The Most Famous House In Every US State
It’s hard to say exactly what makes a home “famous,” but it’s safe to assume that unless you’re the President or a Vanderbilt, yours doesn’t quite make the cut. That said, America is chock-full of famed residences—you just have to know where to look.
We combed through legions of historical landmarks, did some good ol' Internet sleuthing, and injected just enough of our own opinion to identify the most famous house in every state. We'll see you in the comments section shortly.
Under construction for nearly 20 years, this sprawling plantation is considered one of America's most unusual examples of neoclassical architecture. It was also the site of a historic meeting that led to a treaty where the Choctaw agreed to relocate to Indian Territory.
Russian Bishop's House
One of the oldest surviving buildings of Russian America, this two-story log building was both the home and office of Ivan Veniaminov, the first Bishop of Alaska, who served as a missionary to the indigenous Southern Alaskans and helped double the number of Orthodox worshippers in the region.
Frank Lloyd Wright's one-time winter home is now the main campus of the School of Architecture that bears his name. Over his time on the 620-acre property (which he bought for a steal in 1937 at $3.50 an acre), he continually altered and added to the complex, enlisting his students to construct all of the new buildings.
President Clinton's Birthplace
The modest two-story home is where Bubba spent the first four years of his life, being cared for by his grandparents while his mother was working as an anesthetist in New Orleans.
The Playboy Mansion
Hef's 22,000-square-foot party pad may be looking a little worse for the wear these day, but its legendary reputation as the ultimate den of Hollywood debauchery will never die.
Built in 1963 by architect Charles Deaton, this one-of-a-kind elliptical spread is best known for its starring role in Woody Allen's film Sleeper. Despite the incredible unencumbered views, it sat largely unfinished and vacant for the better part of three decades, until being purchased and rehabbed in 1999.
The Glass House
Legendary architect Philip Johnson designed this iconic glass-walled home for himself in 1949, and it became a hugely influential step in the evolution of both modern and minimal architecture. Rather than create true walls, Johnson's vision was to have the surrounding landscape serve as a natural wallpaper, and if you want to get an idea of what it would be like to live your life out in the open like that, it's open to the public for tours.
Nemours Mansion and Gardens
Built as a gift for Alfred du Pont's second wife in 1909, this 105-room chateau-style spread sits on a whopping 300 acres and features the largest French formal garden-style landscape park in North America. And what was the last present you got from your significant other?
Ernest Hemingway Home
Home to Papa between 1931 and 1939, this Spanish colonial-style getaway is where he wrote several of his classics, including the short stories, The Snows of Kilimanjaro and The Short Happy Life of Francis Macomber. The house, which was the island's first to have a swimming pool and indoor plumbing, is a hugely popular tourist spot these days, and is populated by a posse of six- and seven-toed cats that have descended from Hemingway's own feline friends.
Set on 28 acres, this regal mansion was home to the heirs of a cotton brokerage fortune, and in addition to being one of the most recognized and photographed houses in Atlanta, has been used in a number of film and TV projects, including The Hunger Games and The Amazing Race.
Considered both the most intricate and best-known project in architect Vladimir Ossipoff's portfolio, Liljestrand is a remarkable example of Hawaiian Modern style. It was commissioned by a couple who discovered the idyllic plot—a steeply sloped patch overlooking nearby Oahu—during one of their hikes. If you want to see it up close, it's open for tours.
This castle-esque pad was one of several palatial homes to be built in the town at the turn of the 19th Century, but it stands out from the bunch for having been designed by a different architect than had been behind the others. And according to several sources, it's haunted.
Rose House And Pavillion
The ultramodern glass-walled home featured in the infamous scene where Ferris Bueller's best friend Cameron Frye totals his dad's Ferrari was built back in the early '50s for a couple of textile designers, who were its only residents until a little over a year ago. Apparently, it was really tough to sell.
Another Frankl Lloyd Wright gem, this spread is sometimes referred to as the John E. Christian House, and was built for a couple who worked at Purdue University who weren't as well-to-do as many of his other clients, but worked out a special payment plan in order to get their dream home built. It's a shining example of Wright's Usonian style, and is filled with exceptionally colorful decor, which was overseen by Wright's wife Olgivanna.
Immortalized in Grant Wood's masterpiece American Gothic, this simple and modest farm house is featured behind the stoic man holding a pitchfork and his wife. Interestingly, he didn't depict the actual couple that lived in the house in the painting, but rather later added "the kind of people [he] fancied should live in that house" by using his sister and his dentist as models.
John Brown Cabin & Museum
While it was actually owned by his sister, John Brown called this Kansas cabin home for the 20 months while he was in the area conducting some of his most important anti-slavery activities leading up to his infamous raid on Harper's Ferry.
This 325-acre property was home to Kentucky Senator and one-time Secretary of State Henry Clay and his family between 1806 and 1852. They reportedly kept over 60 slaves on the plantation to keep it running. After falling into disrepair following Clay's, the Italianate mansion was rebuilt almost entirely and lavishly decorated by his son, who later sold it to Kentucky University.
