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Early 'Burb

Minimal traditional in High Point.

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High Point Terrace was made up of small farms until the father-and-son developers Chandler and Chandler bought the Koch family dairy farm around 1940. They were instrumental in introducing the new suburban style of housing to Memphis. They laid out an extension of the grid pattern of the city's streets, creating large lots and deep setbacks. The houses, begun in 1941, were one-story with garages built in the rear yard. Front doors and porches were not emphasized. This was an early car suburb; there were no sidewalks. The neighborhood streets were unpaved dirt roads until the early 1950s. When you moved out beyond Highland you were escaping from the city to a place in the country.

In 1945, after the end of World War II, building increased. Houses filled quickly -- as far as Eastland Street and down to Walnut Grove by 1957. This house was built in 1950 at the far eastern edge of the subdivision and backs up to what is now the St. Andrews Fairway area.

Typical of the neighborhood, the house is a one-story structure clad largely in brick, with siding above. Although some large trees original to the area were preserved, it's now mostly the early plantings, now mature, that add an elegantly aged canopy to the area's streets. This house has one grand oak in its front yard, now joined by a second, younger one wisely planted by the current owners.

This lot is not as deep as most. The garage was built beside the house rather than behind it. When time came, it was easy to attach it to the house with a spacious mud entry and laundry room.

The current owners were fortunate to benefit from a complete kitchen renovation just before they moved in. This may have even been the time the laundry was moved out of the kitchen and the garage attachment built. The kitchen is spacious with lots of pickled wood cabinets. A breakfast bar set at a rakish angle keeps guests close at hand without invading food-prep areas.

The current owners have continued improvements at regular intervals. Basic elements such as the roof were replaced, and the whole interior has benefited from subtle paint finishes. Upgrades include an enlarged electrical service, central heat and air, new appliances, and top-quality, insulated- glass windows throughout, including a greenhouse window over the kitchen sink.

Every room (except the family room, which was added) has its original oak floors in immaculate condition thanks to a protective layer of carpet and padding. The living and family rooms in the center of the house open to each other to accommodate entertaining. The bedrooms are tucked to one side. Closets have been outfitted with shelves and rods for maximum storage. Original ceramic floors and high, tiled wainscots add an elegant touch in these economically built houses.

The yard has received plenty of sweat and equity by the current owners. Sun-loving perennials ornament the fenced rear property line. The pair of oaks out front shade the house from midday and afternoon sun. They also offer a friendly environment for the azaleas that flourish across the front of the house. In fact, the whole neighborhood offers a friendly environment where third generations now flourish in this early Memphis 'burb.

3863 Minden Road

Approximately 1,800 square feet

3 bedrooms, 1 3/4 baths; $198,500

FSBO 458-5481; will co-op

Open house Sunday, Sept. 23rd, 2-4 p.m.

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