There are several auxiliary or "outer" buildings on the grounds of Ford House that were built in the same style as or one compatible to the Main Residence. All of these buildings are usually open to the public as part of a house tour or grounds admission, but the outer buildings are temporarily closed to visitors due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Grounds passes are available.
The Recreation Building, also referred to as the "pool house," is situated near the pool and contains a living room, kitchen, separate changing rooms for men and women and a squash court with a spectator's gallery. A tennis court located just outside the Rec Building was eliminated after the children were married. This area was also used as a place where lawn games and activities could be enjoyed near the Rec Building.
For the young visitor, the most fascinating building on the grounds is the charming Playhouse, a 2/3 scale Tudor-like house situated near the south edge of the Meadow. A gift from her grandmother Clara, it was built in 1930 for Josephine's seventh birthday. The house contains miniature furnishings in the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom and sitting room. Three sides of the second-story gable ends of the Playhouse are decorated in high-relief stucco with characters from well-known nursery rhymes, such as Old King Cole, The Cow that Jumped Over the Moon and Little Miss Muffet.
Edsel's Power House
Fashioned in the Cotswold style, the cottage-like appearance of the Power House conceals its utilitarian purpose of providing power and heat. The main house and Power House are today still heated by two of the original boilers installed in 1927. A third boiler was used to heat the pool, but has not been used since Mrs. Ford's death in 1976. The Power House is connected to the main house by a 160-foot underground tunnel.
The Gate Lodge, a familiar landmark on Lake Shore Road, was created with the same Briar Hill sandstone exterior, leaded-glass windows and hand-split stone-shingled roof as the main house. The Gate Lodge contains two generous apartments that were once used for staff members and their families and a small apartment in the archway over the drive. This is also connected to Edsel's Garage (temporary Visitor Center) and the South Cottage.