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September 15, 2008 / Bo Mackison

Seth Peterson Cottage, a Frank Lloyd Wright Design

Seth Peterson Cottage designed by Frank Lloyd Wright

Seth Peterson Cottage designed by Frank Lloyd Wright

This cottage sits on a bluff overlooking Mirror Lake near Lake Delton, Wisconsin. It was one of Wright’s last commissions, and was completed in 1959, the year of Wright’s death. Very little was published about this building when it was originally constructed. However, when the building was rehabbed in the late 1980s, it became clear that the work was architecturally significant. Even though the cottage is small – only 880 square feet – Wright’s chief assistant, William Wesley Peters, claimed this building had “more significant architecture per square foot than any building Wright ever built.”

Main Room in Seth Peterson Cottage

Main Room in Seth Peterson Cottage

The cottage is typically Usonian, Wright’s plan for providing affordable housing. It features a combined living room/dining room with a central fireplace, a minuscule kitchen, a small bedroom and bath. The main room feels amazingly large since it features a sloped roof. The room’s height measures only 6 feet 8 inches at the wall behind the sofa, but rises to 12 feet on the opposite wall of windows.

Wall of Windows

Wright often mitered two panes of glass to make a corner. The decorative wood pieces near the ceiling were representational of pine boughs, but they are in actuality load bearing struts.

This cottage is located in Mirror Lake State Park and is open to the public for tours on the second Sunday of each month, and can be rented for overnight use. It provides a unique opportunity to actually “reside” in a Frank Lloyd Wright home.


  1. Gandalf / Sep 15 2008 8:16 am

    Beautiful “cottage,” and such a wonderful opportunity to stay in an FLLW building.

  2. Anna Surface / Sep 15 2008 8:25 am

    Now that is simply amazing! I really like how two panes of glass make a corner. I would love to rent this cottage for a few days! My imagination would go wild along with my camera. Enjoyed this post, Bo. 🙂

  3. Marcie / Sep 15 2008 12:11 pm

    Thanks so much for this Wright house tour. I’ve always been a big fan of his work..but never before heard of this cottage. Wonderful images!!!

  4. lady.percy / Sep 16 2008 5:33 pm

    That place looks really cool. Wright did some pretty cool things.

  5. Bo / Sep 18 2008 6:38 pm

    I decided to make a reservation for the cottage. It’s expensive – $250 for the night – but how often can you rent a Frank Lloyd Wright home, and then set everything up the way you want to photograph it. I simply cannot resist. And since the first reservation is for November 2009, I have plenty of time to save all my quarters.

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