Stewardship is not a product of special oversight placed on historic homes. It comes, instead, from a shared commitment to storytelling, passed between generations.
By creating a deliberately small space through which one must pass before reaching a larger space, Frank Lloyd Wright caused a temporary sense of tension, followed by a powerful feeling of freedom.
It is Captivating. You feel an Obligation; the need to be Vigilant, Attentive and Careful. But three words best describe living in this Frank Lloyd Wright house. They are Surprise, Wonder and Gratitude.
It was a joy and a privilege to share secrets from the Elizabeth Murphy House at the Annual Conference of the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy.
Fourth graders from Atwater School visited, then created Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired architectural tiles, adding their own flare.
The unpainted Pebble-Dash in the Elizabeth Murphy House appears to be the last example of the original exterior of American System Built Houses anywhere.
After a year of living here, we stumbled upon more horizontal lines in a subtle, but historically significant place: the masonry of our small fireplace.
As with other prairie-influenced designs, the chimney sets the tone for the rest of the house. It is intentionally dramatic, like Frank’s fine pork pie fedora. It is also a fake.
Part of organic design, we're learning, is that spaces are sensory, social and evocative; meant for people, not things.
Then, we poured new concrete, parged walls, and painted matching trim. Today, the Elizabeth Murphy House stands tall and straight, and ready for tour-goers.