Page 1


CHICAGO HrsTORY-

____T_h_e_M_agazine of the Chicago Historical Socie~---

EDITOR

Winter 1989-90

R USSELL LEWIS

Volume XVIII,

umber 4

ASSOCIATE EDITOR

CLAUDIA LAMM

Woon

ASSISTANT EDITOR

M ARGA IU:T W ELSI I DESIGNER

CONTENTS

BILL V AN N!MWEGE:-.: DESIGN ASSISTANT

4

Trn G11ms PHOTOGRAPHY

J o , , i-,: Aw~.RSo:-.:

CATHER.I E SARDO W EJDNER

26 46

Foomcned rn anusc,-ipls of the articles appearing in this issue are avai lable from the C hicago l listorical Society's Publications Office.

walqyli o wolno.s'c w Ameryce. ty J>Ol'IO"',es:i Ame,-yce walc;yc o wolnosc w Polsce ?

Jed3 Mniej Ps;epicy- miesa -tluS'.IC3Y-cukru

abysmy ~H pomoo;· nas:;ym braciom _":a.k?cym w Annlach Alianc~ch

F.

GILLETTE.JR.

Coming Together M A RY ANNjOHNSON

66

ISSN 0272-85-10 Articles appearing in this journ al arc abstracted and indexed in Historical Abstracts and America: fl istory and Life.

White City, Capital City HOWARD

J AY CRAWFORD

Copvrigh t 1990 by the C hicago Historical Soc-iet} C lark Street at North Avenue Chi cago, IL 606 14

Building a Better Life

Slavery in French Colonial Illinois WINSTANLEY BRIGGS

DEPARTMENTS 3

82

From the Editor Yesterday's City

Cover. Detail of poster, c. /917, with image of Pulaski and text in Polish. "'Ail.aski fought for freedom in Ammca. H'ill )-011 help America f,ghtfor freedom m Poland? Eat less wheat, meat, fats, sugars so that we might help our brothers fighting in Allied armies. "CHS, ICHi-21732.


Chicago Historical Society OFFICERS Philip D. Block Ill, Chairman W. Paul Krauss, Vice-Chairman Richard H. eedham, Vice-Chairman

Philip W. Hummer, Treasurer Mrs. Newton N. Minow, Secretary Stewart S. Dixon , Immediate Past Chairman

Ellsworth H. Brown, Presidenl and Director

TRUSTEES Lerone Bennett,Jr. Philip D. Block III Laurence Booth Charles T. Brumback Mrs. Emmett Dedmon Stewart S. Dixon Michael H. Ebner Sharon Gist Gilliam Ph ilip W. Hummer Richard M. Jaffee Edgar D.Jannotta Philip E. Kelley

W. Paul Krauss Mrs. Brooks McCormick William J. McDonough Robert Meers t-lrs. Newton . Minow Richard H. Needham Potter Palmer Bryan S. Reid.Jr. Edward Byron Smith.Jr. Dempsey J. Travis John R. Walter Mrs. Abra Prentice Wilkin

LIFE TRUSTEES Bowen Blair John T. McCutcheon,Jr. Andrew McNally III Mrs. Frank D. layer Gardner H. Stern

HO 1ORARY TRUSTEES Richard M. Daley, Mayor, City of Chicago

The Chicago Historical Society is a privately endowed, independent institution devoted to collecting, interpreting, and presenting the rich multicultural history of Chicago and Illinois, as well as selected areas of American history, to the public through exhibitions, programs, research collections, and publications. It must look to its members and friends for continuing financial support. Contributions to the Society are tax-deductible, and appropriate recognition is accorded major gifts. Me mbership Membership is open to anyone interested in the Sociel)"s goals and activities. Classes of annual membership and dues are as follows: Individual, $30; Family, 35; StudentJSenior Citi,en , 25. Members receive the Society's quarterly magazine, Chicago History; a quarterly newsleuer, Past-Times; a quarter!~ Calendar listing Society programs; invitations lO special events; free admission to the building at all times; reserved seats al films and concert in our auditorium; and a 10 percent discount on books and other merchandise purchased in the ~1useum Store . Hours The Museum is open daily from 9:30 A.M. to 4:30 P.M.; Sunday from 12:00 :-:oo:-: to 5:00 P.~I. The Library and Manuscripts Collection are open Tuesday through Saturday from 9:30 ,UI. to 4:30 1(~1 . All other research collections are open by appointment. The Society is closed on Christmas, New Yea1·'s, and Thanksgiving days. Education and Public Programs Guided tou1·s, slide lectures, gallery talks, craft demonsu·ations, and a variety of special programs for all ages, from preschool through senior citizen , are offered. Admission Fees for Nonme mbers Adults, $1.50; Children (6-17), 50¢; Senior Citi1,ens, 50¢. Admission is free on Mondays.

Chicago Historical Society

Clark Street at North Avenue

Chicago, Illinois 60614

312-642-4600


FRC)M THE En1TC)R " l11 lh<' micl-,1 ofa cala1ni1y witlto111 p;1rnll('I in lit<' wotlcl\ lti'>IOI Y, looking upon tit<· ,,-,Ire·-, of 1lti11 y y('a r•.' an 111n11la1io11.,, tltC' p<'oplc of 11ti-, 011< c· l>C'a111ift1I <ity ltavc rnolvccl 11ta1 ( :111( :AC() S I !Al.I. RISE ACAi ," U11m1;0 'Jrib111u' ecli101 Willia111 B1rn,s v,rntc· tit<' cl ay ;dt<·1 tire · Ctc·;it Clticago Fir<' . Willi tit is -,1a1c·11H'lll, Chicago <·111i>r;1c('cl tit<· inragc ol tire· plro<"11i x. ·1 Iris 111 y1l10 logical i>ircl of a11c ie111 Egypt , Cree«·, and Ro111c , asMHia1ecl wi11t -,1111 wor -,ltip ancl i111111<111 ,tli1 y, bC'c;11nc· ; 1 .~y,n i>ol for IIre ·< ity, wit ic It , Ii k(' IIt i.., l('gc11cl ;1 1y l>i I cl , w;is I ci>ot n 0111 of ii.'> ow11 aslH•s. Its associa ti on wit It Chicago, how('VC't, ltas not '>lit vivc ·cl. /\ logical i>ircl 10 '>y111i>oli1c· co111c·111pora1y Chicago i-, the pigeo11 , a 1cl;i1iw of the· clov(' . Pml>al>l y 1lte fin.t clo111c·'>tic;i1ccl i>ird , pigcom wc·n· valuccl in an1iq11i1y "" fi,ocl , a'>< a, 1in'> of' 111ili1 ,11 y and< orn1nc·1ci;tl 111(•-,sag<'s, ancl "" i>irch ofgr<'al vari<' IYancl i)(';1111 y. /\-, ('at ly as 11 :,0 11< the S11l1a11 of Baghdacl (''> lal>lisltC'cl ;111 <' temivc pi geon post ,y.,tc111, and ( :cnglti'> Kit an< t<'atccl a '>imilar 11c1work 10 '>llj>po11 hi-, 1t1ili1ary conq11c·'>I'>. flig<'<>lls car I ied llH''>.'>:tg('s in wars 1lt1011glt out tlH· 11inc1ec·111lt n·n1111 y ;1ncl i1110 Ilic 1we11liC'tl1. Rai-,ing pig('om was a '>)H'rial privilege ol F1c·n< h nobilit y ancl clngy until the F1c11c h Rcvo l111io11. Flal,oralc 1owc·1-,, <allccl pigc·on11icr'> or colorni>iC'rs, W('n' i>11il1 in cltatcaux and ahl><'ys lo ltous<· ;1-, rnan y as C'iglil 111011-,and pig<'<>llS. The 1111111lw1 olpigeom a 1101>1<' c 01ild own wa'> 1c·s11 i< l<'d by law 10 co1 n ·s po11cl 10 tire -,i,c· of'tlH' cslatC'; pigeon'> tltus bcca11H· an index of wealth. ·1 Ile· dee line of 1hc pig('o11's status began in tile 11i1lC'l('('lllh cc·111u1 y wi t Ir tit(' -,la11glt1c·1 of tire pa-..wngc, pigc·o 11. h>11ncl i11 great ai>1111da11e c· in 1!1C· llnit<'cl States '>in«· IIH' 1700s flock-. ofa i>illion binh we1(· 1101 111Honi111011 p;isse11gc1 pig<·o n'> wc1c· <·asy pr<'y fo1 W('\1('111 li11111t·1., supplying a vc>ra< iou-, Ea,1 Coast app('til<'. By l!J07 tit<' i>i1d wa-.. vi, luall y c-x1i1H I, and in l\Jl•I, Ma11lta, tire la-,1 of 1'11c·<· p;hs<'11g<'1 pig<'<>lls s111\iving in tli<' Cinri1111a1i Zoo , cliccl . B1 anckd as "ra t'> wit It wing..,;• pigc-011s an· 1cgatcl('CI by 111ost <i1 y ollic ials and 111 ;111 y < i1i1<·ns as 111 i>a 11 p<'sts Iltat sp1 cad cl iM·asc·. fl<"oplc 11 y ;1va r iC't y of nH·I ltoch to , id ( :It icago of IIt is II u isa ll<'<': tltc y 111mn11 steel '>pike'> 01 sp1 ay a sticky su l>st,uH c· along huilcling ledges , k·c ·cl 1IH·n1 food lac eel wi11t '> lt·1 ili1i11g ro111racC'ptivcs 01 poison , and even 111011111 plastic :-.11;1kcs and< Iii< ken ltawk'> to fi igltt(·n 1hc111 . By contrast, Ch1cagoa11'> in t<'C'<'l11 yt·a ,., ltav(' welcomed tit<' pc·1<·g1inc lalco11 1ltrnuglt a prngra,n lo 1clocatc 11ti-, gravcl; c11cla11gc1cd spec ics. ·1 he hitd'> rnmt 011 lop of ltiglt I ise<,, fa, lion, ltu11tn'> ancl tit(' g1ca1 ltotn<'cl owl, it'> 11a111ral p1cda1oc 'f'ltl' fai>lcd falcon of 111c·cliC'v,tl kings, Ihe pct cgt ill(' is 01H' of IIH· 1a, est, fast<''-1, and 111m1 -..p<'< I,l< ll lat fli<'I.., of tlH' hi nl kingdom . It s 11 ;1d('lna1 k i-, an in< 1cdihlc clispl;i y of ac·1 ial ,ic rni>alir'>. But the·..,<· falcon'> aho c·a 1 pigeons. /\ ltlt ouglt supp01 l('t s oltltc· pctc·g r inl' 1elcas<' prng1 a111 d.1i111 pigeon craclica1io11 was 1101 the-ii i111en1ion , nian y ci1i,c·m <011sick1 tit is an aclvantag<'. J>c, haps it is not s111 p1isi11g !Ital C:ltirngoa11s <(·leln;itc the p<'t<'g1 inc OV<'I the pigeon . J\l11lo11gh ii is 11011ltc· 1ny1ltical phoenix , its aggn·-..sivC'IH''>\, da, i11g, powc1 , and solitary fi( •t•do111 n·sc·mhl<- the qualitic:-. W(' h;1v<· < ha111pirnH·cl in J\me 1ica11 herne~; il i~ Lhe cowbu; ui t.lie ~ky. There is nothing heroic about the stout-bodied, small-headed pigeon . But as a survivor that has made a place for itself in Chicago and other citie against great odds, it faces the perils of the cily daily with little fanfare. The pigeon is an astute bird that has adapted to urban living; we might learn something from it after all.

RL


Building a Better Life by Catherine Sardo Weidner

Italians and Poles came to Chicago with different dreams-one to prosper and return to their homeland, the other to build a new world in America.

Perhaps most visible among the great wave of immigrants arriving in Chicago in the early decades of the twentieth century were those from Poland and southern Italy. More than 77,000 Poles and nearly 44,000 Italians crowded into the city between 1900 and 1920 alone. To the casual observer, little distinguished the Italian from the Pole; from the factory to the tenement house, immigrants seemed to share a common world. Most were of peasant origin and were meagerly educated. Their Old World agricultural skills held little value in an industrial economy, and they entered the labor market as unskilled 4

workers. Toiling long hours for what were often subsistence wages, Italians and Poles assumed a low economic status that drove them into the crowded tenements and clingy boardinghouses of the immigrant neighborhoods. Here they encountered the institution designed to help them adjust to the urban environment-ethnic parishes, public and parochial schools, and settlement houses.

Catherine Sardo Weidner is assistant professor of history at Bull.er University.


Building a Better Life

,'

Italian immigrants (left) raise an Ammcanjlag in a New World version of an Old World religious tradition-theJecist day celebration. Above, Poles decorate a new business establishment at Nob/.J, and Division streets in red, white, and blue.

5


Chicago Hi.story, Winter 1989-90 Though the immigrants shared a common terrain, each group adapted and responded to American society in specific and distinct patterns. Social work agencies such as the University of Chicago Settlement House, the Chicago Commons, and the Immigrants Protective League formed specifically to help the foreign population adjust to American society, and from 19!0 to 1920 social workers at all three institutions reported dutifully on the "progress" of various immigrant groups. The University of Chicago Settlement, headed by Mary McDowell, and Graham Taylor's Chicago Commons were located directly in the immigrant neighborhoods, providing social workers with opportunities to observe the daily lives of Chicago's foreign born. For all of their careful observations, however, they looked askance at cultural and ethnic diversity. They evaluated immigrant behavior according to a uniform standard, one that defined assimilation strictly in terms of participation in

American institutions and adherence to common rules of citizenship. Few attempted to study or explain different levels of participation in American society on the part of different ethnic groups and what, if anything, such behavior signified. Social workers only documented the activities of Italian and Polish immigrants and did not question their motives. Ironically, middle- and upper-class social workers found the urban-industrial environment more unsettling than did the immigrants. Alarmed by the crushing oppression of cities and factories on individual lives, middle-class urban dwellers swelled the ran ks of the Progressive movement's reform armies. Though they focused their efforts on ameliorating the worst features of the urban-industrial landscape-crowded, substandard housing and poor working conditionstheir preoccupation with a cleansed and improved environment spilled over into other areas. The programs and policies of the Univer-

An Italian-American travel agency appea/,ed to the dream most Italian immigrants had of returning to the homeland someday.

6


Building a Better Life sity of Chicago Settlement, the Chicago Commons , and the Immigrants Protective League uniformly sought to regulate not only the environment but the individual as well. The private lives of Chicago's newest arrivals aroused reformers' concern and condemnation. Italians and Poles alike drew praise for "pro per" behaviorparticipation in American institutions and conformity to American norms-and drew fire for clinging to Old World traditions. The inclination of most social workers to project their own values and expectations onto immigrant communities necessarily diminished their sensitivity to ethnic and cultural differences. Reform parading as social justice created a set of goals completely unrelated to the real desires of Italian and Polish immigrants. Immigrants shared the expectation of a better life in America, but their reasons for emigrating developed in vastly different cultural and politica l contexts. The extent to which the homeland

continued to serve as a cultural reference point for Italians and Poles had profound consequences on their participation in American society, especially between 19!0 and 1920. Italians and Poles constructed social and cultural worlds that reflected their own goals and aspirations. Italians desired short-term economic gains because they hoped to return to Italy. The politically and religiously oppressed Poles, on the other hand, developed a rich and complete community within the context of the freedom offered by the I ew World. Both groups used American society to further the pursuit of their specific goals. Their participation, or lack thereof, in American institutions was deliberate and selective and had little bearing on whether or not they ultimately assimilated. Italian immigration to Chicago is best understood in light of changes in the landholding patterns and social structure of late nineteenthcentury Italy. As the nineteenth century came to

A group of Polish child nm play infront of St. Stanislaus Kostka Church, located at Noble and Bradley streets, in 1911. The first Polish Catholic church in Chicago, 11 was the hub of Polish-American life.

