SUMMARY – Constructed 1939
Historic Use: Residence
Present Use: Residence
National Register Status: Not Listed
The 1939 Diefenderfer House is significant for its association with Tempe’s 1887 Farmer’s Addition. It is also significant as a local variant of Bungalow-style residential architecture.
Farmer’s Addition, located a quarter-mile west of the ASU campus, fronts South Farmer Avenue between University Avenue and West 13th Street. Platted in 1887, Farmer’s Addition was one of two late-nineteenth-century residential subdivisions in Tempe that corresponded with the development of Tempe Normal School.
Frederick and Mary Diefenderfer acquired undeveloped Lot 8, Block 5 of Farmer’s Addition in April 1939 and built the house at 1223 South Farmer Avenue soon thereafter. The retired couple had previously lived in Greenville, Pennsylvania where Frederick worked as a foreman at the Bessemer & Lake Erie Railroad shops. Mary Diefenderfer remained at the address through the mid-1970s; in 1976 the family sold the property to John and Betty Oertle.
The Diefenderfer House is a one-story masonry house with Bungalow-style influences. Rectangular in plan, the house sits on a slab foundation with stuccoed walls topped by a medium-pitched, front-gabled roof with wood-sided gable, exposed rafters, and standing seam metal roofing. A small front porch supported by two square wood pillars and topped by a matching medium-pitched, front-gabled roof with wood-sided gable shades the house’s single-leaf entryway. Windows are wood, double-hung.