Royko’s House to be Torn Down

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(AP) The house where newspaper columnist Mike Royko penned hard-edged articles on Chicago politics and life is being torn down by its owners.

The demolition began Thursday despite pleas from preservationists who say the California Craftsman home has historic value, The Chicago Tribune reported Friday.

Officials of affluent Winnetka, north of Chicago, considered the house the best example of California Craftsman design in the village.

Designed by a local architect in 1906, the house was molded in the Craftsman style, which featured handcrafted wood detailing, wide eaves, low gables, built-in storage space and tiled fireplaces.

Ownership by Royko, a columnist for the Chicago Tribune who died in 1997, added to the house’s significance, said David Bahlman of Landmark Preservation Council of Illinois.

“Not only are they destroying architecture of note, they are destroying history,” Bahlman said of the new owners, John and Catherine MacCarthy.

The MacCarthys, who bought the house from Royko’s wife, Judy, for $1.8 million earlier this year, plan to rebuild on the lot.

The MacCarthys did not return telephone calls seeking comment.

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