1962 Usonian – Polo, IL

SOLD / Archived From 2018
Added to OHD on 5/22/18   -   Last OHD Update: 11/25/18   -   56 Comments
Address Withheld
  • $325,000
  • 3 Bed
  • 2 Bath
  • 2522 Sq Ft
  • 1.98 Ac.
This 3 BDR, meticulously restored organic Usonian mid-century modern home, inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright, sits on a serene 2 acre lot in a quiet town surrounded by evergreen trees, fruit tree orchard and a 1/4 acre organic garden with raised redwood beds. Updates in the last 3 yrs include: Prof. installed cypress roof w/50-100 year shingles, concrete floors with radiant heat, electrical, plumbing, insulation, windows, appliances, and a rebuilt atrium. This property also includes a separate 500 sq. ft heated studio that has a concrete heated floor. Other nice upgrades include a full house water filtration system, underground drainage pipes around house and LED lighting throughout. The modern Triangle Tube SS modulating natural gas boiler operates at 96% efficiency which makes for monthly avg. gas bill of $100. Quality upgrades have been done for you and will last for many many years. Too much to mention so come take a look for yourself.
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56 Comments on 1962 Usonian – Polo, IL

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  1. Kelly, OHD adminKelly, OHD admin says: 10086 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Thanks KTschnooks for sharing!

  2. AvatarChiChiPox says: 230 comments

    Again, this style isn’t for me but it’s still easy to appreciate the architecture as art of the house.

    • AvatarMelissa says: 250 comments

      I was thinking the same. This place is spectacular…. the Mad Men fan in me would love to have a place like this to host parties with mid century modern themes!

  3. AvatarWendy says: 45 comments

    Oh. My. God. My dream house!!!

  4. AvatarBethany Otto says: 2585 comments

    Stunning! I’m from Illinois and I’ve never heard of Polo, but this is an amazing house.

  5. AvatarLinda Clarke says: 34 comments

    Phew…not a speck of paint. Thank God. This is amazing and worth every dime asked. Thanks for sharing it!

  6. Avatarrobinjn says: 218 comments

    ohmygosh. Takes. My. Breath. Away.

    Only possible change for me would be removing the woodstove from the main fireplace which I’m sure was a later addition. The glass. The wood. The melding into nature. The serenity. Want, want, want.

  7. AvatarGraham says: 163 comments

    wow just wow

  8. AvatarLou says: 1 comments

    Wow. Love this style. Polo is about 11 miles from my house and I have never seen this home. Nice weekend ahead; I just may try to find it.

  9. AvatarJeff Myers says: 78 comments

    What a perfectly preserved Usonian! Wright-ish for all the right reasons. Wonderful textures and light.

  10. AvatarMichelle says: 1 comments

    This looks like the house in the Netflix show The O.A. So not my style, but I’d live there in a heartbeat!

  11. AvatarJan says: 1 comments

    Complete perfection, wouldn’t change one thing.

  12. JimHJimH says: 4116 comments
    OHD Supporter

    I knew Polo back in the day, a little farm town a couple hours west of Chicago, fairly conservative and dull. This is a fine modern house that at this price maybe needs to be transported to a suburb somewhere.
    I wonder if they still have the great family style Sunday breakfasts at the White Pines Park down the road – pancakes, eggs, bacon, ham AND sausage, in an NRHP log lodge. Then a slow, happy walk through the forest. NW Illinois has some surprisingly beautiful places!

  13. Avatarscottmerrick64 says: 1 comments

    I’m buying my lottery ticket first thing today. If I win it’s MINE all MINE!!!! I love it. I’m stocking it with Matt Helm, old James Bond, and iIn Like Flint movies, and martinis.

    Sorry for the levity.

  14. Avatarnycsmf says: 194 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1969 Regency
    Nashville, TN

    Love this! I think this is a wonderful blend of MCM and Usonian. The stacked stone is amazing. I would love to create a MCM landscape around this place to complete the perfection. Does anyone have any idea what the red floors are made of? Is it red cement?

    • AvatarJeffrey Mrock says: 41 comments


      The red concrete (which consist of sand, cement, & water) floors are a hallmark
      of Frank Lloyd Wright houses, especially the Usonian ones. The are pigmented concrete, which is then polished after the concrete is floated. I believe the reveals are added in before the concrete cures. The powdered pigment was broadcast dry & floated in, this gave the floors their mottled appearance, rather than adding the concrete tinting powder to the mix, which would appear more monolithic. This is how is was usually done, its possible with this home, the color was added to the mix.

      After the floor is polished and cured it can be waxed & buffed. It’s a great finish, especially nice when the slab is warmed by radiant heat.


  15. AvatarScott says: 1 comments

    Beautiful, but not ready for the zombie apocalypse. In all seriousness, one of the Wright-style designs that I think is quite charming.

