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Do You Want to Buy a World’s Fair Steel House?

This image was part of publicity by Good Housekeeping of the Stran Steel model house that stood at the 1933 Chicago “Century of Progress” World's Fair. (Getty Images)

An all-steel house in north suburban Wilmette, Ill., that was built for the 1933 Chicago “Century of Progress” World’s Fair, is looking for a new home. As recounted in the Chicago Tribune, developer Max Kruszewski will pay to have the home moved to a new location.

Kruszewski is looking to build a new home on the site, but he and family members and preservationists would rather have the current home moved to a new location than torn down.

Architect John Eifler of Glencoe, Ill., who has a background in restoration architecture and serves on that village's historic preservation commission, believes the house is a model built by the Stran Steel company for the 1933-34 World's Fair. He said he compared pictures of the World's Fair model with portions of the Chestnut Avenue house's remaining interior fixtures and determined they were the same structure.

Eifler explained the building could be moved to one end of the current lot and renovated for use, and the building's modular nature would make it easy to disassemble and reassemble.

Stran Steel built the model to popularize mass produced steel homes, Eifler said. However, World War II and its all-consuming need for metals killed the concept.

"It really is very intact," said Lisa DiChiera, advocacy director at Landmarks Illinois, a nonprofit preservation group, of the house. "You have to look past decades of 1970s carpeting and stuff that needs to be pulled out, but the essence of the house is there."

Read the full article here.


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