While this little old house on Menomonee Street may look pint-sized from the outside, it's big on charm and history. Built in 1886, the one bedroom, one bathroom home was one of thousands of cottages built after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 to provide simple, cost-effective shelter to those who lost everything in the disaster. And just as thousands were built, over the last century, thousands have been lost or altered beyond recognition. This 780-square-foot home is one of the very rare few relief cottages whose exterior remains mostly original. According to a New York Times profile on the home from last August, a previous owner wanted to add a second floor and extend the home back to its garage, however, due to its landmark protection, the homeowner was unable to make the changes.
The home is currently owned by David Hawkanson, the former executive director of Steppenwolf Theatre Company. According to Crain's, Hawkanson is leaving the Chicago area for the Sun Belt—Santa Fe to be exact. While the home may be a relic of the past, its size, charm and history make it a one of kind residence. According to records, Hawkanson paid $630,000 for the home in January 2007. It returns to the market asking $795,000.
·216 W Menomonee Street Chicago, IL 60614 [@properties]
·Great Chicago Fire relief cottage for sale [Crain's]
·Treating His House Like a Museum [NY Times]