Another twin found!

So much for the uniqueness of our house 😉  Today I noticed that a house a mere two blocks away and that I’ve passed by thousands of times is basically the same as ours.  Like the other twin, it sits on a flat lot, so it doesn’t give the same “street feel” as ours, meaning it didn’t jump out at us as a copy.  It is very interesting to see how each house has the same basic plan but varies widely in the details.  Both of the twins have single-gabled dormers on the side, while ours has the unusual double-gable.  Since both twins have multi-paned windows, it makes us wonder if ours did, too.  I suspect not, since our remaining original windows in our house were not, but many of our windows were stripped out in the 60’s and replaced with non-opening glass.  8/2009: we found another look-alike.

Front view of twin #2
Front view of twin #2
The windows are much different than ours
The windows are very different than ours

11 thoughts on “Another twin found!

  1. Ooh, I love the twin hunt! And I have to say—even with our house’s *real* twin (the house next door, which we know was built from mirror-image blue prints at the same time by the same family) there are odd differences—our house has oak floors throughout, for instance, while the house next door just has a fir subfloor in the bedrooms; the window and cabinet choices are slightly different though we believe all are original; our woodwork is more elaborate in a couple of rooms. (Our neighbor likes to joke that the daughter in our house chose the “deluxe” finish package while the son in his house picked the “economy” package.) And because we’re on the down slope of a hill and he’s up on top of it, the houses do sit somewhat differently, so people sometimes have to look twice to realize they’re looking at identical and not just similar bungalows. So definitely possible that they could have tweaked window styles and posts and such in small ways to make your house and the twins more unique, too.


  2. Have you looked to see if the house was a Sears house, or a kit? There seem to be lots of houses in Portland that are similar, with minor trim differences.

    We haven’t found anything like our house, a 1908 folk victorian with craftsman influences. We’re still looking!


  3. Ian,

    We had never thought about our house being a kit, because until last fall we never saw any even remotely like ours. Now I’m starting to wonder…

    I was going to ask if you knew of any online resources for researching this, but then I did a search and found this link to all the Sears plans:

    I’m going to check it out and see if I can find ours!


  4. (Oh, and check out the H.M. Fancher link—I was just flipping through those since I hadn’t noticed the name in the past; seems like the style is similar, and they were a Portland firm, too…)


  5. Thanks so much for the tip, Artemis! I didn’t find our house but looked through the entire HM Fancher link and saw a lot of houses that looked familiar! Fascinating!


  6. We have found architect-designed twins in Portland. In some cases, an architect would sell mirror-image plans on the East and West side of Portland. We found the much-altered twin of our NE Portland house in NW Willamette Heights


  7. That’s fascinating Robert! The house we used to live in (about a dozen blocks from here) also has at least one twin that we know of, so I know it’s a fairly common occurance. I’d love to get inside one of these twins and see how the detailing differs – is the hardware different? Wainscotting? Box-beams? It would be fascinating to see. I do kind of wonder if ours was a kit though because the front doors are identical down to the door knocker.


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