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Col. Arthur J. & Francis O’Leary House


Year built - 1932 4725 Norma Drive


May was only 23 years old when he sold this, the first hacienda he designed, to Arthur J. and Frances O’Leary. The $9,500 price included all the furnishings, which May designed or selected. One of the earliest homes to be built in this part of Talmadge Park, it ranges over one and a half lots.


From the street, this house resembles a fortified hacienda, in keeping with the Spanish-Mexican rancho tradition, and it is the progenitor of the ranch house movement. May’s exterior innovations include placing an attached garage at the front of the house, instead of at the rear of the lot, as was typical at the time. This massing allowed for the creation of a private inner courtyard. A traditional Spanish Colonial-style cornice caps the walls and conceals the rafter tails; this is the only one of May’s early homes with this feature. A clay chimney pot hints at the five fireplaces


Circa 1932, Architecture and Design collection, University Art Museum, University of California, Santa Barbara


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