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AIA Presents Legacy Awards to Ruth & Russell Kraus
and Board of the FLW House in Ebsworth Park

Russell Kraus Vernon RemigerRussell Kraus

Russell Kraus (right) with AIA President Vernon Remiger

The American Institute of Architects presented the 12th Annual AIA Excellence in Design Awards
Competition in late October. The awards recognized "excellence in built environments and the craftsmanship that supports these environments."
Russell and Ruth Kraus were recognized for their "exceptional commitment and vision in the design and construction of their home, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, and the wisdom to see this valuable asset transferred to a public setting."
Chairman Joanne Kohn received the AIA Legacy Award for the Board of the FLWHEP. The award recognized the board for "creating the nonprofit organization to purchase, restore and manage the Kraus House, and for partnering with the St. Louis County Department of Parks & Recreation.

The Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park

Ruth Kraus during construction of the Kraus House

FLWHEP Announces the Legacy Fund in Honor of Ruth & Russell Kraus
In order to guarantee the ongoing care of the Kraus House and to continually honor the couple whose imagination, persistence and courage brought about the alliance of Frank Lloyd Wright and the
building of an extraordinary house, the FLWHEP has created a special fund: The Ruth & Russell Kraus Legacy Fund.

Contributions to the Legacy Fund will provide for the care of the House and for the creation of
projects that explore the value of architecture and design for the benefit of the public.

Contributions to the Fund, either directly or through planned giving, are welcome and greatly appreciated. Contributions may be sent to:

The Legacy Fund,
40 Upper Ladue Road,
St. Louis, MO 63124.

Joanne Kohn

A Note From the Chairman

I want to say how delighted I am that Russell Kraus has returned to St. Louis. At the meeting for The Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy in San Francisco in September, where I was asked to speak about the Kraus House, I met other owners of Usonian houses like Russell who worked directly with Wright and cherished their memories of him. Russell continues to share his memories with us, and
we are grateful to him.

The SF meeting put into perspective the challenges we faced with restoring the Kraus House. I heard about the condition of the Malcolm E. Willey House in Minneapolis where the wood was extensively rotted. I was reminded, too, of the sad state of decay of many Wright houses such as the Jacobs and Weltzheimer Houses in John Eifler's talk on Nov. 12 in St. Louis at Washington University. The Kraus House, with all its needs, was in much better shape than those houses.

During the San Francisco conference I visited the Walker, Buehler, Bazett/Frank, Hanna and Fawcett Usonian Houses and noticed similar features in some and contrasting features in others to the Kraus House. For example, the dramatic thrusting triangle like our terrace was seen in the Walker House sitting exquisitely on the Carmel beach. Others had rooms at the end of the carport like our tool house, but they were heated and comfortable bedrooms or offices.

The most common feature I saw in the houses was the Cherokee red floors, in different configurations
from the parallelogram, but all showing signs of wear with owners looking for ways to renew them. We, too, are searching for a product and procedure to restore the Kraus House floors.

The meeting was structured with a mixture of scholarship and viewing of architecture. In addition
to houses, we saw the renowned public building Wright designed, the Marin County Civic Center.

The next Conservancy meeting will be in Madison, Wisconsin, in October 2004. I hope many of you will consider attending. It will open your eyes as the San Francisco meeting did mine.

Joanne Kohn, Chairman
The Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park

Alice Gerdine
Alice Gerdine

Alice Gerdine has had a long-time interest in architecture, specifically contemporary architecture.

Her earliest interest was in watching the process of the design of her own parents home in the 1920s.

Alice, her husband John Philip Meyer, and their four children lived in Huntleigh Village for twenty-five years in a house designed for them by Charles Eames. Furnishings, including a light fixture, furniture and a rug designed by Eames for Alice's home were included in the recent Eames exhibit at the Saint Louis Art Museum.

Her interest in FLW architecture includes traveling to Taliesin many years ago, but added that she did not know there were Wright houses in the St. Louis area until recently.

