2016 Symphony Designers’ Showhouse

HOUSE HISTORY of 444 Westover Road, Kansas City, Missouri

The building permits for the English Tudor house at 444 Westover Road were taken out by H. E. Hucke in 1925.  Mr. Hucke was a son of George Victor Hucke who owned George Hucke & Sons contractors.  One of the firm’s other prominent buildings is the apartment building at 4533-39 Roanoke Parkway on the Country Club Plaza.

A variety of families have owned the house beginning with Walter T. Scholler and his wife Helen.  Mr. Scholler was a buyer for the well-known department store of Emery, Bird, Thayer in downtown Kansas City on Petticoat Lane.

The next owner was Paul C. White and his wife Ann.  He was a supervisor with the Fidelity Investment Association in the 1930s and ‘40s.

Following the Whites were John M. Culver and his wife Audrey.  He was with Columbia Steel Tank Co.

In the 1950s Russell Comer and his wife Eloise operated the Russell C. Comer Advertising company.  Eloise attended the Minneapolis Art Institute and while in Kanas City she was a part of the “clean sweep” movement which battled the Pendergast political machine.  She was chairman of the Women’s Division of the Charter Party, a reform organization.  She was also the author of several national radio shows and published some fiction.  When Mr. Comer died at age 54, she became president of the advertising agency, Russell Comer Radio Productions, and Jimmie Allen Enterprises, a TV production company.  She was honored by the University of Missouri for furthering the progress of women in business.  In her later years she became interested in the problems of the elderly and became president of Service Corps for Senior Citizens.  She also continued her interest in the arts and showed her paintings at various art fairs.

The Comer family was followed by John F. Duncan and his wife Sarah.  He was president of the Plaza Bowl Investment company.

In the middle ‘60s James W. Meade and his wife Bonnie acquired the house.  He was Assistant Director of Research Hospital.

In the 1970s Meyer Goldman and his wife Rosa-Ray Goldman lived in the house with their children, Max and Judy-Anne.  Meyer operated the Beacon Printing and Publishing Company.  Meyer and Rosa-Ray met when she came to the Nelson-Atkins Museum for a commission.  In addition to being an artist she was also a master gardener who belonged to the Loose Park Herb Study Group and the Kansas City Rose Society.  She was also active in the Military Officers Association of America and Hadassah.  She loved the outdoors and enjoyed fishing and swimming three times a week.  Mr. Goldman was a musician who enjoyed playing piano in the music room several steps above the living room.  The Goldman family closed in a screened porch to make a new bedroom and bath for an elderly relative.

More recent owners of the house have been Nicholas Spaeth and David and Noelle Manica.  The Kansas City Symphony Alliance looks forward to sharing this beautiful home with the public after the wonderful decorating by area interior designers and thanks the Manicas for sharing their home with us.

Any knowledge that our visitors have about the house would be greatly appreciated.  You can contact Beverly Shaw, House Historian, at 816 225-7944 (cell).

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