Historic Roots

Origins of the Eichlers and other mid-century modern homes

Fierceness Within
Immersed in nature—the art of Northern California sculptor Mary Fuller McChesney
That Magic Glow
Once loved, then reviled, the world of neon art is back in lights—from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Clay Artist Thinks Big
Once Fresno's best-kept secret, visionary Stan Bitters finds newfound popularity with dazzling grand-scale art he calls 'environmental ceramics'
Dance of a Lifetime
From her legendary open-air deck, dance pioneer Anna Halprin carries on a free-flowing connection between inside and outside
Pioneers of Outdoor Living
Tommy Church and his brood—creators of the 'California School' of modern landscape design
Sacred Art
Prolific yet unsung, Northern California artist Ray Rice put creative expression at the center of his life
Melting the Mystique
Anshen and Allen's 1950s modern designs for an Eichler competitor unlock the mystery at Sunnyvale's Gavello Glen
On the Threshold of Discovery
When the aluminum sliding glass door made its groundbreaking debut—then ushered in the classic look of mid-century modern
What's Become of the Holy Grail?
The first architect-designed Eichlers, Sunnyvale Manor Addition languishes today with no historic plaque or neighborhood connection
Fielder's Choice
When San Francisco Giants great Willie Mays ran into the 'color barrier'—then turned to Eichler for a stylish new home
Jewelry of Our Times
San Francisco artist Margaret De Patta turned ornament into wearable modern sculpture
Return of the Butterflies
After years of hibernation following their mid-century boom, butterfly roofs are spreading their wings once again
Plastic Fantastic Living
Disneyland's spectacular 'Monsanto House of the Future' combined science, showmanship and dreams
Mogie Modern
Exploring the hidden San Mateo cul-de-sac where creative but unheralded architect Mogens Mogensen left a lasting mark
Bible of the West
How Sunset magazine won over everyday Californians with images of mid-century modern and guidance that lifted their lives
Road to Bohemia
From Sausalito to Big Sur—California's free-spirited artists of the mid-century created magical worlds on a troubled planet
How did a pair of all-steel X-100 'Eichlers' find their way to the Louisiana bayou?
How Ad Men Found Freud
Nostalgic and even laughable in retrospect, print ads of the mid-century underscore the era's genuine desires and anxieties
Modern Living Goes to School
Stanford is an Eichler museum—homes from every phase of Joe Eichler’s career
Distinguished at Every Curve
AIA's first African-American, pioneer Paul R. Williams was the 'architect to the stars' who mastered mid-century modern