Oakes-Wood House

Also known as: Grant Wood House, 1142
1142 E. Court St., Iowa City, Iowa


Historic Oakes-Wood House (Grant Wood) - Iowa City, Iowa

Taken Spring of 2013

Photo taken by Dave King


Street View 


"1142" was what Grant Wood, one of America's most celebrated regional artists, fondly called the home where he lived for the last seven years of his life. He bought "1142" in 1935, following the tremendous success of his painting American Gothic and his subsequent appointment to the Art faculty of the University of Iowa. The Anamosa native was a skilled craftsman as well as a painter, and spent the next two years extensively remodeling the house himself, inside and out, even designing and building furniture. Wood planted the junipers on the eastern lot line and created the current retaining wall out of Stone City limestone. He also rescued most of the original shutters, which a previous resident had fashioned into chicken coops behind the house, and restored them to their present condition. Although Wood's studio was in the loft of the carriage house, now the pool house/guest house, he painted the satiric Parson Weems Fable in what is currently the master bedroom.

Nicholas Oakes, a brick maker from Ohio, designed this Italianate-style home for his family and constructed it of bricks from his brickworks, 200 yards to the south. (See The Oakes Brickworks.) "1142" was completed in 1858. More widely known as the Grant Wood House, it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1978 and was named an Iowa City landmark in 1996. (http://www.icgov.org/?id=1686)

National Register information 

Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on April 14, 1978
Reference number
Architectural style
Victorian: Italianate
Areas of significance
Art; Architecture
Level of significance
Evaluation criteria
C - Design/Construction; B - Person
Property type
Historic functions
Single dwelling; Secondary structure
Current functions
Single dwelling; Secondary structure
Periods of significance
1850-1874; 1925-1949
Significant years
1858; 1936; 1942
Number of properties
Contributing buildings: 2


19th Century (38,000)
Brick (42,464)
Built 1858 (362)
Built during 1850s (4,724)
Grant Wood (7)
Have Street View (47,419)
House (27,767)
Iowa (2,527)
Iowa City, Iowa (65)
Italianate (5,116)
Johnson County, Iowa (98)
Private owner (54,399)
Victorian (19,703)

Update Log 

  • September 1, 2014: Updated by Dave King: Imported photo, added description, fixed category 'Grant Wood', added links
  • September 1, 2014: Photo imported by Dave King
  • June 16, 2013: Photo imported by Dave King