Historical Architecture of Grosse Pointe – Welcome to Cloverly Road – an architectural gallery

There are many interesting streets throughout Grosse Pointe. These streets are filled with engaging stories, precious gems by grand masters, a window into the past, along with many historical finds.

Over our series of blog posts we have profiled the following:

  • The pure style of the first block of Bishop
  • Presented Middlesex as the most interesting street in Grosse Pointe
  • Uncovered the Albert Kahn Houses on Ridge Road
  • Delved into the historic district of Beverly Road
  • Analyzed the changing face of architecture on Cadieux
  • Discovered the last remaining summer cottage on Lakeshore

Now it’s the turn of the classically designed homes of Cloverly Road in Grosse Pointe Farms. The first block of this prestigious street offers us a chance to explore the creativity from the architectural talent who completed many projects on this road during the roaring 20’s, a golden era of architectural significance in Grosse Pointe Farms.

The houses on Cloverly present an array of architectural styles, from the Tudor Revival homes with the steeply pitched roofs and intricate detailing to the French Eclectic residences, a very popular style found in the Farms during the 1920’s,

Not only is the first block of Cloverly filled with many classically designed homes, it is filled with an abundance of intricate details. As you walk down the central sidewalk under the tunnel of trees look up and you will see the beautiful copper dormer windows on house number 87, the intricate pattern on the side of house number 110, and the striking chimney at house number 111.

These handsome features are just part of the wonderful detailing that can be found on many of the homes on this road. Grosse Pointe is filled with homes created by some of the best architects on the East coast of the United States. Cloverly showcase’s the work of some of the most prominent Detroit based designers who worked in the community during the latter part of the 1920’s.

J. Ivan Dise was a prominent designer in Grosse Pointe, he created well over 20 homes, along with the handsome sewage pumping station (located at Chalfonte and Kerby Road). The homes he designed on Cloverly are: Number 53 (1928) and Number 68 (1928).

Howard Crane’s portfolio could be described as one of the most varied of any architect during the first quarter of the 20th Century. Known for his design of theatres around the world Crane designed at least 6 homes in Grosse Pointe, three of which can be found on the first block of Cloverly: Number 63 (1927), Number 69 (1929), and Number 79 (1930).

Allen Wright was a talented designer, he created the Headmaster’s House at Cranbrook School (in 1930), two homes on Kenwood long with two homes on Cloverly, including the rather interesting home at Number 93 (1927) and Number 87 (1928).

An active designer throughout Metro Detroit Clarence E. Day created the outstanding home at Number 118 (1928).

Finally, lets not forget the work of one of Grosse Pointe’s most prominent architects Robert O. Derrick. With over 25 buildings to his name in the Grosse Pointe communities Derrick was a notable architect responsible for many superb homes, two prominent school buildings, the ‘Little Club’ along with the Grosse Pointe Farms water filtration and pumping station. Here on Cloverly he designed Number 111 (1924).

It’s not just the first block of Cloverly that is home to such striking homes, travel further up the road and you will find a home by Hugh. T Keyes Number 180; a further home by C. Howard Crane Number 251, along with the one of a kind modern home by the Saarinens, Number.203, but that is another story.

For now lets enjoy the first block of Cloverly Road and the architectural gallery it presents to us. Next time you walk up the street take a look at the collection of exquisite design details, you will be spoilt for choice.


Written by Katie Doelle
Copyright © 2016 Katie Doelle