Healy Chapel in 2011
|Location||332 W. Downer Pl.
Aurora, Kane County, Illinois, United States
|Architect||George Grant Elmslie|
|Architectural style||Prairie School|
|Governing body||Private business|
|NRHP Reference #||85000361|
|Added to NRHP||February 28, 1985|
William H. Healy moved from Yorkville, Illinois to Aurora in 1891. He opened "Healy and Blair", a furniture store that doubled as a mortuary. His brother, Arthur N. Healy, joined him in a new partnership in 1901 and they moved into a new building at 50 W Downer Place. Focusing almost exclusively on undertaking, the firm was officially incorporated in 1919. Increased demand for their services led to the need for a new building.
The Healy Chapel is one of only a few commercial buildings built in the Prairie School style. It was designed by George Grant Elmslie, a renowned architect who worked with Louis Sullivan. Like most Prairie School buildings, there is a strong emphasis on horizontal designs on the exterior. The three-story building features beige stucco along the third floor. A line of orange-glazed terracotta separates the stucco from the brick lower levels.
The building was constructed down the street from the old practice, at 332 W. Downer Place, and cost $100,000. The Healys were the first to bring hearse service to Aurora, and the Healy Chapel is recognized as the first building in the state exclusively used as a mortuary. It is located in the West Side Historic District, but is listed as a non-contributing property. It remains family-owned and continues to operate.