Stevens, Mary Otis

Mary Otis Stevens

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  • BA, Smith College (1949)
  • M.Arch, MIT (1956)

Years of practice

1950– (estimated)


  • The Architectural Collaborative (TAC), Boston, MA
  • (1969) Founder, Publisher, i press
  • Office of Thomas McNulty
  • (1974) Architect, Founder, Design Guild, Cambridge, MA
  • (1973-) Teacher, Boston Architectural Center, Boston, MA

Location of architect’s archive

MIT, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University


Massachusetts, residential


Early life and education

Mary Otis Stevens was born in 1928 in New York City. She attended Smith College, where she majored in Philosophy. She attended MIT and recieved her masters in Architecture. In her early work at the Architectural Collaborative, she worked with German Architect Walter Gropius, who became famous for his Bauhaus school.

Career in Architecture

Otis Stevens married architect and fellow MIT graduate Thomas McNulty in 1958, working with him from 1956-1968. During their collaborative years, the couple built a home for them and their three children, which became known and the Lincoln Home (1965). The home was featured in Architectural Forum, Deutsche Bauzeitung (Germany), Architecture d’Aujourd’hui (France),  Life Magazine, Elle Magazine, and The L.A. Times. The house was recognized for its unique use of poured concrete and glass as its main building materials.

Major Buildings and Projects

  • Gallatin House , Kittery Point, Maine
  •  Residence for M.O. Stevens and T. McNulty, Lincoln, Massachusetts, (demolished in 2001)


Paper by: McNulty, Thomas F., and Mary Otis Stevens. World of Variation. MIT Press: Cambridge: August 1978.


  • Susana Torre. Building Utopia: Mary Otis Stevens and the Lincoln, Massachusetts, House. Impossible to Hold: Women and Culture in the 1960s, p.29-42. New York University Press.
  • Liane Lefaivre. Living Outside the Box: Mary Otis Stevens and Thomas McNulty’s Lincoln House. Harvard Design Magazine, No. 24, Spring/Summer 2006.

Institutional Affiliations

  • Smith College, (Bachelor of Philosophy, 1949)
  • MIT, (M.Arch, 1956) thesis:an urban study of Boston’s waterfront, a project that replaced her initial thesis proposal for the design of a prison.
  • Member, Architects for Social Responsibility
  • AIA