Jacotte house

All photos: Jeff Baker

Ten years ago, Catherine Horsey fell in love with a house.

Jacotte House

Catherine Horsey

Having spent seven years at the helm of Preservation Dallas, and recently returned to Dallas to work on the sustainable neighborhood Urban Reserve, Horsey saw an article on the house at 3216 Jacotte Cir. and was immediately smitten.

This home is significant in Dallas because it was Howard Meyer’s first modernist house, built in 1937. Meyer is one of Dallas’ first and most accomplished modern architects, known for designing Temple Emanu-El, one of the most distinguished works of contemporary architecture in Texas built during the 1950s; the Lipshy-Clark House at 5381 Nakoma Dr., one of the finest international modernist houses in Texas; and 3525 Turtle Creek Blvd., considered the most fully realized and successful modernist apartment building in Texas, perhaps in America.

Horsey saw this home’s rehabilitation as a great opportunity to showcase how historic preservation and green building practices could work hand-in-hand, and spent a year updating the entire house.

With the help of the original plans, photographs from a 1940 Architectural Record article, and conversations with Eugene K. Sanger, Sr., for whom the house was designed, Horsey restored its character-defining elements and adapted it for resource-efficient modern living.

“The longer I have lived in this house, the more I have loved it—that must be one of the definitions of good architecture,” Horsey said. “What I love about the house is the light—so many large windows that open out to the nearly 17,000-square-foot yard, and the very low utility costs. Howard Meyer really knew what he was doing when he designed this house for the Texas climate.”

This is a three bedroom, four bathroom house, with 2,034 square feet. Horsey is selling it herself for $739,000.

“It’s for sale by owner right now, because I’m going to do my best to keep it from falling into the wrong hands,” she said.

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