“The former home of Mildred King Hyde, who launched with her first husband the Fannie May candy business and may have funded the startup herself, will soon go up for sale in Uptown. The brick and limestone house was built about 1902 [at 854 W.] Castlewood Terrace, an Uptown street three blocks long lined with handsome homes built from the 1890s through the 1920s.
“The asking price for the home four-bedroom, 7,000-square-foot home is $995,000, according to Ward Miller, the head of Preservation Chicago. His group wants to get landmark designation for the house, ‘home of a woman who in the 1920s started a business that we still enjoy today,’ Miller said.
“At its height in the mid-1980s, Fannie May had about 330 candy shops. The company, now owned by Italian firm Ferrero Group, had 55 stores, mostly in the Chicago area, in 2020, its centennial year.
“Miller said he believes the interior was stripped in preparation for a rehab project, but that many historical finishes were put in storage to be reinstalled.
“Crain’s couldn’t determine the state of the interior, but the exterior has missing windows and battered wood trim, and much of the underside of an overhanging porch roof is falling apart. Seemingly in fine condition are the major exterior materials, limestone, brick and copper.
“Mildred King Hyde lived in the home at the time of her death, in 1937, although Crain’s couldn’t determine how long she owned it. In 1920, Mildred and her first husband, H. Teller Archibald, opened the first Fannie May candy store on LaSalle Street.
“The chain quickly became a hit and by 1930 had 30 stores in Chicago and annual revenue of $300,000. According to a 2013 article about Mildred King, she told the Chicago Tribune in 1928 that in the early years of the store, her husband kept working in real estate while she “was willing to work night and day” in the candy shop.” (Rodkin, Crain’s Chicago Business, 3/2/21)
Uptown home of Fannie May cofounder for sale; As the home of a woman in business in the 1920s, the house should be a landmark, says a Chicago preservationist, Dennis Rodkin, Crain’s Chicago Business, 3/2/21