  16. AvatarDavid McCauslin says: 66 comments

    My wife would LOVE to own this one! FLW is one of her favourite architects! Thank you for sharing!

  17. AvatarAndrew F says: 3 comments

    I volunteer to wash the dishes!

  18. AvatarKenneth Lee Benjamin says: 63 comments

    LOVE IT!!!!! Not sure if I could handle the winters in Ill.but would sure try for this great home.The red floors look like the vinyl that was popular then,might even be that Asbestos tile.At my age I would even live with that!

    • AvatarFrank D. Myers says: 62 comments

      Floors most likely of stained, scored and polished concrete; a common choice for homes of this style and era.

    • jeklstudiojeklstudio says: 923 comments

      FLW used stained cement for his floors often. This looks exactly like others I’ve seen, in fact the one FLW house here in Oregon that we toured has the same floor. The docent explained how it was colored before being laid–never needs painting.. The color he chose was ‘Cherokee Red’ (or something nearly those words). He liked it for the warmth and unity it brought to the space.

  19. AvatarLeila Ammann says: 25 comments

    This is one of my favorite FLW homes….Sigh

  20. Avatarcheryl plato says: 181 comments

    So breathtakingly beautiful. A work of great craftsmanship.

  21. Tommy QTommy Q says: 462 comments

    As a recent and ardent convert to mid-century, this place is off the hook. Illinois is too cold for my old bones. If you see anymore mid-centuries, I hope you will include them. Thanks as always for the best Site on the Web.

  22. Avatarjau321 says: 8 comments

    Wow. Just wow. I, like Tommy Q, am a convert to mid-century through the efforts of my husband. I owned an 1898 mansion and loved every minute of bringing it back to life, but this home speaks to my heart as a nature lover. Not only a masterful work of art, but so naturally live-able. And, yeah-I’ll fight you for dish-duty!

  23. AvatarJennifer HT says: 798 comments


    Paddles. I need paddles. LOVE this house SO much!

  24. AvatarLouB says: 85 comments

    Oh, this one is SO cool.
    And a basement too?????
    FLW must have bit his tongue about that.
    I’m usually not a big mid century fan, but this one is the bee’s knees!
    And it’s not in the middle of nowhere. Full service hospital in Sterling, shopping in Sterling or Dixon. What’s not to like?
    Very tempting….
    The area has been on hard times for the last 30 years and it’s not close enough for Chicago commuting, so it will have to be a buyer of established means who loves the area for what it is. As I said, very tempting…..

  25. AvatarKimN says: 45 comments

    What an amazing home! And thank you Kelly / OHD – I learn something every time I come here.

  26. Avatarhcatwoodcock says: 42 comments

    I don’t even like this style but I adore this house. Furthermore, I adore it as is. I wouldn’t even buy much furniture to put in it. I may have to start buying a lottery ticket every week! LOVE this property!

  27. SueSue says: 1175 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1802 Cape

    What a kitchen this house has! Like some of you I am not a fan of this style but I really admire his use of space, the flowing lines of his designs and most of all his ability to incorporate natural elements and the “outside in” so seamlessly.

  28. AvatarKath says: 211 comments

    love this style, anything resembling frank lloyd wright

  29. Kelly, OHDKelly, OHD says: 10086 comments

    1901 Folk Victorian
    Chestatee, GA

    Moved to the front page, recently reduced in price. Such a great home, one of the few of this particular style that I really dig. 🙂

  30. Avatarpeeweebc says: 828 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1885 Italianate.

    I’ve saved this forever. lol.

  31. RosewaterRosewater says: 4410 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1875 Italianate cottage
    Noblesville, IN

    It is a blessing that the sublimely beautiful, Cherokee red, tinted, concrete floors remain in their untouched, glorious, original condition. Such a thrill to see this house mostly in the raw without the distraction of many furnishings or rugs to cover the lustrous, rich floors; or otherwise distract from the beauty of the gestalt of materials and composition. The house is a gorgeous gem, there is no question. There is also no doubt that it encapsulates all of the design aesthetics Wright espoused, and his methods of composing them, down to a T. My only criticism is that the actual architect who designed this structure has completely copied each aspect of the design from other Wright designs and has brought absolutely nothing new or original to the composition. Of course Wright himself wouldn’t have minded in the least; and the original owner probably asked for “a Wright house” so he didn’t care. Who was the architect? Who cares.

    • JimHJimH says: 4116 comments
      OHD Supporter

      The architect was Verne Lars Solberg (1924-1992), who studied under Bruce Goff, and was a fan of Wright, obviously. He was given a lot of latitude by the client, his friend Dr. Edwin McConaughy. I think it’s a good design by a local architect, and even if he borrowed a lot from Wright, he still had to put it on paper and get it built. It says a lot about the influence of FLW that his ideas from years earlier were still current into the 60’s. That and the pristine condition of the place makes it special.

