10,000 Tampa Avenue
November 30, 1945
This is not an answer by return mail—but still, it’s better than I did before, isn’t it? I really intend to improve.
To answer your three questions: 1. I have not seen Mr. Blanke yet, have only spoken to him on the phone—and he did not comment on the Frank Lloyd Wright fee, except to say that he will have to discuss it with Mr. Warner. I shall see Mr. Blanke next week, so I hope to find out then more about this matter.
2. My impressions of Taliesin? It’s magnificent. All of the FLW buildings are so much more beautiful in reality than any photograph can convey. I was truly thrilled to see it. We had a very interesting weekend there. My impressions are more complex than I could tell in a letter—so I’ll tell you about it in person, when I see you.
3. No, I didn’t see any more work on your house. I did not see much of their work, because, unfortunately, they had moved all their models and drawings to an exhibition in Milwaukee. I don’t suppose they took your drawings there, but Mr. Wright did not show me through their drafting room—his secretary did, and it was practically bare.
I’m sorry that we did not see you again before we left New York, but I do hope that you will really come here soon. We had a nice trip back, found our house in perfect order and are reconciled to California for the time being. It almost seems to me as if I like our house better since I saw your movies of it—it made the house appear more dramatic than it did before. Frank still says that the best weekend we had in New York was our visit to your house. And I second his motion.
We were unable to find any land we liked while in the East—it is really too difficult a thing to decide in a hurry. But, surprisingly, Mr. Wright agreed to design a house for us without the land—he calls it “a dream house.” I was afraid that he would kill me for such a request, but he didn’t. I told him in detail what kind of a house we needed, how much we wanted to spend, what kind of land we’d get—and he agreed to design it now for the future. Is it necessary to sign a contract or agreement with
him about it? He said it wasn’t necessary. Did you have any letter of agreement about your house? Or is it usually done merely by verbal agreement?
As to your question about my friend who wrote “The Birds and the Bees” (he’s one of its two authors), his name is Albert Mannheimer. His address here is: 1014 North Doheny Drive, Los Angeles 46, California. He came back here shortly after we did, but he might go to New York again later, for the production of his play. He is now working on its screenplay for M-G-M. I am glad that you liked him—he’s one of my oldest and best friends, and he’s an extremely intelligent, talented and honest person.
Best regards from both of us to your mother and yourself,