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North Shore

The North Shore is cluster of suburbs on the north shore of Chicago. It is to be one of the best places to live in the Chicagoland area. It is made up of these fantastic suburbs: Deerfield, Evanston, Wilmette, Winnetka, Kenilworth, Glencoe, Glenview, Highland Park , Lake Forest, Lake Bluff, Northfield, and Northbrook.  These were some of the oldest suburbs to incorporate outisde of the city of Chicago limits in the 1800’s.

Driving on Sheridan Road, Greenbay road or other streets along the shore, you get a sense of the beauty of the area by its mature old trees, grand homes and amazing access and views of Lake Michigan.



In 1834, Anson Taylor moved his wife to a bluff near Harbor Street and thus began the settlement of Glencoe-under the name of Taylorsport. Twenty years later, a man named Matthew Coe started a farm named “Coe’s Glen”, or Glencoe Farms. Coe’s son-in-law, Walter Gurnee, who was president of the Chicago and Milwaukee railroad purchased the farm in 1853. Gurnee brought the railroad though Glencoe in 1855 and located the station in front of this house, called the. “The Castle” at 750 Glencoe Drive-(This home still exists today although it has been rebuilt several times most notably a complete renovation that was done in 1997)

The Castle home in Glencoe, IL.

The Castle home in Glencoe, IL.

In 1866, Dr, Alexander Hammond purchased Glencoe Farms. He established the Glencoe company which consisted of ten men to develop the village. Glencoe was incorporated in 1869. A new railway station was constructed in 1891 and made Glencoe a desirable place to live. Many people commuted to Chicago to work and hired well-known architects to design and build homes for them.

There are several theories of how Glencoe got its name. Some say Walter Gurnee named the village after his birthplace of Glencoe, Scotland. Others attribute it to his wife’s last name, “Coe,” combined with a word describing the beautiful ravines, “Glen.”

A Scottish symbol graces the village seal when the town was incorporated in 1869.

Central school was originally built in 1877 and was located on Greenwood Avenue north of Park. When the new school was built in 1899, it was moved to 680 Vernon Avenue. It is no longer standing.

Architecture varies in Glencoe. Many homes include: Victorian,  Colonial Revival, Tudor Revival, Split Levels, Prairie and Mediterranean.

The Alfred Watt house, located at 640 Washington Place was designed by Armstrong, Furst and Tilton in 1928. This home is Colonial Revival.

The Glassner house, was built in 1905 for bicycle manufacturer William Glassner. Glassner held a competition to build a servant-free house in $5000. This home was a prairie style house built by Frank Lloyd Wright.

The Wieboldt Mansion, Tudor Revival was built in 1929, located at 5 Briar Lane was constructed with glass windows and gables.

Strawberry Hill is a subvision within Glencoe with many homes predominantly designed by Greta Lederer, a North Shore developer. The homes were built in the 1960’s and the majority were built as “split-levels.”

North Shore Congregation Israel was designed by Minoru Yamasaki in 1964. This stylistic temple has dramatic lines and high arches that convey a feeling of flight. An addition was added in 1982 by Beeby and Babka.

Am Shalom, a reform synagogue, at 840 Vernon Avenue, was designed by the Spanish Revival style by Alfred Alschuler in 1928.

The Glencoe Union Church is Glencoe’s oldest church. It’s located at 263 Park Avenue. Destroyed by a fire in 1910, the church was rebuilt in 1912.

In 1933, The Skokie Lagoons, just west of Forestway over a ten year period, was built over nine years, with the assistance of ten companies, and several thousand Civilian conservation corp workers. Those workers moved four million cubic yards of earth to create the scenic lagoon area of today.

In 1963, the Cook County Forest Preserve District and Chicago Horticultural Society collaberated to establish a botanic garden for the area. The site selected was a portion of the marshland in west Glencoe. It was once a portion of Robert Daggit’s Glencoe Farm, who settled in 1839. This area served as a watering hole for his herd. The land had to be drained, and sculpted in order to create the beautiful landscapes that exist in the the garden today. Chicago Botanic Garden was opened in 1972.

Started at the rear of Books on Vernon in 1992, Writer’s Theater has been generating rave reviews and national acclaim for its many professional theatrical productions.

In 1965, the Committee for the GreenBay Trail, working with the village of Glencoe, Winnetka, Wilmette, and Kenilworth created the trail on the abandoned right of way of the North Shore electric railroad. The hiking and biking trail extends north to Highland Park and south to Wilmette.

