Demolition of the University of Michigan Administration Building in Ann Arbor, Michigan

During the 1950s and 1960s, Alden B. Dow built six university and three civic buildings in Ann Arbor.  Perhaps his most unusual campus building was the University of Michigan Administration Building, which he designed in 1964.  The exterior is like a geometric Mondrian painting rendered in three dimensions.  The brick curtain wall fastened to the […]

Alden B. Dow’s Kalamazoo Nature Center Gets a New Dome

After protecting the Sun/Rain Room for nearly six decades, the Kalamazoo Nature Center’s iconic dome and roof are being replaced.  Designed by Alden B. Dow in 1961 and opened to the public in September 1964, the highlight of the Center has been the two-story tall grey Plexiglas dome.  It spans 56 feet in diameter over […]

The Ralph E. Oberlin, Jr. Residence by Alden B. Dow

Alden B. Dow’s only residential structure to be built in Ohio is the Ralph E. Oberlin, Jr. residence in Canton.  Mr. Oberlin was president of Igelstroem-Oberlin, Inc., an outdoor signage, banner, and poster printing company.  He wrote to Mr. Dow about designing a home for his family in early 1960.  Following a meeting to discuss […]

The Dr. Millard Fleming Residence by Alden B. Dow

Alden B. Dow designed two homes in Elkhart, Indiana, nearly opposite each other on the St. Joseph River.  The first was for the William Koerting family in 1937.  Two years later he developed preliminary floorplans for a home for Dr. Millard Fleming.  Working drawings were finished in January 1940 and a contract was signed with […]

Salvation Army Citadel by Alden B. Dow

Alden and Vada Dow were long-time supporters of the work of the Salvation Army in Midland.  Mrs. Dow served on its advisory board during the 1950’s and 60’s, and Mr. Dow donated bushels of apples from the Dow orchards every year to the annual Fall Harvest Festival to raise money for its missionary work.  When […]

The John Best Residence by Alden B. Dow

Also known as the House for $3,000, the John Best residence was designed by Alden B. Dow in 1938 to remedy the need for housing to accommodate the expanding workforce of the Dow Chemical Company.  It was one of several affordable small homes he designed for Midland in the 1930’s and 40’s, including the F.W. […]

Mid-Century Modern in Disguise By Craig McDonald, Director The Alden B. Dow Home and Studio

The Bennett House living room that features the surrounding “gallery” space looking onto hole number three of the golf course. Midland features over 430 mid-twentieth century modern buildings that make the city an unparalleled architectural destination.  Many architects contributed to this great legacy and to the incredible collection of 350 beautiful residential designs that are […]

Out of the Archives: Alden B. Dow’s Lanterns, Towers & Spires

On display are drawings and photographs of the unusual beehive light and sound tower of the Roscommon Congregational Church, the Art Deco lamp posts of the original Midland Country Club, the Jenga-like tower of Kalamazoo Valley Community College, and more.

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