1939 W. Colorado Blvd. was designed by noted and prolific architect, Hoke Smith, as his own home for his wife and five children. Completed in 1939, this neoclassical home with one-story side wings features a full façade porch accented with hand turned columns, elaborate crown moldings, and red oak floors. The roof is made of handsome Ludowici clay tile, renowned for its beauty and durability. The heart of the house is the grand central oval-shaped staircase, which builder Roland Pelt has been known to say was the most difficult project he was ever required to build.
Hoke Smith died just 4 years later. His wife sold the home in 1948 to George M. Stuart Jr. and his wife who owned Stuart Florist, a premier floral company located at the Baker Hotel in downtown Dallas. The Stuarts sold the home in 1959 to Dr. Wallace Basset, pastor of Cliff Temple Baptist Church. In 1969, the widow Basset sold it to the Semos family. Being the only home she ever lived in as a wife and mother, and having raised 3 daughters to adulthood there, Mrs. Semos sold the home to Richard Ledbetter this past summer with mixed emotions. She remains proud of her 43 year stewardship of the house and can still be found on occasion visiting and checking that the new owners are doing right by her.
The current owners fell in love with the original state of this elegant home and are currently in the process of what they hope to be a sensitive restoration. They have recently constructed a guest house in the back which will eventually have a full bath and kitchenette. A small stone pool was also added which blends nicely with the existing stonework of the original walkways and patios. The front yard boasts a salvaged wrought iron fence as well as a complete landscape renovation using boxwoods and Asian jasmine with the two magnificent Live Oak trees towering over it. Evergreen hedges and shrubs of boxwood and holly complete the landscaping.
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Filled with wonderful pictures of fine historic buildings and street scenes, this book shares stories about the beginnings of this great, iconic area of Dallas.
"The Hidden City - Oak Cliff, Texas"
by Bill Minutaglio, Holly Williams