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Chicago Events This Week In Architecture and History

By Jenn Harrman on December 9, 2014


This week in architecture and history events in Chicago we feature a lecture on servant life in Chicago, a lecture and discussion the new Jens Jensen documentary, and a holiday inspired Frank Lloyd Wright Tour.

glessner house chicago prairie avenue
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Explore Chicago. Web. 2 Feb. 2011.

1. Exploring the Lives of the Glessners’ Servants – LECTURE

1800 S. Prairie Ave. – Tuesday, Dec 9th, 7:00pm

$10 per person / $8 for members – reservations recommended 312.326.1480

One of my favorite memories of the Glessner House on Chicago’s historic Prairie Avenue was learning the stories of the servants and how they moved about the Richardsonian Romanesque marvel. From the hidden hallways to the narrow staircase, these design elements reference a different time in Chicago’s history of which the Glessners managed to keep keen record. Executive Director William Tyre engages guests in a presentation on the lives of the home’s servants from who they were to what they did from day to day. To add some live history to the presentation, Tyre will be joined by photos and stories from the granddaughter of one of the Glessner family maids, who served the family in the 1910s.

2. “Jens Jensen The Living Green Project” – A Pathway to Action – WALTER NETSCH LECTURE SERIES

78 E. Washington St., Claudia Cassidy Theater – Thursday, Dec 11th, 12:15pm-1:00pm

FREE – reservations recommended [email protected]

Frank Lloyd Wright might be the big name in Chicago Prairie School architecture, but Jens Jensen was known as the main guy for Prairie School landscapes. He is known in Chicago for many of his designs including Columbus Park, Douglas Park and Lincoln Park. In addition to his contributions in the field of landscape architecture, Jensen was the Midwest’s first great natural conservationist. This Thursday, Carey Lundin, well-known director, will discuss her award-winning documentary “Jens Jensen The Living Green” and how she intends to bring the piece to a national audience.

3. Holidays at the Home and Studio – TOUR

951 Chicago Ave., Oak Park, IL – Saturday, Dec 13th, 9am-11am


Curious about how Frank Lloyd Wright might have enjoyed the holidays in his Oak Park home? Join youth volunteers for a free holiday tour of the Home and Studio decorated as it was when the Wright family lived there during the late 1800s and early 1900s. The highlight of the decorations include a 12-foot, Victorian-style tree and there are even Wright history-inspired toys for kids to play with in the drafting room. This family event is also totally free and no tickets are required. Certainly a unique way to experience the master of the Prairie School.


Chicago Detours offers guided walking and bus tours of architecture, history and culture to public and private groups. We are a passionate team of educators, historians, artists and storytellers, and are proud to be one of very few tour companies in Chicago that is rated five stars on both Google and TripAdvisor.


Call: 312.350.1131
E-Mail: [email protected]