Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wilson & Sheridan, 1923

Here is a great view from 1923 looking north on Sheridan towards Wilson. The only buildings that remain today are the Uptown Baptist Church on the left and the Sheridan Plaza Hotel building on the right. The building that stood where McDonald's now stands housed a bowling alley, drugstore and cafeteria. (photo: Library of Congress)


  1. These pictures kill me. Uptown was so beautiful once.

  2. I miss those good old days like everybody does. They make one long for that "simpler time" that, unfortunately, never was.

  3. I wish there was still a bowling alley at Wilson and Sheridan! I'd love to be able to walk to bowling in the neighborhood!

  4. I agree that the times were probably no less complicated, but the neighborhood definitely looked in better shape. Uptown's building owners have not taken care of the neighborhood very well over the past fifty years.

  5. The "change" goes beyond owners not caring for their buildings. The mass exodus of residents to the suburbs, modern development, property turnover, social changes, rezoning, et cetera, also affected the dramatic change in Uptown's look over the years.

    As a southsider acquaintance eloquently remarked: "It Usen'ta be like that."

  6. rezoning

    Shiller's golden goose.

  7. I didnt realize Shiller has been alderman since the 1920s.

  8. It feels like it...

  9. I would really like to get a hold of these pictures...where can they be found...some days ago there was a CTA photo from an airplane or blimp showing the Aragon and surrounding neighborhood....

    Where can I get at these?

  10. Stu:

    If you own a Mac, place your cursor on the image, hold down, and drag the image to your desktop. You can start then start a file in your Mac's IPhoto feature called "Uptown Images" by opening up IPhoto and dragging the image there from your computer desktop.

    If youre on a boring regular PC, right click on your mouse and select "save pic."

  11. I just had this vision of Apple stock plummeting after replacing Justin Long(the Mac Guy) with Billyjoe.

    Oh the humanity!

  12. Stu --

    Assuming you are looking for photos to frame, rather than just to stick on your computer, I've also been looking into this a bit with middling success. I've never talked with someone from the Chicago History Museum (CHM) directly, but I'm sure they would have some pointers.

    As an aside, there are 4-6 great photos at Truman college on one of their interior walls as well as a photo at the Jewel on Montrose near the pharmacy. Not sure where they came from.

    But, here are a few options:

    1) Chicago Daily News Archive:

    2) Chicago History Museum:

    Photos from the collection in #1 can be obtained here:

    Here's the general photo reproduction page on CHM's website:

    3) Theatre Historical Society:

    I believe you can get some shots of the Uptown theatre here (they are located in Elmhurst).

    If anyone else has any leads on where to get photos like this, I'd be very interested.

  13. Stu:

    The Uptown Chicago History blog also has a great log of historical Uptown images.

    The Library of Congress also has archives of Chicago Daily News images from Uptown days of yore. You can link to it and other Chicago photo archives through the Chicago Historical Society's website.

  14. "As an aside, there are 4-6 great photos at Truman college on one of their interior walls as well as a photo at the Jewel on Montrose near the pharmacy. Not sure where they came from."

    If you have a really good digital camera and know how to deflect glare from the glass covering, you can snap pictures of these photos and make your own prints.

    But for most people, it would seem logical to copy them off their computer screens and store them. Certainly it's cheaper and "greener" than other methods.

  15. Has this photo been flipped or something? The writing on the bottom is backwards.

  16. MotS -- many old negatives have writing reversed on them. I don't think this one has been flipped.

  17. The world was so safe when everything was in black and white.