She is thrilled that the Kraus House was saved. "It's wonderful for our city. The restoration is done
perfectly. The proportions of the house feel right when you're in it, something that you cannot describe. But it feels right." Wright made a house, a great house, a happy place, Alice believes. "I love to go
there,"she says.

She points out, "I'm so happy that the Kraus House has developed into a wonderful resource for the community. We owe a lot of thanks to Joanne Kohn for her perseverance in seeing the House

Joanne encouraged Alice to join the board of the FLWHEP. Even in her ninth decade, Alice continues her dedication to community cultural assets.

Max Lippman
Max Lippman

Max Lippman first became aware of the Kraus House when he served on the St. Louis County Historic Preser-vation Commission. He and his wife, Zoe, toured the house and met Russell Kraus. He
thought the house was a "dazzling strong presence of that period of architecture and a great potential house museum and resource".

Saving the Kraus House is part of his continuum of restoring structures of historic value. The first building he helped save was the Old Post Office in downtown St. Louis. He has been on the boards of the Piper Palm House in Tower Grove Park, the DeMenil and Eugene Field Houses and presently
serves on the Campbell House board. He was on the St. Louis County Historic Preservation Committee for 15 years and chairman for two years.

His love of history brought him to St. Louis from Jacksonville, Florida 40 years ago to get a graduate degree in history. He taught American history at Hazelwood High School until seven years ago when he

Max has always had an interest in architecture being curious about how people live, how structures work and how they affect people. He continues to share his enthusiasm for the Kraus House with his multitude of friends and has benefitted our efforts greatly.

John Eifler Lectures on "Usonian Houses Designed by Frank Lloyd Wright"
John Eifler, of Eifler and Associates of Chicago and master plan architect for the restoration of the Kraus House, brought his experience and expertise with FLW Usonian houses to more than 150 Friends, architectural students and others gathered in Steinberg Auditorium at Washington University November

Eifler explained the difficulty of keeping Wright houses alive, the restoration difficulties and what is needed to preserve them for future generations, including the L-shaped brick and redwood Jacobs Home, the first Usonian in Madison, Wisconsin; L-shaped masonry Usonian Weltzheimer House in Oberlin, Ohio, and the square-plan native stone and wood Seth Peterson Cottage in Reedsburg, Wisconsin. All of these houses have benefited from Eifler's restoration expertise. Slides illustrated how the Kraus House compared with these other houses.

Wright, Eifler explained, believed that everyone should enjoy good architecture.

Usonian houses were Wright's answer to housing for the middle class. The first Jacobs House in 1936 was built for $5,000; the next cheapest Usonian was $10,000. FLW was, according to Eifler, "trying to build great works of art within a budget," with everything used to the fullest. The houses required precision fitting of the components together.

What distinguished these homes were the slab floors, the use of pine and redwood, no attic, the smallest basement, one continuing flowing space, and sandwich wall construction of three different layers of wood about 2 1/4"thick. An example of Wright's experimentation was his innovation of
radiant heating in the floor in the Jacobs House. At the same time, the Johnson Wax Building was being built in Racine. He took the liberty of sharing bricks from Johnson Wax with the Jacobs House.

Wright developed more and more variations of Usonians, but not a standardized model; every home was custom, and highly detailed. Each one was an improvement over the previous, contends Eifler. The architect was designing these homes at the same time as some of his more well-known buildings --
Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, and Wingspread in Racine, Wisconsin.

Describing some of the unique features of the Kraus House Eifler offered that Russell Kraus' studio was not originally designed to be a part of the house, but to be where the tool house is now. Like the Kraus House, which was built by Lee Patterson, other Usonian houses were typically the first house built by a contractor. He also added that the main terrace of the house off the living area has been restored now for the second time.

The Kraus House, although small, is incredibly complex, Eifler pointed out. What makes the Kraus House most remarkable, Eifler believes, is that the Krauses maintained everything, doing an incredible job of keeping everything involved with the house together.

