Historic Architecture: ‘Minimal Traditional’, Late 1930’s – 1940’s

To our delight, not all houses in Reynier Village are ‘Spanish Colonial Revival’.  We have some fine  examples of   Tudor/English Revival, Transitional Arts & Crafts, and lesser known as ‘historic’ but nevertheless is, a style called Minimal Traditional, homes that were  built in the late 1930’s-1940’s (and lasted until the early 1950’s).

You’ve seen Minimal Traditional all over Beverlywood and Beverlywood-Adjacent and Reynier Village has a few as well.

Here’s a typical Minimal Traditional home (location: Glendale)

Typical Minimal Traditional style home Late 1930's-1940's

Typical Minimal Traditional style home Late 1930’s-1940’s

The style was loosely based on the Tudor Revival and Eclectic Revival styles of the 1920s and 30s, but with much less ornamentation and decorative detailing. Although they are simplified versions of historic styles, they were still built with high quality materials (lathe & plaster walls, traditional fireplace mantles, crown moulding, paneled doors, and  wood cabinetry). Exterior architectural detailing is restrained   – the use of ornament is kept to a minimum.   This type of house was built in great numbers in the years immediately before and after World War II.

Features: bay windows, multi-paned windows, sand-finish stucco,attached or detached one and two car garages, intermediate hipped, gabled or gabled on hipped roofs. Minimal Traditional features are sometimes mixed with later Ranch styles.

Sources of information:
City of L.A. Office of Historic Resources
Glendale Historic Preservation
Text by Deni Mosser

3 responses to this post.

  1. I enjoy this. The fact they are simplified versions of historic styles is actually quite nice. I feel the whole less is more thing is going on here.


  2. Posted by David on August 21, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    Thank you so much. I moved into house last year that has this style and I’m trying my hardest to restore it, but until now I had no idea what style it officially was. This will make my work easier and more accurate.

    Thanks again!!


  3. Posted by cs on March 23, 2015 at 5:59 pm

    I live right outside of Beverlywood in 90035 area. I never new there was a style for the homes in this location. Thank you for your article now I know I have a Minimal Traditional style home. I love it. Thank you CS


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