Kenilworth is a village in Cook County, Illinois, United States, 15 miles (24 km) north of downtown Chicago. As of the 2010 census it had a population of 2,513. It is the newest of the nine suburban North Shore communities bordering Lake Michigan, and is one of those developed as a planned community. In 2018, Kenilworth was the eighth wealthiest community in the United States, and the wealthiest in the Midwestern United States.Kenilworth was founded in 1889 when Joseph Sears purchased 223.6 acres of land consisting of several farms between the Chicago and North Western Railroad and Lake Michigan for $150,300. Sears and several of his associates formed The Kenilworth Company to execute his suburban dream.
The company undertook all marketing activities. They publicized the community’s many attractive features through brochures, maps, and newspaper ads, as well as direct personal sales. Prospects were provided transportation from the city and greeted with a reception. Visitors were also offered overnight accommodations. In 1891, Sears invited about 20 of his personal friends, prominent bankers and Chicago businessmen to a picnic luncheon on Kenilworth’s lake shore. Lots were offered at $60 an acre; significantly above the $15 an acre for similarly located property nearby. Some laughed, but the property did sell within 12 months. This planned community attracted widespread attention and was visited by many noted architects attending the 1893 Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
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