In the mid-19th century, James B. Waller built a 60-acre estate and on it constructed a brick Italianate mansion, which he called “Buena.” From these grounds, Buena Park grew to become 326-acre district that was officially annexed as part of Chicago in 1889.
Today, the Buena Park State Historic District boasts several original buildings and houses, which create a diverse architectural character influenced by the Queen Anne, Prairie School and Classical Revival schools of architecture.
Among these original 19th century homes is one that Waller had built for his daughters in 1891.
To design and build the grand row home at 4052 N. Kenmore Avenue, Waller commissioned none other than William Le Baron Jenney, the “Father of the American Skyscraper,” who built the home while simultaneously working on Chicago’s Ludington Building (1104 S. Wabash Avenue).
Now, for the first time since 1994, the 4-bedroom home at 4052 N. Kenmore is on the market, listed by Karen Gilbert of Dream Town Realty.
“The home has been incredibly kept in its original condition,” Gilbert is quick to point out. “This is truly a property for those who appreciate restored classic homes.”
Current owner John Horton finished the full walkout basement, which includes both a front and rear entrance, and also crafted custom Venetian plaster treatments for the original parlor—a callback to the home’s era of construction.
Fully original features that have been maintained throughout most of the home include the mill work, hardwood floors, wood-burning fireplaces (of which there are four), mantles, staircases, doors and doorknobs.
“Because the home does not hold landmark status, the new owner can easily make changes to it,” said Gilbert.
Her suggestions for what updates might be considered?
“Many people who’ve looked at the home have expressed that they would expand the master suite on the second floor, to include a larger master bath and closet. It would also be lovely to have a real fireplace in the bedroom.”
She also explained that a family room could be added toward the back of the main level, which is currently very formal.
“The kitchen is very large and if you bumped out the back wall by about ten feet you, could have a cozy family area there, too.”
In addition to its three finished levels and four large bedrooms, the home also features a finished attic space, currently used as a sitting room and office, that Gilbert says could be easily converted to an additional bedroom suite. There is also a detached two-car garage.
Considering its colorful history, beautiful original features and extensive updates, it’s impressive that this home is listed for only $675,000. You can visit 4052 N. Kenmore during the Dream Town open house on Sunday, February 17, or contact Karen Gilbert directly at 773-329-6520.
Most recent information provided by Dream Town Realty.