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A four car train of wooden cars leaves the Glen Oak station on April 18, 1957.

Photo by TH Desnoyers, from the Krambles-Peterson Archive

Glen Oak

Hill Avenue, Village of Glen Ellyn


Glen Oak was a local station on the Chicago, Aurora & Elgin’s main line near Hill Avenue in what is now Glen Ellyn. A stop at this location was not part of the Aurora, Elgin and Chicago Railway’s initial scheme for stations.1

On January 7, 1909, the Pickwick Country Club was founded and established a nine-hole golf course on the site of the McGarry farm,2 which was on a tract of land just south of the Aurora, Elgin and Chicago Railroad’s right of way. Later that year, Pickwick went into bankruptcy which was followed by receivership in 1910. After falling into receivership, the original owners of the Pickwick Country Club repurchased the land and incorporated the Glen Oak County Club on January 17, 1911.3 The station was likely added around this time in order to serve the patrons of the fledgling country club. (A station serving a similar purpose on the Aurora branch was in operation for almost eleven years at this point.)

The station consisted of two low level platforms situated east of the Hill Avenue overpass.4 Attached to the eastbound platform was a 37 ft. 3 in. by 10 ft. 8 in. waiting shelter. This was a framing and stucco building with concrete foundation walls and floor.5 Though the design of the shelter was unique, the layout was similar to other stations on the CA&E in that it had an enclosed center portion and open sections on the outer ends. Atop everything was a split level gable roof clad with shingles. The roof over the center section was elevated above that of the outer sections. The westbound platform featured a short wooden canopy with a hipped, shingle roof. As with the shelter, the design for canopy was not used elsewhere on the CA&E.

The platforms were separated by a wooden fence set between the tracks. A gap in the fence and the third rail at the western end of the platforms permitted passage between platforms. This gap was aligned with a short path to the south of the station which passed through a cobblestone entranceway leading to the north side of the club grounds. No connection was provided to Hill Avenue from the platforms.

Glen Oak was a local station and was therefore a flag stop, as were all local stops on the CA&E. Each platform was equipped with a flag stop semaphore which was used to notify the motorman of an oncoming train to stop. People wishing to catch a train pulled a chain which raised the semaphore (the “flag”) into the horizontal position. If the flag was not raised, the train did not stop even if it was listed as a stop for that train on the timetable. A passenger onboard a train wishing to alight here had to notify a conductor of his or her intention to disembark.

With the cutback of service from Wells Street to Forest Park due to the construction of the Congress Street Superhighway [Eisenhower Expressway (I-290)] in 1953, passengers abandoned the CA&E in droves making the financial situation of the railroad untenable. In response, in 1956, the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) reviewed two similar plans for assuming operation of the line between Forest Park and Wheaton. A/B skip-stop service would have been implemented over the main line under both schemes. One would have used a fleet of 28 rebuilt PCC streetcars which would have operated between Wheaton and Forest Park where transfers to the “L” would be made.6 Glen Oak would have become an “A’ stop.7 The other plan called for using existing CA&E rolling stock and would have provided direct service to the Loop via the Garfield Park/Congress branch, the Paulina Connector, and the Lake Street Elevated.8 Under this plan the Glen Oak stop would have been one of four stations that would have been eliminated.9

Ultimately, neither of these plans came to pass and on July 3, 1957, the Chicago, Aurora & Elgin abandoned its passenger service. Eventually Glen Oak was razed, most likely when the railroad was scrapped in 1961. The most obvious indication that the station existed are the remains of the cobblestone gateway to the country club, though the platforms (which appear as two long mounds flanking the Illinois Prairie Path—which occupies the railroad’s former right of way) still exist, as does the concrete foundation of the station itself.

Full station profile and history coming soon.

Station Timetables


June 10, 1945

Additional photos

Car 400 is at the tail end of a four-car train passing through Glen Oak on its way to Chicago in 1950. The head two cars of this afternoon train are 450 series cars. At this point, the station and canopy are still painted white. In the railroad’s later years, most structures (including the Glen Oak station) were painted red and blue-gray to match the livery of the rolling stock.

Photo from the collection Mark Llanuza

A two-car train composed of Jewetts 319 and 320 are stopped at Glen Oak on December 7, 1958, during the CA&E’s last chartered trip. It has been one year and five months since regularly scheduled passenger trains plied these rails, but the right of way is still being maintained for the freight service which still operates.

Photo from the collection Mark Llanuza

The last fan trip over the CA&E (and, incidentally, the last passenger movement over the railroad) took place on December 7, 1958. Cars 319 and 320 have made a photo stop at Glen Oak. Due to its scenic, wooded environs and the nearby overpass at Hill Avenue, Glen Oak was a favorite spot for many railfan photographers.

Photo from the collection Mark Llanuza

PP_glenoak1.jpg On March 31, 2010, the stone entrance gate to the Glen Oak Country Club from the CA&E station still stands. Without the railroad providing access for club members, there is no need for an entrance at this location and this whole side of the grounds is closed off with a chain-link fence.

Photo by Don Bosan-Bruno


  1. “The Aurora, Elgin & Chicago Railway.” Street Railway Journal Oct. 1902: 407. Print.
  2. History of Glen Oak Country Club.” Glen Oak Country Club. Glen Oak Country Club, n.d. Web. 8 May 2016. Archived 2 Aug. 2011.
  3. Glen Oak Country Club History: 1911-1920.” Glen Oak Country Club. Glen Oak Country Club, n.d. Web. 8 May 2016.
  4. The Great Third Rail IV-14
  6. “STUDIES RELATING TO A POSSIBLE SUBSTITUTE FOR C. A. & E. SERVICE.” Chicago Transit Authority 18 Apr. 1956: 8. Print.
  7. “STUDIES RELATING TO A POSSIBLE SUBSTITUTE FOR C. A. & E. SERVICE.” Chicago Transit Authority 18 Apr. 1956: Appendix 2-3. Print.
  8. “STUDIES RELATING TO A POSSIBLE SUBSTITUTE FOR C. A. & E. SERVICE.” Chicago Transit Authority 18 Apr. 1956: 3. Print.
  9. “STUDIES RELATING TO A POSSIBLE SUBSTITUTE FOR C. A. & E. SERVICE.” Chicago Transit Authority 18 Apr. 1956: Appendix 1-1. Print.