From Bauhaus to Our House! The New American Home
Summertime and the living is easy….
That was the dream of The General Electric Company and the Federal Housing Association in the 1930’s. Their plan was to have a “New American” Home - years before Levitt designed his Post WWII communities. 9000 architects submitted 2000 sets of drawings. The final design was built high atop Radio City in New York. This easy care home was inspired by the Bauhaus School, a German school of art, design, and architecture founded in 1919 in Weimar by the architect Walter Gropius, who aimed to fuse art, design, architecture, and crafts into a unified whole.
The American Home had been the Man’s Castle and the Woman’s Factory. This was the introduction of the All Electric house including centralized heat! They did not focus living around the central fireplace but allowed comfortable use of multiple rooms unencumbered by the use of fireplaces. These homes were to “save steps, promote health, save labor, lighten housework, and provide convenience and comfort”.
Features also included the iceless refrigerator, the electric stove, the dishwasher, “scientific” lighting with adequate wiring throughout the home. They were designed from the inside out with use of more interior square footage: 85% vs. the typical 60%. With the Exterior – less was also more. There were no pillars, no millwork, but a crisp design with the use of concrete, steel and glass. The flat roofs were meant to be used as gathering places – even in apartment dwellings.
Inspired by the Bauhuas School, the home at 229 Byram Lake Rd , in Bedford Corners has recently come on the market. Research in town records and information provided by the owners on the history indicate the home was built in 1936 and was owned early on for many years by the Marquis & Marquessa Anne Pellegrini Quarantotia. The Marquis was an executive with the Fiat Motor Company in Turin, Italy. The house was named “Homeland” There was a note that, Myrtle Walker, the Governess to their two children was so thrilled to work there since she had enjoyed the promise of such a home at the 1939 New York World’s Fair. Outdoor living space was also important and this home enjoys a screened porch with a pergola topped patio plus a beautiful pool that is wrapped with walls to ensure privacy. This beautiful sprawling home has a huge master suite with fireplace and two baths plus massive closets. There are an additional 3+ bedrooms and a total of 5 baths. It is nestled in the Estate area of Bedford Corners yet close to town, train, shops and schools.
If you would like to see this remarkable home, please contact Karen Benvin Ransom at 914-232-1212 x342 KBenvinRansom@HoulihanLawrence.com .