History for Lunch! Designing a House the Wright Way: An Iowa City Architectural Treasure on the National Register of Historic Places


Wednesday, February 12, 2014 - 6:00am to 7:00am


State Historical Society of Iowa, 402 Iowa Ave., Iowa City

History for Lunch lecture by Roland Wehner.

Description: Those who travel north of Iowa City on Highway 1 are often intrigued by a house with distinctive roof lines situated on the knoll of a hill surrounded by trees. Now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this Iowa landmark is reminiscent of the popular Prairie School style of architecture. Iowa architect Roland Wehner and his wife Marilyn designed and built their house off Highway 1 in 1959. Design features, including the use of stone quarried in Stone City or the cantilevered porch balcony, enhance the beauty of the home. Roland Wehner will give an illustrated talk about their adventures in creating this house; and the issues, circumstances, and philosophy that most influenced the design. Wehner will review the characteristics of this rural site, ways in which the work and writings of Frank Lloyd Wright influenced the design, and the role that the equilateral triangle played in the planning process.

Biographical: Roland Wehner is a noted Iowa architect responsible for designing and renovating numerous public buildings including schools, churches, county courthouses, jails, and retirement homes. An Illinois native, he grew up in Oakville, Iowa, and attended Iowa State College in Ames, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1954. After his marriage in 1956, Wehner moved to Iowa City with his wife Marilyn and started working with architect Henry L. Fisk. They formed a partnership in 1960, and after Fisk's death, Wehner created a firm with his college classmate, Harvey Henry. Over the next three decades, his firm went by various names, such as Wehner, Nowysz, Pattschull, Pffiffner, and a state-wide reputation for excellence was established. Roland Wehner retired in the mid-1990s but continues to pursue his interest in photography and architecture, helping to design and build about 25 houses for Habitat for Humanity. 

Seated is limited.  Call (319) 335-3911 for more information.


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