7


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 a close , two systems of land tenure prevailed. Both had developed when feudalism ended, and they became even more distinct as the government of united Italy sought to promote the sale of land. In northern regions land was not subdivided and sold, but rather, the great landlords retained ownership and leased out their land to peasant sharecroppers . In other parts of Italy, such as Campania, Abruzzi, Basilicata, and Calabria, great estates were broken up , creating many small- and medium-size holdings and resulting in an active land market. The mixture of small, medium , and large holdings in these areas destroyed the traditional social hierarchy of an immense peasantry subserviem to and dependent upon a few privileged landowners. The buying and selling of land stimulated diversification of the social structure. Most Italians who came lo Chicago between 1910 and 1920 were peasant farmers from the southern provinces. The possibility of buying land in southern Italy sheds light on their behavior in Chicago. They depaned for America in great numbers but clearly hoped to return. Chicago, like many industrial cities, was the stepping stone to a better life in Italy. As Salvatore Cosentino, who left the Cosenza province for Chicago in 1913, explained, "That's the intention of everybody that came over here. Make some money and maybe someday will go back there." Often emigration was the only alternative for a peasant farmer caught between his love for the

This 1924 photograph helped immigrant Rena M orandin remember her grandparents back in \i>rona, Italy. Below, passenger ticket to

Chicago from Naples, Italy, 1921.

CONSERVATE QUESTA RICEV~A

OUPLICATO

No.A. I.

191

C

;/' )

/ ~ _ 1,c ~ "=' ! /

Ricevuto dal Sig. --::, '

Lire

It. _

)

,J t ' t ' a ~

daspedirsi aLSig,!,'

(

(y f,,,-,

l". '.·rl

I

'i ,r, ' <£- • ,,-' 1

o mezzo dell' Ufficio delio

59 Via Guglielmo Sanfelice, NAPOLI.

Vag i,a Postali e Telegraflci I I 554 Fr onl Stl't"t"t

l. h1 cago.

8

Ill.

Lire

It. ~";777 -

p.,

I 11

)

[ ~aQ.~~~, / -

I,~

Provincia di_

__, j

/

Nell' Ufficio Postale di •- 'fl!:

VAL. PARISE


Building a Better Life land and rigorous poverty. Many, like Umberto Dini , remained sharecroppers well after the land had been divided. His impatien ce with a system whereby "yo u do all the work and they get half" led him to emigrate in 1911. Even tho e who owned land needed more. The small size of most plots assured the marginal quality of peasant life. Like Marco DeStefano, "Most anybody in that town owned a little land outside the town, like they have maybe an acre ... to raise vegetables and so on. And that 's what we lived on. We had very few cows to give us milk .... It was very, very hard." Despite the rigors of tilling th e soil, Italia n immigrants expressed a deep attachment to their place of' origin, or pa.ese, and settlement patterns in Chicago neighborhoods renected this. Not by mere chance did Louise Panico, emigrating from Accerre, Italy, in 1912, settle in a neighborhood that was "mostly eopolitan and from the south of Italy like Calabrese, Abbruzese." The phenomenon of chain migration, where relatives and friends from a ingle locale followed one another not only to a city but to a particular neighborhood in America, clearly operated in Chicago. Salvatore Cosentino, for example, picked Chicago "because my uncle was h~rc with his family," and he continued to board with them for seven years. Living with or among one's paisanos from the old country reinforced the immigrants' tics to their paesi. Italian immigrants were able to keep memories of the old country alive "because everyone was together, the cousins, the brother-in-law." The temporary, unselllcd status of Italian immigrants inhibited community building in America. As a result, Italians tended to adopt those practice they considered least culturally disruptive and most economically sound. What in their eyes was pragmatic, indeed rational, behavior was often completely unintelligible to social reformer . Some Italian practices uggested an acceptance of American society and values; others seemed to repudiate these very same things. On the one hand, most Italian immigrant demonstrated little interest in two institutions that tl1e social workers deemed "divisive": the ethnic parish and the parochial school. On the other hand , Italian families continued the Old World traditions of taking in boarders and cloistering women and girls. But above all,

People from the same locality in Italy, or paisanos, often relocated not only to the same city but to the same neighborhood, as did the Morandin family-father; brothers, and cousin.

between 1910 and 1920, Italian immigrants consi tently resisted putting down roots of any sort. Social reformers deplored the practice of taking in boarders. A 1936 study of the tenements of Chicago by Edith Abbott noted that boarding several lodgers in a tenement family apartment criously overcrowded rooms that were often undersized, dark, and inadequatel y ventilated. Keeping lodgers, Abbott continued, created additional work for the overburdened wife and mother and provided a constant excuse for failing to maintain standards of health and cleanliness. The most serious consequence of all was "the sacrifice of privacy," for in many cases lodgers slept in the same room with family members . A Department of Public Welfare survey recorded that family and boarders mingled together, "u ing hall, porches and toilets in common." Such close contact, it was presumed, increased "the danger of blunting or entirely destroying the morals and finer sensibilities of the attractive young Italian girls and women who lived 9


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

A Sicilian family poses in "Little Hell, .. their new Chicago neighborhood directly north of Chicago Avenue, between SNlgwick Street and Gau/I Court.

in such intimate contact with so many nonfamily groups." Italians themselves expressed little concern for the deleterious effects of crowding togethei: They unhesitatingly accepted the practice of boarding largely because it met their needs. Many Italian men first came to America alone and, like Frank Mariani, purposefully adopted a spartan existence. He explained, "We didn't have any fami ly, you know, we didn't have no luxury, anything like that, wejustsleep in one side of the other, you know. Five, six men in about two rooms." For the single male immigrant, living with paisanos in a new and often impersonal en\'ironment became a survival mechanism; boarding enabled him to save money and insulated him from culture shock. Boarding also gave Italian women a unique role that allowed them to contribute financially while preserving the traditional family structure. Custom dictated that Italian women attend to family and household duties. But as Nina Dal 10

Cason explained, "It helped because the husband worked and the wife also earned some money by preparing the meals and doing the laund1-y for the boarders." According to Cannella Zoppetti, there was genuine pressure to take in boarders. Her parents, "like everybody else, had boarders because if you didn't have a boarder, the woman was lazy." Social reformers decried the eclusion of Italian women and girls. A 1916 report of the Chicago Commons, for example, complained that the traditions of the old country and early marriages hindered Italian girls' participation in settlement house programs designed to help them assimilate. An Immigrants Protective League report voiced similar frustrations, attributing the high rate of illiteracy among Italian women to Italian males' refusal to let their daughters or wives attend night school unchaperoned -a task the weary laborer often refused to perfonn. On the other hand, social reformers applauded Italians for sending their children to


l/111/tl111}!, 11 /lr/111 I ,J,•

/1,,/1,"i ,m,n, 11111/t t,,Muhr,J Jrw JM11 Ju,1I 11/tn,dt, u•lu,h 11111,,l ,,J,,,,,,,,, l111,rt 11 ,,,,,, ",, 111 of /1,,11 ,,,,ll11w,i,n ,,, '''-"""'"'' "''" '"'''""" r 11/1111f6 I l,nr //1Jl11111 ,1,,/tl,,.,J 111/, ,,,t,,/ ti, ji 111,, ,,1,,,.,/ ,,, Iii, l'J , ,,, ,mtl, I "" 'I ,11, ,,

111tl,l1, , , '11J<tl ,

l• ' H ill\

J>•' lf

111111

.di

Ill 111

f

11 .di,111

, lidcl11 II Ill ( 1111 .11,;11 ,,11,·11rl, cl 11111,111 ~( 1111111 \ Ill I'll

I \~ 1 ll.tl1,111

, 111 111< 0 11 , l1iltl1, •11 1111 p1111 •h

pr , 1 •111,111, ,, , , 111" .111d 111,1 , , I ,,

,I r, •llt

I

1111, •11,l11p

l f

1111111 · 11 11111111111111, · 111 [fl ltdl

f '''"'

l 1111,

1\, 1 I'·", 111 ~

lr ,,d

I I I JII I

I

,

lt,u,I , I

It, I II

1111 1 11"11 , , 11111 111

.,g,•~ ,,I ,., ,

( JI I\ , I I I '

111111111 cl, c •~11111 1111

I

,Ill

I

.d,

I

I I Ill I J'I

'""' '•

\\. c

I

, · 11cl 1lw11

II .111,I 111111

1111111111g c l11ld11 •11

, . ,111q,I •·, 11 111c •11dl1'1 C 1111111 111

f

1111 • ( 1111111111 I l l \ l rl111 . 1l11111

I

l11lcl11 •11 111'1\\f' f' II 1111'

1,, II 111

If 1011111 , ~ l111p1 rl ,

111

I, ,II I

p1d1l11 .111 I

I ff

\111,,cl, 11 \, 11111111 , ''"

111 , ,1 111 "1, , •111 111 tlw p1d,l11

lit.ti \ ,I

ft1

I

\\111

• I ,tlllf I ill.Ill

1,a~ lllU~t llllJJUI tdlll, and e\ 1c.l e 11 ce shows that the majority of Ita li an children left school as soon as they could secure work papers. Like many of hi friends, Marco DeStefano was unable Lo attend high schoo l "on account of funds that were needed at home. We had to do the best we co uld in raising money." In add iti o n to the lack of support for parochial schools, Italian immigrants displayed a surprist:OULdllUII

Ill).\ l.11 ( 111.111,11111111 1111111111 I 11111111 111111 11111\I ' " .I

Ill

,Ill ll"filtl •

1,tl 111 ~1111 I.Ill, IICI\\ ,l).lll ' C' J, I I 1li1

,1111il. 1111,11 , S11 11 l , 111,;1 \'.tl, •1111 , .I """'""·'' \

Ill ( 111, , 1,;11 cltlllllH IIJJ\

I"

I 11111 , l111111cl 11, . ,, "·"'·"' '

l.,g).l•·cl l.11 111 •1111111 111111 •1 111111111,;1.,111 ).111111('~ 1111il.11 , ., IJIIIJIIIIC Hl\111).1

.,,J11

I.till~ Ill ( 111111

l'l:.!IJ

llw111~• ·IH •~ .r

1111·111lw1 s

111

I'·'' ,~11 II

If

"l11·N

111111111,11 , 1111, \II\\( d till'

1.11111 °1 111.111 ilr, • ( lri,,1),1•1 p.11"11

I,,, Ill C

IJI

il,11111,i" ,

fllli\ 11\11 '1111111 l'•ll

111,rll, 1111111 .11111 14 111.11

1111 1111 •

I, ( 111111

' l,CJ()(J ,,.., 1, · 11 11,.,11 ,. 11111 "'' 111ll1'1 N

lkll\f I ' ll 1'1111 o111cl \\I ' ll

.ti

\ill.,g, ,

111111

I,

I ,IC~ 111 '"JI IHIII

\\,I~ IIIJI ., 111.1111 I 111 ,, l1i,;11JII\ 111dil 111 ( 1," "' 111 II Ill\

Ill ( 11111111111111>

bu1ld111g among lta lian 1mm1grants. Strong particularistic loya lties to family a nd vill age prevented Italians from acting in concert for secular as well as religious purpose . Lack of progress in parish construction shou ld not be eq uated with a lack of religiosity. Italian immigrants practiced a form of popular Catholicism that found its most fervent expression in religious feasts and processions-celebrations of 11


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

religion they had experienced in the Old World . While nominally Roman Catholic, most Italian peasants clung to an intensely parochial form of religion. Most villages and many regions in Italy claimed a patron saint of their own. The fate of every villager was thought to be detem1ined not by a distant and unapproachable God but by local saints and madonnas. A high point in every village was the feast day of its patron saint. Though the Italian newspaper La Tri,buna Jtaliana denounced the entire practice as "theatrical vulgarity on the streets" and "a humiliating religious display," Italian immigrants did not abandon the custom of honoring their patron saints once in Chicago. Louise Panico warmly recalled feast days in Melrose Park, not only because they honored "all the saints from different parts" but also because "all the people knew the spots and that's why they came." A vital expression of their attachment to their paese, religious feasts and processions functioned 12

as cultural reference points that helped preserve regional loyalties for transplanted Italian peasants. Mutual benefit societies, typicall y formed according to the place of origin, also became an important dimension of popular Catholicism. These societies often Look the name of a village or province patron saint; for example Society Firenze or Santa Stefano di Castellone. A 1919 Department of Public Welfare study revealed that llO such societies existed in Chicago with 90 percent of the membership made up of local Italians. Membership affirmed the intermingling of religion and the paese in a way that the ethnic parish could not. Thus, Italian support for religious societies reflected the larger desire to return home. A lagging rate of citizenship among Italians lends credence to the theory that. many hoped to return lo the old country. In 1910 over half of all Italian males over age twenty-one were still


Building a Better Life

The 1921 wedding of Salvatore and Christme Cosentino (left) occurred in Our Lady of Pompeii Church, 1224 Macalister Place, one of the Jew Italian churches erected before 1920. Above, George and Mary Carajolo pose before a statue of St. Barbara, their patron saint.

13


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 aliens and only l7.6 percent of this group had acquired their first paper. Census reports show that by 1920 only 14.7 percent of all Italian men and women over age twenty-one had become citizens. Additionally, board of education reports indicate that most Italian of the era did not attend evening school or bother to learn English. The 1912-13 Report of the Superintendent, for example, revealed that only 1,651 out of 27,987 foreign-born or first generation Italians in the population enrolled in classes. Settlement patterns only reinforced these propensities. According to Nina Dal Cason, Italians settled "where they knew their own people and so they were able to do just beautifully without learning the language." Rena Morandin spoke Italian at home "with everybody, uncles, everybody" because "we didn't know how to speak well English." Home ownership patterns, however, best reflect the transient, unsettled character of

Chicago's Italian neighborhoods. A 1915 public welfare department report noted the "characteristic peasant passion for acquiring landed property" and assumed that Italian families lived in abject poverty because they were saving to buy a home. More likely, Italians saved money in hopes of returning to Italy. In the tracts where the greatest numbers of Italians concentrated, most homes were rented rather than owned. In census tract 87 on Chicago's Near Soutl1 Side, for example, where Italians comprised 37 percent of the total population, only 125 out of 500 houses were owned. In tract 246 on the North Side, where Italians made up 40 percent of the population, only 265 of 1,000 homes were owned. A 1915 housing survey in the Italian district noted that "the majority of laboring classes do not remain in any one place long enough to have the feeling of possessing a home." It seems that Italian families incessantly migrated from

These striking garment workers were among the few Italian laborers willing to risk their job security and thus their ability to return to Italy.

