"Altgeld's Castles" are buildings in the Gothic Revival style in five Illinois universities, all built at the initiative or inspiration of Illinois Governor John Peter Altgeld, pictured above.
Altgeld served as the 20th governor of Illinois from 1893–1897.
During his term as governor, Altgeld expressed certain opinions on how buildings should be erected in the state of Illinois. In his second biennial message to the state legislature, he discussed how buildings were being constructed without consideration for their outward appearance.
He stated that it was time for buildings to become more aesthetically pleasing in addition to being functional, and he suggested the "Tudor-Gothic style" as the most inexpensive way to do this. Consequently, several of the state universities in Illinois erected buildings which resembled castles in his honor. (Wikipedia)