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The Full Story


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264 Rowayton Avenue

The Frank W. & Carrie W. McKendrie/

Leo and Sarah Dorn House, c. 1909

Overlooking Rowayton Avenue, this spacious house was built by Frank and Carrie Hyatt McKendrie on land purchased from Franklyn Lynch. Mr. McKendrie worked in the insurance business as well as being a real estate appraiser. In 1917, the McKendries sold the house and moved to McKendrie Court, which was presumably named for them as its first residents.


In 1925, the house was sold to Silvermine Guild (later renamed the Silvermine Art Guild) artist Leo Dorn, a New England Impressionist painter and lithographer. Dorn was a member of the so-called "Knockers" group of artists and craftsmen in Norwalk. It was later renamed the Silvermine Art Guild. He had also been a foreman of Norwalk Tire and Ribbon Company taught at the Thomas School from1927 until1949. Dorn’s wife Sarah was the daughter of Charles J. Gebest, long-time musical director and composer in Manhattan for George M. Cohan.

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Leo Dorn at the Thomas School

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     Sarah Gebest Dorn

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Leo Dorn with students

         Sarah Gebest Dorn

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Thomas School faculty:
Leo Dorn is 2nd from the right.
Mabel Thomas is 4th from the right.

Leo Dorn with Thomas students 1920s

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Woodcuts by Leo Dorn

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