When Phyllis Laurent read an article about Loren Pope’s love for his Frank Lloyd Wright house in House Beautiful magazine, she knew she had found her architect.
Her husband Kenneth, rendered a paraplegic in World War II, had gone through several years of rehabilitation and was finally preparing for life outside of the hospital. In his letter to the architect, Kenneth explained: “I am paralyzed from the waist down and by virtue of my condition, I am confined to a wheelchair. This explains my need for a home as practical and sensible as your style of architecture denotes.” Wright’s only building designed for a disability did not disappoint. Oriented and shaped to maximize the building’s exposure to the sun, the single-story Usonian home, is both beautiful and functional. Wright was so pleased with his “little gem” that he later included it in a book showcasing 35 of his most significant buildings. The Laurents would live in his house for the rest of their lives, maintaining a close friendship with Wright.