Alameda Spite House

 
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As the result of a dispute between neighbors, the house on the left, was built to spite the neighbor (on the right) blocking their view. As you can see, the first floor of the "Spite" House is not much wider than an automobile. Located in Alameda, California.

Lat. 37.761848 Lon -122.240040

Comments

UliaArt

UliaArt - Oct 28, 2014 09:07 AM EDT
Hi !!! I think that my templates slide - show may be helpful in the work !!! http://www.pond5.com/after-effect/42951136/simple-slide-show-8.html?ref=UliaArt Thank you !!!

The owner's have done a great job!

Alameda resident - Mar 28, 2014 04:58 PM EDT
I just learned about the Spite House and decided to take a stroll over this morning. To the owners: Thank you for allowing people to get a glimpse of this fascinating piece of architecture and history. The house looks great and his clearly been kept up and cared for impeccably. The garden was gorgeous and Orange Julius, the neighborhood cat was a perfect welcoming host. I love the stained glass over the door. The Alameda "spite house" made my morning!

Good memories

Tina Thacker McCurdy - Jul 30, 2013 02:01 AM EDT
I was born and raised in Alameda but I have lived in Florida for many years. Whenever I come back home I always drive by to see what changes there has been. I remember there being tours for charity but was never home to take advantage of them. To the owners it looks amazing, epically the stained glass window, nice work folks!

A place of heart in the home!

Manfriend - Mar 18, 2013 03:54 PM EDT
A place in the heart, a place in the home! This house is a home. Fantastic! Tiny and skinny like a little boy. I laugh, but not at the house, only with the house! Romans 13:10 Love does no harm to a neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law. Believe!!!

grewup

guest - Dec 31, 2012 05:13 PM EDT
i lived around the corner of the spite house from 1957 to 1967. Have great memories of the kind old lady that gave candy to the kids. I look back now as an adult she must of been very lonely. I am glad that some one is taking care of the house

I am "the people in the spite house'

Jennifer Jacobson - May 11, 2012 12:39 AM EDT
Your comments about "the unfriendly people in the spite house" and "God bless the house".!! Come on.We have been restoring this house for almost 15 years.We appreciate and live in the fishbowl of this house.Everyday,EVERYDAYThere are tourists everyday.I connect with the nice and cool ones..Every room has been completly redone and I garden every inch of the space,.We love this house Constantly people are amazed that someone lives in it.Where is the other half of your house?How can a bed fit?good thing you are skinny!ha ha.Constant negative comments.Sometimes when you are in the yard or come out the door to this you have to pull back, Some people need to get back into their big SUV and go back to their Macmansion and stop laughing at my small beautiful house,How dare you,I love this place and you do not know what is like.you do not know me either.
Deegee - May 09, 2012 12:40 PM EDT
I live in Alameda and have never seen the spite house, but I must go see it now. I had it confused with the "spit house", which was built because Grandma Amos had enough of Grandpa's chewing tobaccey habit. One of them had to go, and it turned out both of them did. Just for spite, Grandma, just for spit.

Whoa!

Jessie Kern - Mar 16, 2012 07:18 AM EDT
I would like to propose using a good cell phone lookup directory when it comes to identifying callers of unknown landline, unlisted and mobile numbers. Far be it for me to tell you what to do - nevertheless, I strictly recommend following this advice.

