The Master’s Touch in Elkins Park for $607.5K

Here's a finely preserved, nicely updated example of the work of Horace Trumbauer, the titan of domestic architecture in Philly. It's surprisingly modern for a classical home.

518 Spring Ave., Elkins Park, Pa. 19027 | Photos: Scott Laughlin

Besides whoever it was that built the first center-hall Colonial back in Colonial times, no other architect has had as great an influence on how Philly upper-crust neighborhoods look than Horace Trumbauer. The man who hired Julian Abele to design the Philadelphia Museum of Art produced many fine examples of classic, and classically inspired, homes throughout the city and its suburbs in the early years of the 20th century.

This fine home in Elkins Park is one of them.

Trumbauer designed it in 1899 for a minister named Edward W. Appleton. Appleton’s tenure as owner, however, must have been very short, for in 1905, Trumbauer designed this home’s carriage house for its new owner, industrialist George W. Adams.

Foyer (living room)

Living room (study)

Despite its classical appearance and decor, this home prefigures modern design with its asymmetrical, nearly open plan on the main floor. Extra-large archways all but eliminate the distinction between the foyer, the stair hall, the living room and the formal dining room. (The foyer is big enough to serve as the living room, while the living room currently serves as a study.) Multiple French doors open from the living room and study to the front and side porches and let in abundant light.

Dining room


The eat-in kitchen, which is open to the dining room, has been brought up to modern standards with cherry cabinets, a Jenn-Air gas range, a Bosch dishwasher and a Sub-Zero fridge.

Master bedroom

Upstairs, you’ll find a family room, a large master suite with a fireplace and bench seating in the bedroom, a huge walk-in closet with custom cabinets and laundry facilities, and an all-new bathroom with marble tile and a large stall shower. Three interconnected guest bedrooms, one with an en-suite bath, are also on this floor. Two more bedrooms, a bathroom with its original clawfoot tub intact, and storage space make up the third floor.

Front porch

Side porch

In addition to those welcoming porches, there’s a flagstone patio in the rear yard for outdoor relaxation. The carriage house can store three cars, and remnants of the original stables survive at the rear of the first floor. The second floor awaits your creative touch to turn it into a home office, studio, media rooms or perhaps an in-law suite.

This home is close to the center of Elkins Park. The neighborhood’s business district and its Regional Rail station are about a block and a half away in one direction, and Old York Road is a block away in the other.



BATHS: 4 full, 1 half


SALE PRICE: $607,500

518 Spring Ave., Elkins Park, Pa. 19027 [Scott Laughlin | BHHS Fox & Roach Realtors – Chestnut Hill]