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Events & Programs

Throughout the year, the Evanston History Center hosts community events and a variety of high-quality programming on diverse themes and topics.

Our Talks@EHC series, reaches a broad audience interested in history, art, and culture. Docent-led walking tours of Evanston provide fun and fascinating insights. Community events celebrate Evanston’s history and showcase the Center’s extensive collections housed in the Dawes House.

Scroll down to learn more.

Check the calendar for upcoming events>

Evanston Architecture and History Walking Tours

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 meet at the Evanston History Center, 225 Greenwood Street, Evanston. Please be sure to confirm the location of the start of the tour.
  • Tours begin at 11:00 AM and last for 90 minutes.
  • Free street parking is available on Greenwood Street.
  • We reserve the right to cancel due to weather or unforeseen circumstances.
  • Reservations and payments must be made in advance.
  • 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.

Examples of Past Architecture and History Tours

Prairie School Gems

Evanston is a treasure trove of Prairie School architecture, where many of the best-known architects lived.

Evanston’s Activist Women in History

Frances Willard called Evanston “a paradise for women.” Trace the history of these remarkable women and discover how their achievements still have impact today.

Downtown Evanston and the African American Community

Follow the evolution of Evanston, including the role of the African American community in shaping the current cultural landscape.

Architectural Evanston: Styles and Eras

Learn how residential architectural styles in The Lakeshore Historic District reflect changing lifestyles and technologies.

Daniel Burnham: Home in Evanston

Daniel Burnham lived in Evanston, calling it “the most beautiful city in the world.” Explore his neighborhood and his work in Evanston.

Brick by Brick

Unpack the beautiful colors, textures, and patterns that compose Evanston’s remarkable architecture.

Join us for a walking tour (June-October)>


Our Talks@EHC series provides unique, high-quality programming for a broad audience interested in history, art, and culture. Speakers come from a wide variety of backgrounds and areas of expertise. Past topics have included green architecture, the underground railroad in Illinois, and industrial design. Programs occur in September-November and January-March.

A Few of Our Past Talks@EHC

Kate Masur

Until Justice Be Done: America’s First Civil Rights Movement, from the Revolution to Reconstruction

Brian McCammack

Landscapes of Hope: Nature and the Great Migration in Chicago

Scott Mehaffey

A Look at the Edith Farnsworth House National Historic Site

Richard Lanyon

Evanston Stormwater Management 101

Jeanine Michna Bales

Standing Together: Inez Milholland’s Final Campaign for Women’s Suffrage

Daniel S. Holt

Dawes’ Crusade Against the Filibuster

Join us for an upcoming program >

Community Events

Evanston History Center hosts fun, engaging community events throughout the year for people of all ages. From a fashion design showcase and exhibition to holiday celebrations and the annual Mother’s Day House Walk, there’s something for everyone.

ReFashioning History Logo, alternates between the words Fashion History to the words ReFashioning History

The inaugural ReFashioning History Opening Night
was on June 27, 2024. Chicagoland fashion designers and creators took inspiration from a curated selection of objects from our extensive, historically significant costume collection and created a new look of their own. Four winners were presented with prizes as part of a fashion design showcase and juried competition.

See the winners! The ReFashioning History Exhibition is on display now through September 2024 at the Dawes House. Click below for event photos.

More ReFashioning History here >

“Wonderful tour—loved it!”

“We are relatively new members of EHC and look forward to the opportunity to learn more about our neighborhood.”

“We will definitely recommend your wonderful walking and house tours to others who might be visiting the area.”

“The speakers are top-notch.
The topics are always interesting.”

“I learn about things I never knew before, or more about something I only knew a little.”

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