“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Homewood in Cook County, Illinois — The American Midwest (Great Lakes)

Washington Park Racetrack

Washington Park Racetrack Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 7, 2015
1. Washington Park Racetrack Marker
Inscription. Opening on July 3, 1926, with the American Derby and a $100,000 purse, Washington Park Racetrack, built by Washington Park Corporation and Illinois Jockey Club, became a home for the nation's finest thoroughbreds. Colonel Matt Winn and the American Turf Association bought the track in 1929. Ben Lindheimer and Associates acquired the track in 1935. A record crowd of 57,036 turned out on Labor Day 1946 to see 'Armed' break the track record of a mile and a quarter.

Racing here were prominent stables including Calumet and Dixiana with great horses Sun Beau, Whirlaway, Citation, and Round Table. Willie Shoemaker and Bill Hardtack battled for national jockey honors in the early 1950s. Nashua, jockeyed by Eddie Arcaro, beat Swaps, jockeyed by Willie Shoemaker, by 6 1/2 lengths in the "Greatest Match Race in American Thoroughbred History" on August 31, 1955. A.C. Nielsen estimated that the millions of viewers of this race made television-sporting history.

Marje Lindheimer Everett rebuilt, enclosed the plant in glass in 1962, and introduced harness racing. Other owners included Gulf & Western industries. Lastly, Madison Square Garden Corporation introduced nationally recognized entertainers in a concert venue. Illinois' first Sunday pari-mutuel racing in 1976 and first winter thoroughbred racing in 1977 were granted to Washington
Washington Park Racetrack Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 7, 2015
2. Washington Park Racetrack Marker

The racetrack's grandstand and clubhouse burned in a colossal fire on February 5, 1977, bringing an end to the track's rich history.
Erected 2012 by Village of Homewood Heritage Committee and the Illinois State Historical Society.
Marker series. This marker is included in the Illinois State Historical Society marker series.
Location. 41° 33.995′ N, 87° 38.215′ W. Marker is in Homewood, Illinois, in Cook County. Marker is at the intersection of Halstead Street (Illinois Route 1) and Maple Avenue, on the right when traveling south on Halstead Street. Click for map. In the parking lot opposite the McDonald's. Marker is at or near this postal address: 17750 Halstead Street, Homewood IL 60430, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 14 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Dixie Highway connected Chicago to Miami in the early days of automobile travel (approx. 1.5 miles away); Dixie Highway (approx. 1.5 miles away); Camp Thornton #2605 and the Civil Conservation Corps (approx. 2.1 miles away); Site of Absolem Wells Cabin (approx. 4.1 miles away); The Lincoln Highway / The "Ideal Section"
Washington Park Racetrack Marker image. Click for full size.
By Paul Fehrenbach, August 7, 2015
3. Washington Park Racetrack Marker
(approx. 8.3 miles away in Indiana); St. John Township School District #2 (approx. 9.3 miles away in Indiana); Dutch in the Calumet Region (approx. 10.4 miles away in Indiana); Confederate Mound Monument (approx. 13.9 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Homewood.
Additional keywords. Horse Racing
Categories. EntertainmentSports
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin. This page has been viewed 133 times since then and 76 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on , by Paul Fehrenbach of Germantown, Wisconsin. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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