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Cornelius Field House

147 Central Ave., Highland Park
(Built 1875)





Significance: One of the oldest homes in Highland Park, the Cornelius Field House was built in 1875 by Highland Park’s second mayor – a prominent local banker, businessman, and an original stockholder in the Highland Park Building Company. While the architect is unknown, the house exhibits exceptional Second Empire and Victorian Gothic Revival detailing, a delicate porte cochere, and finely crafted interior woodwork. The property is surrounded by an original decorative wrought iron fence and contains the original gardener’s home and coach house.


Current Condition and/or Status: The Field House is on a four acre lot and is separated from Lake Michigan by a lakefront city park, giving it unprecedented lakefront views. Listed for $3.59 million, the house has been for sale for four months.


Potential Threat: While the entire four acre property is designated as a Highland Park landmark, many inquiries to date have been in regards to demolition and dividing the property into three lots due to its size and desirable location overlooking the lake and Central Park. Some residents fear that if the property does not sell, the owner will seek demolition approval from the city. In two past instances, the city of Highland Park’s City Council approved demolition of locally landmarked properties. The property is also in the Linden Park Place/Belle Avenue National Register Historic District, which would provide financial incentives but no legal protection.


What You Can Do: Urge Highland Park officials to keep the property’s landmark protection in place.

Other Contacts: Interested buyers should contact:

  • Hilde Wheeler Carter, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage: (847) 533-4533; or

  • Blanche Egan Romey, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage: (847) 209-6106

Photos: 1-6 Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage






Landmarks Illinois
Suite 1315
53 W. Jackson Blvd.
Chicago, IL 60604 
tel. 312-922-1742 
fax 312-922-8112



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