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Curtis Meyer House (1950)

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If there is a Frank Lloyd Wright house that is not an historic landmark, I’d like to see it. There are, in fact, numerous states that can brag of multiple Wright homes of historic stature. One of those states is Michigan. It boasts more than 30 of Wright’s designs.

Photo Courtesy of Doug LaBrecque

The Acres sign
The Acres Sign in Galesburg, Michigan

The Acres

Five of those designs are located in the Galesburg area known as “The Acres”. Also known as “Galesburg Country Homes”, The Acres was a project dreamed up by scientists from the Upjohn pharmaceutical company. They bought the land in 1947, and later approached Mr. Wright about designing a collection of homes there.

Wright agreed and provided sketches of 21 homes situated on round, one-acre sites. There were however, only five designs ultimately built, four of them by Frank Lloyd Wright, and one by a Taliesin fellow, Francis “Will” Willsey. That entire neighborhood was added to the National Register of Historic Places In 2004.

There are two homes in that neighborhood that are of rare and intense interest. One is the Samuel and Dorothy Eppstein House, the other is the Eric and Pat Pratt House. Both are Wright’s Usonian designs. And according to Crain’s Chicago Business, a Dutch couple living in Toronto – and who own both homes – are planning to list those Usonian homes they own… in a single sale. Originally purchased for about $400,000 each, the pair of homes are now listed together for $4.5 million.

But even more interesting is another Wright designed Usonian home, just down the street. Built in 1950-1951 (only about six years before Wright’s passing), it is the Curtis and Lillian Meyer House, which features a hemicycle solar design and custom-built concrete blocks.

Meticulous Restoration

Another historically significant example of the brilliant mind of Frank Lloyd Wright, the Meyer House boasts meticulous restoration by the homeowner, Doug LaBrecque. Mr. LaBrecque recently received the Wright Spirit Award, “given to homeowners who have rescued a building or have demonstrated outstanding stewardship in its conservation.”

The Road to Restoration of this solar hemicycle Usonian home took over 13 years and several phases of restoration that included things like the removal of glued down carpeting and cleaning up destructive flooding. LaBrecque was well aware that returning the Meyer house to its original glory would not be any small, easy, or inexpensive task. He would need highly skilled and knowledgeable craftspeople. His goal was to uphold the integrity of the Wright design. Uphold it he did, as the finished result after a more than decade-long project reached fruition. There are few existing homes of this style and integrity.

Tours

Learn more. Please remember that the Meyer home is a private residence. Your understanding and respect are welcome. Learn more about his amazing restoration of a truly excellent example of an exquisite Frank Lloyd Wright design at https://www.flwmeyerhouse.com/

Rent the Meyer House

The Meyer House is now available for overnight rentals on airbnb! Check rates and availability here.

Additional Resources

https://www.michiganmodern.org/modern-buildings/curtis-and-lillian-meyer-house/

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About Me

Yvonne Carpenter-Ross

FLW Enthusiast & Webmaster

Architecture and home design have always fascinated me. As a young girl I enjoyed drawing floor plans, rearranging my parent’s furniture and playing with Lincoln Logs and Legos.  My passion has always been the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright. Since I have been old enough to drive a car, I have visited Frank Lloyd Wright homes in the Chicagoland area and attended the Wright Plus house walks. Now, as co-owners of Northern Sky Designs, my husband & I are able to combine our website design skills and FLW travels to bring you this website! Enjoy!

Yvonne Carpenter-Ross