Square House, photos submitted 1980
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Ford, Henry, Square House
29835 Beechwood Avenue, Garden City - Wayne County
Other Names Henry and Clara Ford, Square House
Honeymoon House
Square House
Ford, Henry and Clara, Square House
Property Type frame house
Historic Use DOMESTIC
Current Use DOMESTIC
Style Other
Architect/Builder Clara Ford
Henry Ford
Significant Person Henry Ford
Narrative Description The Henry and Clara Ford "Square House" is located on a small lot in a twentieth century residential area in suburban Garden City, outside of Detroit. The house is basically a one-and-one-half-story, mansard roofed, square, frame house covered in clapboard siding. There is a subsidiary rear addition with a side porch. The three-bay, center-entrance facade is distinguished only by a bracketed window cap on the gabled, central dormer. The house is currently clad in narrow, beveled, novelty siding.
Statement of Significance The Henry Ford "Square House" is significant for its associations with a little known chapter in the life of the great industrialist. Henry Ford, engineer and pioneer auto maker, built the Square House within thirteen months of his marriage to Clara Bryant in 1888. Because of its coincidence with the early months of their marriage, it is sometimes known as the Honeymoon House. The building was a joint venture of the young couple since Clara drew the plans and Henry constructed the building with timber cut on the property and finished in the sawmill he operated. In many ways, this little known building, one of the few surviving structures closely associated with Ford from his pre-automobile period, has some of the most intimate associations with him and his lifelong spouse, Clara.
Marker Name Henry Ford's Honeymoon House
Marker Text HENRY FORD'S HONEYMOON HOUSE Henry Ford and Clara Bryant were married on April 11, 1888. Soon afterwards, construction of this house, known as both the Honeymoon House and the Square House, began in Dearborn. Ford built the one-bedroom house himself using timber cut and sawed at his sawmill. The specifications for the kitchen, sitting room, parlor and bedroom were provided by his bride. Later, Ford added his workship, where he often experimented with gasoline engines. SIDE TWO In 1891 the Fords left this house for Detroit where Ford's career as an automaker began. They kept the house as a summer cottage until 1937. Ford then gave it to a friend, Robert Smith, now known for his soybean research. After the Fords died, the land on which the house stood was acquired by the Ford Land Development Corporation. Smith was told to move the house or tear it down. He moved it here on the anniversary of Ford's birthday, July 30, 1952. It was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.
Period of Significance 1866-1900
Significant Date(s) 1952
Registry Type(s) 11/06/1981 Marker erected
11/25/1980 National Register listed
08/03/1979 State Register listed
Site ID# P25294