber is available for viewing.

In keeping with the modern style, the backyard patio is cradled between the two wings of the house. This new style of architecture celebrated the lifestyle of modern families, who enjoyed backyard barbecues and the leisure that came with a smaller house. Families were smaller, thanks to birth control advances. Women were working outside the home and required a fuss-free home.

Philo Larrabee was Director of Personnel at Illinois Agricultural Association and like many men of that era was involved in community building organizations like the United Way, American Cancer Society and Family Services of McLean County. Elinor Larrabee was active with PEO, a foundation that mentors women, provides scholarships for women and promotes the general advancement of women. The present owners are Bill and Carol Deloreia, a retired high school teacher and graphic artist. Their collection of art decorates each room of the house.

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