WilliamMellenthinPic200William Mellenthin was a prominent builder and contractor. He built and designed homes in Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley from the 1920s through the 1960s.

His iconic “Birdhouse” ranch homes are still cherished and sought after today. With their quality design, build and materials, these homes were made to last. Although some of the homes have been altered and remodeled, there are still many homes in their original, preserved condition.

Not much was known about the man who built these homes, and little had been published about his life and work. There were a few online articles, one that focused on the pre-Birdhouse homes. Now, with a new book about his life and work published in 2017, A Birdhouse in Paradise: William Mellenthin and the San Fernando Valley Ranch Home, more light has been shed on the person behind these beautiful and charming homes.

When you think ranch homes in Southern California, and who built them, most people think of Cliff May. William Mellenthin was a contemporary of Cliff May’s. Although the two only met once, they shared a common love and appreciation of the California ranch home.


William Mellenthin article at Architect’s Newspaper

William Mellenthin on Wikipedia

Aaroe Architecture page on William Mellenthin

Facebook page – Mellenthin Birdhouse

Wm Mellenthin Builder