Winnetka, Illinois

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Winnetka, Illinois
Village
Winnetka is located in Illinois
Winnetka
Winnetka
Coordinates: 42°6′22″N 87°44′16″W / 42.10611°N 87.73778°W / 42.10611; -87.73778Coordinates: 42°6′22″N 87°44′16″W / 42.10611°N 87.73778°W / 42.10611; -87.73778
Country  United States
State Illinois
County Cook
Township New Trier
Incorporated 1869
Government
 • Type Council-manager
 • President Gene Graebel
Area
 • Total 3.89 sq mi (10.1 km2)
 • Land 3.81 sq mi (9.9 km2)
 • Water 0.08 sq mi (0.2 km2)  2.06%
Population (2010)
 • Total 12,187
 • Density 3,198.7/sq mi (1,235.0/km2)
  Down 1.87% from 2000
Standard of living (2007-11)
 • Per capita income $202,867
 • Median home value $1,992,800
Time zone Central
ZIP code(s) 60093
Area code(s) 847 and 224
Geocode 82530
Website www.villageofwinnetka.org
Demographics (2010)[1]
White Black Asian
94.8% 0.3% 3.3%
Islander Native Other Hispanic
(any race)
0.02% 0.1% 1.5% 2.2%

Winnetka is a village in northern Cook County, Illinois, United States. The population was 12,187 at the 2010 census.[1] An affluent North Shore village located approximately 16 miles (26 km) north of downtown Chicago, Winnetka was featured on the list of America's 25 top-earning towns by CNN Money in 2011.[2] The area is one of the most exclusive and wealthy suburbs in the nation. According to Business Week, it is the 14th richest zip code in America.[3]

Geography[edit]

Winnetka is located at 42°6′22″N 87°44′16″W / 42.10611°N 87.73778°W / 42.10611; -87.73778 (42.106227, -87.73801).[4] Winnetka is located 650 feet (200 m) above sea level and has a magnetic declination of 3° 10' W. According to the 2010 census, the village has a total area of 3.89 square miles (10.1 km2), of which 3.81 square miles (9.9 km2) (or 97.94%) is land and 0.08 square miles (0.21 km2) (or 2.06%) is water.[5]

Demographics[edit]

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 12,419 people, 4,162 households, and 3,433 families residing in the village. The population density was 3,242.7 people per square mile (1,252/km²). There were 4,310 housing units at an average density of 434.5 per square mile (1,125.4/km²). The racial makeup of the village was 96.29% White, 0.25% African American, 0.02% Native American, 2.43% Asian, 0.30% from other races, and 0.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.26% of the population.

There were 4,162 households out of which 47.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 76.1% were married couples living together, 5.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 17.5% were non-families. 15.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.98 and the average family size was 3.35.

In the village the population was spread out with 34.6% under the age of 18, 3.4% from 18 to 24, 21.5% from 25 to 44, 27.6% from 45 to 64, and 13.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 94.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.6 males.

The median income for a household in the village was $167,458. The per capita income for the village was $84,134. About 0.8% of families and 1.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 0.7% of those under age 18 and 2.6% of those age 65 or over.

History[edit]

The first houses were built in 1836. That year Erastus Patterson and his family arrived from Vermont and opened a tavern to service passengers on the Green Bay Trail post road. The village was first subdivided in 1854 by Charles Peck and Walter S. Gurnee,[7] President of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad. Winnetka's first private school was opened in 1856 by Mr. and Mrs. Charles Peck with seventeen pupils. In 1859 the first public school building was built with private funds at the southeast corner of Elm and Maple streets. The first year's budget for this school was two hundred dollars.[8] The village was incorporated in 1869 with a population of 450.

The oldest surviving house in Winnetka is the Schmidt-Burnham House. It was moved in 2003 from its previous location on Tower Road to the Crow Island Woods.[9]

Winnetka's neighborhoods include estates and homes designed by distinguished architects including George Washington Maher, Walter Burley Griffin, John S. Van Bergen, Robert Seyfarth, Robert McNitt, Howard Van Doren Shaw and David Adler. Among Winnetka's celebrities are the late actor Rock Hudson and Rock singer/songwriter/producer Richard Marx.

