Lake Bluff Stories

Explore Our Quirky Past!

Which is scarier: Being hunted by wolves or a stalked by a panther?

How many Major League Baseball players have called Lake Bluff home?

Who were Ben & Ida Cloes and why should Lake Bluff care?

611 Walnut: What’s that knobby concrete building on Walnut Avenue for, anyway?

1918: World War 1, Spanish Flu, a blizzard … and the Harris Bridge, which is now the Moffett Bridge. Do you know why?

Remains of a historic chimney on the bluff at Neil & Mary Dahlmann’s lakefront home could tumble into Lake Michigan any day now. Read about the Stearns Chimney here.

Did you know that the go-to place in the earliest days of Lake Bluff was an Irish pub? Click on the following to learn more about the Dwyer Settlement.

Everyone who has ever lived here has their favorite place to eat a meal, have a drink and.or meet with friends. McCormick’s Restaurant & Lounge was one of the best.

Need some cheering up? The Pug Float in the 4th of July Parade  is just what the doctor ordered.

Did you know there were some 30 hotels and boarding houses in Lake Bluff during the summer resort era? Who wouldn’t want to summer here? This story has lots of great info: Lake Bluff hotels during the Methodist Camp Meeting Association era of the 1870s to early 1900s.

Lake Bluff History Museum hosts a Trinkets & Treasures sale every few years. Sometimes the treasures are not only beautiful — but they come with a provenance all their own. Lead Garden Sculpture by significant 18th century artist was one such find.

The Lake Bluff Turkey charmed everyone in Lake Bluff in 2010 — except for the police.

Margaret Hawkins Rockwell was a fixture to generations of Lake Bluff school children. You know what else was really cool? Her iconic Wash Tub.

The Prohibition movement had roots in early Lake Bluff, but not everyone was a fan, especially not members of The Kelly Klub.

Orphanage: the word conjures visions of dour, cold institutions with hungry children. A place where Christmas never happens. The Lake Bluff Orphanage, known as the Lake Bluff Children’s Home since 1955, was different.

Lake Bluff Sledding Hill

Sledding is one of the best things about winter in prairie-flat Lake Bluff. For decades before the Park District sledding hill was built in 1994, kids would sled in the ravines, on beach road, and on Lillian Dells Drive. more...

Lake Front to Sunrise Park

For a small town, Lake Bluff has many beautiful open spaces, and one of the best places to enjoy the outdoors is our beloved Sunrise Park. Thank goodness Sunrise Park even is a park, as its history takes a few surprising and at times shadowy twists and turns. more...

Lake Bluff Ravines

For over 100 years, volunteers worked to preserve, restore and protect Lake Bluff's natural beauty. They're still at it. more...

Village Hall Tower

There is no clock in Village Hall tower, and there never has been. This will come as no surprise to those who have lived in Lake Bluff for at least a quarter of a century, but it’s true. more...

The Lindman Marionette Troupe

Longtime Lake Bluff resident and educator Margaret Lindman created a magic world where stories are brought to life through artful performances featuring marionettes and hand puppets, which she lovingly created in her Lake Bluff home. more...

Wild Beasts of Lake Bluff

Early Lake Bluff setters encountered many of the wild beasts that we see today, including coyotes, fox, raccoon and groundhog. They also lived amongst wild pigeons, wolves and even the occasional panther. more...