Soldiers' Home

The Soldiers' Home is an historic Italianate style building in Chicago, Illinois, United States. Located at 739 E. 35th Street, the Home was built in a series of phases from 1864 to 1923, desgned by by William W. Boyington and other architects. It was designated a Chicago Landmark on April 16, 1996. The Soldiers' Home is the last surviving building in Chicago with exact association to the American Civil War. During the war the home served as a hospital for injured soldiers. After the war it became a home for disabled and aged Union Army Veterans.[1][2]

Soldier's Home, now owned by the Archdiocese of Chicago

Mary Livermore and Jane Hoge, who had met during the war nursing soldiers at nearby Camp Douglas, conceived the idea of the hospital home, and a fundraising fair to support its building. The initial construction was in substantial part funded by sale of President Abraham Lincoln's handwritten copy of the Emancipation Proclamation. Lincoln donated it to the fundraising fair at Livermore's request, saying, "I had some desire to retain the paper, but if it shall contribute to the relief or comfort of the soldiers, that will be better" (this copy was later destroyed in the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, while the Soldiers' Home survived).[3]

In the 21st century, the Soldiers' Home building is used for offices of the Catholic Archdiocese of Chicago, and named, the Cardinal Meyer Center.[3]


  1. ^ "Soldiers' Home". City of Chicago Department of Planning and Development, Landmarks Division. 2003. Retrieved 2007-06-27.
  2. ^ "City of Chicago Landmark Designation Reports - Soldiers' Home". Retrieved 2017-09-18.
  3. ^ a b Rodkin, Dennis (2022-09-01). "What's That Building? Cardinal Meyer Center". WBEZ Chicago. Retrieved 2022-09-03.

Coordinates: 41°49′52″N 87°36′28″W / 41.8310°N 87.6077°W / 41.8310; -87.6077