This Rare 1909 Frank Lloyd Wright Home With a Cathedral-Like Living Room Asks $900K

This Rare 1909 Frank Lloyd Wright Home With a Cathedral-Like Living Room Asks $900K

By Kathryn M.
As one of the few remaining Wright designs with a two-story living room, this century-old residence is ready for new owners to reinstate its former glory.

Set on a wooded lot in the Chicago suburb of Wilmette, Illinois, the 1909 Frank J. Baker House was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright during his time experimenting with 'T-shaped' floor plans and two-story living rooms. 

The 4,800-square-foot home is a classic Prairie design by Wright, with a strong horizontal orientation, low-hanging roof, and deep overhangs. Available for the first time in over 60 years, this historic home is looking for its newest owners.

Surrounded by a natural landscape, the low-lying structure appears to hover close to the ground. The simple stucco and wood exterior and rows of windows are characteristic of Wright's other Prairie-house designs built between 1900 and 1914.

According to local historic records, a series of similar 'T-shaped' homes were built by Wright around the same time, with this one being a rare remaining example of those with a two-story living room. 

These historic qualities have granted the Baker House a spot on the list of the National Register of Historic Places, as well as protected status in Wilmette. While some work may be needed to fully restore the home, its many period details remain intact. 

A 22-foot long dining area is revealed once through the entry way. Diamond leaded glass windows run along the wall, complemented by wooden trim and a pitched ceiling. 

The dramatic, cathedral-like living room features a ceiling that appears to cantilever out from a second-floor loft, giving the impression the space is supported by a continuous row of windows.

A dramatic two-story living space is the heart of the home. Seven-foot-tall bookcases envelope the room, which, along with the dark wooden floors, lends a library-like atmosphere.

Vertical windows create a dramatic central element at one end of the room. The eyes are also drawn upward by a pitched cathedral ceiling, bordered by wide eaves and clerestory windows running along both sides of the room. 

At the opposite end of the living room is a large brick fireplace, with a balcony overlooking the space from a second-story loft. Double glass doors open up to a window-wrapped sun porch.

Approximately 20 years after the home was complete, Wright's office also designed and built an expansive, two-story extension along the rear of the structure. Today, the home offers a total of five bedrooms, three and a half bathrooms, and three fireplaces spread throughout. 

A large kitchen is located along the rear of first floor, off the dining room. Windows run above the sink and lead into a bright breakfast nook in the rear. 

A large bedroom upstairs opens up onto an enclosed porch and offers one of the three fireplaces. The diamond leaded glass windows run throughout all of the spaces.

One of three full bathrooms, the spacious area offers a soaking tub and access to the bedroom. A large window brings natural light into the space.

The large backyard offers a grassy area and plenty of mature trees. According to conservation reports, the home was affectionately referred to as the 'Baker Bungalow' by local residents.

A floor plan of the first level. A largely horizontal layout extends on both sides of the two-story living room. Now enclosed, two porches flank either end of the home.

A floor plan of the second level. Five large bedrooms and three full bathrooms run throughout the space.

A floor plan of the basement. Additional storage and a large recreation room provide additional space within the home.

A floor plan of the detached carriage house and garage. Located in the rear of the home, this space offers room for two cars and additional storage.

507 Lake Avenue is currently listed for $899,900 by Kyle Payne of @properties. 

Related Reading: A Usonian Masterpiece by Frank Lloyd Wright Is on the Market for $1.5m

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