Photos courtesy of the excellent IDOT Chicago Traffic Photographs collection at the University of Illinois at Chicago http://collections.carli.illinois.edu/cdm4/index_uic_idot.php?CISOROOT=/uic_idot
Today I'm going to try a little photographic project just for fun.....
Fellow Chicagoans (and guests, groupies, whatever)....let's imagine that we could travel back in time and see our beloved Sheridan Road exactly as it was in the mid to late 1930s.
We'll start at the "Calvary Curve" (The Evanston border-Calvary Cemetery/Juneway Terrace), and start working our way south, street by street. Today we'll start with just a short drive, just down to the intersection of Sheridan, Devon, and Broadway.....that's still a lot of pictures. :)
Sound like fun? I thought so.
Soooooo....get your hat on straight, Maude, climb in the Wayback Machine (for the sake of shear comfort we're driving a 1935 Packard Twelve Sedan).....And, Hey.....let's drive South, shall we?
We start our drive at the last curve....the South end of Calvary Cemetery. We're just coming into Chicago from Evanston, Illinois. You're looking north east here....Lake Michigan in front of you, to your left Calvary Cemetery, to your right and south is Eastlake Terrace.....the year is 1936.
Still looking North, we see on our right the beginning of Eastlake Terrace, to our left the HC logo of a Sinclair Gasoline station. (Hey, while you're looking at the Butterfinger Billboard, be careful of that rainy, slippery pavement, as the period "guardrail" on the curve doesn't even remotely look like it would keep us from swan diving into Lake Michigan at even a very slow speed wipeout). And, no.....you can't TEXT AND DRIVE, 'cuz it's 19-FREAKING-36...so BwaHaHaHaHahaaaaa!!!
Let's look north for a moment, from Eastlake Terrace....wow, there's Dino over at the Sinclair Station (Maybe we should get some gas....it's only TEN CENTS A FREAKING GALLON!)
So let's glance south again....Eastlake is off to our left, we're just passing the Sinclair as we 'round the curve south....
Let's take a last glance back up north as we take the big curve on into Rogers Park. We've just passed the Sinclair, so maybe we could grab a BBQ chicken sandwich from the "Demetre from Wilmette #1" (Not to be confused with the #2-Villa Demetre, in "No-Man's Land"-an unincorporated zone-now known as Plaza del Lago, in Wilmette. No-Man's Land was a notorious area of drink and debauchery in a "dry" area. The North Shore was "rather mortified", if you will, by the popularity among students, etc...and it suddenly all "burned down" in a 1932 fire...truly another novel for another time, indeed ;) . Getting that BBQ might be a good idea, 'cause all of this will get torn down eventually....you'll only be able to view the cemetery for several decades, which will then lose most of the beautiful trees to Dutch Elm Disease and eventually there will be this horrid giant condo to obscure your view..I'm rambling on, I know, but, trust me, I'm psychic or whatever... ;)
Right now, we're actually standing on Juneway Terrace, which goes off to the west of southbound Sheridan, and you can still see the Sinclair, and the BBQ Joint, and...(well...a lot of words, but work with me here, and you'll see several views from different directions on the curve....k?)
We're looking north at the curve (Juneway to your left) , and now....four more views looking south and west...Fine, I know that The Fireside Theater isn't on right now, but we CAN set the radio to WGN.......Hey, is that Leo Reisman? I just lovvve "It ain't necessarily so"...yeah, do keep that radio on, babes....
Here's a last view looking from Juneway toward the lake and Sheridan.
Ok...let's drive 'round that curve and go south, already...
The next street south off Sheridan is Jonquil Terrace, that's it off to your left as you look north back at the Bowman Dairy sign....
And here's a view looking east to Sheridan from Jonquil....
Next south is Rogers, it actually runs from west of Sheridan to east, ending at Eastlake and Rogers Beach Park. Here's a view looking east toward Sheridan and the lake....
And looking back north from Rogers on Sheridan...
So now we're at Howard Street....It's really considered the dividing line between Evanston and Chicago....the first major cross street in the North Pole of Chicago....this is the view looking east on Howard to the lake across Sheridan: (We COULD go west on Howard, Ya know.....TONS of bars, there. Evanston is still "Dry", being home to the WCTU and all. In fact, it will stay "dry" 'til about the '70s. Howard is incredibly "Wet"....great music, too....just sayin'). Fine, you don't get to TEXT, so I can't have a DRINK....*sigh*.....fair enough. Onward, Jeeves.......
If you look in your rear view mirror, you can see north from Howard all the way back to the Bowman Dairy sign!
It looks like we're finally south of Howard.....next up is Birchwood Ave. Here's a view east to the lake:
Meh...maybe you're getting tired of looking behind you, but here's the view north from Birchwood....
Now Fargo Ave....looking east...
Looking west on Fargo...
And (of course) looking back north from Fargo on Sheridan.... ;)
Now we're south to Jarvis Ave.....this is the east view...
