Saturday, March 10, 2018

March 10, 1948 -- Municipal Airport Crash Kills a Dozen

March 10, 1948 – A Delta Airlines plane with nine passengers and a crew of four crashes into a field north of the Municipal Airport, today’s Midway, less than a minute after taking off from the airport on its way to Cincinnati and Miami, Florida. There is only one survivor as the plane bursts into flames upon hitting the ground.  The plane arrived at the airport at 9:26 p.m. and after being re-fueled leaves for Cincinnati and Miami at 10.45 p.m. According to the Flight Safety Foundation, “The takeoff roll and the first part of the climb appeared to be normal until it had reached an altitude between 150 and 200 feet.  Then, it assumed a very steep, near vertical, climbing attitude.  At 500-800 feet the airplane appeared to stall, and the nose and right wing dropped.  A partial recovery from the stall was made before the aircraft crashed to the ground and burst into flames.”  No determination was made as to what caused the pilot’s loss of control of the plane.

March 10, 1942 – The Lake Forest summer home of the late Edith Rockefeller McCormick, Villa Turicum, is sold at a tax foreclosure sale in Waukegan for $75,000 -- $4,925,000 less than the estate cost to build in 1912.  There are tax claims of $340,427 against the villa along with interest and penalties that have accrued for eight years between 1931 and 1939.  It is believed that the 253-acre property will be subdivided into two- to ten-acre plots with the city of Lake Forest receiving 58 acres for a park.  One parcel out of the 16 that will be sold, the one that holds the 59-room mansion with 13 bathrooms, is sold for $13,500.  Rockefeller's home once sat on a bluff above the lake just east of Sheridan Road and north of Fort Sheridan.  The great mansion on the estate was finally razed in 1956, and another relic of an earlier era disappeared with its pavilion above the lake designed for taking afternoon tea while musicians played, its polo field, reflecting pools, stables and bridle paths and a service area that included 21 garages.  The house itself had a main dining room that could accommodate 60 guests, 13 master bedrooms, each with a bath and fireplace and 14 rooms for servants.  []

March 10, 1913 -- The South Shore Country Club closes its membership, announcing that new members will only be accepted in the event of a death or resignation. This leaves the club, founded in 1905, with 1,027 members and 200 perpetual members. Club members also vote unanimously to improve the facility, designed by Benjamin Henry Marshall and Charles Eli Fox, recommending a $500,000 bond issue to pay for an updated facility. The expanded facility, designed in a Mediterranean Modern style, was completed in 1916. This is the building that is today the South Shore Cultural Center, the exterior of which served as the site of the Palace Hotel Ballroom in the 1980 Blues Brothers movie.

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