Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designed this house for Karl Lemke, owner of an art institute and manager of a Berlin printing works. It was built during the period between the closure of the Bauhaus in Dessau in 1932 and its termination in Berlin in 1933. It is the last house that Mies built in Germany before he emigrated to the United States in 1938.
From 1933-1945 the house was occupied by the Lemkes. The garden was landscaped by the studio of Karl Foerster. In may 1945, Soviet troops requisitioned some of the houses by the Obersee, including the Lemke country house. The house was used by the Soviet army as a garage and storage space and incurred serious structural damage (demolition of the entrance area and bricking in of the terrace windows). In 1962, the East German Ministry of State Security took possession of the house and further alterations were made to the structure of the building and garden.