The long wait for completion of the Kraus House can probably in part be attributed to the large quantity of work at Taliesin on major projects, Eifler explained.

Wright continued to play with geometry, his first hexagon design was the 1936 Hanna House in Palo
Alto; the Kraus House developed using the parallelogram. We were incredibly lucky to get the drawings for the Kraus House from Taliesin, Eifler explained. The level of craft and energy in the Kraus House is really phenomenal, Eifler noted.

Wright always depended on the structural people to make the houses work, thinking he could defy the laws of physics. He thought that 2 x 4s could do almost anything, experimenting to see what worked and what didn't.

Restoration of these Usonian houses has included the finishes, roofs, cantilevered structures, windows.
"These are beautiful houses that need to be kept up and watched over carefully,"Eifler said. Usonian houses were far more complex than Wright had envisioned them.

Beginning the restoration process on the Kraus House, Eifler undertook an assessment of the building and the "terrible shape"of the brick, evaluating why the brick had failed: specifically, no flashing under the top layer of brick. To make the terrace brick work, detailed specifications were drawn up and a great job was done by Markway Construction and Bergmann Masonry, putting the brick back
the way it should have been built. The brick was matched to the original, lights close to the original, doors redone. "It's fortunate that the contractor did high-quality work. The Kraus House was in much much better shape than the Jacobs House,"Eifler pointed out.

Coming back to the House for the first time in many months, Eifler pointed to the quality of restoration of the furnishings brought back by the conservators. "I'm impressed by how well the house has been treated," Eifler said.

The Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy
Each year The Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy spotlights Wright designs in an area of the country at its annual conference. This September, the meeting: "Frank Lloyd Wright and Mid-Century Modernism"was held in San Francisco.

FLWHEP Chairman Joanne Kohn attended the meeting and presented an update on the restoration of the FLWHEP. Earlier this past year an article about the restoration written by Joanne was included in the Conservancy's quarterly "Bulletin".

The meeting was divided between presentations, i.e. "The Rise of Mid-Century Modernism in California", "Protective Easements for Wright Properties", and "Public Sites Valuing Volunteers"Work in Interpreting Wright Sites", and tours of Wright-built properties.

Frank Lloyd Wright Marin

Frank Lloyd Wright's Marin County Civic Center

The northern California area boasts a number of Wright properties. One of the most notable is the Marin County Civic Center, including both the administration building and the Hall of Justice, described as "a kinship of architecture and landscape", and a national and state designated historical landmark.

The design was completed in 1958; Wright did not see the completion of this four-story structure that looms over the Marin County hills area on 160 acres. The county building has been described as the "last and one of the most important works" by Wright. The photo illustrates the roof, sand walls,
archways of cement stucco, and exterior balconies with internal walkways which cantilever over the posts. Built to lessen the effects of earthquakes, the structure is segmented to allow for expansion. Atriums provide beautiful plantings that flow with the structure.

One of the most recognizable homes open to Conservancy attendees was in Carmel, described as a little "cabin on the rocks" - the Della Walker residence, 1951. If you haven't seen it as you've driven down the coast, you may have seen it in the 1959 movie, "A Summer Place". Built for $125,000, with
an addition designed by Wright after the Walkers moved in in 1956, the house was one of Wright's favorites. Distinguished by its stone terrace that juts out into Carmel Bay, the large stone chimney/fireplace and the blue metal cantilevered roof, and the bank of windows, the house is the only building on the ocean side of the road in Carmel.

The Della Walker residence, Carmel, CaliforniaThe Della Walker residence, Carmel, CaliforniaThe Della Walker residence, Carmel, California

The Della Walker residence, Carmel, California

Other homes were also included on the tours. The one-story rubblestone and wood Usonian Berger house was built by the owner Robert Berger in the 1950s in San Anselmo. The Randall Fawcett House in Los Banos was built on a working farm. Another Usonian house, the expansive two-winged house,
has 60 and 120-degree angles and is made of exposed concrete blocks, and has a "walk-in" fireplace in the main living area.