Glencoe is an amazing suburb on the north shore. It’s downtown has several buildings that have been converted over time. Many years ago, a movie theater existed, along with Wienecke Hardware. Weinecke was open for a few generations and then closed, converted to an Active Endeavors apparel store and now is a great restaurant called, “Guild Hall.” Other mainstay restaurants include: Dewey’s, The Red Hen, Chin’s, and Foodstuffs. Other stores include: Einstein Bagels, Starbucks, the Grand Grocery Store and Parkway Drugstore (A Walgreen’s Company Owned Store)

One of the best parts of Glencoe is Glencoe Beach. Opened around 1917, Glencoe beach was opened to the public. In the summer, you can go down to the beach and rent boats, kayaks, swim, and play volleyball. The Glencoe Park District offers many classes here along with several indoor at the Takiff Center at 999 Green Bay Road.

Two large country clubs are located in Glencoe-Skokie Country Club built in 1897  and Lake Shore Country Club which was constructed in 1908.

Several events are held in Glencoe each year-these include the Glencoe Gran Prix (A bicycle race that features amateur and professional bike riders racing through Glencoe). There are stands with food, fun and music. The Glencoe art fair is also a great annual event held in the summer.

Some other facts about Glencoe from the Glencoe Public Library Site:

What movies have been filmed in Glencoe?

  • The Steven Soderbergh film Contagion was partly filmed in Glencoe.
  • The Clint Eastwood film Flags of our Fathers used the Glencoe Metra station in a scene.
  • The John Hughes film Sixteen Candles had a scene filmed at Glencoe Union Church.
  • The film Risky Business takes place in Glencoe, but was mostly filmed in neighboring Highland Park
  • Parts of the film Ferris Bueller’s Day Off were filmed in Glencoe, with one scene filmed at Glencoe Beach.
  • The John Hughes film She’s Having a Baby had part(s) filmed at the Glencoe Metra station.
  • The John Hughes film Uncle Buck had scenes filmed in Glencoe.
  • The TV movie Skokie had part(s) filmed in Glencoe.

What famous people live / have lived in Glencoe?

  • Director Harold Ramis lives in Glencoe
  • Archibald MacLeish was born in Glencoe on May 7, 1892.  He was a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, writer and Librarian of Congress.
  • Actor Bruce Dern grew up in Glencoe on 94 Mary Street (now part of Winnetka).  He is Archibald MacLeish’s great-nephew.
  • Actress Lili Taylor grew up in Glencoe and graduated from New Trier High School
  • Actor Fred Savage (as well as his actor brother Ben and sister Kala) grew up in Glencoe before moving to California in his teens
  • Attorney, author and former FCC chairman Newton Minow was a longtime Glencoe resident
  • H. Earl Hoover, former chairman of Hoover Company (the vacuum cleaner manufacturer), lived in Glencoe
  • Advertising giant Leo Burnett lived in Glencoe
  • Chicago Bears offensive tackle Fred Miller lives in Glencoe, while former Bear Brian Griese lived in Glencoe



New Trier has always been a fractional township. It deviates from the standard 6 mile square because part of the Township is in Lake Michigan. The southern boundary was originally Central Street in Evanston. The northern boundary was Lake Cook Road.

New Trier Township High School welcomed 76 students in February 1901. 12 years later, a third additional to the original building was needed to keep up with the growing population of 600. At the 1954 Annual Town Meeting, the Township voted to appopriate $350,000 from the Town fund for the purpose of erecting a Memorial Library at the high school to honor their lives serving America.

Today, there are two New Trier high schools. New Trier West is the building for the freshman class, which typically is over 1200 kids from the communities of East Glenview, Glencoe, Wilmette, Winnetka, Kenilworth, and Northfield. New Trier East, located in Winnetka has over 3000 kids who are active in academics, sports, and a plethora of extra-curricular activities. New Trier consistently ranks as one of the top high schools in the state and the country.



Single family homes that sold in 2013 illustrate that the lowest home prices occurred from January to March and the highest closed prices occurred from June-September.

(Below are average sold prices in the North Shore that take account sales in Glencoe, Wilmette, Winnetka, Northfield, Kenilworth, and Glenview-Golf)

(Average Sold Single Family Home Prices)

January 2013-$690,528

February 2013- $773,648

March- 2013- 688,398