Mar. 2013 photo of the 13th Ave. (south) side entrance. There were also entrances on E. 20th, and on 12th; the main entry likely faced east – in mid-block today (photo courtesy Mike)

Cedar Croft was the grand estate of the family of John J. Valentine, president of Wells Fargo, at 2015 - 13th Avenue.

The family lived in the Clinton neighborhood (across the street from the Ellen Kenna Home). Records indicate that the home contains 8,638 sq. ft., with 8 bedrooms and 11 bathrooms, and the current site is 0.45 acres. The home was designed by Samuel and Joseph Newsom in about 1883, and was completed in 1885. 1,2 An 1885 article about the new home fairly gushes over the features of the home, such as a library and sitting room finished in mahogany, bedrooms finished in white cedar, and a basement finished with 4-inch thick concrete that can be used as a "large and well-ventilated skating rink." 2 The servant’s entrance is located at 2020 - 12th Avenue.

By the 1950 Sanborn map, several other houses had been built on the property, and the mansion had been divided into 10 apartments.

The property has not sold since September 1, 1992, when the sales price was only $169,500. The current owner of the house is a limited liability company called Cedar Croft Mansion LLC which was established by one of the heirs of the individual who purchased the property in 1992 and then died in 2020.

1903 Sanborn excerpt1950 Sanborn excerpt

Links and References

  1. Building Improvements Oakland Tribune March 17, 1883
  2. A Palatial Home Oakland Tribune November 14, 1885