Elmhurst Art Museum,150 Cottage Hill Avenue, Elmhurst
Moved from original location in 1994
Mies van der Rohe, 1952
The McCormick House is the cornerstone of the Elmhurst Art Museum’s collection. It is the largest of the three single-family homes Mies designed in the United States. The home is a rare and important example of Mies van der Rohe’s mature style, incorporating elements of his celebrated designs for the Farnsworth House (1951) and 860-880 Lake Shore Drive (1949-1951). During the construction of 860-880 Lake Shore Drive apartment towers, Mies introduced his ideas for prefabricated row houses to the developers of the project, Herbert S. Greenwald and Robert Hall McCormick III. They worked together to build a prototype for the McCormick family to live in and it was the first prototype to be built. In the years following, Robert Hall McCormick III attempted to promote and sell the mass-produced modular houses in the suburbs of Chicago. However, the cutting-edge, high-end buildings were not met with enough buyers to begin construction.