About Buena Park: James B. Waller

In 1860 he built a brick, Italianate mansion which was replace in 1917 by St. Mary of the Lake church. Waller named the mansion and its estate “Buena.” He provided a right-of-way and a station stop in 1884 for the Chicago & Evanston Railroad. The stop was also called Buena. The large development portion of Waller’s estate was subdivided into 50-foot lots and given the name “Buena Park.”

Although it was annexed by the city of Chicago in 1889 Buena Park grew as a suburb within the city by taking on the look and feel of the suburbs of the era. Between 1900 and 1930 it took on a more densely populated character and went from a neighborhood of “fine homes” to one of “fine homes and fine apartments.”

The historic flow of Buena Park architecture went from country estate to suburban residences to small apartment buildings to large apartment-hotels.

Waller’s efforts were not alone, because other developers in the 1860s and 1870s developed land in the area. Samuel H. Kerfoot, Daniel Goodwin and H. G. Spofford built estates adjacent to Waller and also promoted the area’s suburban feel.


Author: bikeuptown46

I am currently the Communications Director for the Chicago Regional Council of Carpenters which represents 33,000 union men and women in three states who swing a hammer for a living. I publsih a magazine, a couple of email newsletters and two websites. I also do videos, webinars, advertisng and public relations. As an avid cyclist I ride a three-wheeled trike 5 to 6 days per week 52 weeks per year which adds up to between 5,000 and 6,000 miles year-round, including daily commutes along Chicago's lakefront ... polar vortexes included. I have never missed a day of work because of Chicago's weather. I am an activist who serves humanitarian and political causes: To advocate for the Sudanese in Illinois who have fled Southern Sudan and Darfur is one of my most rewarding experiences. I work with my son Sean on Sudan presentations at churches and community groups with my Sudanese friends on the problems facing them in Darfur, South Sudan and the United States. My son Sean and I work together on the Abolition Institute which seeks to end slavery in the west African nation of Mauritania. My photography chronicles Chicago's lakefront through my daily rides. My photo website is http://genetenner.com/ I just self-published my first photo-book on the history of my Chicago neighborhood: Sweet Home Buena Park. I live about one-half mile north of Wrigley Field in the Buena Park neighborhood.

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