14


Building a Heller Lije fht lo riat, within the boundaries of the ethnic neighborhood. Phil Rafaclli's family "moved from one spot to another. But we never moved further east than Sangamon Street. We were never further west than Carpenter Street, we weren't further south th an I lubbard or further north than Ohio. . . It was a well-known community.... Sicilians." According to historian I lumbert Nelli, Itali ans did not move out of their quarter and into American neighborhoods in signif'ica nt numbers until the ID20s. Work patterns also reveal much about the transient nature of the It alian community. Only a small core of working-class It alians committed themselves to remaining in America and obtaining union recognition. In an era when the strike was not widely practiced, Italian s resorted to it frequently. In l9l0, 3,000 llalian tailors, "tired of their lon g and unjust exp loitati on," enro ll ed in the United Garment Workers of America and struck I !art, Schaffner and Marx, demanding union recognition. Other It alians continued to re~ist the degrading conditions of indu trial labor throughout the decade. But the majority of southern Italians lacked the specialized skills needed fcir employment in the unionized industries. More important, strike activi)y was not necessarily consistent wi th the goals of the transient laborer. Most were simply unconcerned with working condi tions or th e length of the workday. Many, expecting to be in America only a short time , thought unioniLation a risky endeavor, for if economic gain was one's Licket back to ftaly, job security-at any price -was the paramount considcraLion. U11fc>rtu11atcly, most lt ali,111 immigrants did not return . World War I intervened, shauering the dreams of many. At first , the effect of the war's outbreak on the Italian community was unclear. 111 1915 /,'Italia editoria lized that "the It a li an colony of Chicago must support our grea t and noble King Victor Emmanuel Jll , his people and th eir intrepid, loyal and honorable acts in declaring war on Austria." By 1918, however, the same paper had struck a decidedly different posture, encouraging Italians "to show themselves worthy soldiers of ncle Sam," while applauding the Italian colony's generous and patriotic contributions to the American Red Cross. Did L'ltalia mirror a similar shift in loyalties among Ita lian immigrants? One can only speculate. What does seem

1#1rld l#tr I inlPrfered with many lialiam' /Jlan.; lo rl'litnt to ihl' old flalian flmwPrPd the call lo arms from America,

country. Thi:, young his adopted rowtlry.

clear is that Italian ass imilation patterns during this decade must b assess cl in li gh t of immi grants like Louise Panico's father, "w ho a lways wanted to go back some clay but never had a chance." Polish immigration oITcrs a strik ing contrast to the Italian case. As with Ita lians, the a similation paucrns or Polish immigrants arc meaningful only in relation to the cultural and political environment of the divided homeland. The Polish state suffered partition three times in the eighteenth century, and in 1797, afte r Prussia, Russia, and Austria divided the last remnant of Polish territory between themselves, it disappeared entire ly from the map of Europe until the twentieth century. In spite of a brief revival in modified form as the Duchy of Warsaw from 1807 to 1815, Poland remained divided after 15


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

A Polish businessman, posing in front of his ecclesiastical goods store at 1025 N. Milwaukee Avenue, decorated h/J windows with religious and patriotic symbols, an action forbidden in his homeland.

the 1815 Congress of Vienna. For most of these years until it regained its sovereignty after World War II, Polish territory was subject to Austrian, Russian, and Prussian domination. Throughout most of their history, then, Poles were able to preserve a sense of nationality only in active opposition to the policies of the state that ruled them . As historian Norman Davies makes clear, to speak of Russian Poland or German Poland is a contradiction in terms. Russian rulers from Catherine to Nicholas II, unequivocably committed to the program of "Faith, Throne and the Fatherland," advocated the assimiliation and standardization of their Polish subjects. After the ill-fated Polish uprising of January 1863, Russification became the official policy throughout the Polish provinces. Individuals who continued to speak Polish, practice the Catholic religion, or even associate with other Poles were automatically suspect. Prussian authoritarianism closely matched Russian autocracy. Prussia, the central bastion 16

of the German empire by the late nineteenth century, began systematically enforcing Germanization in the Polish provinces after 1871. The Gennan language was made compulsory in all schools, and Polish was banned. Repression extended to the religious realm as well. Government inspectors interfered with religious instruction , and many Polish priests were exiled or jailed. Motivations for emigration developed in a climate of political and religious repression. Poles often emigrated as a purely political act. Victor Harackiewicz came to Chicago in 1913 because "they were already talking about the war, the First World War. So then, a lot of young fellas like myself now, they trying to avoid that because we have to get into the Russian army at that time." Yet more disturbing to Poles than military service was the forcible suppression of their language. The extent to which Poles, peasants and nobles alike, tried to resist this indicates how highly they valued their heritage. Walter Roman-


IJ111/rl111g

fl

ill'lln l,tjr•

/'11/1'1 111//v /m {m/1111/11111 , I I'll~

owsk1 11·1111·11Jlw11 ·cl 1111' ()pp11 ·ssio11 111111<-1 Cl'I 111.111 111lt- : "So 1111 · 1101,lt- l;1cl1n 11 i1·cl to 11·ac h 11s l'ol1sl1 i11 tllt'i1 l1()111n . 1'(111< 1· 101111d rn1t , lllcy <.1pt1111· 1111·111 ,111<1 to()k tlll'll liooks .1w;1y ,111d Jilli 1111· l,1di1·s i11 jail. ,'-;(), nobod y <otild ka111 Polisli." l'ol1·s 1111d1·1 R11ssi ;m do111111.1t1<!ll d1spl ,1ynl a s1111 il.11 11 ·11,1< ll)' ,11101 cli11 g lo J()hll ( ;,1pi11sk 1 Villag 1·1s "l1111'cl ., pi iv:11, · 11·.11 l1t·1 and lt1· t1 ·ad1 1lw R11ssia 11 011d 1111' l'ohsh l.111g11ag1 •." S1ill , tlm p1 ,H Ii< 1· w;is "wi y cla11g1·rn1is .... Wli1·11 1111' poli, t · i11v,1<kcl 1h1· villag1 · w1· l1av1· lo l1ick Ill(' hook ." 'I hi' c()111pl1rn11·d 11 ,11io11ali1 y 1111 x i11 111<· /\11s111.111 p,1111111>11 , OJ K111 gdo111 ol ( ;, ,lie i.1, wlii1 h covered some 20,000 miles of territory to the north of the Carpathian Mountains, precluded repression on the same scale as that in Russian or German Poland. An inharmonious mixture of Germans, Rut.henians, Poles, and Jews inhabited th is province, and widespread poverty aggravated social, national , and cultural differences. One of the most economically backward areas of the empire, Galicia consisted mostly of indigent

p<'asa11ts. II sdclo111 ,0111111.111cl('d 1'11· 11·so111c·t·s 111·11·ss:11 y 10 solv<· ils 111a11ifolcl prol>k111s. Ac rnnling lo C:,1lh<·1 i1w Ko1ik, a Calirian t'·111ig1t'· : "J,;v1·1 yhocl y sln1gglccl in l'ol.t11cl . I clrn1'1 tl1i11k anyl>ocly <c>1dd hdp ;myl>od y l>l'(',111st · this JH'l son got·s m11 111 lht· l'i(-lds willi 1111· ,111111p and th1·11• ,111· < ows to 111ilk ;incl c ltirk<·ns to look ;,!11·1 ,111<1 pigs. ·1}l('st· JH'<>pl<- 011l y lt ,1v1• tlH · l>a11 · 1H·< t·ssili<·s . Villag1·1s 1lt1·y h,1v1· ;i lwd .111<1 tlt1 ·y lt.tV<' ,1 tal>lt· and tl11 ·y lt ;1w a liox to k< ·t·p lh!'ir rlotl1ing i11 .... ·1 ll('y lravl' m11· 1rni1 of boots, 111;1yl><·." Many Poll's liwd a lift · of 1·x t11·111<· clq>1 ivatiot1 , a11d sonal 1t·fo1111<·1s ass1111wd th.11 l'oln flot kt·d to Chicago for that reason only; "because the city offered them the immediate chance of making a livelihood." Their assumptions disregarded the very genuine sense of cultural, political, and religious estrangement that also contributed to the desire to leave the homeland. For many, American freedom meant escape from political subjugation rather than the possibility of economic gain. America, paradoxically, offered Poles

17


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 opportunities forbidden in their homelandfreedom to practice their religion and speak their own language without fear of reprisal. Poles developed strategies for survival that drew from traditional culture yet embraced the new. While ethnic parishes and parochial schools seemed to be extensions of culture in the homeland, they could flourish only in the American context of cultural pluralism and religious toleration. But social reformers, lo whom cultural persistence in any form was anathema, saw such institutions as barriers lo Americanization. They failed to perceive that, given their immediate history, Polish immigrants were able to transfer their loyalties more readily than their Italian counterparts. Social reformers' sweeping characterizations of the Polish community also led to false assumptions about social class distinctions. A 1915 report by the Chicago Community Trust on Americanization assumed bluntly that "the Poles are by heredity a rural people. In the old country, they lived on small farms cultivated by both the men and women with the help of children. Their homes were small huts; their food coarse and plain. Except in severe weather, they slept outdoors. They are not accustomed to city life." Yet political conditions dictated that not all Poles who emigrated were peasants. Many, like Leona Hojnacka's parents, came from cities like Warsaw and were well educated. That Hojnacka's parents refused to accept her husband because "Warsaw people didn't have nothing lo do with farmers" reveals a schism in Chicago Polonia that had significant implications. By and large, the better educated, more sophisticated Poles assumed the lead in the cause of Polish nationalism. The majority of Polish peasants did not organize and agitate for Polish political sovereignty, but they did seek in America what they had been denied at home-cultural and religious freedom. The popularity of the Polish National Alliance (PNA) only served to heighten the anxieties of social workers. Though membership in the P A was estimated at 101,000 in 1913, it is unclear whether the average Polish immigrant subscribed to the concept of Polish selfdetermination. Countless oral testimonies affirm that "old Polonia came mostly from the poorest villages in Poland and had very little formal education." As noted sociologists William Thomas 18

and Florian Znackiecki have noted, a relatively low level of education meant that abstract ideas like political sovereignty held little appeal. Moreover, most Polish immigrant had never experienced a Polish national life, rendering the concept of a united Poland that much more remote. Oral testimony suggests that the PNA's appeal was not its supraterritorial pretensions but the practical benefits membership conferred. As Halina Gawronska recalled, "the interest first of all was insurance. Insurance was the mainstay, the basis of the organization .... That's tl1e reason they can exist for so many years." An additional reason for the longevity of the PNA may have been the extent to which it functioned


Building a Better Life

as a Polish-American, raLher Lhan strictly Polish, organi1aLion. Reporling on Lhe alliance in 1913, Dziennik Zwiazkowy praised Lhe organizaLion for working "Lo educate Polish immigrants and to qualify Lhcm lo command higher wage and make Lhcm beuer ciLizens." The Polish parish, a lth ough frowned on, played an instrumental role in cultivating ties to America . Yet the Chicago Community Trust's !isling of church organizaLions it considered agents of Americanization excluded Catholic parishes entirely. Graham Taylor dismissed the church as an effective socialization agency, confirming the bias against ethnic parishes as "divisive." Though they did not provide a common

Above, Polish women and children mill around the church just after a 1918 Easter basket blessing ceremony. Below, the Polish National Allumce building, 1406-08 W Division Street.

19


Chicago Hi5tory, Winter 1989-90

St. Adelbart's, a Polish church on Seventeenth Street.

ground on which to promote the common welfare, Polish parishes were ultimately democratic institutions-sanctioned by religious tolerance and subject to the American Catholic hierarchy. A commingling of Polish and American values, the ethnic parish fostered appreciation for religious and cultural freedom. Settlement houses could not even begin to fill the roles of ethnic parishes. The parish was the cultural bridge between Old World parochial ties and the new Chicago neighborhood. Poles had long centered their lives around the church. Veronica Siwek, reminiscing about the homeland, associated her birthplace with its parish: "Tarnow and that was Parish Rycglicia." In turn, Chicago's Polish immigrants built new lives around their new parishes. Zeb Zarnicki could only remember his first neighborhood in Chicago by the parish (St. Hyacinth's), explaining, "Polish people like to congregate in and around the church." Stanley Olech's Joliet parish "was the center ofall the activities oftl1e organizations that were formed and most of these were Polish speaking." But the new Chicago parishes represented a break with the past as much as a new beginning. Like Pauline Glembiewska, many immigrants never forgot the religious oppression of the Old

20

World. "The Russian policemen, they called gendarme. He stay in the choir every Sunday. If the priest say something, he gone." More than spi1-itual or emotional ties bound Poles to their Chicago parishes. These parishes expanded to meet a whole range of needs fulfilled by other in titutions in the old country, from the parochial school to the mutual aid society. Parishes established here bore little resemblance to the u¡aditional landmark of the Old World. They met the tremendous financial challenge posed by expanded services largely through contributions by the immigrants themselves. A study of St. Hedwig's parish by historian Mary Cygan found that immigrants shouldered approximately 90 percent of the parish's financial burden; they footed the bill for a new church building and an extensive parish plant comprised of a church, meeting hall, school, and rectory. Historian Rudolf Ve coli concluded tl1at Martha Wojciechowski, who "used to donate a lot of money to the church," was not unusual in this regard. Vecoli found that from 1910 to 1920 Poles surpassed all other ethnic groups in their support of the church, contributing $65,000 per 10,000 members. It seems likely that something other than Old World parochial ties prompted such tremendous sacrifice. Most Poles were unskilled laborers earning little more than an average of $8 per week in the early twentieth century. That Poles invested so heavily in the parish expressed a confidence in America and a commitment to building a new life in this country. If the parish symbolized the bridge between cultures, parochial schools became the forum for adjustment to the ew World, at least for immigrant children. Social reformers nevertheless viewed parochial school attendance as the single biggest hindrance to Americanization. A Chicago Commons warden's report on the Polish community in 1918 expressed worry that "as these children attend parochial schools, they are not so easily reached and assimilated." School census figures documented this "alarming" trend. The 1914 census, for example, showed the predominantly Polish 16th Ward to have 5,207 minors between the ages of seven and fourteen enrolled in private schools, compared to 3,893 enrolled in public schools. The only other wards in the city that approached a 56 percent enrollment


Building a Better Life rate in private schools were the 29th (37 percent) and 5th (41 percent) wards, both of which had a high concentration of Polish immigrants. A compelling logic supported the practice of sending children to parochial schools: public schools did not teach the Polish language. A 1911 editorial in the Polish newspaper Dziennik Zwiazlwwy decried the injustice of th is lack, stating that "no one can honestly deny the righteousness of our demands that the Polish language be taught in the public schools when the German language is being taught to the children of German parents." Certainly the preservation of some Old World languages was compatible with American institutions and values, as parochial schools also proved to be. Anna Blazewicz's testimony reveals the extent to which parochial schools attempted to bring together, rather than separate, Polish and American cultures: "Of course, we had religion, we had Polish grammar, we had English grammat~ reading and ari!:hmetic In America, Poles had Liu, freedom to build churches such as Holy Trinity at Haddon and Noble streets (above), to speak their oum language freely, and to continue their customs.

2]


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

Above, Polish children play outside a local saloon and (right) march two-by-two in a parochial school activity.

22


Building a Beltn- Ufi'

(that I loved) and history, geography. Most of our classes there was English. The only thing that was in Polish was the catechism and the grammar." The assumption that parochial schools subverted American culture and values overlooked what a 1911 f)zimnik Zwiazkowy editorial pointed out: that Poles "live in a free America, not under the rule of Moscow or Prussia, under which the teaching of the Polish language is connected with a great deal of unpleasantness and sacrifice." Polish immigrants demanded that the Polish language be taught, and they supported the parochial school for that very reason. But clear!} the} did so only within an American framework. High rate ofciti,enship and home ownership belied the apparent segregation of Chicago's Polish colony. By 1920 Poles had surpassed all other immigrant groups to claim the highe t citi,enship rate among Chicago's foreign-born population. Of the Polish population 31 percent of all men and women over age twenty-one had attained citizenship-which points to the steady integration of Chicago's Polonia. Home ownership figures supported this trend. Statistical data from the 1920 local community studies reflect a consistently positive con-elation between home ownership and a dense concentration of Poles. In census tract 186 on the ear West Side, for

example, where Poles comprised 42 percent of the population, more than 40 percent of the 900 homes were owned rather than rented. In census tract 185, also on the Near West Side, nearly 50 percent of the homes were owned. The relationship between ethnicity and home ownership must be examined in conjunction with the: ethnic parish. Neighborhoods formed around the institution central to the lives of most Polish immigrants-the church. Martha Lec7Ctyck expressed this relationship very imply: "I went to school [there], I got married there, and I'll be buried there. I'm not running away." Perhaps the greatest proof of Polish-American loyalty came during World War I. Offered the opportunity to fight either for Poland or for the United States, the great majority opted to fight for this country. Fears that the PNA, the ethnic parish, and the parochial school fostered a separate Polish identity proved groundless, as reflected in draft statistics. In fact, the draft board totals of Local Board 39 at the Chicago Commons showed that Poles led among all registrants, constituting 8,136 of the approximately 12,000 who registered. In 1918 Dziennik Zwiazkowy bitterly acknowledged that "the number of recruits to the Polish army from Chicago has fallen to a few daily," a phenomenon that suggests Poles had indeed transferred their allegiance to America.