This three-story mansion was home to NoLa socialiate-cum-serial killer Delphine LeLaurie (portrayed by Kathy Bates in the third season of American Horror Story) who was discovered to have tortured and killed a number of slaves inside. The home was badly damaged in an 1834 fire intentionally set by her cook in a suicide attempt, but has since been rehabbed and served as everything from a public high school to a furniture store. In 2007, Nicolas Cage bought it, although he lost it in foreclosure just two years later because, well, this.
Does this Colonial farmhouse look familiar? No, it isn't the haunted setting for some famous Stephen King novel, but it has appeared in a great deal of other art—specifically the Andrew Wyeth masterpiece Christina's World. The famed realist painter depicted the quaint 14-room home house in a great deal of his work, enough so that it was actually designated a National Historic Landmark a few years ago.
Edgar Allan Poe House
This unassuming brick row house was home to the literary icon during the 1830s and is where he penned a good deal of work. It has more or less operated as a museum since 1949. In a weird twist of art-imitating-life, during renovations, workers uncovered skeletal remains in the floorboards, calling to mind the events in The Tell-Tale Heart. Turns out, though, they were just discarded animal bones.
Paul Revere House
Dating back to 1680, this three-story colonial home is not only the oldest in downtown Boston, but was also where Paul Revere and his family were living when he embarked on that fateful nighttime ride in 1775.
Alden B. Dow Home & Studio
Considered the masterpiece of the prolific 20th century architect, this unique pad seamlessly weaves into the surrounding landscape of gardens, and ponds, as if it emerged organically from the ground. It's been considered one of America's best historic homes, and is open to the public.
James J. Hill House
Built by the railroad magnate in 1891, the behemoth 36,000-square-foot house was considered the "showcase of St. Paul," and boasts its own art gallery, pipe organ, and gymnasium.
This ostentatious octagonal mansion was commissioned by the cotton baron Dr. Haller Nutt, who actually died in 1861 well before the home was even close to complete. It stood neglected for decades until it was finally rehabilitated, becoming one of the state's most popular tourist attractions and filming locations.
Jesse James Home
The small home where Jesse James was gunned down by Robert Ford in 1882 originally stood about two blocks away from the more conveniently accessible spot it sits today. The bullet hole can be seen clearly in the wall, which you can inspect along with a number of James' possessions at the museum that's been set up inside.
C.M. Russell Log Cabin Studio
This traditional log cabin served as the home and studio for Charles Marion Russell, America's most beloved "cowboy artist," who created over 2,000 oil paintings depicting life and landscapes in the Wild West. Today, it sits on a compound along with a museum dedicated to his work.
Buffalo Bill Ranch
Currently a "living history state park," this Second Empire-style one-room mansion was built in 1896 by Wild West showman and bison hunter Buffalo Bill, and included a large barn where he kept his legendary traveling shows' livestock warm in the winter.
In operation in one form or another since 1971 as Nevada's first licensed brothel, Mustang Ranch—which started out in four double-wide trailers—has a colorful, controversial, and somewhat troubled history, making it the best-known in the state. It remains employed by a wide range of women who are obligated to offer services to practically any customer who can afford their long list of services.
Robert Frost Farm
Originally owned by Frost's grandfather, this traditional New England farmhouse was home to the acclaimed poet and his family between 1900 and 1911, and he credited living there as being incredibly influential to much of the work produced then and thereafter.
Albert Einstein's House
This modest cottage was home to the wacky-haired theoretical physicist from 1936 until his death in 1955. He specifically requested that it not be turned into a museum, and it's since been home to a number of fellow notable brainiacs teaching at the nearby university, including the theoretical physicist Frank Wilcek and economist Eric Maskin.
Billy The Kid's Hideout
This charming 4,000-square-foot pad provided a safe hideout for the gunslinging fugitive while he was avoiding capture, and any Wild West history freak with a cool $545,000 to spare will be happy to know it's for sale! According to the listing, the outlaw hid in a flour barrel in the kitchen and later under a bed when soldiers from nearby Fort Stanton came knocking.
New York City
Built in 1799 by the shipping magnate Archibald Gracie, the two-story Federal-style home overlooking the East River in Manhattan's Yorkville neighborhood has been home to a majority of New York City mayors since being appropriated as the official residence of the office in 1942. The property itself is actually quite historic too: George Washington commandeered a since-destroyed building on it during the Revolutionary War to provide a strategic lookout.
One of two Vanderbilt properties to make the list, this jaw-droppingly palatial pad is still in Anderson Cooper's extended family, making it the largest privately owned residence in America. It's roughly 50 times the size of the average house in America with a whopping 136,000 square feet of living space, and is worth an estimated $3 billion. Best Airbnb ever?
Chateau de Mores
This two-story, 26-room "chateau," which sits on a picturesque 128 acres, was the summer home for the French aristocrat and entrepreneur Marquis de Mores during several years in the 1800s. Fun fact: among other things, the Marquis was known for being both a talented duelist and a raging anti-semite.
