Segments in this Video

10 Homes that Changed America: Introduction (01:38)


Geoffrey Baer highlights ten architecturally adventuresome dwellings that elevated living to an art form. (Credits)

The Taos Pueblo (04:52)

Taos Pueblo Indians stacked their homes like apartment buildings for protection and a sense of community. Combining adobe mud and straw support the weight of the building; vigas hold up the roof. While most Native Americans in the area live in modern houses, they still preserve the living spaces first created in the 15th century.

Monticello (05:11)

Thomas Jefferson called the home he designed and built his "essay in architecture." Andrea Palladio inspired the domicile. The kitchen, laundry, and stables are partially underground.

Lyndhurst (04:40)

Gothic Architecture coupled with modern conveniences influenced Lyndhurst's design. A.J. Davis designed the interior and exterior of the home, which was built for a former mayor of New York City as a country residence.

The Tenement (05:41)

Immigrants from Ireland, Germany, and Poland lived in tenement houses on the lower east side of New York City. These "warehouses for people" contained little direct light and did not have electricity or toilets. Jacob Reese and other muckrakers inspired the legislature to pass the Tenement House Act of 1901.

The Gamble House (04:24)

David and Mary Green hired Charles and Henry Green to design their home in California; they decorated it themselves. The bungalow home is described as an Arts and Crafts movement masterpiece.

Langston Terrace Dwellings (05:35)

During "The Great Migration," African Americans traveled to cities in the north to pursue a better life for their families. Hilyard Robinson designed the superblock in a U shape to provide light to the apartments and provide a place for the community to gather. The "Progress of the Negro Race" is a terra-cotta frieze that depicts African American history from slavery to World War I migration.

Fallingwater (05:58)

Fallingwater reinvigorated Frank Lloyd Wright's career; Philip Johnson called him "the greatest architect of the 19th Century." The home uses cantilevers to balance atop a waterfall. A hatch in the floor opens into the stream bed and can be used during the summer to cool the residence.

Eames Home (05:42)

John Entenza created the Case Study House Program. Charles and Ray Eames designed the home to help provide affordable housing to soldiers returning from World War II and used only prefabricated materials. The original design called for a bridge home, but the couple discovered a more suitable location.

Marina City (05:14)

Bertrand Goldberg designed the complex to reinvigorate the downtown area. Construction crews built a floor a day. The apartments boasted floor to ceiling windows of the Chicago landscape, private circular balconies and the complex had ample parking, office space, a marina, a theater, and stores.

Glidehouse (05:23)

Michelle Kaufmann designs sustainable homes that are a little over 1500 square feet. Solar panels provide more electricity than she uses in a month; high windows and ceiling fans pump out hot air without using air conditioning. These prefabricated affordable homes are delivered across the country.

Credits: 10 Homes that Changed America (00:25)

Credits: 10 Homes that Changed America

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10 Homes that Changed America

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10 Homes that Changed America highlights ten architecturally adventuresome dwellings, which provided Americans with more than just a “roof over their heads”—these homes elevated living to an art form. Meet the talented architects who brought these buildings to life, along with their often-eccentric clients, and the lucky individuals who live in these historic homes today. A primer in domestic architecture, 10 Homes will also offer a lesson in the history of American domestic life, as the evolving design of these homes over time reveals America’s changing relationship with nature, technology, and each other.

Length: 55 minutes

Item#: BVL129835

Copyright date: ©2016

Closed Captioned

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10 Homes that Changed America

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