During the 1900’s in Elmhurst Illinois the town was growing. There were a lot more buildings going up all over the town. Two building that were being made and or getting ready to be used. Are the Elmhurst College.


In 1926, a young architect from Chicago named Benjamin Franklin Olson was told to make a big development plan for the Elmhurst College Campus. There is an area in the middle of his plan called “The College Mall” then there would be little red-brick buildings around it.

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The “Chicago Sunday Tribune” stated that the College was designed as one of the nicest little Colleges.



The College did Olson’s plan for 36 years. He designed every Campus building. During the Interim Years Olson designed Lehmann Hall, Dinkmeyer Hall and the Hammerschmidt Memorial Chapel. Also Olson designed many more.

Website: http://public.elmhurst.edu/explore/history
Photo Website: http://public.elmhurst.edu/explore/history

In 1912, Elmhurst City Council let an ordinance pass to make a Public Library for Elmhurst, il supported by taxes. Then the Mayor made a nine seat Library Board. Then over the next couple years the Board wrote bylaws that would support the library. The Library will eventually be located at this house.



The new library first opened on March 22, 1916 even though there was a big snow storm 100 people went to the opening. The room was rented by the Park District for $15 per month and the first librarian was paid $15 per month also. The janitor was paid $5 per month. The Board for Elmhurst paid $400 to buy all of the books and magazines. More money was pitched in by the Elmhurst Woman’s Club. They donated $75.



In the small town of Elmhurst, Illinois; village boarders were from, the site of Sandburg Middle School, to the location of present day Hamburger Heaven and a small area near present day Field School. The town was a variety of social and economic classes the high class contained wealthy businessman and strong political officials. The middle class contained the normal working man and some farmers. The lower class consisted of farmers who were run out of business by the bigger distributors.



Website: http://www.elmhurst.org/elmhurst/museum/historicarchives.asp#elmhurst FOR ALL PARAGRAPHS

The business district was and is located near the city hall and important Metra Station. This city center contained all types of stores and shops that often sold clothing, household items, ceramics, and other necessities that the common home owner needed. It was a regular site to see apartments or living complexes located in between shops. The city hall today contains documents, plans, and other important things, but in 1900, The Elmhurst Historical Museum, known as the Glos Mansion back then, was a three story structure that contained the post office, grocery shop, the bank, and the public hall where important legal, political, and social problems were solved in an open debate with the public.



Modern riches, like electricity and running water, often items that many Americans tend to forsake and overlook, were supplied with these forgotten treasures but didn’t take them because the were sort of new and were suspicious of these technological wonders that man had created. Like in the movies involving small towns, Elmhurst had a policman, known as a marshall. Elmhurst had a jail in the back of the public hall were the local con men and criminals were imprisoned. The fire department, which was made up of citizens who bravely volunteered, protected the town from deadly flames.



There are many public schools today including Sandburg Middle School, but back in the year 1900 there was only one school that was open to the public. The main schools located in Elmhurst were mainly Catholic, including the school, St.Mary’s, which eventually became Immaculate Conception. The was also a school named the Proseminary, which later became what many Elmhurst residents know as Elmhurst College.



Even in the year 1900 railroads and rail companies played an important role in the lives of the citizens of Elmhurst. Two rail companies, the Northwestern and the Chicago, gave commuter service to those that would take it, to downtown Chicago. Since the automobile had only just been invented there was no need to pass a village speed limit until 1903.