431 Menker Avenue
1920s Arts and Crafts Bungalow
This beautiful home was built in the 1920s. “The White House” is currently owned by Jerry and Ruth White. The living room has the original 8-foot picture window with leaded glass. The dining room has the original French doors that the owners enjoy opening on warm days. There are also two built-in china cabinets with a window seat between.
The kitchen was remodeled in 2003. All the appliances were replaced and a dishwasher and two ovens were added. The Whites selected maple cabinets and had them stained to match the existing moulding around the doors.
The side door to the back yard was replaced with a door that looks like it was always there, including glass doorknobs that match all of the other interior doorknobs.
The new office and guest room downstairs have the original floors. You can see that painting hardwood floors was popular some time ago. They will be refinished in the future. The windows in the room behind the kitchen (the future office) are unusual – they slide DOWN into the walls. Notice the old push-button light switch on the wall.
The downstairs main bathroom has been relocated to make room for the stairs to the new addition. It has an antique cabinet built in that matches the original bathroom door that was relocated with the bathroom. A 6-foot claw foot tub was added to match the period of this house. Notice how much the new window frame in the bathroom looks like the other original windows in this house.
The hall has the original linen closet. The owners had to convince their architect to keep this lovely treasure!
There are now two sets of stairs, one going down to the basement and the other leading up to the new second story. The second story is being built to match the original house. Notice the nine-foot ceilings upstairs. There are plans to add picture moulding to the three bedrooms to match the first floor rooms. All the new windows are Marvin wood windows and solid wood doors will be used in the upstairs bedrooms.
The home will be almost twice the size of the original house, but the plan is to build such that, when completed, newcomers to the house will be unable to tell where the original house ends and the addition begins.
The primary residents of 431 Menker, Christian and Katherine (Kate) Diener, moved into the house in 1936 from Tulare County, having farmed there and raised their five daughters. Christian works as a janitor at the County Hospital (Valley Medical Center today). After Christian died, Kate Diener continued to live in the house until 1972, a total of 36 years.