27 June 2005
An article in the Saint Louis Business Journal by Liz Braun describes our work on a Harris Armstrong home from the 1950s. Armstrong's original clients for the home were the Vollmers. In the 1990s, the Vollmer family sold the house to its second owners: Anne Bergeron and Steve Wellmeier. Anne and Steve had moved to Saint Louis from the Big Apple based upon a job change. They were particularly interested in purchasing a modernist home. Initially, their inclination was to live in the urbanized part of Saint Louis City, but were disappointed by what was available and the condition of the city itself.
They began to search outside the city proper and engaged a realtor to help them find a home. They were shown many homes around West County that fit the more "standard" house type: two-story colonial. They weren't pleased with the homes that seemed to be on the market. They began driving and exploring various neighborhoods and communities that seemed promising. Anne stumbled across the run down looking ranch at the end of Sherwyn Lane and asked their realtor to show it to them. It was explained that the house was a "tear down" that no one would want to purchase because ranches from the 1950s were no longer popular.
Anne and Steve persisted and visited the house despite the recommendations to the contrary. It is quite understandable why most people wouldn't see a whole lot of promise in the house. It was dark on the interior, the landscaping was overgrown, wood-rot was evident on the exterior, and the split-level configuration was not readily adaptable for renovation and alteration. Anne and Steve were able to "see through" the layers of grime, old wallpaper, etc. and proceeded to purchase the property.
You can also view the Saint Louis Business Journal article in a format similar to the published version here: Raimist revives Harris Armstrong architecture.