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An Olmsted Homestead

Renovated 1884 house would likely have delighted town’s famed designer



Though this 13-room house was not built until 1884, the acclaimed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted-who helped design the suburb of Riverside in the 1860s-would likely have loved the place, with its rusticated stone base, verdant paint job, and busy, many-angled roofline.

RIVERSIDE

List price:
$1.595 million
Sale Price:
$1.424 million

Part of the credit for the house’s charm goes to Robert and Julia Mosbrook-he’s a trader at the Chicago Board of Trade; she’s a graphic designer-who bought the home in December 2002 and undertook a 16-month renovation. “Everything we did was supposed to restore it as much as possible to the original look,” Julia says. The couple used a book about Riverside in 1896 as a guide; among other things, they stripped the white aluminum siding off the house’s exterior and replaced it with painted cedar.

With plans to move into a smaller Riverside home, the Mosbrooks put the house on the market this past February, listing it with Joan Wert of Burlington Realty. It sold in April, setting a record-according to data from the Multiple Listing Service of Northern Illinois-as the suburb’s most expensive vintage-home sale. (Only one Riverside house has sold for more-for $1.725 million in 2006-and it was brand new.) At press time, the names of the new owners had not yet appeared in public records.

 

Photograph: Chris Guillen

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