380 Congdon Avenue was built by Elgin builder, Roy Covey, in 1936 for Alfred J. and Carolyn (Carrie) A. Rinehimer Stiles.  Carolyn A. Rinehimer Stiles was a sister to C.A. Rinehimer, a principal of the former Rinehimer Brothers Manufacturing Company. The Rinehimer Brothers Manufacturing Company was a millwork and manufacturing company who made wooden lockers for the Navy, doors and window frames for military installations and wood pipes for the Army Corps of Engineers during World War II. The manufacturing company's building was razed in July of 1966 for the Elgin's city hall - municipal complex. Alfred passed away in 1944 which led to Carolyn renting out the home until it was sold in 1947 to John A. and Jeanne C. Newkirk.


380 Congdon Avenue is an example of a Cape Cod in the Colonial Revival style. This simple, affordable style was particularly popular during the depression years between 1930 and 1940. It is a simple frame home designed with a rectangular footprint, a steep gabled roof, symmetrical appearance with a front entryway centered. 

When it was new, this home was featured in the August 1937 issue, Volume 5, #3 of The Fox Valley Mirror and the caption stated that, "even the modern, the more modest cottages have distinction." By today's standards this is an older home, but in its time it was a state of the art, modern structure with an attached garage (rarely seen prior to the 1930s).



Sources: 2010 Heritage Plaque Application; Audio: TextAloud