Dwight and Sarah Safford originally built the George Oscar White house as a rental home in 1872. It was not until 1903 that George Oscar White purchased the home and began making improvements to it. He renovated the originally simple Italianate structure into a Colonial Revival, which was the “latest style” of the day. He made changes to the windows, doors and porches. He also made a large addition, which greatly added to the scale of the home.
George Oscar White
Mr. White was well established in the buggy and automobile business. He was a locally known carriage, buggy and automobile builder, and was hired away from his own factory in Pennsylvania to manage the J.H. Wilson Buggy Company in Moline. White was eventually manager and board member of the Rock Island Buggy Company. This company was also a project of well-known capitalists Phil Mitchell and Frank Mixter. During his years with the buggy and automobile trade, White manufactured automobiles around 1909, and eventually produced curtain lights and batteries for automobiles.