      • RosewaterRosewater says: 4410 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1875 Italianate cottage
        Noblesville, IN

        Huh. Interesting. Wonder why the article posted refers to him as a “Disciple Of Wright” if he studied under Goff? Weird. This place is for sure all Wright; and there doesn’t seem to be a hint of Goff IMO: perhaps the use of the irregular, rough stone; but even that –. IMO this house is 95% Taliesin, and 5% Auldbrass.

      • BethsterBethster says: 786 comments
        OHD Supporter

        1927 Spanish
        NY (house is in VA), NY

        JimH, thanks for getting in a mention of the actual architect. I imagine the original owner did want a house that looked like it was designed by Wright, and Solberg complied. I have no problem with that.

        And Rosewater, just a guess here, but Solberg may have revered Wright but studied under Goff because that made sense at the time he was in school. (I’ll have to read up more on him to see what I can find out.) Studying under someone doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll be a lifelong disciple of that person.

        • RosewaterRosewater says: 4410 comments
          OHD Supporter

          1875 Italianate cottage
          Noblesville, IN

          When an architect is referred to as “a disciple of Wright”, in the past, that has always meant that that person was either a Wright apprentice, or studied with The Taliesin Fellowship.

          Let me know what you find out after reading up.

          • BethsterBethster says: 786 comments
            OHD Supporter

            1927 Spanish
            NY (house is in VA), NY

            Apologies—I didn’t realize that “disciple” has that specific usage when one refers to Wright. I simply assumed that the generic non-Wright meaning, “a convinced adherent of a school or individual,” was meant. I’ll watch that in the future.

            I haven’t been able to find much info on Solberg. He was born in 1924 and died in 1992. He graduated from Bradley University in Peoria in 1948 and then attended the University of Oklahoma, which is where he reportedly studied under Bruce Goff. Even though his obituary described him as “1951 graduate of the University of Oklahoma with an architecture degree,” another source alleged that he did not actually graduate from the University of Oklahoma. I found no mentions of him having been a Wright apprentice or studying at Taliesin. The website vernelarssolberg.com has this to say: “While at the University of Oklahoma Solberg and his wife Lois met Ross and Eleanor Graves (whose father worked the land of Frank Lloyd Wright, in Taliesin, WI) – and it was Ross Graves who showed Verne Lars Solberg the work of Wright and Taliesin.”

            Obituary is on this page:

            A very little bit of discussion is here:


  32. SueSue says: 288 comments
    OHD Supporter

    1802 Cape

    I read all they did during restoration. It is amazing. Makes me sad that with all they put into this home it has had to be reduced. This is a perfect home for someone that works from home (which is many people now) or an artist/writer/designer etc. I think people in general are so focused on an abundance of amenities that places like this get overlooked.

    • PreservationMattersPreservationMatters says: 98 comments
      OHD Supporter

      1710 Saltbox>>Greek Revival
      Windham, CT

      I work from home Sue and usually have no problem with focusing on work but at this house, I would surely be spending work days awestruck with my jaw on the floor. This home is mesmerizing perfection. Would love to be holed up here in a blizzard.

  33. TGrantTGrant says: 541 comments
    OHD Supporter

    New Orleans, LA

    One of the nicest Usonians I’ve ever seen.

  34. CandyCandy says: 130 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Carpentersville, IL

    This is soooooo *not* my style but it really is a gorgeous and interesting house! In the owners’s summary of all the work done on the house, included is new concrete floors with radiant heat… such a great amenity … both concrete and tile can get really cold in IL winters!

  35. AvatarGina Hill says: 80 comments

    What a super cool house!

  36. AvatarSusan says: 18 comments

    Wow…just wow!

  37. AvatarRbykrk says: 14 comments

    stunning home

  38. AvatarSandra says: 192 comments
    OHD Supporter

    Rochester, MN

    Fabulous home! Love the FLW influences and I think the architect did a remarkable job being true to Usonian elements.

  39. AvatarPaul says: 9 comments

    I dig any style/ period that was well designed and built. This beauty was is no exception.

  40. AvatarKay says: 8 comments

    My reaction tallies with that of so many commenters—I normally am drawn to old federal and Georgian houses but simply love this house and would happily live in it, spare furnishings and all. I don’t care in general for modern, find 1920s and 30s houses mostly stodgy and uninteresting, find Victorians too fussy—ah, that’s it! It’s the simplicity of really old houses and the very different simplicity of FLW and adherents’ houses that evoke similar responses, even though the houses themselves are so wildly different. Thanks for posting this one!

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