Northwest of Downtown, Galesburg, Illinois

It’s always interesting to see a city such as Galesburg that is primarily a community of wood frame houses, its building materials brought south from the Northwoods by Chicago’s vast rail network. The house above is the first one north of the railroad tracks that separate the residential neighborhoods from downtown.

Of course there are a few brick houses, but not many.

Of course, the aspect of many of these houses is that loss of millwork, which once made many of these much more elaborate. It’s long ago been removed, and the original wood siding has been replaced with vinyl.

Below is rumored to be the oldest house in town, and it was meticulously restored only a few years ago. Known as the Nehemiah West House, it was built in 1843.

There is definitely a wide variety of housing stock.

I got a kick out of this house below; originally obviously an Italianate home in style, it received a giant front porch at some point.

A friend once noted that there is a chain of little vending machines unique to Illinois that vends bags of ice, and they don’t exist hardly anywhere else.

There are also some beautiful renovations.

More on the northwest side of town, I ran across this stunning beauty, which has been meticulously restored. I think the choice of paint colors is what really makes this shingle style house pop.

One thing to note: there probably would have originally been railings; perhaps the current owners are still working on finding the appropriate design to rebuild them.

Also, as is so common before the Twentieth Century, the architect really took the time to address both street exposures, making both sides of the house function successfully as “fronts.”

The house down the street is awaiting its own rebirth.

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