23


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

Polish immigrants like these young men resting during an outing found a new life in Chicago. Free to practice their religion and speak their language without fear of reprisal, Poles in Chicago merged their traditional culture with the modern life of their adopted city.

24


Building a BettPr Life In a sense, World War I represenLed the final chapLer of Polish assimilaLion, allowing immigranLs like Julius Kopielski Lo sLep back from his Polish heriLage and place iL fully in its American perspective: "I was very enthusiastic about it. ... I was rewarded for my services in the U.S. army with someLhing that pleased me .... My country of America was fighting for my other country of Poland." Social reformers in Chicago articulated a theory of assimilation that sociologist Milton Gordon has called ''Anglo conformity." Essentially, Anglo conformity demanded a complete renunciation of ancestral culture in favor of the behavior and values of the dominant group. Assimilation thus depended on immigrants eschewing their own institutions and organizations-and any sense of ethnic identity-for the common American institutional structure. Such a model, however, reduced assimilation to an ideological construct that bore little relation to the actual prbces of becoming an American. Participation in American institutions proved misleading and unreliable as an indicator of assimilation in the case of Italian and Polish immigrants between 1910 and 1920. Social reformers mistakenly assumed that Jtalians readily assimilated while Poles resisted Americanization, based on the two groups' participation or nonparticipation in ethnic organizations. To the applause of reformers Italians sent their children to public schools and lent negligible support to the ethnic parish: yet most planned to return to southern Italy. If Italians hoped to return, Poles were equally determined to remain. Poles centered their community life around the ethnic parish and the parochial school. While reformers decried this as ethnocentric, thee pracLices ensured Lhat Poles cultivaLed a deep and lasting auachment to American society and values. All Lhis suggests that a more inclu ive Lheory is needed to elucidate Lhe markedly different responses of Italian and Polish immigrants to the urban-industrial environment. The biases of social reformers notwithstanding, Italians and Poles appeared remarkably free to adopt those values and institutions that best fit their goals and expecLations. This phenomenon illustrates what sociologist Nathan Glazer has described as "the voluntary character of American ethniciLy." Eth-

nic groups in America had ample opportunity to maintain themselves on a voluntary basis: ethnic parishes could be built, foreign language newspapers circulaLed, and parochial schools staffed and filled. Immigrants constructed social and culLural worlds consistent with their own needs and desires. In this context membership in ethnic institutions could well reflect American values, and vice versa. Italians hoping Lo return to the paese forged Lemporary yet meaningful worlds. Neither participation in American institutions nor minimal support for the ethnic parish indicated the jettisoning of old country values. Poles, too, developed complete, stable, and satisfying communities around institutions, ethnic by definition, that inculcated respect for American values and traditions. Both processes were at work in the 1910s, confounding socia l reformers and disproving the validity of Anglo conformity as a model of assimilation. For Further Reading Interviews with immigrants pre entecl in this article are extracted from the Nl:.11 Oral History Project: Italians in Chicago (1981) and the Oral History Archives of Chicago Polonia (1977), both available in the Archives and Manuscripts Department of the Chicago Historical Society. For more on Italian immigration see Frank Orman Beck, The Italians in Chicago (Chicago: Department of Welfare, 1919) and Humbert Nelli, Italians in Chicago, 1880-/930: A Study in Ethnic Mobility (New York: Oxford University Press, 1970). Chicago's Polish community is discussed in Joseph Parot, Polish Catholics in Chicago, 1850-1920: A Religious History (DeKalb: Northern Illinois \lniver ity Press, 1981) and Edward R. Kantowicz, Polish-American Politics in Chicago, 1888-1940 (Chicago: The Univer ity of Chicago Press, 1975). On the Americanization of immigrant see Milton Cordon, Assimilation in American Life( ew York: Oxford University Press, 1964).

II Iustrations 4, Special Collections, The University Library, The University of lllinois at Chicago; 5, CHS, ICHi-03021; 6, CHS, ON 204; 7, CHS, ON 56-524; 8, 9, Special Collections, The University Library, The University of Illinois at Chicago; 10, CHS, ON 234; 11, 12, 13, Special Collections, The University Library, The University of lllinois at Chicago; 14, CHS, ON 65-305: 15, Special Collections, The University Library, The University of Illinois at Chicago; 16, CHS, ICHi-13182; 17, Polish Museum of America; 18-19, CHS, ICHi-21733; 19 bottom, 20, Polish Museum of America; 21 top, CHS, lCHi-21732; 21 bottom, Polish Museum of America; 22, CHS, ICHi-20287; 23, CHS, ICHi-21677; 24, Polish Museum of America. 25


White City, Capital City by Howard F. Gillette,Jr.

Hailed as a landmark of the City Beautiful movement, architect Daniel Burnham~ 1909 plan of Chicago fell prey to city politics. But in the more favorable political climate of Washington, D.C., Burnham realized his urban vision.

In the history of urban development in America, two cities could scarcely have been more different than Washington, D.C. and Chicago. As a government city, Washington never developed the industrial base necessary to attract a significant immigrant concentration. Chicago became the very epitome of what Lewis Mumford has called the "insensate industrial town." Yet for most of the first quarter of the twentieth century, when public initiatives attempted to quell the undirected growth of urban centers throughout the United States, Washington and Chicago led the way in shaping what has come to be known as the City Beautiful movement. Closely tied to the origins of the city planning profession, the City Beautiful movement sought to make cities more viable by reducing congestion, exercising control over land use, and inspiring civic pride through the magnificence of monumental public buildings. While Washington remains the most fully developed example of that effort, the movement gained momentum in Chicago, led by architect Daniel H. Burnham. He helped fashion the agenda to be followed in the redevelopment of Chicago and other American cities. Burnham was among a group of leading architects who pioneered a commercial style that lent a distinctive element to American architecture. His greatest national fame, however, came as director of works of the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago. Burnham and his colleagues popularized the design of monumental civic spaces in America through the collaboration of architects, landscape architects, and sculptors. Greatly influenced by a commitment to classical architecture associated particularly

with the Ecole des Beaux-Ans in Paris, the organizers of the fair turned their backs on the commercial work through which Burnham had helped make Chicago famous. Monumental exposition buildings, constructed of wooden frames and a temporary plaster material painted pristine white , gave the fair the popular designation, the "White City." The fair gave the public a new vision for emerging downtown areas and showed how better urban planning could create a more positive civic image. Such a pleasing aesthetic statement, the architectural critic Montgomery Schuyler argued, was especially important in an era of rapid immigration to visually communicate the values of American democracy to illiterate newcomers. The design possibilities of the fair excited Burnham. Shortly after the fair closed, he approached Chicago business leaders with the idea of developing a comparable civic complex in the heart of Chicago's downtown along Lake Michigan. Following the suggestion of his friend James E. Ellsworth to set out a plan for the eight miles of lakefront from the Chicago River to the Jackson Park fair site, Burnham added an ambitious proposal for the new "Lake Front Park" at Congress and Michigan avenues. In addition to the new Art Institute, here would be new civic buildings including a library, an armory, and an exposition hall. Like the fair, the landscape was to be embellished with sculpture, including a reproduction of the celebrated MacMonnies Columbus Fountain featured in 1893. According to Charles B. Atwood, Burnham's partner in the lakefront park proposal and a Columbian Exposition architect, the new group-

Howard F Gillette,jr., is a native of Chicago. He is currently professor of American civilization at George Washington University in Washington, D. C.

State Street looking north from Madison Street. Urban growth and rapid immigration clogged city streets and vistas in the late nineteenth century, prompting city planners and architects to champion the City Beautiful movement.

26


The White City of Chicago'1 1893 Worlds Columbian Exposition iUustTau!d how urban planning, by creating an aesthetically pleasing city, could promote a more positive civic image. Photograph by C. D. Arnold.


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 ing would "reproduce many things that will recall to memory the beauties of the White City." The Chicago Tribune echoed that theme in congratulating Burnham for showing "the same sense of the beautiful , the same love of the artistic, and the same strong belief in Chicago's possibilities that characterized his administration of the White City." A subsequent Tribune issue reported that Burnham's plan "has in view making Chicago so beautiful it will outrival Paris," and the Times Herald ran the headline, "Fo r a ew White City." Commercial Club president Franklin MacVeagh added at an 1897 meeting to promote the plan, "We surprised the world with our material forces ... but the world is not satisfied. ll was stunned,

After designing the While City/or the 1893 fair, arrhitecl Daniel H. Bumham (right) engineered numerous city plans, including Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Cleveland. As seen in the map below, the idea for a monumental rity core set amid the greenf>I)' of a /1arh was explored i11 the Worlds Columbian Exposition and later applied i11 other city plans. Burnham reproduced the /air's ,\lac,\lonnies Columbus Fountain (far righl) in his inilial plan for LIU? lakefront park shortly after LIU? fair closed.

r

I'

r-!__ ,· .

1, ' , ,

~-

.... ,

-

-- -

-

A"'.•· ,1,,JJ_,,,1,.~'-' /'hu.,,,,,,.,,.

:t~Ei:~-:,

~ ~-

·-~,.,.;.,,~-::;....... .·E::--:-,_,,.. --·-

/

;-. J

/

30

-- 7


\Fhite City, Capital City but not com inced. ft is waiting to see whether the World's Fair is followed up.·· Although Burnham had been encouraged to seek public support for hi ideas after his companion from schoolda\ , George B. Swift. was elected m,l\OI; he immediate!\ ran into political difficult,. In June l 95 the cit\ rnuncil rejected a proposal to create an independent commission to supeni e the plan. _\ldermen appro,·ed filling in parh of the lake for a park onh after the commission had been eliminated frorn the proposal. \\'ith sufficient funds allocated onl\' to plan for parb, the Tribunr till breathed a sigh of relief, suggesting that the proposed buildings could wait. "The great point,"' a June 29, l 95, editorial noted, "is to prO\ idc for filling in the 150 acres of submerged lands and putting an end to the semeless demand that the, . hall be used for commercial purposes for which the~ are utter!> un. uited."' Swift wa., succeeded in 1897 h:,- Caner H. Harri . on, Jc. a Democrat \\ ith close ties to aldermen ~1ichael "Hinh D1nk·· Kenna and

··Bathhouse··.1ohn Coughlin. During his term. the building plan languished e,en though Ell~,,onh ,,a able as a parks commissioner to ca,,., out some of the ambitious propmah for linking the cit,\ open ,paces. I he ideas incorporated in the building plan, howe,er, influenced both the subsequent plan of 1909 for Chicago and the rede,elopment of Washington, where no local political obstacles existed. While Washingtonians initiall 1 felt bitter about losing the bid to ho t the 1893 fair, the elTect of the exposition was nonetheless powedul in the capital cit:,. .. \11 I 9-1 editorial in the Washington Evemng Star argued fora new municipal building, stating that the failure to prO\ ide sufficient attention to the exterior design would disappoint the "ideals of a people ,,·ho appreciate architecture more thane, er before since it ha seen,, hat architectural genius did for the World's Columbian Exposition." A special 1898 issue of the _journal Jtu111c1pal Affairs, ,, hich helped direct national attention to the concept of the Cit; Beautiful,

31


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

..,.

Ill¡\ 1,-.1 II l'lll I l\11

\I\'

l'I \

t, IL\ 'T I'.\ HI,

32


White City, Capital City suggested that Washington was an ideal candidate for comprehensive planning following the 1893 exposition example. A 1900 article in the Washington Evening Star signed by a Mrs. F M. Bradley suggested that the city's premier boulevard, Pennsylvania Avenue, be redeveloped by encouraging every state to construct a representative building along the lines of the Columbian Exposition. Referring specifically to the central feature of the fair, Bradley suggested, "In the center of th is rese1-vation let there be a magnificent court of honor, extending perhaps from 3rd to 15th streets, with lakes, fountai¡ns, colonnades and statues, with handsome buildings ornamented by the best of American architects and artists." What Chicago had offered the nation as an object lesson, she claimed , "will not bear legitimate fruit unless and until the glories of 1893 are rivaled in the great government park in the capital city of the world." Like Chicago, Washington had its share of complaints about undirected urban growth as the twentieth century approached. Unlike Chi-

cago, however, which wa considered mired in partisan politics, Washington's commission form of government, appointed by the president and monitored by Congress, offered an opportunity for pursuing the kind of bold plans unrealized in Chicago. For men of Burnham's social and economic standing, Washington was open to influence not usually available in other big cities where boss rule superseded what Burnham's contemporaries referred to as government by "the best men." Historianjon Peterson has described the confluence of interests among architects, Washington businessmen, and the powerful chair of the Senate District Committee, James McMillan, that led to the establishment in 1901 ofa Senate Parks Commission, referred to as the McMillan Commission. The 1893 fair directly influenced the formation and membership of the commission. At the December 1900 meeting of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) that spurred the creation of the McMillan Commission, an array of speakers dwelled on the positive example of

A 1903 design for Grant Park (above left), drawn by the Olmsted brothers, groups monumental buildings within a formal landscape plan. Many of the ideas for this area, however, were rejected by Chicago :S city officials. The 1936 photograph (below left), shows Grant Park as it was eventually developed. Nineteenth-century Washington, D.C., in this view looking southeast along Pennsylvania Avenue (left), also experienced the oppression of rapid growth and development. lmpired by Chicago :S fai,; citizens supported the idea of a comprehensive city plan to visually unify the city :S core.

33


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

This bird~-eye view, c. 1892, slwws the Washington, D.C., Mall before the McMillan Commission plan gave it shape.

