Having explored several homes on Three Mile drive last week, we continue our journey with the review of eight further homes. The creation of these homes span several generations – from one of the earliest to appear on the street, number 805 (in 1917) to one of the newer homes to be constructed, number 1011 (in 1954).
Despite the obvious age gap, the architects that were responsible were prominent designers in their respective era’s. Given that the change in architectural style altered significantly from the early 20th century through to mid century, it is a testament to the skill of these men that none of these homes look out of place on a street that has such an eclectic mix of homes.
So lets begin with one of the older homes on Three Mile Drive, number 805, designed in 1917 by Charles Kotting. Born in Holland in 1865 Mr. Kotting worked on both commercial buildings and residential projects throughout Metro Detroit. He created several stunning large homes in Grosse Pointe between 1905 and 1930. This classically designed 4,710 sq ft Tudor Revival home has exquisite detailing on the front elevation, and has many superb characteristics associated with this architectural style including the half timbering, brick and white stucco finish, along with the smaller windows on the upper floor. It certainly makes an impressive statement at the beginning of the road.
George D. Mason. An architectural superstar, renowned Detroit historian Clarence M. Burton once wrote, quite simply George DeWitt Mason was “the dean of Detroit architects”. With a career spanning over 50 years George D. Mason created many historic buildings in and around the city, including several homes in Grosse Pointe, 9 of which (that we know of) are still standing. Here on Three Mile Mason created number 1175 for Frank E. Fisher in 1925. This substantial 8,166 sq ft house is designed in the English Cottage style, which was very popular in Grosse Pointe during this era.
Alvin E. Harley. Also in 1925-noted architect Alvin E. Harley created number 1168. A classic 4,500 sq ft Colonial residence, the design of this house was somewhat of a departure from Harley’s more formal designs. Having worked for both Albert Khan and George D Mason, Alvin Harley was certainly a skilled architect, creating many residences’ in some of Detroit’s newly established prestigious neighborhoods – Palmer Woods, Bloomfield Hills and at least 6 homes in Grosse Pointe Park.
In 1929 Harley designed house number 1005. This rather impressive exterior is a combination of stone, brick and wood – common traits of the Tudor style, and at the time of completion the 4,800 sq ft residence was located on a 50,000 sq ft ‘park like’ lot. You can read the full story of this house by clicking here.
Hugh T. Millar. House number 1004 is a striking Georgian Mansion designed in 1928 by Millar, a Detroit based architect. The handsome 5,962 sq ft symmetrical central entrance home has a slate roof, and is an elegant brick construction with exquisite detailing on the front elevation. The living room is paneled in English walnut, while the library features mahogany paneling.
Designed by Clarence Day, number 1018 is a grand Tudor style home, created for W. D, McClintock in 1927. A recipient of a Bronze Historic Plaque from the Grosse Pointe Historical Society this 7, 008 sq ft house features intricate carved wood, a hand painted sculptured plaster ceiling in the living room and dining room, along with Pewabic tile throughout. Clarence Day was an active designer within Metro Detroit, and created several outstanding Tudor homes in Grosse Pointe.
John L. Pottle arrived late to the architectural party on Three Mile. Nevertheless he created two superb homes in the early 1950’s. Number 1016 is a modern Colonial designed in 1952, and number 1011, also a modern Colonial home, was built in 1954. Both homes are attractive brick constructions and are very similar in their design, as the photos below demonstrate. John L. Pottle was a very active architect in Grosse Pointe throughout the 1940’s and 1950’s, creating nearly 40 homes throughout the community.
There are many more homes on Three Mile we would love to feature. If you have an interesting story you would like us to share please drop us a line. Where the eclectic mix of homes on Three Mile Drive is concerned, there is so much more to know.
Written by Katie Doelle
Copyright © 2017 Higbie Maxon Agney
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