John D. Larkin- Table of Contents .............................. Museum District - Table of Contents
Larkland: Five houses built by by John D. Larkin for his wife and children
John D. Larkin.
Brother-in-law William Heath.
Son John, Jr.
Son-in-law Harold Esty.
Son-in-law Walter Robb.
Catalog #86, Fall/Winter 1921-22
Photo courtesy of Daniel I. Larkin, author of "John D. Larkin: A Business Pioneer," pub. by Western New York Wares, 1998
The Onondaga limestone wall along Lincoln Pkwy. just to the north (left) of the gates to 65 Lincoln Pkwy. Wall encompasses the entire block.
John Larkin House, 107 Lincoln Parkway
John Jr. Larkin House, 65 Lincoln Parkway
Harry Larkin House, 160 Windsor Avenue
Charlie Larkin House, 175 Windsor Ave.
Harold Esty House, 176 Windsor Avenue
In February of 1909, John Durrant Larkin, Senior,
founder of Larkin Company, purchased an entire city block of land known as Rumsey's
Wood. Bordered by Rumsey Road and Forest and Windsor Avenues, the property fronted
on Lincoln Parkway. Larkin and his wife Frances called it Larkland and proceeded
to have beautiful homes built there for themselves and four of their children (Charles,
Frances, John D. Junior, and Harry).
Each house had a garage with an apartment for the chauffeur's family above and a heating plant in the basement below. The heat was carried via steam pipes through a tunnel connecting the garage to the house.
In addition to the homes, there were greenhouses and utility buildings on the grounds.
A road was built through the compound from Forest Avenue to Rumsey Road for deliveries
of coal and other necessities. Finally, a limestone wall surrounded the whole property.
Truly Larkland was a very extensive and beautiful estate.
The seven children of John and Frances Larkin:
- b. 1875. in Hudson, suburb of Chicago
- Charlie left Buffalo in 1919 and moved to California
Frances Elberta ("Daisy")
- b. 1876
- M. Harold M. Esty in 1899
- b. 1877
- Attended Lafayette College 1896-97.
- Hired by Larkin company in 1898.
- M. Edna Crate in 1900
- Three children: J. Crate, John III, and Mary Frances.
- Elected president of Larkin company after his father died
- 65 Lincoln Parkway deeded to him in 1917
- Died in accident after her clothing caught on fire
- b 1881
- Graduated from Lafayette College in 1903, majoring in Chem.
- Hired by co. in 1903
- M. Ruth Williams
- Elected president of Larkin company in 1939 after John Jr. taken ill and confined to home.
- 160 Windsor Avenue deeded to him in 1917
- Died in infancy 1887
- b. 1891
- M. Walter Robb (Larkin Co. executive)
- Moved into 107 Lincoln with 2 children after Frances died
- In 1909 Larkin purchases a parcel of Rumsey's Woods (Ansley Wilcox represented Rumsey estate)
- Names the Lincoln Pkwy./Windsor Ave../Forest Ave../Rumsey Rd. block "Larkland"
- Limestone wall surrounding the block begun almost immediately
- The houses for the three sons were completed by 1915 and deeded to the children in 1917
- A service road cut through the block from Rumsey Road to Forest Avenue which provided fro delivery of coal and other necessaries. In the center of the block was the large garage for 107 Lincoln with an apartment for Charles Pratt, the chauffeur, and his family, and next came the greenhouses and utility buildings.
- Each of the other three houses on the block had its own garage with an apartment for the chauffeur and his family, and each of the houses had its heating plant in the garage basement with a connecting tunnel for the steam pipes.
- Stables, garages for all the houses designed in 1913 by Wood & Bradney. The firm is best known for the Sidway and Spaulding building at Main & Goodell. Bradney lived at 547 Franklin
Special thanks to Daniel I. Larkin, John Larkin's grandson
and author of "John D. Larkin: A Business Pioneer," pub. by Western New York Wares,
1998, for sharing his time and knowledge in an interview.
- "John D. Larkin: A Business Pioneer," by Daniel I. Larkin. Pub. by Western New York Wares, 1998
- "City to Lose Old Showplace When Larkin Home is Razed," by Mary Nash, in The Buffalo Evening News, May 26, 1939
- Martin Wachadlo, Consultant\