Glessner House Museum offers guided tours of Glessner House (1886), a National Historic Landmark and Clarke House (1836), the City's oldest surviving building located in the adjacent Chicago Women's Park and Gardens. Tours are led by trained docents and last approximately one hour in each house. All tours begin at our Visitor's Center located at Glessner House Museum and are timed so that the two houses may be toured back-to-back.
are open year-round, except for major holidays.
1:00 and 3:00 pm
at 12:00 noon and 2:00 pm
July 19, 2015
August 16, 2015
September 20, 2015
(Tours begin at 2:00pm)
Also available by appointment for groups of 10 or more.
Starting Point: Glessner House Museum
for museum members
Check back often for details
on more exciting events and programs!
IMPORTANT NOTE REGARDING PARKING
Parking is available for all special events (NOT regular tours or Prairie Avenue Walking Tours) in a parking lot located on the west side of Indiana Avenue, one block south of 18th Street. Look for signs that read "MUSEUM PARKING ONLY." A greeter at the gate will provide you with the necessary parking permit when you arrive at the lot.
Museums Decorated for Christmas
Wednesday November 26, 2014 through Sunday January 4, 2015
Available for viewing during normal public tours and during our special Candlelight Tours (see below); group tours for 10 or more by appointment
Experience a traditional 19th century Christmas at the Clarke and Glessner House Museums this holiday season, and learn about the origins of many of our beloved traditions.
Opening of the John J. 'Jack' Simmerling Gallery of Prairie Avenue History
Monday December 1, 2014
Reception at 6:30pm, program at 7:00pm
Reservations requested to 312-326-1480
Jack Simmerling (1935-2013) had a passion for Prairie Avenue that began as a young boy when his grandfather first brought him there to visit a friend living in the coach house of the old Marshall Field mansion. As a teenager, Simmerling started amassing a collection of architectural fragments from the grand homes of Prairie Avenue as he sadly watched them fall to the wreckers ball. A talented and nationally-recognized artist, he preserved these homes in numerous artworks that captured the glory days of the "sunny street that held the sifted few." Simmerling's huge collection of Prairie Avenue artifacts and artworks were gifted to Glessner House to create a permanent gallery showcasing the history of Prairie Avenue. Join us on what would have been Jack's 79th birthday as we officially open the Simmerling Gallery and marvel in the rich legacy he left for all of us to enjoy.
Exploring the Lives of the Glessners' Servants
Tuesday December 9, 2014 at 7:00pm
$10 per person/$8 for museum members
Reservations suggested to 312-326-1480
The Glessners left a rich archive of materials documenting their lives and the creation of the landmark home designed by architect H. H. Richardson. They also left behind a wealth of material about the servants who lived and worked at 1800 S. Prairie Avenue over a period of nearly 50 years. Join Executive Director and Curator William Tyre as he presents this lecture on the lives of the Glessners' servants, exploring who they were, how they lived, and what a typical day in their lives would have looked like. A special treat will be a brief presentation by the granddaughter of one of the Glessner family maids, who will share photos and stories of her grandmother's years with the family in the 1910s.
Christmas Candlelight Tours
Saturday December 13 and Sunday December 14, 2014
Tours at 5:30, 6:00, and 6:30pm each evening
$18 for adults/$14 for children 8-12
Members: $15 for adults/$11 for children 8-12
Pre-paid reservations required to 312-326-1480
These special 90-minute docent
led tours will highlight Christmas customs and decorations of the 19th
century. The Clarke House will feature simple decorations of the
1840s era when the celebration of Christmas was just beginning, and New
Years Day was the most celebrated holiday. The Glessner House will
feature more elaborate decorations of the late 19th century including
a live tree (shipped from the Glessners' former summer estate in New Hampshire)
decorated with period ornaments, and the dining table set for the Christmas
feast. After the tour, stroll over to the Keith House, an 1870 Second
Empire style landmark mansion on historic Prairie Avenue, for light refreshments.
Learn the history of painted canvas floorcloths and create your own using period techniques. Participants receive a prepared 2' x 3' blank and all paints and stencils will be provided. A Clarke House Museum signature event.
Last Thursday of each month from 9:30 to 11:30am
Free for ladies and gents ages 10 and up
(Children must be accompanied by an adult)
Clarke House Museum, 1827 S.
Indiana Avenue, Chicago