The Martin family’s grand home was also a place of business.
In 1883, George Martin built a new house for his family on the rural edge of downtown Naperville. Called Pinecraig, the home stood on Locust Hill near Martin’s limestone quarries along the DuPage River. Martin’s quarrying business boomed after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, when Chicagoans needed stone to rebuild their devastated city. George Martin and his business partner Martin King also developed the successful Naperville Tile and Brick Works.
The Martins’ home stood near the quarries closely tied their personal and business lives together, with dynamite blasts and clouds of limestone dust interrupting family meals. Pinecraig’s brick, tile and stone showcased the building materials produced by George Martin’s operations. Martin met with customers in his home office, working with his daughters. After George Martin’s death in 1889 his widow and daughters stayed at Pinecraig, maintaining the family’s businesses by becoming active partners and managing their 200 acres estate farmed by tenants with help of Caroline Martin’s husband, Edward Mitchell.
Architect Joseph A. Mulvey designed Pinecraig for George Martin in the Victorian Eclectic style in 1883. In 1936, Martin’s daughter and last surviving heir, Caroline Martin Mitchell, left the family’s home and estate to the City of Naperville. Pinecraig is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.