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Good Ol’ Days

Posted December 26, 2012 in Altoona, Community Featured

The year was 1959. The weather outside was frightful. The family inside was delightful. And they all agreed to let it snow, let it snow, let it snow as they continued to move in.

Norma Sheets still lives in the home she and her husband moved into in 1959.

Norma Sheets still lives in the home she and her husband moved into in 1959.

Almost 54 years later, Norma Sheets still remembers that snowstorm. The house they were moving into was built by family, and they were excited to start their new life.

Her father was the carpenter and did the framing. Her father-in-law was in charge of the new pine cabinets in the kitchen, and her husband did the finish work.

The home boasts built-ins of the era: a laundry chute, a telephone niche with phone book holder underneath, a folding door to the living room coat closet, original built-in oven and those pine cabinets in the kitchen — all still there.

It was a four-bedroom, one-bathroom delight, all for a stout $8,500. Their monthly payments were $60.90.

Once they added the upstairs and two-car garage, their payments increased slightly. Shortly after they moved in, the street in front of their home was paved, Sheets remembers.

“We survived one bathroom for all those years,” she says.

While the newness of the late 1950s-styles may have faded, they have also stood the test of time and practical use. The home has undergone the typical home maintenance upgrades of new siding, roof and furnace.002

“The tiling and new sump pump in the basement we had put in totaled just under $8,000,” Sheets says. “It’s that interesting?”

Norma likes that her neighbors take great pride in their homes as well.

“I can’t say enough good things about my neighbors,” she smiles.

Sheets is the only original homeowner from the era who is still living in the neighborhood. She passes her time with her two daughters who live nearby and check on her often. She and her son enjoy seasonal flowers, fountains and a small ornamental pond in the back yard.

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