New Home Tour Celebrates Charming Collection of Charles Dilbeck Designs in Cochran Heights

Photos showing some of the original details of this 1940 home by noted architect Charles Dilbeck, located at 5106 Milam Street in the Cochran Heights neighborhood of Dallas, Texas. Taken March 17, 2016. (Photo © Michael Hamtil)

Dallas Morning News photographer Michael Hamtil and his wife, photojournalist Lara Solt, have opened their Cochran Heights Dilbeck for the neighborhood’s first ever home tour on April 3. (Photo: Michael Hamtil)

This brand new home tour on April 3 is part celebration, part education, as Cochran Heights opens five of its Dilbeck-designed homes.

So, what’s the occasion?

According to Erika Huddleston, the neighborhood is celebrating its new Texas Historical Commission marker signifying the splendid collection of Dilbecks Cochran Heights holds.

The marker, which is on Henderson Ave. next to Consignment Heaven and Nick Brock Antiques, will have a formal unveiling at 1 p.m. Sunday April 3 with Preservation Dallas director David Preziosi and City of Dallas Parks and Recreation director Willis Winters. The unveiling will be followed by the home tour from 2 to 4 p.m. Tickets are available on the Cochran Heights Neighborhood Association website for $15 in advance or $20 the day of the tour. Or, if you want to try your luck, CandysDirt.com will have a ticket giveaway next week for two pairs of passes to this tour. Stay tuned to our Facebook page for your chance to win!

“These Cochran Heights Dilbeck homes have not been open to the public before, so this tour is a rare opportunity to peer into 1930s Dallas architecture and see how the homes have been adapted to 21st century living,” Huddleston added. “I hope that the Texas Historical Commission’s marker will encourage developers and homeowners to restore and rework old homes as a continuation of our history rather than tear them down and replace them.”
5216 Milam BeforeAfter

 

Before the official home tour, Preservation Dallas will host an in-town outing March 30 at 6 p.m. at 5215 Milam, pictured before and after restoration above. The home, a 1936 Dilbeck that was completely restored to LEED standards, won a 2015 Preservation Dallas Achievement Award. The tour is free for Preservation Dallas members and $20 for non-members, which also includes a ticket to the earlier neighborhood home tour. You can RSVP via reservations@preservationdallas.org.

Michael Hamtil, owner of 5106 Milam, shared some splendid details discovered during renovation. He gave us a sneak peek of his charming home, which will be on tour:

As residents, what we like most about the house are the unique original details. On the inside, particularly the large fireplace (now gas), breakfast nook, faux ceiling beams, unique trim work, large windows for natural light, and stars around the ceiling in the kitchen. On the outside, the drive-up appeal of the split-level, combined with the interesting woodwork and colors, exude charm. Living here, the facts that every room is on a different elevation and the amount of natural light and floor plan (no rooms on the first levels terminate in a dead end) make the house seem larger than it is.

Perhaps the most interesting thing we’ve discovered in the house was what we presume to be the phone number of Charles Dilbeck’s office, handwritten in pencil on the inside of the original wall sheathing boards in the original garage. There were perhaps a half dozen names and phone numbers written there, all still remaining, and some arithmetic. With nothing else to go on, we presume it was scrawlings of the builders, who needed to make calls (and do math) while the house was being constructed. The writings are now covered in drywall.

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

 (Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)

(Photo © Michael Hamtil)