The John and Catherine Christian House, Samara
In the early 1950s, Purdue University professor Dr. John Christian and his wife Catherine dreamed of a home that would serve both their desire to entertain faculty, staff, and students and be a lasting structure that would grow with their family. Research, perseverance, and a touch of luck led the Christians to Frank Lloyd Wright with whom they built their dream home.
The John and Catherine Christian House, commonly known as Samara, is one of the most complete Frank Lloyd Wright homes in the United States. Nestled in one of Indiana’s most historically significant cities, the 2,200 square-foot Samara was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 2015. The home affords national and international visitors of all ages the rare and immersive opportunity to experience Mr. Wright’s fully realized Usonian design just as if they were guests of the family.
Samara, named for the winged seeds found in pinecones, was completed in 1956 near the end of Mr. Wright’s career. The home was built on a modest budget and with the caveat that the clients would see the famous architect’s designs through to full completion.
John and Catherine held true to this commitment and the architect’s vision. Samara is an approachable and educational work of art that proudly features more than 40 of Mr. Wright’s architectural innovations and plays host to thousands of visitors annually.
Today, Indiana Landmarks co-stewards Samara with the John E. Christian Family Memorial Trust, Inc., working to preserve the extraordinary property and share its remarkable story.
Halfway between two of America’s most architecturally important cities
Samara is located close to Interstate 65 in West Lafayette, Indiana (the home of Purdue University). This places it approximately halfway between Chicago, Illinois and Columbus, Indiana, two of America’s most architecturally important cities.
A trip to Samara pairs perfectly with a visit to one of the area’s local restaurants or cultural attractions.
Samara in 2023
We’re pleased to reopen Samara to the public, following a year-long, $2 million restoration that addressed structural and mechanical challenges at the National Historic Landmark. Tours are now offered on a regular basis for the first time, rather than by appointment. Make your reservation now.
Donate to Samara
Help us preserve this extraordinary property and share its story by making your tax deductible donation via Indiana Landmarks. Make sure to note the donation is for “Samara” in the “Leave a comment” box.