Et Voila!!!! ......north from Jarvis (of course)...Teehee.... ;)
Next on our journey south is Sherwin Ave....Here's east to the lake:
And two views looking back north on Sherwin..
Next to the south is Chase Avenue.....here's a view east toward the lake:
Another view to the east...less leaves on the trees...easier view :)
Here's the view from Chase looking north....
Touhy Avenue...really next large east/west cross street you encounter going south on Sheridan. Here's a view going toward the lake and what is now Leone Park and Beach.
And the view North on Sheridan from Touhy:
Next South is Estes Avenue. Here's a view east to the beach:
And here's a view looking north up Sheridan:
Here's the next southbound Sheridan cross street: Greenleaf Avenue. This is a view east toward the lake and beach:
Lunt Avenue....another of the larger streets of the Rogers Park area of Chicago as it meets Sheridan. An Eastward view..
A view north:
Morse Avenue....next up, and here's a view to the east:
And a view from Morse Ave. to the north:
The next street to our south is Farwell Avenue....a view east:
And a view from Farwell to the North:
The next large cross street going south on Sheridan is Pratt Avenue. Here's a view looking north up Sheridan from Pratt:
Wow...just a couple more streets and we'll be at Devon Avenue. That's where Rogers Park ends, and the Chicago neighborhood that we call Edgewater begins.
Sooo.....this is Columbia Avenue. Here's a great view looking east: Oh, and by the way....Walgreens.....so there! Not that damn Starbucks we now have on the corner. Sorry, but you'll just have to live with the CHASE AND SANBORN'S from my damn Percolator back at Chez Laura......Come to think of it.....there's no fast food OR Starbucks on this drive....I really HAVE died and went to heaven!!
And now two views looking north....both show the wonderful "400 Theater" to the left. It was originally built as the Regent Theater for vaudeville and movies, in 1912. It was renamed the "400" in 1930, just a few years before our pictures were taken (1936-37)
Next up: North Shore Avenue.....a view east (Bowman Dairy is stalking us, methinks...Meh, I prefer soy milk, personally).....
A view north from North Shore:
Now we're at Albion Avenue. Here's a view east:
Two views south on Sheridan from Albion: the first in 1938, the second in 1936...(Thanks for the correction, emerald772!!)
Lastly, here's a view north from Albion, again from 1936...
Ok....Loyola Avenue.....ALMOST the last street before Devon Avenue. It's Loyola, as in Loyola University, and St. Ignatius Church, which is just over to the west on Glenwood Avenue. You're in JESUIT LAND, now, Kiddo....put your Thinking Cap on.....Jesuits like thinking....just sayin'.....trust me ;)
Here are two views looking north up Sheridan....the Elevated line crosses Sheridan just south of us. Loyola University and Loyola Academy (well back in '36, anyway..the academy is now co-ed, and in Wilmette, Illinois) are to your right/east.
Here's a view very similar, and north of the elevated, looking west:
Now, lastly....two views of Sheridan, first one of Loyola Ave. looking southeast onto Sheridan (note the Grenada Theater in the upper right of the pic), and next a view looking back north at the elevated line from Sheridan to Loyola Ave.
Here we are at Arthur Avenue.....the last street before Devon. Just a spit from Loyola Ave. to the south, and kinda hard to notice if you don't know the neighborhood around the university. The views are very similar to the two pics just above this one. First, a view east:
And here's a view to the north:
Ok.....the end of today's ride: Devon Avenue. A large cross street. Sheridan Road branches off east, and then south again along the lakefront. Broadway continues directly south from where Devon Avenue ends as it turns into Sheridan going east.
Here are two views looking north from Broadway just before crossing Devon, and turning into Sheridan Road. (Note the Balaban and Katz -Grenada Theater, once one of Chicago's grandest movie palaces, unbelievably demolished in 1988, still structurally sound, at least until halfway demolished and left to decay....You can blame the Senior Life Styles Corporation, they demolished it to build a hideous apartment/commercial structure they insultingly named "The Grenada Center". It was later purchased by Loyola University for student apartments).
The glorious Grenada:
Here's two views looking west toward Devon Avenue (the first in 1937, the second in 1943):
Here are two views looking east, as Devon becomes Sheridan (the first in 1937, the second in 1943):
Here's the last view on our ride today. This is Sheridan as it turns off east toward the lake. To your right it becomes Devon Avenue, and if we keep going south, it's now Broadway.....we'll officially pass out of the Rogers park neighborhood into what we call Edgewater.
This is a view from 1943.
Wow....that seemed like a really long drive... Must've been rush hour ;)
Thus ends my little experiment in time travel. I had fun, I really hope you did, too.....(even if you aren't a Chicagoan and know the journey, let me know if my experiment worked for you).
Maybe we can drive farther south next time!!!!!
Gas is cheap (well, use your imagination, we are time traveling after all).
And.....NO.....you can't borrow the Packard Twelve for your date this weekend !!