Douglas Neighborhood Mansion May Get Landmark Status

September 15, 2009
3802 S. Michigan Avenue

3806 S. Michigan Avenue

Designed by one of Chicago’s most prestigious architects and built for one of the city’s premier construction contractors, the Griffiths-Burroughs House was granted preliminary landmark status today by the Commission on Chicago Landmarks.  The 1892-built home has significant architecture and neighborhood history according to Chicago real estate history buffs.

Located at 3806 S. Michigan Avenue in the Douglas community, (mere blocks from US Cellular Field) the two-and-a-half story limestone home was designed by Solon S. Beman, noted architect of the planned company town of Pullman, in the Chateauesque architectural style, which was popular for high-style mansions during the last quarter of the 19th century.

The building was built as the residence of building contractor John W. Griffiths, whose company constructed many of Chicago’s most iconic structures, including Union Station, the Merchandise Mart, and the Civic Opera House Building.

After Griffith’s death in 1937, the house became headquarters to the Quincy Club, an important clubhouse for African-American railroad workers and their families, and in 1959, it became the first home of the DuSable Museum of African-American History, considered the nation’s oldest and one of its most important museums dedicated to African-American history. The building today remains the home of Dr. Margaret Burroughs, who founded the museum with her late husband Charles.

“In addition to its architecture and architect, the house is significant for its associations with the development of one of Chicago’s most prestigious residential streets and its later role supporting the city’s African-American community,” said Patricia A. Scudiero, commissioner of the Department of Zoning and Land Use Planning.

Detailed with Gothic-style ornament, the house is a significant local example of the Chateauesque architectural style, characterized by massive masonry construction, high-pitched hipped roofs, and a variety of vertical elements including dormers, spires, finials, turrets, and chimneys.

About The Author

Read All Stories By Mitch Levinson

Mitch Levinson is the author of “Internet Marketing: The Key to Increased New Home Sales” published by BuilderBooks. He is an Internet marketing expert with expertise in search engine optimization, website development, email marketing, social media and CRM consulting services. He is known for creating effective programs that can be tracked through analytics to prove effectiveness and ROI. Mitch is founder and president of MLC New Home Marketing and MLC FlatFee Realty, as well as managing partner of mRELEVANCE, LLC, a Marketing, Communication, Interactive agency with offices in Chicago and Atlanta. He currently leads the Chicago team. A Multi-Million Dollar Sales Producer who earned an MBA in Computer Information Systems and eCommerce, he brings a unique perspective and experience to the field of real estate communications. Mitch combines the two interests in order to help home builders and developers gain a competitive advantage through the Internet and technology. When he isn’t behind a computer, he enjoys participating in sports and coaching his kids’ teams. Mitch resides in Arlington Heights, Ill., a northwest suburb of Chicago, with his family, which includes two rambunctious labs. Visit my Google+ profile.

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