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Clarke House

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1915–1916, Barry Byrne. 500 S. Main St.
  • Clarke House (David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim)

When the Clarke house was described in Western Architect in April 1924, it was noted that this design had a “tendency to break with the manner of the past, although even here there is still much that is reminiscent of the work of Wright.” While the Clarke house is indeed a Prairie-style house, it is a highly personal interpretation. Its plan, with an entrance at one end, an attached garage at the other, and the open living/dining room space between, is not a classic Prairie-style design. Neither is the interior; its light-colored walls and furniture share much with the Scottish designer Charles Rennie Mackintosh and the Viennese architect Josef Hoffmann. Equally individualistic is the external color scheme, described in Western Architect as “brick of dark golden color, woodwork black with white sash; roof green, and balcony blue.” The Chicago artist Alfonso Ianelli collaborated with Byrne in this design. The beautifully laid-out garden surrounding the house was designed by Arthur Seifried.

Writing Credits

David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim


What's Nearby


David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim, "Clarke House", [Fairfield, Iowa], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Buildings of Iowa, David Gebhard and Gerald Mansheim. New York: Oxford University Press, 1993, 325-325.

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