McCook's Sutton Home, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, subject of new book

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The only structure in Nebraska designed by the renowned architect Frank Lloyd Wright, the Sutton House in McCook, is the subject of a new book that will be available in July.

"The Sutton House" spans the 100-year old history of the little-known architectural gem in McCook. Written by Donald Morgan with photographs by John Altberg, it includes first-person accounts of owners' memories, along with original floor plans and historical photographs that tell the story of the large Prairie Style home.

The book is the culmination of Morgan's decades-long passion for the property, that began with his 1964 college thesis.

"Who would have thought 45 year ago when I wrote my architectural thesis, that I would be still continuing this 'love-affair,'" Morgan said, who grew up in McCook and graduated from McCook High School in 1959.

Morgan, now of Florida and Altbeg, another 1959 MHS grad and living in California, spent four days in McCook last year collecting more than 500 images of exterior and interior shots of the restored house for the book. For the next few months, Morgan conducted interviews with present owners Jan and Van Korell, along with family relatives of the original owners, other past owners and members of the community, for little-known historical facts needed to update the 100-year old history of the residence.

The book chronicles the diverse background of the home, completed in 1908. It begins with correspondence between original owners Harvey and Eliza Suttton and Frank Lloyd Wright that documents the myriad details that went into the creation of the house, such as carpenters having difficulty figuring out Wright's innovative blueprints.

The book also includes new details provided by the Dr. Donaldson family, from when the structure was turned into a diagnostic medical clinic and comments from former owners Don and Mary Poore, who saved the home from destruction when they purchased it in the 1970s.

The current owners of the house, the Korell's, have completely restored the home as much as possible to the original design, including modernizing it for today's living standards.

After 2,600 hours of writing, editing and revisions, "The Sutton House" is rolling off the presses and contains contributions from Morgan's other 1959 classmates at McCook High School, including a forward by Sen. Ben Nelson.

Morgan and Altberg will be in McCook sometime in July for a book signing, when copies will be available for purchase.

The publication is 147 pages with 71 photographs in color, 25 black and white and 29 drawings.

For more information on the book, go to Copies are $29.95 plus $6.50 for shipping and tax. To pre-order your copy of the Sutton House 100th Anniversary Edition publication, contact Cornhusker Press at 877-463-6702 (for credit card sales) or e-mail mkkissell@dutton

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  • The house was NEVER in danger of destruction as this article states. Fact checking is a part of proper journalism. Please be responsible!

    -- Posted by BruceKDonaldson on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 8:22 AM
    Response by McCook:
    According to a 2008 interview with author Donald Morgan, the house was on the market for so long sometime in the 1970s that there was talk of demolishing house and building an apartment complex.
  • Your article did not say "according to Donald Morgan", or "according to sources", or even put the allocations in quotes, giving the reader to opportunity to decide for themselves what the truth is. Instead your irresponsible journalism published as it was fact, not opinion.

    There is a lot of interesting things that could be said about the historical building that is not being published or considered.

    Being a news source comes with responsibility toward truth.

    -- Posted by BruceKDonaldson on Thu, Jun 25, 2009, at 7:41 PM
    Response by McCook:
    You can read the original story, complete with attribution, at
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