703 Broadway – This 1903 Victorian home, built for Professor Manfred Holmes, has been in the Funk family since his daughter Elizabeth’s marriage to Theodore (Ted) Funk. Elizabeth and Ted lived at 703 Broadway with their son, also named Ted. Ted Jr. was a photographer whose travels took him to nearly every corner of the globe. His final will included provisions to ensure the home was put to good civic use and his family says he would have been delighted to learn it was recently renovated and now serves as a local place of respite for faculty and staff at, affiliated with, or visiting Illinois Wesleyan University (IWU). The Funks, many of whom are among the ranks of proud IWU alumni, have a close history with the university going back to its beginning when Isaac Funk was among the 30 founders in 1850.
Ted’s life, and the role 703 Broadway played in the Funk family, can be understood in the role the Funk Family played in local history. They are composed of Midwestern United States pioneers who were leaders in the fields of agriculture, politics, finance and civic life. Abraham Lincoln was one of nearby Funk Farms’ first attorneys. Lincoln later served in the Illinois House of Representatives with family patriarch Isaac Funk, then one of the largest landowners in the U.S. and a friend of Lincoln’s who became a key booster when Lincoln first ran for President.
Isaac Funk, among the 30 founders of Illinois Wesleyan in 1850, ensured that, upon his death in 1865, the University would receive a $10,000 bequest from his estate in order to establish the Isaac Funk Professorship in Agriculture.
This home has been lovingly cared for over the last 120 years with updates appropriate for the era. A porch was added in 1951.
Things you won’t want to miss:
Original stained woodwork and staircase
Library with photos spanning several generations
Steinway piano in the front parlor, which has been in the home for at least 50 years