Homes of Ernest Hemingway and Frank Lloyd Wright among gorgeous architecture you will find in Oak Park

Chicago Scene

Welcome to Oak Park, filled with historic homes, including two belonging to renowned Americans, architect Frank Lloyd Wright and writer Ernest Hemingway. We’re going to take you on a tour of how the legacies of these artistic figures transformed the tree-lined village into an internationally visited setting of creativity. 

As a remarkable outdoor museum of architecture, Oak Park contains the largest collection of Frank Lloyd Wright-designed buildings in the world. During the first 20 years of his career, Wright built 25 structures in Oak Park, including Unity Temple and his own home and studio. 

Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio

Our first stop is at the Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio located at 951 Chicago Avenue.

The Frank Lloyd Wright Home and Studio, nestled on a tree-lined street in the heart of Oak Park, is known as the birthplace of Prairie style architecture. You’ll see original blueprints in the laboratory and marvel at colorful stained glass in the adjacent living quarters before hitting the streets of the Frank Lloyd Wright Historic District. 

The neighborhood is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Landmarks like the Nathan Moore House, Heurtley House and Hills-Decaro House, illustrate Wright’s evolution from traditional homes to the flat-roofed structures he is known for today. 

While in Oak Park, Wright developed his Prairie style of low, earth-hugging dwellings, forever changing the course of 20th-century architecture. 

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Oak Park also contains an outstanding collection or porch-wrapped Victorian homes, historic sites and museums, including the Hemingway Birthplace Museum, Pleasant Home—a turn-of-the-century estate—and Cheney Mansion

Hemingway Birthplace

The second stop in this Chicago Scene is at the Ernest Hemingway Birthplace Museum at 339 N. Oak Park Avenue.

Ernest Hemingway Birthplace Museum explores the roots of the author’s life and art in the home that he was born in on July 21, 1899. This restored Queen Anne style home was built in1890 by Hemingway’s maternal grandparents.

Our third and final stop in our Oak Park Adventure is Pleasant Home at 217 Home Avenue.

Pleasant Home is considered one of the nation’s most distinguished examples of Prairie style architecture. It is an opulent 30-room historic house museum providing exciting opportunities to learn about the history and Prairie style architecture of the early 20th century. 

It is a lasting tribute to architect George W. Maher and also to Pleasant Home’s early owners, John Farson and Herbert Mills. Pleasant Home is located on the corner of Pleasant Street and Home Avenue, just steps from downtown Oak Park.

Pleasant Home

In addition to historic architecture, you’ll find restaurants, boutiques and plenty of activities in Oak Park, located just 10 miles west of downtown Chicago.

For more, follow @tomwgnchicago on Instagram.

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