Blog

artifacts

Donating artifacts to the WHS Museum Collection

by Siera H. Erazo WHS is actively collecting objects, costumes (clothing), personal papers, corporate archives, original photographs, original blueprints, and other items that directly relate to developing a better understanding of the story of Winnetka and its residents. To donate an item(s), please contact the curator by calling 847-446-0001 or by emailing curator@winnetkahistory.org. After we […]

Legendary Purdue coach Ward "Piggy" Lambert poses with Allen Menke after awarding him the Ward Lambert Trophy for athletic and academic achievement in 1943.

Meet Allen Menke

By Sally Schneiders Heads turned toward us as we made our way to a table at the Bluestone Restaurant one day last November. Ninety-five years old, yet still standing almost completely erect at 6’5″, my lunch companion looked impressive in a brown leather bomber jacket, tan slacks, and relaxed expression. As my friend pulled out my chair for me to […]

This beautifully renovated home at 644 Walden will be the site of the 2017 WHS Gala event Big Noise from Winnetka on June 10.

WHS Gala: “Big Noise” on a Quiet Street

By Laurie Petersen The theme of this year’s Winnetka Historical Society’s gala is “Big Noise from Winnetka,” inspired by the Big Band tune of that name. Music and merriment will fill the air at the beautiful home and garden of hosts Becky and Chris Hurley. Their remodeled house at 644 Walden Road, designed by Paul […]

The North Shore Hospital, a familiar Winnetka landmark for clsoe to 70 years was demolished in 1969, making way for Centennial Park. Winnetka Talk February 24, 1969.

Centennial Park: Settlers, Sanitarium and Open Space

By Susan Whitcomb The earliest people to walk the land we now know as Centennial Park were Native Americans who moved north and south on the Green Bay trail. In the early 19th century, trappers, mail carriers and settlers began to trod the same ground. The first permanent dweller on the land that comprises Centennial […]

DavidJames2_crop

In Memoriam: David James, 1923-2016

Being the first African-American to buy a house in Winnetka was just one of many milestones in the eventful life of David James. His multi-faceted personality and lifelong work for social justice were recalled at the July 29th funeral mass at Sacred Heart, where he was a longtime parishioner. Born in St. Louis, Mr. James […]

spiegel photo 001

Winnetka’s Spiegel Family: Installment Credit Pioneers

By Tane Beecham For more than four decades, 410 Sheridan Road was home to the Spiegels, founding family of the Chicago-based mail order company, Spiegel Inc., and its iconic “Spiegel Catalog.” Universally known to consumers in the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s, the company opened its doors in 1865 under the name “J. Spiegel & Company” […]

laundry-ad

The Laundry: Still Fresh at 40

By Laurie Petersen In January, 1976 the Winnetka Talk featured the surprising headline, “Doing the Laundry can be fun.” This was because a large commercial laundry building in the middle of the Village would no longer be taking in dirty clothing—it would instead offer elegant new apparel for sale. It would also have stores offering […]

dsc_0024

Curator’s Cache: Burgundy Velvet Visiting Costume

Burgundy visiting costume, c. 1883. Velvet, silk faille, taffeta and voided velvet; ornamented with glass beads and a small amount of chiffon ruffle at the cuff. Found in Collection.   For November’s Curator’s Cache we feature this exquisite deep burgundy velvet suit, c. 1883. It was selected as a companion to Silhouette: An Intimate History of Undergarments […]

jet closeup

Curator’s Cache: Jet Black

Black silk dress c. 1913. Ornamented with embroidery, chiffon and jet beads. Found in collection. First in a series of Curator’s Cache objects, this exquisite black silk dress dates from the early nineteen-teens, probably about 1913. It is both as ornate as a Victorian dress with embroidery and chiffon embellishments; and as simple as an […]