Kit Houses

Sears Lumber Plants

To pass savings on to customers, Sears purchased factories rather than subcontract work and lose money to middlemen. Its first purchase was a lumber mill in Marion, Ohio, in 1909, followed by a forty-acre lumber yard in Cairo, Illinois, in 1911, and a mill work plant in Norwood, Ohio, in 1912. In the 1920s, the company opened a lumber mill in Newark, New Jersey, to boost East Coast sales. They opened sales offices across the country to deliver personalized service.

Sears Modern Homes No. 230. Courtesy of Historic New England.