1893. Although Burnham, a former president of the AIA, was expected to attend but backed out at the last minute, other participants noted how the Columbian Exposition had demonstrated the importance of uniform treatment of buildings and the use of broad terraces and grand vistas. In an effort to influence the role of Congress in redesigning Washington's monumental core, local leaders submitted a bill to the Senate urging that any new design body for the city should consist of Washingtonians alone. But Senator McMillan's rival Resolution 139, "to consider certain improvements in the District of Columbia," called for the establishment of a commission of

34

nationally prominent figures. Although Resolution 139 was never officially adopted, McMillan managed nonetheless to carry out its intent by securing authority to name a select body of experts to "report to the Senate plans for the development and improvement of the entire park system of Washington, D.C." McMillan immediately selected Burnham for the commission, following shortly with the inclusion of Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., son of the landscape designer of the 1893 fair. McMillan thought Olmsted as capable as his father, whom he knew as designer of Belle Isle Park in Detroit. As the third member, McMillan suggested Charles


White City, Capital City McKim, a ew York architect whom Burnham described as the man he "most relied on in the Chicago Fair work." The scu Iptor Augustus SainlGaudens, also prominent in the planning of the fair, joined later as a fourth member. McMillan's secretary, Charles Moore, who had drafted legislation to improve Washington's public works and who also drafted Resolution 139, played an unofficial but important role. Resolution 139 clarified the connection between the Washington plan and the Chicago exposition, declaring, "The remarkable success achieved at the Chicago World's Fair and since repeated on a smaller scale at other like exhibitions, shows how an artistic plan may be devised and carried out so as to be a source of national pride, and a means of national education. What has been achieved temporarily in the midst of commercial cities may be realized permanently in this non-commercial capital city." Burnham expressed his enthusiasm for the project in a letter to his son-in-law, Albert Wells, on March 27, 1901, boasting that "the Washington work is a stupendous job, full of the deepest interest; and it appeals to me as nothing else ever has. I have the be Lfellows with me, and we have the sympathy of all the officials in Washington. IL is going to make the summer a period of intensely hard work, but is going Lo pay from every point of view to do it all." To Secretary of the Treasury Lyman Gage, who had headed the Chicago board of directors for the world's fair and chaired the first public meeting to discuss Burnham's lakefront park idea in 1895, he wrote, "I do not think anything that has come into my life since the World's Fair promises such a delightful vista." Although circumstances in Washington differed greatly from those in Chicago, there were a number of connections between Burnham's Chicago experience and the plan is ued for Washington in 1902. In an article publicizing tl1e Washington plan in the February 1902 issue of Century magazine, entitled "White City and Capital City," Burnham argued tl1at the fair demonstrated what planners could do to "develop and correlate the diversified pans of an urban and rural landscape of an already beautiful city." Burnham carried the City Beautiful ideals to an extreme, writing, "People bid their wise men not alone to safeguard them from foreign invasion or

internal corruption, but to remove and forever keep from view the ugly, the unsightl} and c,en the commonplace." Even as the McMillan Commission stressed the need to revive French engineer Pierre CEnfant's original 1791 plan fora monumental federal presence at the city's core along the park connecting the legislative and executive branches, known as the Mall, it presented artistic renderings or a reconstructed city core as a virtual "White City" surrounded by residential neighborhoods. One of the first items addressed in the written plan was the need for a new monumental Union Station. This bold stroke by Burnham and the commission would remove the unsightly tracks and railroad station that disfigured the Mall. Placing a new Union Station near the Capitol as part or a grouping of public buildings, open spaces, and grand statuary followed the design or the world's fair of 1893. Although the fair's terminal station attracted little public attention in 1893, its grand scale, historically accurate rendition or classical style, and visual connection to other monumental buildings along an open basin provided a model for Washington. As the new Union Station neared completion in 1905, the Architectural Record noted the association with Chicago: "The White City is vanished like a beautiful dream, but its chief designer, grown greater with the years, has produced in this building a structure which surpasses the most beautiful of the ephemeral creations of the vanished city." The McMillan Commission liberally illustrated its report with pictures of European monumental spaces that Burnham, Mc Kim, Olmsted, and Moore had visited in the summer of 1901. Although the text did not emphasize the connections, the commission's drawings for a new Washington made the European parallels clear. The planners envisioned a promenade for the Potomac River like those of Paris and Budapest, a reconstructed Mall influenced by the ChampsElysees of Paris, and improvements to the Anacostia branch of the Potomac made after London's Henley pleasure grounds. The commission announced its intent to review those European designs that had most influenced I..:Enfant's 1791 design for the city, but the urban landscape they viewed in 1901 had changed considerably. More influential than the European designs or the I..:Enfant plan were the modern city planning 35


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 techniques of Paris under Napoleon III in the second half of the nineteenth century. The commission's presentation included linkages between the city core and outlying parks and recommended public bathhouses along the Potomac River as a sanitation measure, following Boston's example. But otherwise the document that Jon Peterson has called the nation's first comprehensive plan failed to deal with social issues such as poor housing conditions throughout the city's back alleys. The plan was chiefly aesthetic in orientation, true to the goals of the fledgling City Beautiful movement. The commission argued Burnham's point that investments in city amenities would more than pay for themselves, as they had in Paris. On June 20, 1902, Burnham was named to a cit-y planning commission in Cleveland along with architects John Carrere and Arnold Brunner. They were to design a new group of public buildings, again following the model of the world's fair. Just as the Washington plan had been influenced by European examples, so too was the Cleveland plan, which envisioned the careful arrangement of public buildings, including a city hall, a public auditorium and music hall, a board of education building, a public library, a federal building,

36

ThP McMillan Commission presented its plan for \,\,ashington, D. C. to govemment officials in 1902 at the Corcoran Callery, as shown in this Washington Post illustration from January 15, 1902. Below, architects and planners prepare a model for till! exhibition.


White City, Capital City

v.,,/

I

r

I•'

__ _

'""

.-....,. .....

,,

' 0

- ---·-- .---:-=...-= ----=-.. ---

___,. ----·-;:~.:; ...":;:..7..·--

· · - - ... v

..

-

===~::::~;;.:: .::..::. . . ::. -------1--..---·. __.. "'_*.,, ,...:;.::...~ ..........

