Originally built as the model home for the Northwood Hills neighborhood in 1960, this mid-century modern gem was the result of a collaboration between two architects, Charles Potter, AIA and Joseph Alison Lee, AIA. These architects were clearly influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright’s Usonian Style, using deep roof overhangs and repetitively placed brick fins to create architectural intrigue and rhythm through the clever use of articulated shadow lines. Originally completed for the Colonial Mortgage Company, the owners of the Northwood Hills development, the house was used as an office out of which home sales transactions would occur. This explains the oversized, walk-out Laundry Room located in the basement, which served as the functioning sales office.
Charles Potter, AIA and Joseph Alison Lee, AIA were both graduates of Clemson University’s Architecture Program. Though it’s unclear how long their association lasted, research into office locations suggests that these two architects were part of a larger climate of collaboration in which Greenville’s smaller architectural practices shared resources. Both architects had successful careers in which they owned and operated independent practices. Charles Potter operated out of the North Main neighborhood, having completed another home on this tour (on Stone Lake), with offices located on Wade Hampton Blvd. and his personal residence on E. Avondale Drive. Joseph Alison Lee, a U.S. Army Air Corps veteran of World War II, was a partner of Greene, Banks, and Lee Associates in Greenville prior to returning to his home of Greenwood, SC, where he owned and operated J. Alison Lee Architect Inc.. He designed many churches, schools, residences and establishments in Greenwood and the surrounding areas.