Frank Lloyd Wright is probably the most famous American architect, and his most renowned building is a house in Mill Run, Pennsylvania, called Fallingwater. Wright designed the house in 1935 for Mr. and Mrs. Edgar J. Kaufmann of Pittsburgh. It was completed in 1939. The location for the building was inspired by Edgar Kaufmann's love for the waterfall on Bear Run, the stream that runs through these serene woods. Wright also recognized the beauty of the location, and immediately visualized a house with cantilevered balconies on the rock bank over the waterfall.

The Kaufmann family used Fallingwater as a vacation and weekend home from 1939 until the 1950s. In 1963, the son, Edgar Kaufmann, Jr., a curator at New York's Museum of Modern Art, entrusted the family home to the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy. Fallingwater became the gem of Wright's organic architecture school. A 1991 survey of the American Institute of Architects members judged it the all-time-best work of American architecture.

Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater
©1996 Terry Way, Commonwealth Media.
Frank Lloyd Wright's Fallingwater.

Today Fallingwater is open to the public and contains the original Wright-designed furnishings and the Kaufmanns' superb modern and Japanese art collections. And, of course, there are the exterior views of the place, which suggest that art and nature are not so very far apart.

Fallingwater Information

Address: Rt. 381 between the villages of Mill Run and Ohiopyle
Mill Run, PA
Telephone: 724/329-8501
Hours of Operation: Mid-Mar. - Late Nov., 10 a.m. - 4 p.m., Tue. - Sun.
Admission: $16 adults; $10 kids

To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:

  • Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
  • Pennsylvania State Guide: Learn about Mobil Travel Guide-rated hotels and restaurants in Pennsylvania, as well as other recreational activities.
  • Scenic Drives: For those who think that getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the country.