During World War II, the Elmwood house at 1420 Brunner Ave. in Oak Cliff was a refuge for British pilots here for training. The Royal Air Force was getting creamed by the Germans and needed help, which was available here.
The first of the training schools was created in Terrell, about 1.5 hours east, and many flyboys made their way to Dallas on the weekends. A few of them ended up at their home-away-from-home, the Craig house on Brunner Avenue, where a little girl, Paula, lived with her folks.
“The boys were so fond of little Paula that they gifted her with a RAF patch, one Mrs. Craig sewed on the sleeve of Paula’s dance costume — a miniature U.S. Army uniform,” said Gayla Brooks, who wrote about the house in 2009. “Between the ages of 4 and 7, the little dancer wore the costume when she performed at war bond rallies.”
This storied property is our Thursday Three Hundred today, and Paula, all grown up now, is a Montessori teacher who continues to live in the neighborhood. The house has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, and 1,806 square feet on two stories, built in 1940.
The home is of considerable size by Elmwood standards, and it has a genuinely spacious lot of almost one-third of an acre.
“It manages to roll in the new —Bertazzoni gas range, a light color palette, and tons of natural light — with the original — crystal doorknobs, hardwood floors, original built-ins throughout — and has a large finished-out attic that would be perfect for a bedroom,” said Emily Ruth Cannon with Briggs Freeman Sotheby’s International Realty, who has listed the house with Jennifer Stolarski.
This house is in the heart of Elmwood, walking distance to the greenbelt along the limestone banks of Cedar Creek. It’s also a short distance from the 260-acre Kiest Park and the Oak Cliff Nature Preserve, two of the gems in this part of Dallas. Nature is front and center if you live in Elmwood, a family-friendly neighborhood of Tudor cottages, Craftsman bungalows, and ranch-style homes built mostly in the 1920s through the 1950s.
Walk inside this house and find a lovely front living area with a now-decorative fireplace, gorgeous hardwood floors, crown molding, and built-ins.
The kitchen is totally updated with that gorgeous Bertazzoni Italian gas range, light-colored countertops, white cabinets, and a farm sink. This opens onto a large enclosed porch overlooking the back deck.
The bedrooms are good sized with hardwood floors, including an original wood paneled bedroom. The large, finished out attic with its own bathroom has ample storage, making a perfect bedroom or office.
Upstairs, the finished bedroom and full bath make for some seriously great space and make this house larger than most in Elmwood.
This home was listed Aug. 24 for $325K, reduced to $319,000 yesterday.