--------

-

...,,

- ~~~-·:::-_-_;=::Z".:__ - ... - ~" ;!:-~~=~.;...:,_. J',-A I. A

,,,

..\

-

i

* ,,

,, '

+

,,+· \""''

ll1r. ~,•

'-:

,,.

,,,

,,

~-'

_,,

I

r'

. •' '

, ..+'

•·'

ThP 1901 MrMlilan Plan (below) drew upon lhe 179/ plan <1 French engineer Pierre J;Enfanl (above), which first delineated lhe Mall <LI an enclave of monumental government buildings. To this idea, the group added the aesthetic ideals of llw Worlds Columbian J-:xposition lo create a White City al Washington, D. C. '.score, surrounded by residential neighborhoods.

37


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

)

r

1..

c1.

' ,,,....,,,--r_«- ""'

~--u ~,,.:·,..,

,-.. ~·l' 1

•.

' - ..

-;1-1 r

At the tum of the century, railroad tracks and an unsightly station occupied the J\lall (below). To transform the spaa, the McMillan Commission proposed building a new station near the Capitol. Inspired by the tmninal station of the 1893 fair, Burnham design for Un ion Station (above) echoed the classical style of the 1893 building and incorporated the principles championed in planaing the fair, blending public buildings, open spaces, and grand statuary into a unijil'd whole.

s

trary, it sad ly disturbs our peacefulness a nd destroys that repose within us which is the tru e basis of a ll contentment. Let the public a uth ori ti es, therefore, set an example of simplicity and uniformity, not necessarily producing monotony, but on the con trary 1·esu lting in beautiful designs emire ly harmon ious with each other... . Only in this way, as is so clea rl y esta blished by a record of centuri es throughout th e o lde r citi es of the world , ca n a great city a lso become a beautiful city.

the Cleveland Chamber of Comme rce, and the Cuyahoga County Co urt House. These structures were to be located a long a magnificent 560foot-wide public mall space and ca pped, like Washington, with its new U ni o n Station, which Burnham would design. Reiterating the concept th at h ad an imated both the Chicago world's fair and the McMillan Comm ission, the Cleveland commission report described the importance of complementary building designs of uniform height and width: The jumble of buildings that surrou nd us in our new cities contributes nothing va lu ab le to life; on th e con-

38

As ev id ence of the interest in each city's development, newspapers in Cleveland and Washington in 1904 traded comp leme ntary editori a ls on their respective public improve me nts. Burnham subsequently provided important plans for San Francisco and for Ma nila, but the City Beautiful move ment reached maturity only with his 1909 plan for Chicago. Interest in Burnham's Ch icago plan co incided with the attention he rece ived as a member of the McMillan Commission. Invited in 1901 by the Chicago Commercial Club to resume his earlier improvement project, Burnham wrote McMillan's secretary, Charles Moore , in 1902, "The Washington work has started up anew the interest here in beautifying this city on the lines of my old work four years ago ." When interest from the Commercial Club lagged, the newer and more aggressive Merchants Club-especially its president, Charles


White City, Capital City R. orton-revived it. Norton enthusiastically supported rekindling the lakefront plan, but other members of the Merchants Club urged caution. Member Thomas E. Donnelley wrote Norton at his vacation retreat on Martha's Vineyard in August 1906: "I know that we are going up against the question that Mr. Burnham is a czar and will not work with anybody else. At the same time, I do not believe that we want to turn this whole question of the future of Chicago to Mr. Burnham and run the chance of him making as big a fiasco as he did of Orchestra Hall. I believe if the thing is handled right we can get Mr. Burnham to act with enthusiasm with other associates." The Merchants Club eventually overcame its problems with Burnham. After it merged with the Commercial Club in 1908, it enlisted Burnham and Edward Bennett, an architect Burnham hired in 1903, to formulate a plan for Chicago. In many ways the 1909 Chicago plan was more ambitious than the 1901-02 McMillan report, especially in its design of a regional transportation system . The plans of Chicago and Washing-

ton shared what architectural historian Carl Condit has called "the last phase of the geometric, eo-Platonic planning of the Renaissance, with balance, axiality, and monumental vistas deployed in a hierarchical atTangement." Charles Moore assisted Edward Bennett with the text of the Chicago plan, and artist Jules Guerin provided stunning illustrations clearly designed to muster public approval. As its precedents, the Chicago plan cited the world's fair and the McMillan Commission report, including many of the report's European references. Once more a monumental railroad station provided a centerpiece for the plan. Burnham and Bennett again presented the argument that improvements would pay for themselves in increased tourism. The Tribune noted that while Paris attracted tourists, "conditions in Chicago are such as to repel outsiders and drive away those who are free to go." If Chicago would only take advantage of the wonderful opportunities that nature provided, the Tribune continued, if"it will build in a civic way as it ought to build, vast fortunes will be returned to it."

Burnham :1 plan for Cleveland arranged public buildings around an open mall and, as in Washington and Chicago, stressed the importance of unifonn building height.

39


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

"New Chicago" Salon.

In the photograph at left, Burnham and Edward Bermel/ meet with Chicago businessmen in Bumham's office. The ,"1erchants Club had mlzsted the architects to develop a comp-rehensiw plan for Chicago. The cartoons above, from the Chicago Tribune ofJ uly 11. 1909, poke fun al the secrecy of the unveiling of plans for the "smokeless city."

40


White City, Capital City Although the plan made some attempt to deal with the poor, it did so only indirectly, choosing to ignore the city's dilapidated older housing and arguing that the reduction of urban congestion would benefit workers and merchants alike. In the late nineteenth century Washington had erected six skyscrapers, mimicking Chicago buildings. In reaction to the construction of the twelve-story Cairo apartment building in a residential neighborhood in 1894, however, Washington established a height limitation of 90 feet for residential and llO feet for commercial buildings. The city directed its ruling not at protecting the prominence of the Capitol in the cityscape, but at ensuring public health from the ill effects of shadows cast by high buildings. In his plan for Chicago, Burnham ignored the distinctive skyscrapers that had helped make his reputation in favor of buildings of uniform height, very much in the Washington mode. The centerpiece of the redesigned city, moreover, was a prominent civic center placed in the middle of a plaza created by the convergence of several monumental avenues. Capping the civic center

would be a great dome looking much like the Capitol. Domed buildings, common in civic architecture , had been used for a number of state capitols and prominent buildings at the Columbian Exposition. But Burnham's inclination to use a dome for the civic center may well have been influenced by yet another Washington planning development. Although the McMillan Commission had recommended that a new memorial to Abraham Lincoln be erected on the Potomac River at the west end of the Mall, a debate followed over its placement. Some members of Congress argued that the area between the new Union Station and the Capitol be used, and they sought Burn ham 's advice. Privately Burnham held to the McMillan Commission's original recommendation, reassuring Olmsted in 1908 that he did not see how a memorial to Lincoln could be placed in the neighborhood of the station. "Of course we must stand together in anything that is done in Washington," he asserted. Publicly Burnham remained more open because he wanted authority to extend the station grounds. In a telegraph message to Architect of the Capitol Elliott Woods

This 190 I drawing of the Mall details the planning commission's vision for Washington, D. C.

41


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

The focal point of Burnham s proposed design for Chicago was a domed civic center (never built), set in a plaza Jonned by monumental avenues that were lined with buildings ofunifonn height, illustrated in this drawing. c. 1913.

dated January 3, 1909, he indicated that he felt Congress was the best judge of the most appropriate site. Completing the Union Station composition was the most important factor, said Burnham, "no matter what name it bears." Following the world's fair once again, Burnham indicated his desire to create a peristyle to give monumental treatment to the Capitol. In a subsequent letter to Woods dated February 20, he stated his preference for the original site on the Potomac, but he indicated he was willing to use a memorial to Lincoln to complete his work near the Capitol. "I feel hopeful that the Government, by prompt purchase of the property between the Capitol and the Station, will insure the fitting development of this foreground from which every visitor to Washington will get his first impression of the Capitol," he wrote. "That we should have secured so beautiful a building to stand forth as the symbol of legislative authority

42

in America is a piece of national good fortune, and the most beautiful possible setting for this beautiful dome is none too good." As early as 1908 Burn ham's firm had sketched designs in response to requests from several members of Congress for a Lincoln memorial site near the Capitol. While Burnham backed away from the project under pressure from supporters of the site proposed by the McMillan Commission, the connection between it and Chicago's Civic Center is evident. Both the Capitol and the Civic Center were to be framed by other monumental structures, influenced by the world's fair and Burn ham 's European survey. Even as Burnham worked to get support for his Chicago plan, he was offered another opportunity to guide the design of Washington when President William Howard Taft named him chairman of a new Commission of Fine Arts in 1910. This panel was established specifically to carry out the mandate of the McMillan Commission. Burnham's appointment reunited him with his old associates. Frederick Law Olmsted, Jr., was a fellow commission member, along with Charles Moore, who served as the commission's powerful secretary for thirty years. Burnham's death in 1912 prevented him from seeing the McMillan plan carried out, but in 1926 Edward Bennett, his partner on the 1909 Chicago plan, became supervising architect of the Federal Triangle buildings program. In this role, Bennett completed the last of the improvements recommended in 1901-02. Burnham never slavishly applied the same designs in all of his planning projects. onetheless, the . association in ideas as well as design concepts between the world's fair and the Washington, Cleveland, and Chicago plans is evident. Moreover, Burnham maintained close contact with a small number of associates throughout these projects. His appointment to the Commission of Fine Arts was evidence of this. Other Burnham associates besides Olmsted and Moore were involved , most notably Burnham's chief artistic advisor in 1893, Francis Millet. Also named to the commission were John Carrere's

This design proposal for Michigan Avenue, painted by Jules Guerin for the 1909 Chicago plan, illustrates Burnham s rejection of the skyscrapers that had brought him Jame in Javor of buildings of uniform height along a tree-lined boulevard, similar to ideas he applied in Washington, D.C.


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

a ·u

CIIJ('A<,,.

TJ.fH,Ttn,; '>tt<•'-l'-1, 111r 1111C>t·I' ( ,1 J1nu,1,,;, ('l,,,in11,1,;o nlf rk,,,..,flh n\1• n.\U.JI

f,-,d,..wLarabrf Jariiw.

The plan f or Chicago scivic center in 1909 (above) drew upon Burnham s 1908 dPsign for a memorial to Lincoln, which W<L5 never executed (below).

44


White City, Capital City capital from city symbolized the national split in urban reform between social and aesthetic goals. Both Washington and Chicago te ted those goals. In their projected plans and the realization of some of their ideals, these two citie 'urban landscapes renect the limitations as well a some of the strengths of the early stages of city planning in America.

For Further Reading

ew York partner, Thomas Hastings, and Charles Norton, who had left Chicago to serve as President Taft's personal secretary and who played a major role in forming the commission. The Chicago plan was backed by an elaborate public relations campaign, but its supporters never achieved the kind of comprehensive physical arrangement of buildings and boulevards finally accomplished in Washington in the 1930s. In the encl Washington benefited from its special political standing, which gave appointed commissions more power than Chicago's elected officials allowed Burnham and his associates. But if Chicago fell short in design, it did not fall into the trap that has plagued Washington since the early part of the century. WitJ1 the establishment of a separate federal enclave, imbued with the principles of the City Beautiful movement, Washington's city core has been set off literally as well as symbolically from the needs and aspirations of ilie indigenous population. This separation of

There are two biographies of Daniel Burnham, the first written by his contemporary Charles Moore, Daniel H. Burnham, Architect: Planner of Cities (Boston: 1-loughton-Miffiin Company, 1921), 2 vols. The modern biography is Thomas S. Hines, Burnham of Chicago: Architect and Planner (New York: Oxford University Press, 1974). Mel Scott provides general background LO the City Beautiful movement in American City Planning since 1890 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1971). A more critical view is taken by M. Christine Boyer, Dreaming the R.ational City: The Myth of American City Planning(Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1983). The best overall history of planning in Washington, D.C . is provided by Frederick Gutheim, Worthy of the Nation: The History of Planning for the National Capital (Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution Press, 1977). On the 1909 Chicago plan, see Carl W. Condit, Chicago, 1910-29: Building, Planning, and Urban Technology (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1973) and Joan E. Draper, "Paris by the Lake: Sources of Burnham's Plan of Chicago,¡¡ in John Zukowsky, eel., Chicago Architecture 1872-1922: Birth of a Metropolis (Munich: Prestel-Verlag, 1987).

Illustrations 27, CHS, BC-294; 28-29, CHS, ICHi-18420; 30 top, CHS, ICHi-09662; 30 bottom, CHS, Prints and Photographs Collection; 31, CHS, ICHi-18013; 32 top, Chicago Park District Special Collections; 32 bottom, CHS, ICHi-18352; 33, CHS, ICHi-21650; 34, CHS, ICHi-21651; 35, CHS, ICHi-12368; 36 top, The Library of Congress; 36 bottom, U.S. Commission of Fine Arts; 37 top, CHS, ICHi-21638; 37 bottom, National Archives; 38 top, CHS, ICHi-21632; 38 bottom, National Archives; 39, Western Reserve Historical Society; 40 top, Chicago Tribune Company; 40 bottom, CHS, ICHi-03560; 41, National Archives; 42, CHS, Prints and Photographs Collection; 43, CHS, Paintings and Sculpture Collection; 44 top, CHS, Prints and Photographs Collection; 44 bottom, The Architect of the Capitol. 45


Coming Together


by Mary Ann Johnson Wallace Kirkland's documentary photographs of Hull-House clubs capture the spirit of neighborhood groups in the 1920s and 1930s. Mary Ann Johnson is director of ,Jane Addams' Hull-House Museum at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her book, 7'/Je Many Faces of Hull-House (Urbana: University of lllinois Press, 1989), was recently published in conjunction with the centennial anniversary of Hull-House. All photographs courtesy of the Jane Addams Memorial Collection, The University Library, The University of Illinois at Chicago.

'

J.

"

'-

..,

...

:'I .. • ,

. r-'I

,r

--!i

....

r-

.

.

-",'J-.. :·

,,...

.,. .

I

.

,

! I

-....Members of the Wes£ Side Sportsmen's ~thleti~ ~ssociation, ·a Hull-House club organized in. _) 192Q. ltaj,ian men froin.th.e immediate neigh,: borhood ~etre.gulailt fq·r.s9cial, athletif, _and • educational acti-Vities. / · .. . · •-

r,..

.

~--

·,.,.... .. ..: .......

.....-~· .

.

- ,.

,

--

....._.•

.,._'\P'·....,.


48

hortly after Wallace Kirkland began work as director of the Hull-House men's and boys' clubs in 1922, the Eastman Kodak company presented the settlement house with a five-by-seven-inchview camera. Jane Addams passed it on to Kirkland, who quickly taught himself how to use the new device. During the next eleven years, Kirkland would shoot more than a thousand photographs, covering almost every facet of Hull-House life. â&#x20AC;˘ In his 1954 memoir, Reflections of a Life Photographer,

Kirkland described how he "rigged up a closet in the club for a darkroom, and with the help of the boys I made photographs of the teams, the classes and other activities." The phrase "with the help of the boys'' pinpoints the nature of Kirkland's relationship to his subjects and characterizes the programs and activities of Hull-House during the 1920s and 1930s. â&#x20AC;˘ As a Hull-House resident (as the livein staff members were called) Kirkland shared personal


( ' 0111i11~

To~(•thPr

relationships with the 1wople who would hPeonw his subj<1cts. Many of Kirkland's photographs eonvey an immediacy, a naturalness, and a grpat spirit of fun that ,·ppaks to thP 'ense of community that pervaded the sPttlPmPnt. In addition thPy are document~ of the high level of group id<1ntification and int raetion pres<1nt at Hull-Hom;p at the time. • Working with groups of people and thP social aspect of settlement house life had hecn fundamental to Hull-House from the beginning. rJane Addams always stressed the importance of a reciprocal relationship hetwcen the settlement house's residential staff and the neighborhood people. By the 1920s staff members had lwgun to formalize their commitment to th} ducational potential of the group expcri nee. Resident'-> such as eva Boyd, a pioneer in group work theory, cfrveloped an ideological fram work based on ocial groups. Boyd believed that group work stimulated creative power and that "as people arc r lated to )ach other through working together on a common problem, planning and executing a project, playing together~ or any other mutual pndPavor~ the potential productive power of individuals and groups is released." • ThP following Kirkland photograph. illu trate the vitality and variety of the group experienee at Hull-House during the twenties and thirties. At thi, time approximately nin thousand people participated in variou Hull-House activities Wl ekly, and it hecamr the settlement house's philosophy to work as mueh as possible with natural groups already existing in the neighborhood as thr hasis for various cluhs. Pictured ar} groups of neighborhood girl , gatherings of area mothers, m n of common rthnic backgrounds, and even hoys' stn et gangs organized into special inter 'St clubs. A Hull-Hou eyearbook descrihPd how the street gangs, "their gang organization and control worked out automatically by the boys thcmselvc · ... carried over from the 'trcct into the eluhs." Photographs of Edith de ancredc' immcn ely popular th(~atrr and dane) cluhs, formed when the members wcr four and five years of age, exemplify groups that stayed together well into adulthood. The group work theory proved very successful. The 1931 Hull-House yearbook described how "participation in such a group is a stimulating experience which often results in years of association and friendship." • Hull-House's residential staff, while not an indigenous group, lived communally and became an integral part of settlement house and neighborhood life. As an active and imaginative member of this group, Wallace Kirkland documented HullHouse's activities from a remarkably personal point of view. • 1

1

1

1

I

1

1

1


50 Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

The thirteen-building Hull-House complex, looking north along Halsted Street.


51

Coming Together

Members of the Flash Arrows Boys' Club, a Hull-House social and athletic club formed from a neighborhood gang.


52 Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

A cooking class for neighborhood girls in the Hull-House Labor Museum. Exhibits around the room on historical methods of food preparation served as references for modern classes.


53 Coming Together

A weekly after-school sewing class.


54 Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

Martha Scott worked with gangs of "particularly difficult" boys, teaching them to sing and exposing them to the harmonizing effects of music. Her motto was, "Sing and you'll be good."


55

Coming Together

A social and dramatics group of neighborhood children, organized by Edith de Nancrede, gathers for its Saturday folk dancing class in Hull-House's Bowen Hall.


58 Chicago History, Winter 1989- 90

Members of the Mignonette Club at the Bowen Country Club. A social and dramatics group, the Mignonettes had been meeting at Hull-House for seventeen years when this photograph was taken, and many of the members had joined the group when they were four or five years old.


M)

Coming Together

Hull-House resident staff members gather for their evening meal in the dining hall. These individuals from many backgrounds lived communally and shared in the daily life of the settlement and the neighborhood. Jane Addams is seated at the middle table on the far right.


60 Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

These Mexican men's club members shared a common ethnic background as well as expertise in traditional Mexican pottery, a skill they practiced and taught at Hull-House.


(ii

('oming Togl'thPr

A group of mothers at Bowen Country Club, the Hull-House summer camp in Waukegan, Illinois. Each summer, the country club gave groups of mothers a chance to relax, socialize, and share experiences.


.,.

'

,. f

.

)

I

'

' ·•

t

•I

r

,r

I

.,,.

t;---.

/.

- j

.

;

'

••,:~.

A group of neighborhood friends formed this Hull-House doll club, one of the many special interest groups that grew out of the Friday Play Club.

.

4


64 Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

The Marionettes, one of Hull-House's social and dramatics clubs formed from neighborhood children, in a mid-1920s performance of Moliere's Le Bourgeois Gentilhomme.


65 Coming Together

Story-telling time for kindergarten children in the Mary Crane Nursery Building.


Slavery in French Colonial Illinois by Winstanley Briggs

66


Early Illinois settlers enslaved both Indians and Africans, but they developed peculiar forms offrontier slavery for each group. Editor's note: President Abraham Lincoln's second AHOUSE inaugural address on March 4, 1865, was brief. After DIVIDED AMERICA IN THE almost four years of bloody AGE OF LINCOLN war at great sacrifice to the nation, Lincoln sensed that a patriotic oration trumpeting the Union battlefield victories that had turned the tide of the war in the North's Javor would fall on deaf ears. He spoke instead of slavery, identifying it as the chief cause of the Civil War. "A ll knew that this interest [slavery] was, somehow, the cause of the war, "he stated. "To strengthen, perpetuate, and extend this interest was the object for which the insurgents would render the Union, even by war; while the government claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it." But only recently have historians accepted the centrality of slavery in nineteenth-century America and its importance to the growing sectionalism that led to the fateful division of the nation. The Society's new longterm exhibition, A House Divided: America in the Age of Lincoln, is based on this new scholarship. Curated by Eric Foner of Columbia University and Olivia Mahoney of the Chicago Historical Society, A House Divided explores slavery, economic development, sectional politics and the antislavery movement, the Civil War, and the consequences for the schism on American life through more than six hundred artifacts and images from the Society's Civil War-era collections. In this issue of Chicago History, we are pleased to introduce the first article of a series published in conjunction with the exhibition A House Divided. Focusing on the impact of slavery, sectionalism, and the Civil War, these articles will explore how national issues were played out in Illinois and in Chicago. We begin with an examination of the introduction of slavery into Illinois in the eighteenth century.

