670 OAK STREET
The home at 670 Oak Street first appears on the City Directory listing in 1927, and was built for August Krausman likely in 1926. Krausman worked for the Elgin Street Sweeper Company, one of the many businesses driving Elgin’s economy in the early 1900s.
August lived at the house for a number of years, still listed there in the 1940 Census. He was born in Michigan in 1878 and married Essie Krausman who hailed from Illinois. By this census, August was also a superintendent at a local manufacturing plant.
This is also one of Elgin’s many Sears homes, which were very popular in America between around the turn of the century an 1940. In Elgin, there was a Modern Homes sales office from 1928 to 1931 that helped facilitate such sales.
670 Oak Street is one of Elgin’s many bungalow Sears homes. Ordered from a Sears Roebuck Modern Home Catalog with all the parts ready to go, these houses were popular for working class families across the country for their affordability. In Elgin, thanks in large part to major industry players like the Elgin National Watch Company related businesses; there are over 200 such homes.
Consumers had the choice from nearly 400 models, this being the Del Ray. Common features of this bungalow are the wide overhanging eaves, decorative beams under gables, with this example also being a cross-gabled roof and one story.
Sources: 2004 Heritage Plaque Application; Audio: TextAloud