The Conservancy was established in 1989 to "facilitate the preservation of the remaining structures designed by FLW", in the wake of the demolition of a number of FLW buildings, including the Imperial Hotel in Japan and the Larkin Administration Building in Buffalo, New York. Since The FLW Building
Conservancy started, not one Wright-designed building has been destroyed. During the past 13 plus years, the Conservancy has waged numerous successful efforts to help preserve threatened FLW buildings.

Ron Scherubel

Ron Scherubel, Executive Director of The FLW Building Conservancy,
visits the Kraus House

For additional information on the Conservancy and the annual conference,

The Tool House
The restoration/renovation of the tool house is complete with the exception of the floor.

The structure, connected to the house by the carport, was unfinished and had been used for storage. The large old porcelain sink and water heater have been removed. A new water heater has been put in the basement, a smaller sink installed, the squirrel-damaged windows repaired, and the ceilings and walls treated and painted.

The work included installation of a heating and air conditioning unit. Bricks were removed and stored to allow for the installation. Birch cabinets were built similar to the kitchen cabinets complete with as close
as possible Cherokee (FLW) red counter tops and brass pulls that match the kitchen cabinet pulls.
The building is used for storage, space for caterers, a planned small shop, and showing of the video. These services will eventually be included in the planned visitors' center, and the bricks removed will be reinstalled.

The tool house restoration/renovation is funded by the Gateway Foundation of St. Louis.

Frank Lloyd Wright Birthday Party
The FLWHEP again celebrated the anniversary of Frank Lloyd Wright's birthday on June 8. Wright was born June 8, 1867 in Richland, Wisconsin.

On another glorious June day, like last June 8, Friends and guests gathered on the lawn of the House. The afternoon included hearing Jan Greenberg and Carole Kroeger talk about their pottery collections and seeing the exhibit of art pottery, touring the house and viewing the new video. With music by the St. Louis Ragtimers, guests enjoyed delicious food and birthday cake.

The exhibit of pieces from Jan and Carole's art pottery collections were on display during tours through August.

Special thanks to Party Chairman Sally Pinckard, and her committee including Laurie Hellman, Susan Gelman, Marilyn Vollet, Joanne Fogarty, Edie Binder, Bryan Erdmann, Anne and Jack Heisler, Kay Kinsella, Jan and Tibor Nagy, Julia Rapp, Marsha Rusnack, Peggy Gundlach, Mary Ann Janssen, Susan Ehrenfest, Michelle Walter, Ruth Pinckard, Sharon Bateman, Ann Plunkett, Mary Ottoson, Ann Smith Carr and all the docents who led the tours, whose efforts resulted in a highly successful benefit.

Docents Evening with Russell Kraus
FLWHEP docents joined Russell Kraus (seated center right), and hosts Jan and Tibor Nagy at the Nagy's home on North Ballas in Kirkwood. The Nagys, who are neighbors of the House and Russell's long-time friends, invited the docents for a lovely evening of delicious food and to meet Russell. Thanks to
Jan (far right), a board member of the FLWHEP, and Tibor (far left), who designs many of our communications, for generously hosting this opportunity to learn about Russell's experience of building and living in the House.

The Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park

Masonry Institute Award
The Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park is the proud recipient of the Excellence in Design award of the Masonry Institute of St. Louis.

Recognizing an exceptional example of masonry construction in Eastern Missouri, the award states: "It took an insightful masonry repair plan to restore this house to former glory and protect it for the future."The Masonry Institute awards are presented every three years for design and craftsmanship.

Pictured: Jeff Markway of Norbert Markway Construction Co., General Contractor; Joanne Kohn,
Chairman of FLWHEP accepting for the FLWHEP, and Dave Bergmann, masonry contractor. Also honored were John Eifler, restoration architect of Eifler & Associates, Chicago, for masonry repair design; McGinnis & Associates, Engineer; Missouri Brick & Supply and Sioux City Brick & Tile and
Brentwood Supply for work on the restoration and materials supplied.