â&#x20AC;˘â&#x20AC;˘ ,#

French settlers enjoying village festivities on the Illinois frontier. Lacking sufficient manpower to work the rich lands of the Mississippi River valley, eighteenth-century French farmers imported black slaves, depicted at lower left and at far right, into the l llinois country.

Winstanley Briggs is a fellow of the Newberry Library and coordinator of the Newberry Library Early American History Colloquium.

67


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 Illinois spawned an active abolitionist movement in the nineteenth century and stood steadfast with the Union cause in the Civil War, but for at least 130 years it had also sanctioned legal bond slavery before the state supreme court outlawed it in the 1840s. The first French settlers introduced slavery to the area as early as 1715, keeping both black and Indian slaves and practicing a distinct and peculiar system of slavery with each. Black slaves were vital to French Illinois's market economy, which depended on the exportation of food to lower Louisiana. The scarcity and high cost of these slaves, however, dictated social treatment aimed at preserving their productivity. The first Canadian immigrants brought Indian slavery to Illinois. Unable to import black slaves to Canada, French Canadians resorted to Indian slavery and eventually introduced it to Illinois. French settlers in Illinois, outnumbered by the Indians, could not risk offending tribal neighbors by treating native slaves in a manner contrary to the slavery that Indians practiced. The result in both cases was an "ameliorated" slavery, in which Illinois slaves achieved a higher, but still subordinate, status than in any other slave-owning colony. Since slaves had existed in French New World colonies such as Haiti and Martinique as early as 1650, the French government had devised laws to regulate their behavior and their treatment. But the Illinois settlers modified many of these written rules. Guided by unwritten interpretations of these laws and their own community controls, the French setllers created systems of slavery that suited the special needs of frontier life. Neither the death camp slavery of Caribbean sugar plantations nor tl1e gang-labor slavery of the Old South, French frontier slavery engaged Africans and Indians as "family helpers" who were vital members of the village life of early Illinois society. The French first settled North America in Quebec in 1608, and in 1663 King Louis XIV made New France a royal colony. On June 14, 1671, the Sieur de St. Lusson officially claimed title to the yet unexplored Illinois country. French colonial Illinois, called le Pays des Illinois (the country of the Illinois), derived its name from the area's Illiniwek Indians, whom the French called the Illinois. Although the land never had clearly defined boundaries, the

68

French generally considered the area to encompass not only the Illinois River valley (extending north into the present state of Wisconsin and south to the Mississippi River) and the upper Mississippi River valley, but also tl1e present states


Slavery

,,.

,... ,....,,.

3.{

YlE 1l D

• F' f'.

II l

.J,.

~-

\I

t: '

I

<l.

l

t:

r

.. ,,,,,

C

,,,

,,. ,, "

"

,1111

I

'1 Ufll • 111 11• , .

I \ Ill\ II Ill 111

of Missouri and Iowa. On May 17, 1673, Louis Joliet, an expert mapmaker and experienced woodsman, and Father Jacques Marquette, a J esuit priest, set o ut from St. Ignace, Michigan, in two canoes for Green Bay in search of a great

1)

J' \ It I IC"l I tt U f 111,

I••

:N 0 11

I

\

·""

I . fl t ...

\IOHI I I •

Cane de la Louisiane et du Cours du Mississipi (Map of Louisiana and the course of the Mississippi), by Guillaume Delisle, 1718. In 1682 the explorer La Salle claimed the vast interior basin of North America-the land stretching from the Alleghenies west to the Creal Rockies and from the Gulf of Mexico north to approximately Lake Erie-for france and named the territory after Louis XIV.

69


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

Portrait of Rene-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle (1643-87), by George PA. Healy, 1882. An indefatigable explore,; La Salle paddled a canoe to the mouth of the Mississippi in 1682 and/or the next five years sought to establish a French empire in the West. He founded Fort Crevecoeur in 1680 and Fort St. Louis in 1683, the first European colonies in the Illinois country.

river to the west that Indians had described to the French, hoping the river would flow west to the Pacific Ocean. On June 17 the expedition entered the Mississippi River and probably three days later first saw Illinois Indians; they continued their journey along the western border of the present state and down to present Arkansas. On their return trip, they traversed the Illinois country on the Illinois and Des Plaines rivers. From 1679-87 Rene-Robert Cavelier, Sieur de La Salle, a frontiersman and entrepreneur, led expeditions to find the mouth of the Mississippi and established forts and settlements in the Illinois country, most notably Fort Crevecoeur and Fort St. Louis on top of Starved Rock. Canadian coureurs de bois (illegal fur traders) permanently settled in French Illinois around 1696 in deliberate defiance of King Louis XIV's royal edict abolishing the fur trade and prohibiting travel and settlement west of Montreal. Responding to a surplus of furs and a desire to preserve for missionaries Indians "uncontaminated" by contact with other Europeans, the king

70

had ordered all Frenchmen except authorized officials and missionaries to return immediately to Canada. An adventurous class accustomed to a free and unconstricted life in the West, the coureurs de bois were reluctant to re-adopt the strictly controlled life of a Canadian habitant (farmer). Subject to rules and regulations issued by a plethora of government officers and clergygovernor, intendant (chief provincial administrative official), subdelegate (local official), bishops, and the highest ratio of priests to population outside of Rome-and dependent on a grant of land from theseigneur(lord of the manor) to earn his livelihood and to ensure security for future generations of his family, these farmers had little voice in the bureaucratic and semifeudal world ofancien regime Canada. Although technically illegal, a small group of coureurs de bois settled and farmed the rich soil of the Mississippi River bottom lands near established French missions in the Illinois country, far from any authority. Seminarians had built a mission for the Tamaroa and Cahokia Illinois tribes in 1699 on the Mississippi River at Cahokia (directly across the river from present St. Louis), and Jesuits established another mission some sixty miles down river at Kaskaskia in 1703. Many of these early French settlers married Christian Indian women, and they soon founded four more villages along the Mississippi between the two missions: Chartres (adjacent to Fort de Chartres), 1718; St. Philippe, 1720; Prairie du Rocher, 1720; and Ste. Genevieve, 1740s. These six villages fom1ed the nucleus of le Pays des Illinois. By 1718 Illinois was already home to a tiny population of coureurs de bois turned farmers. Although the temporary ban on fur trading was finally lifted in 1715 following the death of Louis XIV, these early settlers, fearing prison terms if they were caught bringing furs into Canada, willingly gave up the life of trapping for the more sedentary life of agriculture. They lived on a subsistence economy, and though it was perhaps more generous than most due to the unusually rich soil, it was nevertheless primitive. Their great achievement was creating a participatory early modern village society similar to the British colonial towns of New England. Although Illinois was still officially part of Canada at this time, no government authorities had been pres-


Slavery

"....,

•-

•,-

- -. --1:

I

._ • ,•: A' ,#I .;°r ,'.. •.:. =

,,•. '

.,..

I.-· ·,

john Law ( 1671-/729), Scottish financier and comptroller general of France,Jonned the Company of the West in 1717 to develop a French colony in the lower Mississippi River valley. The company financed the settlement of New Orleans in 1718, and though it was bankrupt three years later, it held possession of till! territory until 1731.

71


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 ent in the land since the closing of Fort St. Louis in 1696. The ex-coureurs de bois settling in Illinois had to create their own society and government. The absence ofa "feudal" lord and, in fact, ofany authority and any seigniorial land system; plentiful land owned outright with unrestricted right of inheritance (fee simple); local control of the

village church; and government by a parish meeting of household heads enabled them to regulate themselves. This frontier society, independent of official or metropolitan elite guidance and control-the very opposite of French settlement in Canada-grew and prospered and eventually attracted a large number of Canadians.

A J\ C Jl

,: â&#x20AC;˘â&#x20AC;˘

This 1720 view of New Biloxi by jean Baptiste Michel Bouteu:x shows a flurry of activity in the burgeoning Gulf settlement.

72

,.

,,

0

'l

I\


Slavery The growth of the French Gulf Coast settlements transformed the subsistence economy of Illinois villages into a Elouri hing marketoriented society. When Gulf Coast settlers cou Id not feed themselves-often starving in the early years-the Louisiana government turned to the Mississippi bottomlands of Illinois as a source of

desperately needed food. As early as 1713 the Louisiana authoritie informed officials in Paris that the good harvest in Illinois would enable them to escape another year of starvation. For this reason ,John Law, the Scottish monetary and financial wizard of Louis XV's government and founder of the ill-fated Company of the West,


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 which he formed in 1717 to deve lop a French colony in the lower Mississippi River va ll ey, insisted that le Pays des Illinois be detached from Canada and joined to Louisiana. The creation of an inexhaustible market for Illinois food spurred additional Canadian immigration. After Illinois was incorporated into Louisiana on September 27, 1717, settlers came directly from France as well. The Illinois settlers shipped wheat, hams, salted beef, buffa lo tongue, and venison to the hungry residents of New Orleans, Mobile, Biloxi, and Natchez and rapidly reached an enviable

MAP

o•

,•• u. SCALL #

KASKASKIASITTLDIDIT&

,,.o,,Tkoa IIU'rcHtN•

1 lf,l.&s

Tiu! six viii.ages that formed tlu! nucleus of eighteenth-century French Illinois-Cahokia, Kaskaskia, Chartres, St. Philippe, Prairie du Rocher, and Ste. Genevieve-are shoum on this 1778 map by Thomas Hutchins. Tiu! French owned Indian slaves in addition to Africans. Fearful of reprisals if they enslaved the local Tamora and Cahokia tribes, which greatly outnumbered tlu!m, tlu! French used women and children captured from distant tribes as house servants.

74

level of prosperity. Illinois continued to enjoy self-government because the new Louisiana authorities in New Orleans would not risk their supply of food from Illinois by offending farmers with Canadian-style social controls. They willingly granted ex post facto approval to the Illinois vil lage meeting as the focus of loca l authority, and they a llowed the settlers to retain the land they had claimed. For the ir part, tl1e Illinoisans needed only to clear land, produce food, and ship it down river to maintain both independence and considerable prosperity. otsurprisingly, the Illinois villages continued to attract more Canadian immigrants. The new settlers were young, ambitious married couples from established Quebec farming families seeking to establish themselves as respectable villagers. What landless son of a Canadian habitant fami ly could resist the lure of land, a minimum of sixty acres of rich soil tliat could be owned outright in fee simple? Who would not feel compelled to move to a place where villagers governed themselves without the guidance of intendant, subdelegate, seigneur, or bishop, and where a steady and seemingly insatiable market for food promised prosperity? Hundreds of Canadians eventually answered the call, canoeing more than a thousand miles through wilderness to live in the Illino is villages . This immigration provoked the fury of the Canadian authorities, as French settlers in North America were few in number (75,000 in continental North America in 1763), and Canada was not eager to lose its population. Faced with an exodus of the colony's best, most productive young people, Canadian authorities imposed penalties to stop the flow: army patrols, imprisonment, whipping, branding, and even death. Yet the attraction was too great, and the Illinois vi llages became home to a new group of Canadian immigrants. But supplying this inexhaustible demand for food was difficult. Land was abundant (the average holding in Ste. Anne's Parish in the village of Chartres, for instance, was 185 acres); the main prob lem was a shortage of labor. The number of men with sickles who could work the fields for the wheat harvest at one time was crucial since ripe wheat grains will fall after ten days, and a single worker with a sickle cou ld cut only an acre a day. An equally vital task was the clearing of new land. For each 185 acres owned in 1752, an


Slavery average of only 40 seems to have been already cieared. The settlers did what they could to overcome the labor shortage; any new arrival could either hire himself out, rent land, or farm a piece on shares, all on favorable terms. These terms were so attractive that even footloose, professional voyageurs (legal fur traders) signed contracts to "go farming" for a while. But th e French in Illinois numbered around two thousand at the most, and of these, the small number of families made rapid growth unlikely. The French farmers simply could not solve the problem amo ng themselves. Although they placed high value on their own freedom and independence, ironically they resorted to slavery to compensate for their labor shortage. The French government became directly involved early on in setting up a slave system in an effort to compensate for the small population of La Louisiane. Not long after its founding in 1699, Pierre Le Moyone, the Sieur d'Iberville, the first governor, had suggested the importation of slaves directly from Africa. In the early eighteenth century the Louisiana government had attempted an abortive scheme to capture Indians and exchange them in the French West Indies for African slaves. By the 1720s the Compagnie des Indes, a trading agency authorized by the government, was regularly importing slaves directly from West Africa. When the company's first ship of slaves arrived in 1723, there was great discussion to decide the question of equitable distribution of its slave cargo among the settlers. The governance of black slavery fell under the auspices of the strict French law known as the Code Noir (Black Code). These official rules and regulations reflected the standard European view of slaves as objects and property (except in terms of religion) and gave them little protection and few rights. The Code Noir had originally been devised for controlling the large populations of black slaves on small, settled We t Indian islands and was used to justify cruel and inhumane treatment. On the Illinois frontier with its small population of black slaves, the harsh treatment specified by the Code Noir had no place. French Illinoisans followed the Code Noir only when it assisted health and contentment among their slaves, otherwise ignoring or adapting it; the result was a specific form of black slavery adapted to frontier life in Illinois.

From the time of their incorporation into the Province of Louisiana on September 27, 1717, Illinois farmers had clamored for black slaves despite their cost and scarcity. A slave was a serious, expensive capital investment for a small French farmer, and they were difficult to come by in Illinois (a healthy adult black male slave, when available, cost roughly twice the New Orleans price, more than a house and lot together, and sometimes more than a whole farm). The only alternative was to purchase slaves in New Orleans and transport them to Illinois at great expense on the semiannual convoy, which might take several months. A 1726 waiting list of slave buyers listed 110 Illinois settlers and noted that they already possessed 128 slaves. Renting and leasing slaves were popular alternatives to purchasing them. 1ine surviving slave rental contracts show that fees ran from 30 to 160 livres a month. One could also hire a young, unsettled Frenchman (when available) for such sums. Illinois French families simply could not afford to own many slaves. According to the 1752 Recencement (census) 37 of the 151 households in Ste. Anne's Parish owned all but 24 of the 203 black slaves. Even among the wealthier segment of 74 families, only half of them could afford a slave, and usually only one. The Code Noir granted slaves some of the same rights as Frenchmen, such as clue process in criminal justice proceedings. Other portions of the law could also be favorable to slaves. Because of their slaves' monetary value and scarcity, the Illinois French, using these provisions, protected and preserved them at almost any cost. As a result black slaves won a status denied to them elsewhere: as individual farmer "helpers," they were considered inferior, yet the community allowed them certain rights that French vii lagers enjoyed. Interfering with a slave's productivity, either physically or morally, was considered a serious antisocial act. On the other hand, the Code Noir also held black slaves to be meubles (movable goods), specifying that in matters of debt and inheritance the rules for meub/,es applied, as with cows and horses. The Kaskaskia Manuscripts (which contain IOI documents of transactions in black slaves through 1756) strongly suggest that French Illinois villagers also accepted the legal status of black slaves as meub/,es in spite of their ameliorated treatment. Believing that the light of Christian salvation 75


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

I.

far outweighed the disadvantages of enslavement, Europeans often justified slavery as a rescue from heathen darkness. In addition, conversion to Christianity brought slaves a measure of social acceptance, especially in Illinois. The Catholic powers-the Spanish, the Portugese, and the French-appear to have made serious attempts to Christianize their slaves according to this principle, while the English were ambivalent about tJ1e matter. Of the Catholic powers, the French seem to have been most anxious to make slaves Christian in substance, not just in name. The Code Noir commanded such missionary activity. Throughout the whole of Louisiana these religious efforts met with considerable success. The French had flooded the West with missionary priests to redeem the Indians, so they were also in a position to care for the small slave-holding population concentrated in the few Illinois villages. By the end of the French period, the large majority of black people living in Illinois and lower Louisiana had become Catholic. Few adult black baptisms are recorded in the Ste. Anne's Parish register, but those of black infants appear regularly. Surprisingly, their godparents were not baptized slaves, but French settlers, generally other than the owners. Serving as godparent to a black slave infant was a normal social duty possibly having a certain prestige, and it is evidence of the seriousness witJ1 which the French took their religious obligations to slaves and oftJ1e status of Christian slaves. It also indicates that the Illinois French acknowledged slaves as human beings and as accepted members of village society and not simply as meubles. Almost all black slaves in the records have Christian names such as Thomas, Jean, Pierrot, and Marie Therese, which in a premodern Catholic society indicates considerable missionary activity. A minority of slaves were Muslim Arabic, tJ1eir names camouflaged by eighteenth-century French spelling. The Compagnie des Indes regularly procured slaves from around Senegal and particularly from the infamous island of Goree, far enough north for black Muslims from the Sahel to be available. This Muslim presence of Islamic names indicates that the French did not openly practice forced conversion, at least in Illinois, as Muslims would be the most likely to voluntarily refuse baptism and its "blasphemous"

76

French brass holy water font inscribed 1752. Anxious to rescue Indians and Africans from their heathen ways, the French flooded the West with missionary priests. Conversion to Christianity brought slaves greater social acceptance in the l~nall Illinois villages.

Christian renaming if they could. Toleration of ilie Muslim religion among Africans indicated a recognition of slaves' need to express themselves as humans. The social result-indeed, tJie function of this missionary activity-was to give slaves a "place" in French Illinois society; Christianized and baptized according to the injunctions of the Code Noir in Illinois, they now "belonged." Neither objects nor outcasts, they became members of


Slavery the social structure, subordinate and inferior members to be sure, but members nonetheless. This religious status together with the special "rights" beyond the Code Noir granted by the community gave black slavery in French colonial Illinois its unique character. But the Illinois French went beyond using the Code Noir to give the blacks among them a larger stake in society. Since, for instance, the code required church marriages, the integrity of the black slave family was legally protected. Separating ecclesiastically recognized families would have been not only against the law, but in eighteenth-century Catholic society, a cardinal sin. Slavery made it worse by forcibly imposing separation on a defenseless family. The churchinOuenced Code Noir fully recognized this situation and flatly forbade separating families, including removing children below puberty age, going so far as to decree that the sale of one member of a family meant the sale of all members-included in the same price. In the plantations oflower Louisiana, this seems to have worked reasonably well. As a result slaves there often came to be sold as a group "with the land"-something like medieval serfs. In Illinois, however, the case is notsQ clear. The Illinois farmers, tight-fisted descendants of frugal French peasants, may have simply ignored the law when it interfered with the sale of their most valuable assets. In this case the slaves' great scarcity-so advantageous otherwise-may have worked against them. When preparing documents about slaves the local notaries never stated the family relationship of an individual, such as "married," "single," "orphan," etc., as they did for the French. In sales of slave children, hardly infrequent, not one document lists the status of the child, making judgment difficult, especially in light of eighteenth-century adult mortality rates. Were they orphans? The evidence is inconclusive, but the most likely scenario is the sale of family members without breaking up the family. This practice permitted the best use of expensive as ets without breaking the spirit of the law or ruining the productivity of the slaves, and this was only possible in Illinois where everyone lived in nucleated villages; Canada and lower Louisiana had no villages. The village of Chartres, for example, was at most a half-mile long by a quarter-mile wide and included the residences

