Explore Winnetka Stories

Glean insight into specific topics of Winnetka’s history through photographs, videos, articles and artifacts by exploring the pages below.

Winnetka’s Oldest Houses

Winnetka has an impressive number of houses built before 1900 that still stand today. Learn the history about some of the Village’s oldest and most famous houses.

Winnetka and the Civil War

When the Civil War began in the spring of 1861, early Winnetka settlers felt called to fight. Learn about some fascinating Winnetkans who fought in the Civil War, risking and sometimes losing their lives for the Union cause.

Winnetka’s Historic Churches and Faith Based Groups

Explore the history of Winnetka’s churches from the founding of the first church in 1869 to later additions in the 20th century as parishioners of various faiths continued looking for new places to worship.

Winnetka’s Historic Mysteries, Murders, and Crimes

While Winnetka has long been considered an idyllic suburb, the Village, like most small towns,
has known its fair share of mysteries, crimes, and even murders. Explore the dark side of
Winnetka’s history.

Winnetka’s Clubs and Organizations

From the Winnetka Literary Club, founded in 1875, to the 100 year-old Winnetka Fortnightly, learn about many of the historic clubs and organizations the Village has been home to.

Winnetka’s Long-term Businesses

For a small Village, Winnetka has had an impressive number of long-term businesses. Learn about some of the Village’s notable, long-lasting businesses and the people who helped make them a success. 

Winnetka’s Extraordinary Women

From artists to authors to architects, Winnetka has been home to many notable women. Learn more about these extraordinary women and how they have made their mark on the Village’s history.

Martin Luther King Jr. and Civil Rights on the North Shore

On July 25, 1965, Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered a historic speech, on the Village Green in Winnetka, to a crowd of over 8,000. Read more about this historic event and its lasting impact.

Winnetka’s Architects and Architecture

For a Village of less than 4 square miles, Winnetka has an impressive array of architectural styles. Learn whose visionary designs helped make Winnetka the unique and architecturally significant village it is today.

Small Town Hollywood

View images of famous film locations around the Village and watch clips to see which of your favorite Winnetka sites are featured! Learn more about John Nash Ott and his contribution to film and science.

Hadley: A Shining Light for 100 Years

Hadley has helped thousands of blind and visually impaired individuals learn tools to improve their work and personal lives. Learn more about the development of Hadley and how it contributed to Winnetka’s history.

Winnetka’s Shoreline 

Explore the history of Winnetka’s popular shoreline and what’s being done to save our village’s beautiful beaches.

Honoring Winnetka’s Veterans WWI & WWII

Discover how the war affected people in Winnetka and across the United States, as well as how the community participated in the war effort, both at home and overseas.

Coming Together

See how Winnetkan’s have come together during the Influenza epidemic of 1918 and during the Coronavirus of 2020.

Skokie Lagoons &
Winnetka Future 2040

Explore how this unique man-made nature preserve was created and has changed over time. Also learn how Winnetka created a progressive engine of change in comprehensive village planning. 

Spring is Here!

Discover why Winnetka’s trendsetters chose their bonnets and see how the styles changed over time.

Fearless Firefighter
& Winnetka’s Progressive Era

Glean insights into the history of the Winnetka Fire Brigade and learn how Winnetka was transformed from a sleepy rural village into a forward-looking, modern suburb.