I took this photo of 1634 Jane Avenue in the summer of 2010. It's on the infamous block ravaged by abandonment and arson. Last time I checked, there was only one house remaining. All the others, including this one, have been demolished or burned down. I had a special attachment to this little house because it reminded me of my 700 sq. ft. home in San Francisco, which was in bad shape not many years ago and was brought back to life by the woman who sold it to me.
The National Archives recently made documents from the 1940 Census available online, so I decided to look up 1634 Jane Avenue. At that time, it was rented by William and Gwendoline Williams for $30/month. (Other houses on the block were valued at $2,300 to $3,000, not that different than what homes in the area might be worth today.) He was 35 and born in Montana. She was a year younger and hailed from England. They had two sons, ages 8 and 14. George Spenser, a 49-year-old Irishman, and Harold Daniels, a 35-year-old from England, are listed as boarders.