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.