The Clark T. Wells Residence by Alden B. Dow

Mrs. Clark T. Wells expressed her wishes for a home for her husband and family in a letter to Alden B. Dow on December 3, 1939. “We have decided to abandon the idea of a one-story house.  We feel that perhaps we can get more for our money and an extra room or two with two stories on at least part of the house.”  A colored pencil presentation drawing dated January 10, 1940 shows a two-story house, as desired.

The Wells residence is situated on a corner lot in the gentle bend of the road.  A brick retaining wall follows the curve of the street giving the 2480 square foot structure a raised appearance.  The exterior is of the same brick as the wall, with Homasote panels under bands of windows on both levels.  The façade is divided by a deep wood trellis that wraps around two sides of the house.  The flat metal roof projects out beyond the walls and windows.

At the front door is a random arrangement of glass blocks set into the brick wall.  The layout of the rooms follows the basically square footprint of the house.  One steps into the living room from a brick entry foyer.  The living room looks out onto the street with a linoleum-topped seat under the windows.  Wood shelves line the adjacent plaster wall.  The dining room features a wall of windows set above edge grain fir cabinets; drawings show a screened porch off the dining room.

The upper level contains four large bedrooms, the master bedroom being a combination bedroom and upstairs sitting room or study.  In a letter accompanying the sketches Mr. Dow referred to a basement with a game room and fireplace that would be accessible from the main entry hall and from the garage.

The construction contract was signed in December 1940 for $16,097, and the house was substantially completed by the summer of 1941.

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