Homes in the 1960s

Written by skip davis
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Homes in the 1960s
Homes in the 1960s reflected the Modernist era. (Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images)

In the years following World War II, renowned home builders, such as the Alexander Brothers and Joseph Eichler, constructed homes that reflected the Modernist era, which lasted from the mid-1940s through the 1960s. These homes used prefabricated materials and modern architectural designs, which is the simplification of a building's decor However, Americans also bought Readi-Cut houses, which were affordable and practical in their design.

Rummer Homes

Rummer-style homes were created by builder Robert Rummer, who built the first of this design in the Greater Portland, Oregon, area. These homes were nearly identical to Eichler homes, which had become a popular home design in the 1950s. The front entrance of a Rummer house featured an arch that had a similar build to a Swiss chalet. Also, the kitchen designs in Rummer homes were likened to Eichler homes in that the cabinets were composed of walnut-laminated plywood and a white globe pendant lighting fixture was in the centre of the room's ceiling. The differences between the two home styles were nominal. For example, Rummer homes installed PVC pipes rather than copper, and Eichler homes had slabs underneath the houses, while Rummer homes laid a foundation. Almost all of Rummer homes were built in the Portland area.

Alexander Homes

Popularised in Palm Springs, Calif., these Modernist-era homes were designed by Robert and George Alexander, two brothers in the Southern California real estate business. The Alexander brothers began developing houses in the mid-1950s through the mid-'60s that were renowned for their butterfly wing roofs. Their early '60s homes were known as "steel houses," which were one-floor, boxlike structures with floor-to-ceiling windows in the living room. However, building these homes required prefabricated material, so only a limited number were actually built. Alexander Homes also created the "House of Tomorrow." Located in Palm Springs, this house was the home of Elvis and Priscilla Presley in the early 1960s and is commonly referred to as the "Elvis Honeymoon Hideaway." The architects of Alexander Homes were Donald Wexler and William Krisel, who both were based in Los Angeles, Calif.

Aladdin Houses

The Aladdin Houses were Readi-Cut homes that resembled a mix of the 1950s Modernist design and ranch-style homes, which were popular in the American West. The company began to design homes in the 1940s, but Aladdin Houses flourished in the 1960s, when the houses were delivered intact to a plot of land via 18-wheeler. Most of the earlier Aladdin homes were practical, one-level homes, but in the '60s, this building company offered split-level designs as well. Each house had an indoor garage or attached outdoor carport and the designs could accommodate basements.

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