The only Prairie Style home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in the state, this exceptional home was built for serial entrepreneur Burton J. Westcott. He and his family endured a great deal of tragedy while living there, and it eventually fell into disrepair, but It's since been completely rehabilitated and is now a museum.
Pawnee Bill Ranch
Not to be confused with one of Leslie Knope's constituents, Pawnee Bill was a renowned Wild West showman and performer, who for a short time even partnered with his pal Buffalo Bill. His ranch was once the showplace of his beloved "Wild West Show," which traveled the country performing for sellout crowds. Today, his mansion and the surrounding grounds are open to the public as a museum.
Mikey's House From The Goonies
On the bucket list for any Goonies superfan is a visit to this suburban pad that served as Mikey's house in the cult classic. The current owners are apparently fairly cool with visitors stopping by to snap pics outside, though it's unclear how they feel about the rampant truffle shuffling.
Considered by many to be Frank Lloyd Wright's piece de resistance, Fallingwater sits somewhat precariously atop a set of falls on Bear Run, and was built to serve as the weekend home for a wealthy Pittsburgh couple.
Of all the spectacularly decadent Gilded Age summer "cottages" in Newport, this 65,000-square-foot Vanderbilt retreat is the most opulent and emblematic of the era of excess. It's also the most visited attraction in the entire state, with 400,000 people passing through every year.
This two-story Greek Revival-style home has been owned by seven different families since it was built in 1830s, however the moment that made it famous was a historic two hours in 1865. Jefferson Davis, hoping to continue the Confederate government's struggle, assembled the last Council of War cabinet members here, where they showed unananimous opposition to his plan and threw in the towel on the fight, essentially ending the Civil War.
Between 1911 and 1926, this ornate home was the residence of Senator Richard F. Pettigrew, who is credited with helping put the state figuratively on the map, and served as its first full-time U.S. Senator. He was also a world traveler and amateur archaeologist, and transformed the rear of his house into a museum to display his broad selection of collected artifacts.
Elvis's 17,500-square-foot, 23-room residence is one of second most-visited private homes in America behind the White House, attracting nearly 600,000 people every year. They flock to see The King's gloriously retro digs and its grounds, where he and his parents are buried.
Currently a conference and event center, Southfork stood in for the Ewing's mansion for the show Dallas during both its original run and its more recent reboot. When filming began, it was still owned by a private family, but they had to give it up once tourists began flocking. Today, it hosts parties and weddings, and has its own on-set museum dedicated to the show that made it famous.
The Lion House
Salt Lake City
This large but othewise unexceptional house was built by Brigham Young (the second president of The Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter-day Saints) to accommodate his polygamist brood, which by final tally included a whopping 57 biological children.
Author Rudyard Kipling had this classy two-story shingle-style house (named for a pavilion he saw on a trip to Pakistan) built in 1893, and lived there while he wrote several of his best-known works including The Jungle Books. Set on a hillside with killer views, today it's available to rent for just $350 per night.
After inheriting a great deal of land from his father, Thomas Jefferson set out to build his own plantation when he was just 26 years old. The result was a sprawling 5,000-acre estate to cultivate tobacco and several other crops. The 11,000-square-foot house itself—perched atop a small peak in the Southwest Mountains—was designed by Jefferson himself, borrowing from many different styles in a conscious effort to develop a "new" type of architecture for his fledgling country.
Edith Macefield's House
Colloquially known as the "Up house," this tiny domicile in the heart of the Ballard neighborhood was owned by a woman who made headlines in 2006 for being a badass and refusing a $1 million offer to sell her house to make way for a commercial development. She has since passed away, but the house remains untouched to this day, although it's looking increasingly like it may see the wrecking ball sometime soon.
While the original Palladian mansion that sits on this island in the Ohio River burned to the ground long ago, a detailed replica has been constructed in its place. It was once occupied by the lawyer and politician Harman Blennerhasset, who hosted many dignitaries including Vice President Aaron Burr on several occasions. It was Burr's frequent visits—and his decision to set up the base for his mysterious military expedition there—that eventually led to him being charged with treason.
Surprise! Another Frank Lloyd Wright joint. Taliesin was his main estate and studio, sitting on 600 acres that originally belonged to his mother's family. It was rebuilt twice, once after a grisly case of murder and arson by a disgruntled student, and the second following an accidental fire. Not only is it notable for being a spectacular example of the Prairie School style of architecture, but was also where Wright dreamed up many of his most memorable projects including Fallingwater and the Guggenheim.
The Kendrick Mansion
Built between 1908 and 1913 by cattleman John B. Kendrick, who would go on to serve as the state's ninth governor and later U.S. Senator, this 14,000-square-foot spread was a masterpiece of the era, constructed under the skilled craftsmanship of laborers that brought it from thousands of miles away.
The White House
The American president's house was actually designed by an Irish architect, and looks a whole lot like several of his other buildings. Curious what other weird stuff you don't know about it? Check this out.
Joe McGauley is a senior editor at Supercompressor and currently hatching plans on how to make his 3-bedroom apartment famous. Ideas welcome.
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