52 HAMILTON AVENUE
In 1899, Charles Wolff purchased a lot in the Crighton Park Addition for $750. Wolff was a partner in the Wolff Brothers Company which produced flower and feed, likely in association with the thriving dairy industry in town at the time. Just one short year later, Charles Wolff warranted the property to his son, Charles J., for $3,000. The dramatically rapid increase in price suggested that a house was built on the property in 1900.
In the 1903 Elgin City Directory, Charles J. Wolff is listed at 52 Hamilton, and he lived in the home until his passing in 1941. His wife, Emilie, continued to live in the home until 1959. Charles J. was an active member of Elgin civil society, serving 10 years as a member of the Kane County Board of Supervisors, and an 8 year member of the Kane County Liquor Control Commission. He was also employed at the Watch Factory, working in the train department until his retirement in 1932.
52 Hamilton is a fine example of the Queen Anne Free Classic sub-type. The Illinois Urban Architectural and Historical Survey lists this property as contributing to the history of the neighborhood. 52 Hamilton exhibits a number of the characteristics of the Free Classic style such as its irregular shaped plan with a wrap around full-width front porch with a decorative pediment above the entrance door. Original wood windows of the one-over-one double-hung styles retain its integrity, while the original wood siding has been covered over by aluminum. Historic records indicate an addition to the barn was made in 1926.
Sources: 2000 Heritage Plaque Application; Audio: TextAloud