THE PEOPLE LIVING IN THE SPITE HOUSE

EVELYN MAROULAS - Feb 12, 2012 11:08 AM EDT
I AM THE GRANDDAUGHTER OF MRS ATHENS PARIS WHO LIVED IN THE HOUSE NEXT DOOR TO THE SPITE HOUSE. THE PEOPLE LIVING IN THE SPITE HOUSE ARE NOT FRIENDLY AT ALL.THEY DON'T WANT ANYONE BOTHERING THEM IF YOUR GOING TO LIVE IN A HISTORICAL HOUSE PREPARE TO SHARE. THEY LIVE IN A HOUSE FULL OF HISTORY AND WANTS EVERYTHING PRIVATE. MRS DORCEY, THE OWNER OF THE SPITE HOUSE , NEVER CLOSED OUT THE HISTORIANS LETS KEEP GOOD MEMORIES ALIVE THEY WORKED TO HARD TO HAVE SOME EVIL SERCHING STORIES EXIST GOD BLESS THESE HOUSE AND KEEP GOOD MEMORIES THEY DON'T DESERVE ANYTHING LESS EVELYN MAROULAS
omidiu - Feb 06, 2010 07:02 AM EDT
For as good as humans can be, we have a far greater capacity to be angry and vengeful. This vengeance takes many forms; some kill, some cheat, some will glue your butt cheeks together while you sleep. But few go as far as erecting a building as a monument to their anger toward another. ___________ omidiu, part of the Traduceri team.
Pinetree3 - May 08, 2009 06:56 PM EDT
More info from Wikipedia: At the turn of the 20th century, the city of Alameda, California took a large chunk of Charles Froling's land away to build a street. Froling had planned to build his dream house on the plot of land he received through inheritance.[23] To spite the city and an unsympathetic neighbor, Froling built a house 10 feet (3.0 m) wide, 54 feet (16 m) long and 20 feet (6.1 m) high on the tiny strip of land left to him.[23] The Alameda Spite House is still standing and occupied.[23] (Pictures are below right). Info from "Spite House" search in Wikipedia.org
azkul - Feb 14, 2009 10:05 AM EDT
I really liked the story behind this house.
Guest - Dec 28, 2007 12:50 PM EDT
Great comments... only one I know is wrong - the spite house does not block view of bay for original house. Spite house is on east side of original house and blocks view of Oakland hills.
Guest - Jul 07, 2007 12:10 AM EDT
Great image, Alex and a fantastic read by all the contributors. How terrific to get input from the current owners and a relative of the former tenant. Thank you everybody for bringing this image alive for all of us. Vicki
Guest - May 14, 2007 09:13 PM EDT
How narrow is your house?
Guest - Oct 13, 2006 07:29 PM EDT
These stories are indeed quite interesting. I love it. I thought it was only one house when I first saw it.
Guest - Oct 07, 2006 07:20 AM EDT
Here is a link to the HGTV website with information about the story on the house including Episode number and dates/times. http://www.hgtv.com/hgtv/shows_hwth/episode/0,,HGTV_24598_44526,00.html
Guest - Oct 02, 2006 03:37 PM EDT
This is a pretty good website but I didn't find what I was looking for but thanks anyway
Guest - Sep 17, 2006 05:50 PM EDT
Garret-- Do you know what the title of the show is? I checked the HGTV web site but there are several shows. Thank You
Guest - Sep 16, 2006 08:56 PM EDT
HGTV is supposed to air their show on Oct 1, 2006. I do not know the exact time.
Guest - Sep 12, 2006 04:55 PM EDT
Alex did not listen.It was never "said" that the spite house owner went mad and killed herslf.It was the woman in the big house next door who became distressed that all the windows were blocked on that side of her house and she feared her rooming house business would be affected.She had more problems than this,of course. The tv show has not aired yet proably in the next month or so.
Guest - Sep 12, 2006 02:53 PM EDT
To JJacobson in the "Spite House" It is good to see a nice color on the house finally. I never liked the brick red color. I am hoping to come back to Alameda in the near future and would love to see the inside of the house once again. I haven't been inside the house since my Grandmaother passed away in 1968. The house was in real bad shape then. I really wish my Aunts hadn't sold it.
Guest - Sep 06, 2006 06:33 PM EDT
San Dee, I suspect the story about your grandmother going mad, probably grew from local gossip to explain why the house was abandoned for a period of time. I was told the HGTV special was scheduled to be on sometime in August, but I never saw it. I suggest the next time you are in Alameda, you stop by the house and drop in on the current owners Jennifer and Jim. They are nice people, very accomodating and interested in the house's history. They have done some recent rennovating and I am sure they will be happy to show you around.
Guest - Sep 06, 2006 07:29 AM EDT
Your welcome, I had no idea that people thought my Grandmother went mad. She was very religous but i don't recall any stoies of exorcisms in the house. I do know that she had a few too many cats.The only time I was in the house was shortly after her death. I have been back to the house several times but have never been inside. I wish really that my Aunts hadn't sold ot, but it was too costly to repair I guess. My Grandmothers name was Elsie Darcey. I hope to go out there again soon. I plan to visit the Alameda Museum. They have told me they have a small section on the house so I would like to see that. Do you know when that special ran on HGTV? I missed it, never have watched that station. Also do you do a lot of research on this house? Thank You SanDee Darcey
Guest - Sep 06, 2006 01:58 AM EDT
Thanks for the clarification. There are many stories and myths about this house, it is good to get a few facts. It is especially nice to hear it from someone close to the source.
Guest - Sep 05, 2006 05:36 PM EDT
To Alex D.--As to the woman who supposedly went mad because the house was haunted. My Grandmother did not go mad and she died of old age. She stopped living in the house because she had to be placed in a home. The house fell into disaray because no-one was living there. My aunts sold it after her death in 1968.
Guest - Jul 20, 2006 05:38 AM EDT
Based on the previous comment, I took the opportunity to visit the Spite House again and met the owners. It is their opinion, that the previous story is one of several legends about the history of the house. Based on their research, they believe that a the original owner of the first house had a small parcel of the land adjacent to the house, and thought to be useless because it was too small. In an effort to raise some additional money they sold the piece of land to an enterprising individual who turned out to be a carpenter. That person, began building on the site, which evolved into a dispute, and ended with the completion of the Spite house. But the story gets more interesting...The house later came into the possession of a woman. She believed the house to be haunted. Furniture was found moved around, etc. She became quite agitated by the haunting. More than three exorcisms were conducted at the site. She later abandoned the house, which fell into disrepair. It is said that she ultimately went mad and committed suicide. Later the house was sold again to the owner of the larger house next door and rebuilt. A connecting passageway was built between the two homes. The smaller of the two houses (the "Spite House") became a party house with a bar taking up most of the lower floor. About 8 years ago the current owners purchased the house and have been rennovating. In fact, the house has been repainted on the outside since this picture was taken. I suspect that every local historian has a different version of the story. It turns out that there are several "spite" houses located around the country. This one claims to be the narrowest freestanding structure among them. This August, there will be a show on HGTV devoted to the house.
Guest - Jul 18, 2006 07:36 PM EDT
The actual dispute was between brothers. Story goes that a man had two sons, one was estranged. When the father died, he split the property between the sons, giving the sliver to the estranged son knowing he wouldn't be able to do anything with the space. To prove the father wrong, the son built this house to block the view of the bay from the favored son's house - out of spite.
Guest - Dec 13, 2005 11:36 AM EDT
Nice photo.There are tourists to our house almost everyday,j
Guest - Jul 04, 2005 08:42 AM EDT
Nice Picture and story, hard to believe anyone would do that, very interesting. Carol

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