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  • Writer's pictureTravis Fader

Jackson B. Hallett designed house now available in Midland, Michigan

Updated: Aug 8, 2022


Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


One of the distinctive features of Mid Century Modern architecture is the way the homes were designed to fit into their surroundings rather than intrude upon them. Jackson Hallett’s Dean House is a fascinating case in point as this daring example of modern architecture seems to have sprung from the earth in the middle of a forest of full grown trees!


Jackson Hallett A.I.A. built more than 40 Midland structures and while all his buildings are unique, he definitely has a distinct and recognizable style. Undoubtedly the most striking visual feature of the house as you approach is how it's constructed of many different geometric shapes, all stacked and arranged like pieces of a puzzle. Each piece is different, yet they all end up fitting perfectly together. This technique is called collision of forms, and one might expect that it would create a strange house that looks completely out of place beside its neighbors, but instead, the Dean House fits naturally among the mature trees that surround it.


Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


In 1970, Hallett designed this home for Dale and Judith Dean. The Dean Family owned and operated 4D Inc. in Midland, which manufactured concrete blocks. It then is no surprise that Hallett incorporated the use of this natural material. Although, as amazing as the exterior design is, the true genius of its design is realized once you enter through the front door and you’re struck by the view of the living room through the floor to ceiling glass walls. And that openness follows through to the dining area and kitchen, and really every area of the house. The living spaces seem to flow together just as well as the exterior shapes seem to fit with one another. Visually, there is almost no distinction between indoors and out- which was another design feature Hallett loved to employ.

Photography © Mid Mod Michigan

Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


Cozy fireplaces, plenty of built-in storage, and trim details all from Douglas Fir, a mixture of hardwood, tile and carpeted floors, an incredible recreation room with a wet bar downstairs, and a comfortable sauna which is especially nice given our Michigan winters! The quality natural materials and obvious quality of construction make all of this … just work together to create an amazing space to live.


Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


The primary bedroom suite is especially unique as in 1988, the Deans contracted Saginaw architect Rex Reittenbach to design an addition in keeping with Hallett’s original design. The result is a spacious suite that includes a great en suite bath, a private sitting area with it’s own balcony.


Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


While mid century modern homes can be very different from other styles in appearance - both inside and out - as you spend time in them, you begin to realize how their form follows the desired function of the spaces, instead of dictating it. Accomplishing that while still creating flat-out beautiful design is one of the hallmarks of Jackson B. Hallett's architecture.


Photography © Mid Mod Michigan


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