Art Acquisition Fund Established
We have received our first contribution to the Art Acquisition Fund - a $100 gift from Leon and Gloria
Anderson. The Anderson's gift is greatly appreciated.

This acquisition fund is being set up to purchase pieces of art, accessories and books to fill the empty shelves and add to the enjoyment of the house tours.

If you would like to donate to the Fund, send your check payable to the FLWHEP, indicating Art Acquisition Fund. Contributions, tax-deductible, to this special fund will be specifically recognized in upcoming newsletters along with the items purchased by the funds.

For more information contact: (314) 822-8359 (8FLW) or send your contribution to FLWHEP,
c/o 40 Upper Ladue Road, St. Louis, MO 63124. Please indicate Art Acquisition Fund.

Sculpture gift of Susan Lorenz
Susan Lorenz, a Friend of the FLWHEP, and friend and fellow student of Russell Kraus has donated
this metal and wood piece designed by Eugene (Frederick Jean) Thalinger to the FLWHEP.

The Frank Lloyd Wright House in Ebsworth Park

Mr. Thalinger, who attended the Washington University School of Art at the same time as Russell Kraus, did commercial sculptures at his studio on Delmar in St. Louis. One of his distinctions was
his design of the first educational mobile depicting the planets, for the New York Museum of Natural History. Thalinger was included in the St. Louis Artist Guild's Centennial Exhibit in 1977. He was the son of artist E. Oscar Thalinger, who was associated with the Saint Louis Art Museum for nearly 40 years.

Other recent gifts will be featured in upcoming issues of "Wright Focus".

Trip to Oak Park and Elmhurst, Illinois
After spending a day in Oak Park at the Wright Plus House Walk, friends of FLWHEP visited the 1901 Wright Prairie Style Henderson House in Elmhurst with owners Penny and Pat Fahey. Special thanks for planning the trip to Janet Schoedinger, Jim Mann and Ellen Post.

FLWHEP Plans Trip to Bartlesville and Tulsa
Join the Friends of the FLWHEP on our next tour April 23 -25, 2004, when we visit Bartlesville and Tulsa, Oklahoma. Bartlesville, 45 minutes away from Tulsa, is the home of the 1952 Wright-designed Price Tower and "Hillside", the 1954 Harold Price, Jr. House, as well as several other architecturally significant buildings.

A New York Times article on October 16 touted the work being done in Bartlesville to restore the Price Tower, one of two skyscrapers designed by Wright. The tower has been recently renovated, including an inn on six of the top floors and an art center below. The group will stay for two nights at the Inn and have dinner one evening at the Tower's Copper Restaurant and Bar.

We will attend the newly opened Robert Indiana show in the art center and see several examples of the work of prominent architect, Bruce Goff, former head of the Oklahoma School of Architecture.
Bartlesville is also home to a Community Center designed by William Wesley Peters, chief architect of Taliesin. Most of the interior decor of the Center, located adjacent to the Tower, was selected by Mrs.

Planned is a trip to the countryside to visit the 3,600 acre Woolaroc Ranch, Museum and Wildfire Preserve, the rustic country estate of Frank Phillips, the founder of Phillips Petroleum, now filled with
Russells and Remingtons where ostriches and emus roam, and a hike or ride through a renowned prairie noted for its flowering beauty.

On Sunday morning, we will travel to Tulsa for brunch and a visit to the famed Philbrook Museum of Art and to the equally renowned Gilcrease Museum. The group will return to St. Louis Sunday evening.

Price TowerFrank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower,Bartlesville, OklahomaFrank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower,Bartlesville, OklahomaFrank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower,Bartlesville, OklahomaFrank Lloyd Wright's Price TowerFrank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower

Frank Lloyd Wright's Price Tower,
Bartlesville, Oklahoma