The Douglas Era: 1906 - 1937

Douglas Renovations

Although little evidence on the interior of the mansion during the Sinclair era exists, the available information reveals extensive changes by the Douglases. Victorian ornateness gave way to the more simplistic decoration style of the Edwardian Era.

The Douglases hired Chicago architect Howard Van Doren Shaw to oversee $30,000 of renovations, including:

  • Shifting the mansion entrance from the First Avenue side to the Linden Drive side
  • Installing butternut paneling and faux ceiling beams in the Great Hall
  • Adding porches on the east and west sides of the mansion
  • Developing the North Terrace and removing the conservatory
  • Enclosing the Servants’ Porch and constructing a service yard
  • Adding Shaw’s trademark “Baskets of Plenty” to the mansion’s interior and the throughout estate
  • Removing several stained glass windows and simplifying elaborate cabinets in the Dining Room
  • Replacing the gas lighting with electric lighting 
  • Adding an electric refrigerator, a significantly modern upgrade in 1925