Location Information
(for the W.C. Gryder House)
Name:W.C. Gryder House ["Cat House"]
Address:1212 Iola Road
City/County:Ocean Springs, Jackson County
Architectural Information
Construction Date:1960
Designed by noted architect Bruce Goff (1904-1982), the W.C. Gryder House was built in 1960. It is eligible for listing on the National Register of Historic Places under Criterion C 'Architecture.' Goff was a child prodigy who began practicing architecture at the age of twelve. He became known for architecture that was exuberant yet organic, and his buildings defy traditional classification. The majority of Goff's commissions were in the Midwest, mainly Kansas and Oklahoma. The Gryder House is one of only two commissions undertaken by Goff in Mississippi and the only one that survives. (The other, the Gutman House in Gulfport, burned in 1986.)

The house is included in "Buildings of Mississippi" (2020) (p. 359, GC42).

Brief Description
The Gryder House is located at 1212 Iola Drive and is situated on the east side of the road in the Davidson Hills Subdivision on a cul-de-sac. The main facade faces west. The two-story, futuristic, orchid inspired residence has a concave concrete roof. The roof extends into pointed cantilevered overhangs sheltering second floor balconies and has a centrally located chimney flue designed as a stylized flower stamen. The entrance has a breezeway which extends into a porte-cochere. It is supported by two reverse hourglass columns on the rear and an inverted triangle with decorative radiating poles extending from the sides to the ground and above to the ceiling of the porte-cochere. The house has a concrete slab foundation, stucco cladding, rounded corners and irregularly shaped plate glass windows. The exterior of the house is painted purple to echo the purple tones in the surrounding trees. Inside, the house has an open plan, recessed living area with integral couches and a central, conical fireplace. The original design also included custom tile in the kitchen and bathrooms.
Historic Information
W.C. Gryder II purchased the land from Iola Y. Davidson in June of 1957. The Gryder family owned a chain of shoe stores along the Gulf Coast. After seeing the Gutman House in Gulfport, the Gryder family commissioned Bruce Goff in March 1960 to design the house. In addition to the house, Goff also designed a carport for the Gryder family, but it was never constructed.