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Historic Designations

P.O. Box 15967
San Diego, CA 92175
Phone / Fax (619) 269-3924


Visit Kensington Park

Visit Kensington Park

Another Great San Diego

Kensington Park has
Celebrated its Centennial!
November 25, 1910 - November
25, 2010

Check the local Kensington
community calendars to see
what is coming up next!

Kensington Park Opened on Thanksgiving Day, November 25, 1910
The entirety of this article is difficult to read from the microfilm copy, but is entered here in part:

PICTURE TO YOURSELF A tract of 150 acres of high level land, 14.4 miles from the center of the city. (Absolutely the best soil in the whole country.)

Separated from all surrounding Additions by a deep, broad canyon spanned by a $6,000 bridge over which the Street Cars (5 cent fare) run into the very center of Kensington Park.

Kensington Park will absolutely and undoubtedly become the fine residential Section of San Diego. We say to you in all sincerity, buy now if you possibly can.

PICTURE TO YOURSELF such a place with broad cement sidewalks laid throughout (which is the case with cement curbs and perfect parking).

PICTURE TO YOURSELF trees full of fertility lining both sides of all streets (which is the case) and the streets scientifically engineered to form perfect water sheds (which is the case) and surfaced with ten inch disintegrated granite, with cement aqueducts at all crossings (which is the case).

PICTURE TO YOURSELF a whole block laid out as a Pleasure Park for the residents of Kensington with a fountain playing, the lawn green with grass, the palm trees planted, the flowers in bloom (which is the case).

...with every possible modern improvement, except sewers.

...and our architect's guarantee that he will not pass upon the plans of any house not architecturally sound. (NOTE: THIS MEANS ARCHITECTURAL RESTRICTIONS WERE IN PLACE)

November 20, 1910, San Diego Union

The Lighted Cobblestone Entrance Gates to Kensington Park are Character-Defining Elements to this Historical San Diego Neighborhood.
Improved Water Delivery System Aids Kensington Park

From City of San Diego and San Diego County: The Birthplace of California by Clarence Alan McGrew, 1922

On June 1, 1910, James A. Murray and Ed Fletcher bought the entire Flume Company property for $150,000 and immediately began reconstruction of the system.

They increased the height of the Cuyamaca dam by about two feet, enlarged the spillway, raised the concrete diverting dam on the San Diego River, twenty-two miles above Lakeside, repaired the flume line, built several large siphons by which about six miles of wooden flume were eliminated and re-lined the flume with a composition which added much to its usefulness and age.

The name of the system was changed to the Cuyamaca Water Company.

The Cuyamaca company later took over the entire distributing system in Normal Heights and Kensington Park, and is now furnishing about 11,000 people with water in La Mesa, Spring Valley, Lemon Grove, East San Diego, Normal Heights and Kensington Park.

Water has been on Kensington but five weeks and already five houses are under construction. November 19, 1920, San Diego Union
Inside Lots $600, corners $700 - Kensington Park in 1910

San Diego Union, November 5, 1911
Kensington Park Building on Boom

Many Homes Under Construction in Subdivision at End Of Adams Avenue Line.

San Diego Union, September 3, 1911
Kensington Park - William Douglas, General Agent

In September, 1911, William Douglas proudly annouced the 8th and 9th houses to be built in Kensington Park. Drawings of the houses were featured on the lower left and right of this advertisement.

Click on pictures to enlarge.
Another Builder - S.V. Sutton home, sold to Mrs. M. Hull in 1911

This six-room cottage was located on lot 19 block 17 in Kensington Park, north of Adams Avenue on Kensington Drive. It has a cobblestone porch and chimney. It is one and a half stories in height, and featured hardwood floors, a hot water heating system in the kitchen and bathroom, and built in buffet in the dining room. It also featured a spacious fireplace in the livingroom. All of these features were considered "modern in every respect" for 1911.

Dr. N. D. Laughlin Kensington Park Home, South of Adams Avenue
An April 16, 1911, San Diego Union article announced that several new homes were under construction in the Beautiful Kensington Park Suburb.

One was the "handsome story and a half bungalow" for Dr. N.D. Laughlin. That house fronted east on Kensington Drive on Lot 22 in Block 20 of the tract. It was a six room structure with hardwood floors, a spacious brick fireplace and living room, built in buffet, and window seats. It has a large front porch with brick walls and buttresses.

Other houses included a seven room house on the east side of Terrace Drive for T. R. Riley, north of Adams Avenue. The article states that his brother also planned to build another home on Lot 5 in Block 21, at the southeast corner of Kensington Drive and Park Place.

The grading contractor, Walter Stanford, was also planning to build a home on Lot 1 in Block 17 at the southeast corner of Terrace Drive and Jefferson Avenue.

Click on picture to enlarge.

San Diego Union, November 13, 1911
Most Beautiful Residential Section in San Diego - 1911
Cememt Sidewalks and curbs. Absolutely the best street grading in San Diego. There are shade trees growing the entire length and breadth of Kensington.

There you will find great entrance gates.

Electric light posts on every corner.

There you will find that at the intersection of every street are cement aqueducts to carry off the water.

Click on picture to enlarge.
New Discovery - Olaf Norsven-built House at 5013 Park Place

A recent discovery in the June 13, 1926 San Diego Union revealed the designer and builder of this familiar house on Park Place, near the Kensington Park and Library.

Olaf Jensen Norsven, a carpenter from Norway, designed and built the house in 1926. The advertisement states he "has had years of experience in federal buildings and finest eastern residences."

To see more of his construction, visit http://lascasitasonrobinson.com/index2.html

to learn about the little cottages, now dubbed "Las Casitas on Robinson," which were commissioned by Mrs. Winfield E. Randall at 1035 Robinson in San Diego.

* * * 1911 Photographs of Kensington Park Homes * * *

From the San Diego Union, November 12, 1911

Advertisement for Kensington Park, William Douglas, Agent.

This Gem is Still Present in Old Kensington Park

Another Kensington Park Residence

This Beautiful Kensington Park Craftsman Looks Much the Same Today


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