Deerfield, a half-hour drive north of downtown Chicago in light traffic, is home to a site that helps visitors imagine what 19th-century life was like in the area. Deerfield Historic Village is a collection of historic buildings where visitors can learn about life shortly after the community was settled in the early 1800s. Founded and maintained by the Deerfield Historical Society, the Deerfield Historic Village is a family-friendly attraction worth visiting. Here are some of the attractions to see at the site, a five-minute drive from the apartments at AMLI Deerfield.
Caspar Ott Cabin
Considered the oldest standing building in Lake County, the Caspar Ott log cabin is a relic from days of yore. The house was moved to the Deerfield Historic Village from its original location on present-day Saunders Road, but its structure has hardly changed. To the modern eye, the three-room log cabin and farmhouse looks simple and antiquated. But it was likely one of the nicest houses around for several decades after it was built in 1837.
George Luther House
The George Luther House, built in 1847, is another Deerfield Historic Village highlight. Another three-room cabin, the house was updated in the Greek Revival style following the Civil War. The George Luther House serves as the Deerfield Historical Society’s offices, visitor center, and gift shop. Exhibitions showcasing stove pipe hats and other period objects are displayed here.
Bartle Sacker Farmhouse
Once occupied by a farmer who made honey in his kitchen, the Bartle Sacker Farmhouse was moved to Deerfield Historic Village from its original plot of land on Waukegan Road a few decades ago. Built in 1854, the Bartle Sacker Farmhouse is decorated and arranged to look like a typical 19th-century regional home. The farmhouse offers one of the most historically accurate pictures of how homes were furnished and operated 150+ years ago.
Built by the historic society in an effort to give Deerfield Historic Village a complete feel, a replica of a carriage barn is another major on-site attraction. Community volunteers helped with the construction effort, assembling the carriage house with salvaged materials from four historic area buildings. The carriage barn houses antique carriages and farm equipment and tools like a tractor pull.
Little Red School House
The Little Red School House is a furnished replica of a one-room 19th-century schoolhouse. It’s also part of a unique initiative involving Deerfield Public School District 109. Every child in the district attends class at the schoolhouse for one day as part of the district’s history curriculum. Dunce caps and a one-legged stool, used as a form of discipline in the one-room schoolhouse days, encourage good behavior.
Feature photo via Wikimedia Commons/Shsilver.
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