In the early 1950s, Gerald Tonkens commissioned the office of Frank Lloyd Wright to design and build his family’s residence, The Tonkens House, in Cincinnati, Ohio. Mr. Tonkens’ daughter, Nancy, had a cat named Felinus and she requested an appropriate residence for the cat as well, so the office designed this modern cat house in Wright’s favorite color, Cherokee Red.
This important piece of feline design — along with the original rendering shown above — has passed through the hands of various auction houses and antique dealers until recently being acquired by The Feline History Museum in Alliance, Ohio. The museum is a project of the CFA Foundation and houses a large collection of historical feline artifacts.
The new acquisition was unveiled at a reception and tested by some lovely Maine Coon cats. I can’t think of a more perfect place for this cat house to live! If you’re ever in Ohio, please make sure to pay the museum a visit. More information about the CFA Foundation and the Feline History Museum at FelineHistoricalFoundation.org.