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Midwest Architecture

The architectural styles on this page are not limited to the Midwest. Just as Cape Cod and Victorian styles found their way across the U.S., so too did Mission, Prairie and Craftsman styles. However, if you want to see the best examples of Prairie Style, the American midwest and a trip to the Chicago suburb of Oak Park, IL is a must.

Not only is Oak Park where Frank Lloyd Wright built his first residence in the 1889, while working for the notable architect Louis Sullivan, it is here that his early sense of design mirroring the enviroment comes to light. Many of the homes in Oak Park showcase the early works of Wright's Prairie Style -- a design that was borne out of the flat, straight lines of the Midwest. (See images number 5 and 7 for examples).

It's unfortunate that I have been to Chicago several times, but still haven't had a chance to visit Oak Park. But anyone who has browsed through a Frank Lloyd Wright book has seen the incredible turn-of-the-century homes he built there.

Someone was kind enough to send a photo of Frank Lloyd Wright's residence in Oak Park to include in this section, and I've included an architectural drawing of one of his Prairie style homes for reference. The other photos below were taken in Ann Arbor, MI, with the exception of the exemplary Prairie style William Purcell home in Minneapolis, MN.

Other photo pages in the Midwest section include:

Toledo's "Historic Old West End" -- 25 photos from the "largest turn-of-the-century residential neighborhood in the America". I highly recommend a virtual tour of the Old West End. I was so impressed with the historic neighborhood that twice I have traveled the 250+ miles from Pittsburgh to Toledo just to go on the area's house tours, and it's been well worth it.


Thumbnails for Midwest

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Photo Guide:

  • 1.Mid-teens bungalow, Ann Arbor, MI
  • 2. Another typical bungalow, Ann Arbor, MI
  • 3. Quaint bungalow with climbing rose arbor, Ann Arbor, MI
  • 4. A rustic bungalow with original fixtures, Anne Arbor, MI
  • 5. William Purcell Prairie style (Minneapolis, MN)
  • 6. Frank Lloyd Wright's first home (Oak Park, IL)
  • 7. Proto-typical Frank Lloyd Wright Prairie Style drawing from an Oak Park, IL residence