A Case Study House

Case Study Houses

John Entenza, the editor/owner of Arts and Architecture, announces in the magazine's January 1945 issue a program promoting new design and construction ideas for the exploding post World War II housing market. The magazine challenges architects to create real houses for Joes and Janes, not concept houses. Each home "must be capable of duplication and in no sense be an individual performance...It is important that the best material available be used in the best possible way in order to arrive at a good solution of each problem." The program is christened the Case Study House Program. Over 31 architects accept commissions in association with the program designing residences on sites in greater Los Angeles. The architects submit 34 designs over two decades. Arts and Architecture features photo essays of the homes with images by some of the most famous photographers of the time. The program continues from 1945-1964 and profoundly impacts public taste and expectations across the country.


Decade at a Glance

The U.S. population increases to 132,122,000 with over 8 million people unemployed. Life expectancy is 68 for women and 60 for men.

The average annual wage is $1,299 and a minimum wage is set at 43¢ per hour. Teachers earn $1,441 per school year.

The U.S. Supreme Court rules that African Americans have the right to vote.

There are 34,500 people killed in auto-related accidents.

More than half of all U.S. homes have indoor plumbing improving public health. The first eye bank opens in New York. Penicillin is developed. This antibiotic improves the survival rate of American soldiers wounded during WW II.

The war effort encourages the development of many new technologies and the employment of women.

The end of the war changes the balance of world power; the U.S. and the USSR emerge as super powers. A new war begins—the Cold War.

Plans for home bomb shelters are popular.