South Loop Church’s Massive Tiffany Window Goes Out For Repairs
Apr04

South Loop Church’s Massive Tiffany Window Goes Out For Repairs

At a time when too many of Chicago’s holy places are being abandoned, or worse, we bring you a good news story out of the South Loop. The enormous Tiffany window at Second Presbyterian Church has been removed for conservation. Stained glass window being removed from Second Presbyterian Church in March, 2021. (Courtesy of Friends of Historic Second Church.) Thousands of people have admired the 16-foot-tall window during services,...

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Another Piece of Chicago Architecture History Goes From Dust to Dust
Mar28

Another Piece of Chicago Architecture History Goes From Dust to Dust

Easter is a time to celebrate miracles.  But unless The Big Guy, Himself decides to go all Lazarus on 1319 South Ashland Avenue, Saint Stephenson Missionary Baptist Church is gone forever. Saint Stephenson Missionary Baptist Church in August 2020 (Courtesy of Little Italy Spy Blake) Little Italy Spy Blake tithed our tip line with the news that demolition crews have finally done with demolition crews do, and turned this once...

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City Preserving the Morton Salt Shed
Mar01

City Preserving the Morton Salt Shed

For almost a hundred years, the Morton Salt complex at 1357 North Elston Avenue, has been welcoming commuters to downtown Chicago.  Now the city landmark with a lower case “l” is becoming an official City Landmark, with an uppercase “L.”   The Morton Salt complex, before the eastern shed was torn down last year (via Apple Maps) This coming Thursday (March 4, 2021), the Commission on Chicago Landmarks will...

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Trib Tower Rock Tally Down to 149, As One Piece Moves to the Suburbs
Feb21

Trib Tower Rock Tally Down to 149, As One Piece Moves to the Suburbs

Eight years ago, we received an e-mail from a teacher asking for a list of all of the stones embedded in the facade of the Tribune Tower.  Neither she, nor we, were able to find a full list on the internet, so we spent half a day wandering around what was then the home of the Chicago Tribune, jotting down the rocks. The resulting article, listing all 149 rocks, is now our fifth-most-read article, with over 13 million views. Tribune...

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Chicago’s Newest Landmark is a Loop Skyscraper
Feb06

Chicago’s Newest Landmark is a Loop Skyscraper

There are plenty of Chicago skyscrapers that are city, or even national landmarks.  But it’s been a while since we got a new one.  That changed a few days ago when 225 West Randolph Street became the newest Chicago landmark.  You may know it as the Southwestern Bell Building, or the Ameritech Building.  Or if you’re really old school, the Illinois Bell Building. 225 West Randolph / Illinois Bell Building / Southwestern...

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Salt Shed to Pepper West Town With Entertainment, Bars, Offices
Feb01

Salt Shed to Pepper West Town With Entertainment, Bars, Offices

The massive salt shed that has greeted commuters coming into town on the Kennedy Expressway since before there was a Kennedy Expressway is about to start a new chapter in its existence.   Morton Salt’s Elston Avenue terminal (by Cosmo1976 [CC BY-SA 3.0) The Chicago Plan Commission has approved a $30 million project to turn the old Morton Salt Elston Avenue Terminal into a mixed-use development. It was a little over five...

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Wrigley Field Officially Awesome.  It’s a Signed Document.
Nov23

Wrigley Field Officially Awesome. It’s a Signed Document.

You don’t have to be a Cubs fan to consider Wrigley Field a national treasure.  It’s been anointed so by the Department of the Interior. The north side ballpark was named a National Historic Landmark a few days ago, complete with an 8½ by 11″ certificate, suitable for framing. Wrigley Field gets a thumb’s up from the Department of the Interior The proclamation signed by Scribbly McPenmanship lists the following...

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Le Colonial’s Former Colony Under Siege
Oct26

Le Colonial’s Former Colony Under Siege

It’s been a very long time since we would stand in the shadows outside of 937 North Rush Street and startle passing tourists who only noticed us out of the corners of their eyes.  Good times. Back then, 937 was the home of Le Colonial, one of the Gold Coast’s social touchstones.  A frequent haunt of shopgirls and their clients, ladies who lunch, and people trying to channel their inner Graham Greene or Somerset Maugham over...

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The Last Big House in Edgewater Is Becoming a Landmark
Oct05

The Last Big House in Edgewater Is Becoming a Landmark

Who doesn’t love a big, old house this time of year? All gussied up for Halloween, it makes you feel all Great Pumpkin inside. There’s a great old house in Edgewater that’s on its way to becoming a landmark. 6106 North Kenmore Avenue (Via Apple Maps) 6106 North Kenmore Avenue goes by the name Perkins-Nordine House. It was designed by Allen Pond and Irving Pond, who together made ripples in architecture circles as...

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South Side Civil Rights Landmark Makes National List of Most Endangered Places
Sep27

South Side Civil Rights Landmark Makes National List of Most Endangered Places

The South Side church where the 1955 funeral and visitation for Emmett Till was held has been named to a list of the most endangered places in America. Roberts Temple (via Apple Maps) The National Trust for Historic Preservation puts out a new list each year, highlighting the places that shaped the nation that are also in danger of disappearing. This year’s list has locations from Alaska to Puerto Rico, and includes the Roberts...

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