Stories and Structures: Downtown Winnetka and Beyond

Stories and Structures: Downtown Winnetka and Beyond

Winnetka, Illinois 60093, United States

Created By: Winnetka Historical Society

Tour Information

Explore downtown Winnetka and beyond! This 1-hour walking tour will take you from the Winnetka Historical Society's headquarters at 411 Linden (c. 1859 Victorian) through the Village's historic downtown, along the edge of the Village Green, and back through some of the oldest neighborhoods. You'll learn about the architectural elements that make these 12 structures unique, and hear stories about the people who lived and worked in them.

The Winnetka Historical Society is a nonprofit charity recognized as tax exempt by the Internal Revenue Service under section 501(c)(3).

A donation will help the Winnetka Historical Society preserve our collections, maintain our facilities (Schmidt-Burnham Log House and Museum/Research Center at 411 Linden) and develop relevant and engaging programs.

For more information about the Winnetka Historical Society and to make a donation, visit our website at

Tour Map

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What You'll See on the Tour

The house at 421 Linden is one of many mysteries. For one, the architect of this stunning 1903 Victorian Farmhouse is unknown. The original owner is also a mystery, though records indicate it may have been Frank E. Herdman, a successful mec... Read more
The vernacular Victorian at 455 Chestnut was built c. 1888 by local business owner Max Meyer, who is widely known locally as the founder of Winnetka’s first bank. The Meyer family immigrated from Germany to Winnetka in 1871, first living ... Read more
This whimsical Arts and Crafts house was designed by Charles Haag in 1920 for well-known activist and artist Lola Maverick Lloyd. Born in Texas in 1875, Lola was the granddaughter of early Texas pioneer and landowner Samuel Maverick. The te... Read more
While the building at 801 Oak has been home to Bratschi Plumbing for about 90 years, it was actually built 20 years before the business took it over. This tall, slim building was first built c. 1907 by John T. Brady, a young yet experienc... Read more
This Chase Bank may seem like a typical bank building, but the site has a long history and the building itself is architecturally significant. The commercial history of the site dates back to 1855, when early settler Riley M. Graves opened... Read more
The Tudor Revival building at 733-35 Elm was built by Julius Frederick Eckart, an artist who immigrated from Germany to Chicago in 1881. While living in Germany, Eckart was trained to paint frescos. He utilized that skill when he arrived in... Read more
This historic home was built c. 1895 for Dr. Arthur Murdow, who was the very first dentist to open a practice on the North Shore north of Evanston. He was born in Chicago in 1869. After graduating from Northwestern’s medical school, he me... Read more
The stately Georgian Revival at 500 Maple was designed by William Aitken in 1916. This property was originally owned by the Prouty family, but was sold to Aitken after the Prouty home was destroyed in a fire in 1912. According to the origin... Read more
The original portion of the vernacular Victorian at 475 Maple was built c. 1874. While the architect is unknown, we do know that the house was built for early Winnetka resident Charles Octavius Fox Sedgwick. Sedgwick was born in England in ... Read more
Both the current house at 688 Cherry and the house that stood here before it have interesting histories. The original house was built by E. Ashley Mears, a corrupt developer who built several unfinished mansions, known as the Mears Sham Ma... Read more
The Winnetka Historical Society’s headquarters at 411 Linden was first built as early as 1859 on land that was owned by Charles Peck, who is largely considered the founder of Winnetka. The house is considered one of Winnetka’s best exa... Read more


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