Muirhead Farm: A Frank Lloyd Wright Designed Farmhouse


Learning Tour


Muirhead Farm

A Frank Lloyd Wright Designed Farm Home



Optional though encouraged: DeKalb Barn Tour

9:00 am until 4:00 pm – estimated 4.5 hours for full tour
scroll below for additional information



August 8, 2015

4:00 pm



Muirhead Farm

42W814 Rohrsen Road

Hampshire, IL 60140


Muirhead Farm tour: $15 non-member, $10 members
Purchase tickets via EventBrite

No shoes inside the home.  Photos are allowed.




The Muirhead family was among the first settlers in Kane County, establishing their farmstead on its current site in 1860. By the late 1940s, then owners Robert and Elizabeth Muirhead felt they had outgrown the original farmhouse and wanted something better suited for their growing family of five children. The result was a Usonian-style home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Mr. Wright thought a house should be designed to reflect the individual requirements of its occupants. The Muirheads had many discussions with the architect as to what they wanted and needed in a farm home.

The Muirhead home remains in the family today and in 2003, underwent extensive restoration. In addition to the home, the surrounding 800 acres of farmland is also being restored. Purchased by the Kane County Forest Preserve, the land is being re-developed with native prairie wildflowers and grasses.  Now known as the Muirhead Springs Preserve, the land features a 4 mile limestone trail loop that can be used by walkers, bicyclists and horse enthusiasts.


Located in a rural setting just northwest of Chicago, the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Muirhead Farmhouse is the only known farmhouse designed and built by Wright during his lifetime.

The 3,200 sq. ft. Usonian, built in the early 1950s, is now surrounded by nearly 800 acres of restored prairie. An article on the Restoration of a Frank Lloyd Wright farmhouse.

Muirhead Farm is a working farm with their produce available at Batavia Farmers Market on Saturdays (8:00 am to 12:00 pm)  and East Dundee Farmers Market on Sundays (9:00 am to 1:00 pm) .  They also grow hydroponic crops as well.

Transportation is not provided, though we will help pair people to share rides.   We will introduce people offering rides to those who advise they need them.



Chick-N-Dip, 995 S State St, Hampshire, IL 60140, a roadside drive-in with picnic tables and local hangout with
fried  chicken, burgers and
shakes.  Informal and inexpensive.

OR Art & Alma’s Century Inn, 125 Main St, Burlington, IL 60109, (847) 683-2883

Opens at 4:00 pm.  At the intersection of Main and Central, Century Inn is a supper club with fish and lobster fry on Friday night and prime rib dinners on Saturday nights.

U-Pick Farm for raspberries at $3.00 per pint

30683 Lanan Rd, Kingston, IL 60145,, 8:00 am to sunset.  This is a self serve/honor system business.  No cashier on site. Please bring cash or your checkbook (instructions and supplies provided)

Driving Directions:

From Chicago:
Take the Northwest Tollway (90) West.  Exit at Route 47 (Huntley exit) and go south (left). Take Route 47about 9 miles to Rohrsen Road.  Go east 1/2 mile to Farmhouse.

From Milwaukee:
Take Highway 43 South/West to Highway 120 South.  Highway 120 South turns to Route 47 South after crossing into Illinois.  Stay on 47 South to Rohrsen Road and go east on Rohrsen Road 1/2 mile to Farmhouse.


From Madison:
Take Highway 90 south to the Route 20 exit (Marengo, IL) Take 20 east to Route 47 and go south to Rohrsen Road. Take Rohrsen Road east 1/2 mile to Farmhouse.

Greater Midwest Foodways Alliance is dedicated to celebrating, exploring and preserving unique food traditions and their cultural contexts in the American Midwest. By hosting public events, developing archival resources and generating publications, the GMFA uncovers the distinctiveness of a region that is as varied in tastes and traditions as it is in its geography from the Great Lakes to the Great Plains . Whether indigenous foods like Wisconsin cranberries and Minnesota walleye, iconographic flavors like the wheat and corn from across the prairies, immigrant cuisines from early Europeans to 21st century newcomers, or fish boils and fine dining in small towns and big cities, the Greater Midwest Foodways promotes and chronicles the diversity of the region’s culinary character.

Reservations made via EventBrite.     Questions?  Please e-mail or call at 312.380.1665.


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Learning Tour

DeKalb Barn Tour

August 8, 2015

9:00 am until 4:00 pm

Cost: $20 per car paid in advance or day-of to event co-hosts*.


If you wish to offer a ride or want to share a ride, please advise.


The DeKalb County Barn Tour is a one-day driving tour of barn sites within DeKalb County hosted by the DeKalb Area Agricultural Heritage Association and the JF Glidden Homestead & Historical Center.

Participants will receive a map Guide Book containing hand-drawn sketches of each barn and the barn’s history, style and use. Participants drive to each location in any order for a tour of the barn(s), including many interiors. Purchase your event ticket at any of the seven locations.

Admission is $20 per vehicle (buses extra).


Barn Tour organizers are emphasizing certain points of interest at each location. Addresses will be provided in the Guide Book distributed to tour participants on Aug. 8.


Featured during Barn Tour 2015 are:

  • *DeKalb Area Agricultural Heritage Association, 111 S. Second St., Suite 204, DeKalb: Explore the exhibit, “Barns: A Historical Resource!” What can barns tell us about our farming heritage?
  • *Joseph F. Glidden Homestead and Historical Center, 921 W. Lincoln, DeKalb. Get your guide book signed by artist David Allen Badger. Enjoy a barbed-wire-making activity, and stop by the gift shop inside the Welcome Center.
  • Bortolin barn, Sycamore: home to Glidden Homestead’s head blacksmith, whose metalworking business is housed in the repurposed barn.
  • The Newman barn, DeKalb, was restored by Trillium Dell Timberworks. Representatives will be on site to share information about barn restoration and preservation.
  • The McArtor barn, Malta, is a traditional peaked-style barn with a track in the mow for loading hay. As you drive through Malta, don’t miss the Lincoln Highway mural on the old opera house, now home to Malta Historical Society.
  • Jonamac Orchard in Malta includes a petting-zoo barn used during apple season by Jonamac Orchard. Enjoy a steak sandwich ($8) or hot dog ($5) lunch with chips and soda offered by the DeKalb-Kane Cattlemen’s Association from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Butler Farm II and Precious Pastures Dairy, Malta: Hand milking demonstrations will take place periodically between 1- 4 p.m. at this barn.
  • Butler Farm I and Cottonwood Stables, Malta: See the buildings and display of old and new tractors and other farm equipment. Enjoy a petting zoo with lambs and a mini horse trained for therapy. Horseback riding and grooming demonstrations will also take place.


If you wish to bring locally produced sausage home, bring your cooler to stop in at:


Saturday: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Closed Sunday

Monday-Saturday: 8:00 am to 7:00 pm, Closed Sunday

  • Ream’s Elburn Market, 128 North Main Street, Elburn, IL 60119 Phone: 630.365.646,, Saturday: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Sunday: 11:00 am to 4:00 pm




Advance tickets are available at in person at either Glidden Homestead, 921 W Lincoln Hwy, DeKalb or DeKalb Area Agricultural Heritage Association.


Tickets also are available at each location on the day of the event. Large groups are welcome and should call 815-756-7904 for details on pricing.


For information,visit or