What follows is the topographical description of the Oratory of St. Francis of Sales in its early days.
The front of the house faced south and was the only side to have doors or windows. The living quarters comprised an are on the second floor, which had a very low ceiling. The total height of the house was slightly over twenty feet.
In the front, approximately in the center, where the stairway was located, there was a narrow entrance and to its right, if one were facing the building, a pump which provided plenty of pure ice cold water.
Behind this building, forming one with it of the same length and breadth, on the spot where the superiors' dining room now stands, was the shed which had been converted into a chapel.
Behind the single altar adorned with a picture of the Blessed Mother, was a fair-sized room which did duty at first as sacristy.
To complete our picture, we must add that the greater part of the property was located in front of the house. Don Bosco had the whole area from the building, where the pump was, to the west wall cleared and leveled to provide a playground for the boys.