Dunlap’s Dining Room

We’re still trying to navigate house/building research in Sacramento, Calif., without paying an arm and a leg, and we were so grateful to find this house with a super cool story for Black History Month.

Located in the Oak Park neighborhood of Sacramento, this home was originally a pink bungalow built in 1906 for Black entrepreneur George T. Dunlap. He built additions to the home as his family grew, eventually opening the home’s dining room as a restaurant in 1930.

Dunlap’s Dining Room never had a printed menu, and instead offered three entree options: T-bone steak, fried chicken or baked ham.

Before he retired in 1968, the business hosted guests including Frank Merriam (28th governor of California); Earl Warren (30th governor of California and chief justice of the United States from 1953-1969) and C. K. McClatchy (editor of the Sacramento Bee and founder of McClatchy newspapers).

The house was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1992.

Dunlap’s daughter, Audrey Dunlap Wilcox, donated the house in 1997 to the Sacramento Children’s Home, requesting it be used to help Oak Park families. It underwent a $300K renovation in 2001 to become a resource center for the county. It received new foundation and retained the original hardwood flooring.

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