470 E. Chicago Street was built in 1887 for Arwin E. and Martha A. (Lewis) Price. Of an interesting note, Martha's great uncle was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. It was told that Arwin was a "self-made man" who led a colorful, local political career as alderman and mayor. He was elected and defeated for the post more than anyone else in Elgin history, and is known as the "drunken mayor" as his antics were a source of entertainment for decades. Price was born in 1850 in Waukesha, Wisconsin. At age 12, he began learning the stone and marble cutting trade. By 19, he married and relocated to Elgin. His first term as mayor began in 1889, two years after the construction of this house. Price's last term as mayor ended in the 1920's when he was in his 70's. Besides his political career, Price continued his interest in marble cutting and in 1896 he purchased the Elgin Marble and Granite Works, opposite of Bluff City Cemetery. Arwin passed away in 1933.


470 E. Chicago Street is an exceptional example of a finely detailed Stick Style house. Of particular note is the lattice work over the second story porch, the sunburst influence in the porch detailing, the variation in the siding pattern, and the finely detailed bays. Also note the stained glass in the front bay and on the west side of the house. 



Sources: 1993 Heritage Plaque Application; Audio: TextAloud