33 Dunning Ave.
Dunning Avenue is famous for its wonderful vintage turn of the century homes, but this one, recently chosen as the November 2011 Site of the month, has always been a favorite. Maybe because of its wonderful old Colonial Revival front porch with the Brazilian teak floor with paired round Doric columns …or maybe the seasonal decorations we can expect to see there. This autumn the decorations consist of corn stalks, hay bales, pumpkins and chrysanthemums. The neatly stacked firewood welcomes winter as the beveled glass front door greets guests.
The home belongs to Dick and Patti Cataldi who moved into the two and a half story structure home in 1983.
According to a 1902 village map, Andrew Holly owned a frame house at this location –purchasing it in 1890. In 1912 it was sold to James Albright and in 1923 to Russell B. Mason – a name well-known in Webster for many years. In 1928 the home was purchased by Carroll E. Sutter and James C. Bass. After Bass’ death in 1936, Carroll E. Sutter lived there with his wife and children and in 1949 moved his law office and insurance business into the home. He lived there until his death in 1960.
The afternoon the Village Historic Preservation Commission met at Cataldi’s was different from the usual. Ordinarily the Commission meets in front of the house– they talk about the style, and the features of a specific home to be designated as the featured “Site of the Month”, but this time Jude Lancy, Maryjean Yengo, Karl Laurer and Carol Klem were invited inside to take a peek and get the feel of this wonderful home.
And yes, “Wonderful” describes it to a T. It has an elegant comforting nonchalance … it’s a home to come home to- a home that welcomes friends. Somehow the Cataldi’s were able to combine the old with the new. Natural woodwork, crown moldings, leaded glass windows, chandeliers in keeping with the period, a large bay window in the parlor lets the sun shine in. Built-in nooks and cupboards and crannies are everywhere. Patti pointed to a closet that was under the beautiful stairway and said “That’s where we keep Christmas.”
The large living room, (sitting room) boasts a wood stove with more leaded glass windows, bookshelves, oriental rugs, complimenting the antiques. And yet a large TV and comfortable leather sectional appear absolutely at home in this vintage home. The star of the show is the kitchen. It once encompassed three separate rooms, a butler’s pantry, a breakfast nook and a working space – it is now a state of the art, marble and cherry cook’s kitchen where French doors lead to a paver patio which again leads to a great back yard. In the back is the carriage house or barn /garage where many village kids played basketball and where Dick Cataldi brought his well known blue-grass country band, “Gone Fishin’” for practice.
The Webster Village Historic Preservation Commission left, once again, understanding why we love and treasure these older beauties that have withstood the test of time and look soooo good.