School/Masonic Lodge

This building was built in 1874 and housed a school on the first floor and a Masonic Lodge on the second. The photo is from 1878. The school closed in 1951. Visitors can still see the original desks and chalkboard.

SchMas1878Image (7)

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Cuneo Museum

We conclude the Chicago area sites with two classics. The first was a residence in Libertyville IL that is now known as the Cuneo Museum and Gardens. It was originally the Samuel Insul estate built in 1916. Insul made his fortune as creator of Commonwealth Edison and Peoples Gas, as well as head of the RTA and four other rail lines in Chicago, but lost it all in the Great Depression. The estate  was purchased by John Cuneo in 1937 and given intact to a foundation in 1990. Today it is a museum and venue for concerts, weddings, car shows, art festivals and special events. The front photo was taken in 1941 and the rear yard photos in 1926.



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Mineola Hotel

Built in 1884, the Mineola Hotel in Fox Lake IL. was originally a private club for a few members of the Chicago Board of Trade. It was sold in 1891 and remodeled. The veranda was designed by the same architect who did the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. During Prohibition the Mineola was  a hangout for Chicago mobsters, most noteably Al Capone. It is still considered the largest frame building in Illinois, but, sadly, is closed to the public and awaits probable demolition. The first two photos were taken 1911 and 1913 respectively while the Waukegan Bachlors Club photo was taken in 1907.

Mineola1911Mineola2Mineola 1913Mineola1Waukegan Bachelors Club 1907Waukeganclub


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Lake Street Church

For November and December we will be viewing Chicago area sites beginning  with a church, The Lake Street Church (formerly First Baptist Church) is located in central Evanston IL. It opened in 1875 and continues to be Evanston’s oldest public building. The church has all original woodwork, windows, and pews. The pulpit contains wood from the 1814 White House roof. It is shown here in a 1909 postcard.

First Baptist Church Evanston, IL


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Gross Point Lighthouse

The Gross Point Lighthouse in northern Evanston IL was built in 1873. For well over a century it has helpled ensure the safety of waterborne traffic and has acted as a vital link in connecting the Great Lakes with the Gulf Coast and the Atlantic Seaboard. It still contains the original second-order Fresnel lens, the largest on the Great Lakes. It is seen here in a 1906 photo.



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Bahai House of Worshop

Located in Wilmette one mile north of the Gross Point Lighthouse and on the same street, the Bahai House of Worship was started in 1921 but not dedicated until 1953. Construction of the beautiful nine-sided structure was delayed by the Great Depression and then World War II. It is seen here under construction in a 1930 photo and enclosed but not finished in a 1930′s postcard.


The Baja's Temple Wilmette


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Located in Durham NC, Greystone was built in 1911 and is seen here in a 1915 photograph. After fifty years as a residence, it was converterd to apartments and offices in 1961. Restored in 1998, it is now a reception hall and inn.



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Hill House

Hill House was built in 1910 by John Sprunt Hill, a prominant banker whose company occupied his namesake building (now known as Sun Trust Building).When he died in 1961 he donated Hill House for use only by non-secterian, non-political female organizations. The first photo was taken in 1915.




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Hill Building

The Hill Building was built in 1937 and is seen here in that year. It had the same architect as the Empire State Building. It was sold in 2012 to a company planning to convert it to a boutique hotel.




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Duke Chapel

Duke Chapel was completed in 1932 and is seen here in pictures from that year and 1940. It sits at the center of Duke University and is on the highest ridge of the West Campus.DukeChapel_const1_1932




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