Preservation News Roundup: MAY 2019

Check below for the top Illinois preservation news during May 2019. Every month, Landmarks Illinois updates you on the latest preservation news and provides information on how certain LI advocacy efforts have progressed. You can also receive these monthly news roundups directly in your inbox by signing up for our newsletters at the bottom of the page.

Ebony Test Kitchen set to tour the US

Landmarks Illinois announced earlier this month it had accepted a proposal from the Museum of Food and Drink to take possession of the iconic former Ebony Test Kitchen to feature in its scheduled national exhibition, African/American: Making the Nation’s Table. The exhibit, which will be dedicated to celebrating the impact African Americans have had on American cuisine, will tour the United States, reaching a wide audience in various locations.

MOFAD’s proposal was one Landmarks Illinois received from interested parties and organizations during its request for proposal period that ended May 1, 2019. Read LI’s press release below for full details and next steps.

Read the press release. 


Read more in the news: 

Ebony Test Kitchen to head on U.S. tour
Crain’s Chicago Business, May 21

Historic ‘Ebony’ test kitchen finds new home in Museum of Food and Drink exhibit
Curbed Chicago, May 21

Ebony magazine’s iconic test kitchen is moving to New York, then around the U.S.
Chicago Tribune, May 21

National tour planned for historic Ebony test kitchen
Chicago Sun-Times, May 21

Ebony Magazine’s psychedelic test kitchen to embark on nationwide tour
Archinect, May 22

EBONY Test Kitchen to Tour the Nation as Part of Traveling Exhibit
EBONY Magazine, May 24


(Photo: Lee Bey)

2019 Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois

Landmarks Illinois announced this year’s Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois on May 1 at a press conference in Springfield. Below in this email, we provide news updates on several 2019 Most Endangered sites. You can also visit our website to see the full list of the state’s most threatened historic places and learn what you can do to help us save them!

Learn about the 2019 Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois

2019 MOST ENDANGERED UPDATE: Booth Cottage sold, new owners apply for demolition permit

Just last week, Landmarks Illinois learned the new owners of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Booth Cottage in Glencoe had applied for a demolition permit to tear down the historic 1913 home, included on LI’s 2019 Most Endangered list. The new owners of the home reportedly closed on the property May 9, and following a Freedom of Information Request initiated by the Frank Lloyd Wright Building Conservancy (FLWBC), the Village of Glencoe disclosed the new owners filed a demolition request shortly after. The demolition application, however, was incomplete at the time of filing. If finished, the application would trigger a 180-day demo delay period due to the home’s honorary landmark status.

Read LI’s Advocacy Alert on the demolition application, and check out additional coverage in local news below.


Read more in the news: 

Wright buffs scramble to save a Glencoe cottage by the famed architect that’s threatened with demolition
Chicago Tribune, May 28

The New Owner of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Booth Cottage Just Filed For Demolition
Dwell, May 23

Buyers of Wright-designed cottage plan demolition
Crain’s Chicago Business, May 22

Owners of Frank Lloyd Wright home in Glencoe file for demolition permit
Chicago Tribune, May 22

2019 MOST ENDANGERED UPDATE: Thompson Center included on National Trust's '11 Most Endangered' list

The National Trust for Historic Preservation announced its  ‘America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places” yesterday. Among the sites included on the national list is Chicago’s own James R. Thompson Center. Landmarks Illinois has included the iconic, Post Modern building, designed by Helmut Jahn in 1985, on our own Most Endangered list three years in a row.

Read more about the announcement at the National Trust’s website.

Like LI, the National Trust is urging people to voice their support for preserving the state-owned building by contacting Gov. Pritzker. The Trust has set up a petition you can add your name to asking the governor to include reuse in any potential sale of the building.

Sign the Petition

2019 MOST ENDANGERED UPDATE: LI waits for response from Rock Island County after offering preservation solution to lawsuit

On April 24, Landmarks Illinois sent a draft proposal to the Rock Island County Board and the Public Building Commission offering to end our lawsuit and appeal regarding the Rock Island County Courthouse. As the Dispatch-Argus reported earlier this month, we did not hear back from the County on the offer, and a number of county board members said they were not aware we had made such an offer.

The proposal outlines how Landmarks Illinois, its co-plaintiffs in the lawsuit and county officials could work together to market the historic Rock Island County Courthouse to potential developers. LI has continued to call attention to the courthouse facing demolition, including it for the second year in a row on our 2019 Most Endangered list.

Read the article below for full details.

Landmarks Illinois offers to settle courthouse suit against Rock Island County. No response from county, and many officials haven’t seen the offer
Dispatch-Argus May 21


Read more on the Rock Island County Courthouse in the news: 

More people join chorus of those who want to save the Rock lsland County Courthouse
Dispatch-Argus, May 22

Cecelia O’Brien resigns from Rock Island County Board
Dispatch-Argus, May 23

RICO should explore settlement
Quad City Times Editorial, May 29

2019 MOST ENDANGERED UPDATE: Rockford preservation advocates file lawsuit to save Chancery

A group of local preservation advocates in Rockford filed a lawsuit this month against the City of Rockford to stop demolition of the historic Chancery, which LI included on its 2019 Most Endangered Historic Places in Illinois.

The lawsuit comes after the Rockford City Council voted to deny landmark status for the Rockford Diocese-owned historic building. The suit alleges the city failed to comply with the city’s own historic landmark ordinance in its 7-6 vote. The council needed 10 votes to pass landmark designation.

Read more in the news: 

Former Rockford chancery to stand at least a few more days
Rockford Register Star, May 28

Battle over the Chancery building continues
WIFR, May 28

Preservationists work against the clock to save former chancery in Rockford
Rockford Register Star, May 23

Lawsuit aims to stop demolition of former Rockford chancery, convent
Rockford Register Star, May 16

TRO filed in last-ditch effort to save Chancery, halt demolition
WIFR, May 16

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