The Morris Downtown Development’s Historic Preservation Committee oversees Morris’ Heritage Homes project. The project serves to identify the historic homes within the City of Morris, to encourage their preservation, and to promote an awareness and appreciation of the community’s history.
J . A. Pool House
Built in the Folk Victorian style with a front gable wing. Today, the home still includes many details of the era it was built in. The house, situated in an area with many other historic homes, features an oak staircase, French doors, stained glass, and detailed crown moldings. It was originally home to the owner of a Morris drug store and manager of the Chicago Telephone Company, which was the largest suburban telephone exchange in the country at the time.
D. A. Mathews House
David A. Mathews house is a charming cottage built by a prominent local businessman and farmer. He had the original home located on the property divided into two houses; then he moved down the street to 712 and 716 Fulton. The 716 house, now called William Burwell House, is also a Morris Heritage Home. Mathews also founded Morris Hospital in 1906, which still serves the community to this day.
Milford Hull House
An English cottage of brick and frame construction, highlighted by a turreted front entrance. This house was built in 1923 for Milford Hull, constructed from plans that came straight from Great Britain. Hull was the Morris Fire Chief and the owner-operator of the Morris Grain Co. Inside the home, there’s a grand stone fireplace, hardwood floors, and the original bathtub and stand-alone shower.
Edward Sanford House
Built ca. 1875
A statuesque three story Italianate mansion with a striking blue color jumps out at passerby through tall trees flanking the property. The home was built in 1875 for Edward Stanford, the first principal for the Morris School District and later a successful lawyer. The property went to his son, Frank, in 1909. The home changed hands several times and stood unoccupied for a number of years until it was bought in 1979. Today the home retains much of its original splendor, including Tiffany chandeliers, detailed woodwork, and marble fireplaces.
Perry Armstrong House – Delockery Apartments
Plain yet dignified Georgian style house was home to a prominent local attorney. Perry Armstrong played a crucial role in having Morris established as the Grundy County seat. He also was a local historian and writer, who was a friend of prominent tribe leader Chief Shabbona and Abraham Lincoln. He entertained both in this home. The house was later occupied by Lyman B. Ray, a leader of the local Republican Party, who would go on to become Illinois Lieutenant Governor in 1888. The house is built on the double-pile plan, with a central hall flanked by two rooms on each side. There are no gutters. A “water table” protects the foundation from water running down the walls.
William Sachse Home
This Prairie Style home, built by Dr. William Sachse, is a Frank Lloyd Wright copy and features quarter sawn oak, 16 stained glass door panels and a porte chochere. The bow window in the dining room was the first in Morris and the fireplace, made of burnt ceramic tile, was imported from Italy. Other features include a curved solid oak built-in buffet, a built in wood box and book cases and beveled glass.
George and Susan Fisher Home
This Queen Anne clapboard home was originally owned by George and Susan Fisher. Although the home was built in 1890, it appears that the Fishers mortgaged the plot in 1867. In 1908, the home was sold to Albert and Ida Erickson, and later to Ana and Thomas O’Connell in 1921.
The home contains the original brass and tile fireplace, bannister, support beams and flooring throughout. Additionally, the large entryway floor to ceiling mirror, glass-plated front door, chandelier, clawfoot tub, pull toilets, built in china cabinet, bench, bookshelves, doors and molding on windows, doors and plate rails are original.