A Craftsman built in 1914 in Torrance has hit the market for $899,000 â€“ and brings with it a bit of a mystery.
A title search indicates the home once was owned by city founder Jared Sidney Torrance, said co-listing agent John Fields of Bonanza Realty.
The discovery has created a stir at the Torrance Historical Society.
Torrance, who died in 1921, lived in Pasadena, and the homes he commissioned in what would become Torrance typically were held in a company name, said Janet Payne, the societyâ€™s coordinator.
â€śThis little tidbit that John has uncovered is exciting,â€ť she said. â€śThis information is new. We had no records here that Jared Sidney Torrance himself owned any homes in Torrance.â€ť
The 1,944-square-foot house at 1323 Cota Avenue in Old Town Torrance has three bedrooms and 1.5 bathrooms. Much of it is original, including the woodwork and wainscoting, a dining room hutch, pocket doors and a built-in desk in the office, the agents say. The kitchen is connected to a bright breakfast roomÂ and the living room has a fireplace.
â€śNo one has ruined this house with the remodels that were popular in the 1950â€™s through the 1970â€™s,â€ť Fields said. â€śThe house does need a restoration and remodel but has fabulous bones.â€ť
The front porch spans the width of the two-story home, set on a 10,502-square-foot lot. The home has aÂ broad front lawn divided by a walkway, plus a koi pond and fenced backyard.
The residence was among several that Torrance, an entrepreneur and real estate developer, had commissioned along the street to lure executives from the Midwest to come work for him, Fields and Payne said. Co-listing with Fields are Keith Kyle and Adam Wilson of Vista Sothebyâ€™s International Realty.
Itâ€™s not clear why Jared Torrance would have owned this particular house. Fields said a document search also revealedÂ that it was listed as an asset in the estate of Helena Torrance, Jaredâ€™s widow.
In 1926, the agent said, the home was purchased for $4,400 by someone who took out a 14-year mortgage, which preceded the modern, 30-year note.
Having the name Torrance in the title history may mean bragging rights for someone, but thereâ€™s also the possibility that a new owner could simply tear down the 104-year-old house and build something different.
Payne said thereâ€™s no city regulation to stop it.
â€śWeâ€™re hoping the right buyer steps forward that likes history,â€ť she said.
An open house will be held on Saturday and Sunday, July 28 and 29, 1 p.m. â€“ 4 p.m.