The Evanston History Center is open for self-guided tours and to view exhibits.
Public Guided Tours
The Evanston History Center is located at 225 Greenwood Street, Evanston, IL 60201 (View map)
The Evanston History Center is open for self-guided tours and to view exhibits!
The Dawes House and exhibits will be open Thursday, Fridays, and Saturdays at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00 pm. Guests will be limited to 10 people per time slot. Tours will be self-guided with a prescribed route. We will not be open on Sundays at this time.
Admission for non-members is $10 per person. Contactless payment in advance is preferred. If the method of payment is cash, please bring exact change. Members are always free!
Reservations must be made in advance. Plan to arrive promptly on the hour but not early, so that we may be able to respect social distancing and occupancy quotas.
Confirmation of reservation is required via a confirmation email from the EHC.
Mask wearing and all social distancing guidelines will be followed. No restroom facilities will be available.
The Dawes House is occasionally closed for tours, check for closures before planning your visit.
Admission for non-members is $10 per person. Members are always free! Click here to become a member.
Admission to the Dawes House includes a self-guided tour of the historic home of former Vice President Charles Gates Dawes, entrance to the permanent exhibit on Evanston history, Milestones & Memories, entrance to the temporary exhibit honoring the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, Evanston Women and the Fight for the Vote, the Votes for Women Historic Trail Marker for Catharine Waugh McCulloch, and Rightfully Hers, the pop-up exhibit from the National Archives.
Free street parking is available on Greenwood Street.
The Evanston History Center is wheelchair accessible on the first floor only. There is a wheelchair lift on the driveway and a ramp into the house. The lift must be operated by a staff person, please notify the front desk when upon arrival. The second floor has limited accessibility. An elevator goes to the second floor and basement, it does not accommodate modern wheelchairs and must be operated by a staff person..
There are 6 stairs up to the front door with railings. For additional information or specific inquires, please call 847-475-3410.
For guests’ comfort, the Center does have climate control throughout the year.
Photography is allowed at the Evanston History Center, with the following conditions:
- Photographs are for personal use only and may not be reproduced or sold without the written permission of the Center.
- Only non-flash photography is permitted.
Private Guided Tours
The EHC welcomes separate group tours, independent of regular tour hours, for groups of 8 or more. The tour takes approximately 45 minutes, with time at the end for viewing the exhibits.
Themed tours are available, such as servant life (“Front Stairs, Back Stairs”), the arts (“A Collection of Tiffanys”), architecture, technological change, and of course, “A Crowded Life: Charles Dawes”.Group tour fees are $7.50 for Seniors and Children 6-12, $10 for Adults.
To make a group tour reservation, please call 847-475-3410 or email Kris Hartzell. Reservations must be made at least two weeks in advance.
School Group Tours
School group tours are available. The tour includes an interactive exhibit on Evanston history.
Please visit the Education page for a selection of pre-and post-visit activities for the classroom. We can help tailor your school group tour according to a variety of lesson plans.
To get more information on school group tour options, please call 847-475-3410 or email Kris Hartzell.
$5 per person, group leaders are free
The Evanston History Center offers lively docent-led walking tours of Evanston neighborhoods, downtown, and the lakefront. The tours provide fun and fascinating insights into the history of Evanston, its architecture, and the cultural landscape.
Most tours, unless otherwise stated, meet at the Evanston History Center, 225 Greenwood Street, Evanston. The house will not be open and no restroom available. Please be sure to confirm the location of the start of the tour.
Tours vary and are occasionally repeated.
Tours begin at 11:00 AM and last for 90 minutes.
The cost is $20 per person/$15 for members unless otherwise stated. Contactless payment is required when registering for a tour.
Reservations and payment must be made in advance. RSVP to Kris Hartzell, or 847-475-3410.
All guests are required to wear masks and practice safe social distancing. There is a limit of 20 guests per tour. We do reserve the right to cancel due to weather or unforeseen circumstances.
Free street parking is available on Greenwood Street.
Types of Tours and tour dates
Historic Apartment Buildings – October 2, 2021
This tour meets on the northwest corner of Hinman Avenue and Main Street
This tour through southeast Evanston will explore how different architectural styles popular for Evanston’s houses were also applied to its apartment buildings, from Gothic Revival to Arts and Crafts.
Architectural Evanston – August 7, 2021
Explore the Lakeshore Historic District and trace the growth of Evanston through its historic architecture, from Greek Revival to the Prairie School, through to contemporary styles.
Burnham in Evanston – June 5 and September 18, 2021
Daniel Burnham, Chicago’s most well-known architect, chose to live in what he called “bucolic Evanston.” Discover his neighborhood and view the work he did in his hometown.
Downtown Evanston – October 16, 2021
This tour begins at Fountain Square
Evanston’s Fountain Square was intentionally platted as the epicenter of the commercial district. Discover the many varied stories, including Evanston’s rich African-American heritage, represented in downtown Evanston.
Evanston’s Lakefront – June 19 and September 4, 2021
Stroll along Evanston’s lakefront with its public parks and discover how it has evolved and played a role in the development of the city.
Evanston Women’s History – August 21, 2021
This tour meets at Frances Willard House, 1730 Chicago Avenue, Evanston
Discover how many Evanston women effected change and played diverse and prominent roles in fighting for women’s rights.
Forest Foray – July 17, 2021
Explore one of Evanston’s most iconic streets and learn the stories behind the stately homes of Forest Avenue, from Greenwood Street to Lee Street.
Michigan Meanderings – July 10, 2021
This tour will meet on the parkway at Michigan Avenue and Burnham Place.
Michigan Avenue is a beautiful street that holds a remarkable collection of houses by Chicago’s most distinguished architects, all within just a few blocks.
Group walking tours can be scheduled by appointment. To get more information on group walking tour options, please contact us at (847) 475-3410 or e-mail Kris Hartzell.