In March of 1923 Ruth Snow Lord purchased property along Douglas Avenue from Minna and Henry Ackemann. She and her husband, Ralph Sherman, were first listed as owners of 721 Douglas Avenue in the 1923-24 Elgin City Directory.

In 1925, R. Sherman Lord partnered with William Graf Jr. to start L-G Chevrolet Sales Company, a popular business during the boom years of the early 1920s. As business grew, so too did their operations as the pair expanded onto S. Grove avenue. Not long after Graf moved on from the business and Lord changed the name to Lord Motor Company, the crash of October 1929 hit hard, requiring Lord to take out mortgages on his Douglas Avenue home to stay afloat.

In 1939, the Lord family sold 721 Douglas to John and Mildred Amis. In 1934, Mildred Amis ran as a Democrat for County Superintendent of Schools. Her opponent was E. Earl McCoy, a republican and assistant County Superintendent of schools. The candidate to which Mrs. Amis lost her election.

In 1944, the Amis family sold the house to James and Constance Harris who kept the home for nearly 35 years before selling.


721 Douglas Avenue is a nice example of a stucco Colonial Revival. Typical Colonial Revival features dominate includes the height of 2 stories, the accentuated front door with a portico, and a symmetrical façade with windows exhibited in pairs. The sidelights flanking the front door and sunburst transom add additional characteristics common to this style. The one-story sun porch on the south end of the house is a 1935 addition.

The home is considered as a significant and contributing structure to the Spring-Douglas Historic District, a nationally recognized district in which it resides.



Sources: 1999 Heritage Plaque Application; Audio: TextAloud