The 5-BR, 4-BA modernist exclamation point at 45 Fayerweather Street is undoubtedly (we think) one of Cambridge's more interesting homes. It was designed in 1940 by Walter Bogner, a Harvard architect who up to around that point was known to focus on the more ornate Beaux Arts style. Forty-five Fayerweather marked Bogner's transition to a modernist bent: severe, clean, not a lot of whiz-bangery. Here was the Cambridge Historical Commission in July 2011 (PDF), when considering landmarking what came to be called the Garrett Birkhoff House, after its first owner, a Harvard math professor:
The use of antique red brick salvaged from a demolished Back Bay house kept 45 Fayerweather Street from being a textbook example of International Style design, but the texture of the brick enlivens the strong geometry of the composition. The house is well sited on a large wooded lot, with a conservatory facing a sunken garden that is surrounded by the foundations of the previous house on the site. The Birkhoff House hit the sales market back in September for $3,400,000 (the 1-BR, 1-BA guest cottage was included as well). It had last traded in November 1995 for the very specific $1,116,250. Before that it was 1940 (Birkhoff himself). The 2,755-square-foot house has apparently found its third buyer with that $3.4M asking, though we don't yet know if it's closed for that. Stay tuned.
· Listing: 45 Fayerweather Street [Brattle Associates]
· Cambridge's Birkhoff House Looks for Third Owner Since 1940 [Curbed Boston]
· Our Big Deals archive [Curbed Boston]