The Chicago and Milwaukee Railway was built in 1855 through Winnetka, connecting its namesake cities. It eventually became the Chicago & Northwestern Railway. In 1937 the railroad tracks through Winnetka were lowered after people were hit at the grade crossings. Due to public interest both grade crossings in Winnetka and Hubbard Woods were lowered, with the station at Indian Hill located above grade level. In 1995 the C&NW was merged into the Union Pacific. Only Metra trains are operated on this track now; freight operations ended in the late 1980s. Winnetka has three Metra stations: Hubbard Woods, Winnetka, and Indian Hill.

The Chicago, North Shore and Milwaukee electric interurban was built through Winnetka and the North Shore in the first decade of the 1900s, and the line through Winnetka was removed in 1955. This is now the Green Bay Trail bicycle path.

The Crow Island School, designed by Eliel & Eero Saarinen and the architectural firm Perkins, Wheeler & Will,[10] was declared a National Historical Landmark in 1990. It was declared 12th among all buildings and the best architectural design of all schools. 10,000 people attended the opening in 1938.

Notable events[edit]

The house featured in the Home Alone and Home Alone 2: Lost in New York films

In 1965, Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke in Winnetka. A plaque dedicated to him is on the Village Green, a park in the town, where he spoke.[11]

Winnetka was the site of the Hubbard Woods Elementary School shooting by Laurie Dann in 1988.

A song named "Big Noise from Winnetka" was recorded in 1938 by The Bobcats.

Winnetka was named number 4 on the list of America's 25 top-earning towns by CNN Money in 2007.[12]

In film[edit]

The bulk of the film Home Alone and the beginning of Home Alone 2: Lost in New York are both filmed in Winnetka at 671 Lincoln Avenue, home to the starring character Kevin (played by Macaulay Culkin). However, in the film, the street was named "Lincoln Boulevard".

Numerous other films have been shot in Winnetka, including portions of films Ocean's 12, Breakfast Club, National Lampoon's Vacation, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Sixteen Candles, Risky Business, Planes, Trains & Automobiles, She's Having a Baby and Uncle Buck. The film Contagion was filmed in the area in the spring of 2011.

A popular TV series, Sisters (1991–1996), was set primarily in Winnetka, but was not filmed there, except for some exterior establishing shots.

The characters on the TV series The League reside in Winnetka.

The TV series "I Didn't Do It" is set in Winnetka. The characters attend the fictional Ditka High School.

Schools[edit]

The Winnetka Public Schools system (District 36) consists of three elementary schools and two middle schools.[13] Hubbard Woods, Crow Island, and Samuel Sewall Greeley (est. 1912) Elementary Schools serve grades kindergarten through four, students in fifth and sixth grades attend Skokie Middle School and seventh and eighth graders attend Carleton W. Washburne Middle School, named after educator Carleton Washburne. Winnetka's schools were modeled after Washburne's educational philosophy in an experiment called the Winnetka Plan. The town's schools continue to reflect his educational philosophy.

Winnetka is in New Trier Township, and public school students who reside in Winnetka attend New Trier High School for grades 9 through 12.

Crow Island is a National Historic Landmark due to its significant architectural design.

Private schools[edit]

Local media[edit]

Media outlets covering Winnetka include the Winnetka-Glencoe Patch, the Chicago Tribune's TribLocal, the Pioneer Press, Winnetka Talk, and 22nd Century Media. In addition, The Diller Street Journal (The newspaper of North Shore Country Day School) has a following in the area.

Notable residents[edit]

"Welcome to Winnetka"

See also[edit]

References[edit]

Notes
Further reading
  • Dickinson, Lora Townsend. The Story of Winnetka. Winnetka: Winnetka Historical Society, 1956. Print.

External links[edit]