of all the villager.. Thus it is entirely possible that the sale of a slave family member to another owner did not break up the family. The family might have remained together in their cabin with the sold member "commuting" daily to his new owner's place, perhaps a half-mile away. Although its due process and religious provisions could be relatively "favorable," the Code Noir was hardly an enlightened document. It contained horrendous clauses that the Illinois French simply ignored. If the objective, on a far frontier, was to maintain the productivity of scarce labor, the death sentences and tortures of the Code Noir were not the way to do it. As alien intruders in a hostile environment, African slaves and Europeans on the American frontier were forced into 3. sort of partnership for either to survive. For the French to utterly discourage their black "partners" would have been dangerously counterproductive. Aside from religion, the only cases in which the Code Noir accepted the human condition of slaves was in criminal proceedings. The legal punishments to be meted out were horrific: for striking the master, death; for striking any white person, probable death; for stealing horses or cows, possible death; for stealing sheep, goats, hogs, chickens, or even grain, whipping and branding. The code specified cutting off a runaway's ears for the first offense, hamstringing for the second, and for the third, death. o appeal was allowed for sentences of whipping, branding, or the cropping of ears; only sentences of hamstringing and death could go to the superior court of the colony. In French Illinois, however, these punishments were considered as exotic and barbaric as they would be today. The few favorable provisions of the Code Noir, such as clue process and death sentence appeals, were carefully followed, while cruel and harsh treatment was ignored or avoided, if for no other reason, possibly, than that hamstringing and branding were not likely to increase the productivity of one's most costly asset. The exigencies of frontier life made such treatment unthinkable. In 1738 the Frenchman LaCroix broke the arm of Father Boulenger's slave in a fit of anger at being insulted. He was sentenced by the local court to pay the surgeon's costs and settle all other medical expenses, to provide substitute labor himself while the slave was recuperating, and, finally, to pay all damages 77


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 if the slave turned out to be partially or totally incapacitated. He would have been better off to have broken the arm of another Frenchman. When the slave Jean Baxe scuffled with his owner's tenant(and representative) and bit him badly, he should have been in grave danger of the death penalty. The Illinois court, however, on the pretext of "some Indians requesting mercy" and Jean Baxe's claim that it was all an accident, set aside the death sentence and ordered Baxe to be whipped, to bow to the tenant whenever they met, and to make a public apology. The purpose of a public apology, obviously, was to humiliate the culprit; therefore.Jean Baxe, slave, must have had enough status to lose some. Baxe suffered penalties that publicly disgraced him, but they ensured that he was alive, well, and productive. Even in the case of runaways the court never imposed the legal penalties. In spite of the surrounding forests, runaways were not very common-for a few livres in trade goods Indians would track them clown. In dealing with them, the Illinois court usually found a way around the law. One group of runaways neither had their ears cropped nor were they branded; after investigating their treatment, it was sufficient that their owner promised to watch them more carefully. In addition, however, the court ordered the Code Noir to be read publicly in church on three successive Sundays. In Illinois the criminal sections of the code were for public reading, not enforcing. Nor in their search for slave productivity did the Illinois French neglect incentives. Slaves could own minor posses ions and have money, in violent contradiction to the Code Noir, which flatly stated that slaves could own nothing. The civil suit for damages in 1755 brought against Frarn;:ois, slave of Doyen, means that Fran<;:ois must have owned something of enough value to be sued. In another case, the payment of wages to the black slave Jacques wa carefully recorded with the local notary in 1754 to avoid future disputes. The payment of wages to slaves is not rare in American slavery, but the need to record it in front of a notary is. The documents of the Superior Council in New Orleans contain many descriptions of the full application of the horrendous penalties of the Code Noir (such as the cropping of ears, hamstringing, etc.) as well as investigations into 78

the deaths of slaves from abuse (violence and starvation). These examinations generally occurred because an owner had not finished his payments to the Compagnie des Indes. The Illinois documents, however, contain no such cases. They do include various records of manumission-generally for "faithful service"-and ignore the elaborate rules the Code Noirrequired for such proceedings. The "clue process" rules in regard to slaves were carried out in Illinois with a respect that is not found in the records of other places. The celebration of slave weddings with official participation by French settlers other than owners is significant evidence of the special treatment of black slaves in Illinois, as is the obvious community aspect of black infant baptisms in the local church. But the most telling fact is the absence from the records of the usual horrors that are found anywhere else. The first French settlers also brought Indian slavery with them from Canada, where it had developed because of the low population and the inability of the Canadians to get black slaves. Short of manpower, the Canadians had tried in vain as early as 1680 for official authorization to import black slaves, but the French king believed that Africans would simply die in the Quebec winter, making their importation a waste of time and money. As a solution to the problem of winter a Canadian official, Ruette d'Autcil, in 1689 made the interesting proposal to Versailles of dressing imported Africans in Canadian beaver furs. This would keep the slaves snug and warm during the Quebec winter while upgrading the furs to the more expensive castor gras quality through the absorption of body oil. "Let them wear furs" has to rank with "Let them eat cake" as one of the outstanding phrases of Old France. evertheless, French officials strongly suspected that the Canadians could not pay for a shipload of black slaves. Since the total income of the colonial government of Canada in 1757 was only 335,000 livres and the standard price for a shipload of black slaves from the Compagnie des Incles was about 300,000, the suspicion was possibly not unfounded. At any rate, no shipload of black slaves ever arrived at Quebec, in spite of Canadian requests. Thus, the Canadians relied on Indian slaves, cautiously at first because early French law protected Indians, shedding doubt on the legality of this proceeding. But in 1709


Slavery

. I

'I' J. • 1 : 1 ·

I,, •• ,,.

1

of

('.\S L\SKIE S

. / \ - \1,,,

.

\ ", , ' --1\..: .l '

lk\Pl'! ' \l( ' ( '

r ,._,-1r,,_,1,,:-r•l/""'r~11-1, lA, 1;4...,,'

1:,

J

j'

This 1770 map shows Kaskaskia after France rerled Illinois lo /he British in I 763. Slavery persisted throughout the British occupation and under American rule. Con/inned by the Virginia Act of Cession of 1783 of their right lo own slaves, Illinois French legally held slaves 11 ntil the state supreme court outlawed the practice in the 1840s.

Raudot, the intendant of Canada, issued an ordinance stating th a t anyone who bought "esclaves" owned them as slaves in fu II property.' From th is mom e nt on th e number of Indian slaves in Canada grew rapidly, reaching a total of about three thousand. While Indian slaves were important among the Canadian French since th ey were the only slave available to th e m , they were relativel y rare in the English colonies. Indian slaves represented a miniscul e element among the English colonial population, even in South Carolina where they were most common. But the Indian slave trade unfortunately thrived . The English Carolinians routinely incited certain tribes (particu larly the Chickasaws) to war on their neighbors with the purpo e of d e livering captives to the Carolinians in exchange for European manufactured goods. The prison e rs were then sold to the Sugar Islands (Barbado , J ama ica, etc.) of the Caribbean and faced almost certain death from abuse, overwork, and disease. On the continent, however, the actual use oflndians as slaves remained a French specialty, no t an English one. Vas tly outnumbered as they were in North America by the English , the French quickly real-

ized the vital necessity of cultivating Indian a llies. Under these circumstances, it is surprising that the French engaged in Indian slavery at all. They managed the practice by utilizing two Indian concepts: Indians maintained a form of slavery among themselves , and Indians lacked any apparent sense of an "Indian identity." In short, Indians did not object to the concept of slavery. Consequently if the slaves came from far enough away, the local Indians felt no particular connection with them. Therefore, the French imported slaves into Quebec whom they acquired from Pawnee tribes in the area of the present states of Kansas and Nebraska. In fact, the most common French word for "Indian slave" was panis, the equivalent of the English "Pawnee." By the econd half of the seventeenth century French voyageurs had already traveled quite far up the Missouri River. Their principal contacts were with the Missouri Indians, who became their fast friends and allies. The Missouri were generally in a state of war with the Pawnee , Osage, and other tribes, and they were glad to offer their captives to the French for trade goods, much as the Chickasaws served the Carolinians. The French voyageurs transported their prison79


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 ers by canoe all the way to Montreal and Quebec, a notable wilderness feat. Once in the French settlements, several thousand miles from home, these captives were of no particular concern to the nearby Hurons, Montagnais, and other Algonquian tribes. They were treated harshly, according to European ideas of slavery: they were worked to the bone, and any sign of rebellion could mean being sold to the French West Indies and certain death. Canadians transplanted Indian slavery to Illinois, where they had to practice it quite differently. Even though the Indian slaves in Illinois also came from the Kansas-Nebraska area, the middle Missouri River was not that far away. A couple of thousand French colonists isolated in an ocean of Indians needed to be sensitive to Indian sensibilities if they planned to survive. Since the Indians practiced a form of slavery themselves, it behooved the Illinois French to conform to the Indian concept of slavery, which differed from the European. For instance, no record exists oflndians used as field hands or for any other kind of hard, continuous labor in Illinois. Indian slaves were house and personal servants. Unlike African slaves who were primarily from agriculture-based village societies and who adapted to the farming life on the Illinois frontier, Indians were culturally unequipped for forced gang labor in fields or mines and all too often died of culture shock when forced to work under these conditions. The Illinois French carefully minded this Indian cultural "limitation." Slaves among the Indians-generally war captives-were normally women and children, since the men would be killed in battle. Among the Illinois French, male Indian slaves amount to only 3 percent of those listed in the 1752 Recencement and are almost absent from the rest of the records. Thus the French contented themselves with the slaves the Indians thought proper, acquiring from friendly tribes women and children captured in the normal course of intertribal warfare. The local government carefully enforced this practice, taking great care to prevent French traders from subverting the purely Indian system of slave trade. Indian slaves in Illinois therefore amounted to less than onethird the number of black slaves; in Ste. Anne's Parish, Indian slaves constituted only 8 percent of the population. Th is adherence to the Indian

80

concept of slavery changed the nature of such slavery in Illinois, not only from what Europeans might have practiced elsewhere, but also from that actually practiced in Canada.

French Habitation in the Country of Illinois, by Tardien l'aine. TllP typical dwelling in a French Illinois settlement was constructed using the poteaux-sur-sole (post on sill) techniqiu. Spaces between the vertical posts were filled with clay and stone. The chance to own land and a home and to participate in a village community drew hundreds of Canadians to the Illinois country.

The old courthouse, Cahokia, Illinois, 1904. Photograph by J. Siler. Originally a house dating from the the mid-eighteenth century, this building became a courthouse in the 1790s under American rule.


Slavery As with their black slaves, the Illinois French took their Christianizing mission among the Indians quite seriously. Conversion was a primary method of inducting the Indians among them into French society. All Indian slaves who are listed in the remaining records have Christian names, a sure sign of widespread baptism and conversion. The already Christianized Indians, notably the Kaskaskia, were strictly off-limits for slavery, not only for religious reasons but also for political reasons. They were members of those staunch French allies, the tribes of the Illinois Nation. The seriousness of the Christianizing impulse among the French was demonstrated in 1726 when the Frenchman Legras freed his Indian lave Marie so she could marry a free Indian-but under strict conditions: she had to marry him and in church. No record exists in the Illinois documents of trials or punishments oflndian slaves (as opposed to black slave trials). Subjecting Indians to European justice was apparently a cultural provocation the Illinois French preferred to avoid. Indian slaves, however, enjoyed legal privileges denied to blacks, including the ability to testify in court, which had never been forbidden in the Canadian ordinance for Indians as it had for blacks under the Code Nair. Because they were exempt from field work, Indian slaves did not have the enormous monetary value of their black counterparts. They may well have been considered status symbols. In better homes one was waited on by Indian slaves. At the same time, free Christian Indians were everywhere. The women often married Frenchmen in the first years, and nothing in the Illinois records indicates that Indian wives of Frenchmen were treated differently than French wives of Frenchmen. Although such marriages became less popular after the first generation of settlers, Indian descent could be very desirable. Nearly all the elite French families, generally descendants of the first settlers, had an Indian mother or grandmother. Certainly the Philippe family benefited immensely, in wealth as well as in statu , from tJ1eir descent from the Kaskaskia "princess" Marie Rouensa. The Richard family's rise to prominence through the fur trade was hardly hampered by the marriage of the very elite Charles Daniel Richard, "marchant et bourgeois de Kaskaskia," to the daughter of the

Metchigamea chief,Joachim. French colonial settlers in Illinois actively pursued slavery, but in comparison with other slaveowning societies, theirs wa a mitigated slavery. If the black slaves in Illinois benefited by their carcity, Indian benefited by their abundance. Although the Illinois French treated each slave group quite differently, they gave each a level of respect and consideration generally unknown elsewhere among the French or the English. The practical demands of the frontier environment undoubtedly exercised the strongest inOuence in the treatment of slaves in French Illinois, changing their condition markedly from that of their French brethren in other places with the same laws, the same religion, and the same culture.

For Further Reading A full account of life in French colonial lllinois is found in the author's Ph.D . dissertation, "The Forgotten Colony: Le Pays des Illinois" (University of Chicago, 1985). This article draws extensively on the Kaskaskia Manuscripts, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, Illinois. All references to the Code Nair are from Recueils de Reglemens, Declarations et Arret, Concernant le Commerce, l 'Administration de la Jmtice, & la Police de Colonies Frani;aises de l'Amerique & les Engages (Paris: Libraires Associez, 1745). On the formation of Indian slavery in Canada see Marcel Trudel, L'Esclavage au Canada Frani;ais (Quebec: Les Presses Universitaries Laval, l960). For background on Gulf Coast slavery practices see Alton Moody's Slavery on Louisiana Plantations ( ew York: AMS Press, 1976). Eugenne D. Genevese's Roll, Jordon, Roll: The World the Slaves Made ( ew York: Vintage Books, 1971) is an important overview of slave life.

Illustrations 66-67, CHS, ICHi-21687; 68-69, The ewberry Library; 70, CHS Paintings and Sculpture Collection; 71, CHS, ICHi-21691; 72-73, The Newberry Library, Ayer Collection; 74, CHS Library; 76, CHS Decorative and Industrial Arts Collection; 79, CHS Library; 80, Missouri Historical Society.

81


YESTERDAY'S CITY Tripping the Light Fantastic by Perry R. Duis

Charles Fenno Hoffman was amazed at what he saw. On New Year's Eve 1833, his effort to sample the social life of the frontier brought him to Chicago. Although he was still wearing his dusty traveling clothes, his hosts took him to a frame house whose unfinished second floor was deco-

Perry R. Duis is associate professor of history at the University of fllinois at Chicago and a frequent contributor lo Chicago History.

By the middle of the nineteenth century, upperclass social life in Chicago revolved increasingly around dancing. Eager to become expert and graceful dancers, the city's elite sought to IRam the steps most popular in the East, such as the latest sclwttish, polka, galopade, waltz, and cotillion. From Drawing Room Dances, CHS Library.

r

I

'

I

82

/

;

rated with pine boughs and flags for the occasion. A three-piece band, consisting of a violin player, a bass drummer from Fort Dearborn, and a man who played both the flute and the triangle, provided musical accompaniment for dozens of dancers. What astounded the eastern visitor most was the mixture of people: prominent and common citi7ens, the social leaders, and the less wealthy. "In one quarter," he wrote, "the highplaced buttons of a linsey-woolsey coat would be


Yesterday's City

dos a dos to the elegantly turned shoulders of a delicate-looking southern girl; in another, a pair of Cinderella-like slippers would chassez cross with a brace of thick-soled broghans." The dancing that Hoffman witnessed mirror.eel larger social trends in Chicago. As dancing developed in the nineteenth century, it revealed volumes about the meaning of social class, perceptions of social space of the city, and the relationships between parents and their children. The type of party Hoffman attended was Chicago's answer to the isolation and narrow recreational opportunities of the undeveloped frontier. Throughout those early days people willingly traveled many miles through the snow to join in the revelry. Similar parties took place in Naperville and Warrenville. Often the young bachelors of the town sponsored the events to see whether the daughters of farmers new to the area were attractive. Weekly wintertime assemblies became formally known as the "Bachelors' Assembly Balls." With the institution of volunteer fire companies, however, the organizers adopted a more benevolent motive. Besides giving the firemen-or "extinguishers," as the Weekly Chicago Democrat called them-a chance to dress in formal uniforms and show off for their ladies, these parties raised as much as $400 for the benefit of widows, orphans, and di ab led firemen.

The growing popularity of dancing prompted the demand for more sophi ticatecl facilities than private homes and the South Market Hall, which housed the city's municipal market. The opening of Melodeon Hall on Randolph Street in 1852 initiated a new generation of facilities. IL was "arched and provided with unique additions to give better effect to the music-these con ist of bottles holding about ten gallons each, which are fixed above the ceiling out of sight, with the necks down and mouths open. These it is said increase the vibration and give better tone qualities." A "professor of dancing" ran the program. Irving Hall, also on Randolph Street and even larger and more spectacular, had dressing rooms and stuffed sofas. These advances impressed many Chicagoans, but a small minority of citizens regarded the new halls as gilded hells. They objected to themeven those organized witl1 worthy fund-raising goals-on religious grounds, denouncing bodily contact between tl1e sexes as sinful. They also believed parties open to the public encouraged the participation of undesirables who would drink or behave lasciviously. In 1850 The Watchman of the Prairie, a religious paper, complained that any social gathering should have at least one constructive purpose, such as enlightening con-

83


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 versation or healthful exercise, but "whatever brings men together in masses, without setting some good before them, corrupts them." Dancing continued to grow in popularity despite opposition. o longer mere entertainment, dancing became a social necessity for upper-class Chicagoans. Many worried that clumsiness or ignorance of the latest steps wou ld lead to ostracism and loneliness in the social circuit. The solution to their problem came in the form of professional instruction. As early as 1834, out-of-town dance teachers included Chicago on regular seasonal circuits, and several resident instructors competed for business by the end of the decade. James A. Marshall , hoping to enroll potential pupils in h is regular three-month course, invited Chicagoans to samp le an evening of dance at the New York House for $1. During the 1840s many of

the schools added classes for youths. In 1850 "A. Woods" boasted that he had traveled to the East to learn "the latest style of dancing, waltzing, and galopading ... together with ... the new and improved polka, Schottisch, Redowa, Chacuca, German Celarious, Two and Four Step Waltzes, also the German Cotillion." The midcentury quest for expertise and th e interest in eastern fads indicated a new phase of dancing that emphasized the city's growing socia l class distinctions. During the early 1860s the most popular dancing schools were located downtown . Giovanni Mirasole opened a schoo l at 214 (now 219) South Wabash Avenue, and J. Edwin Martine launched his first studio in 1860 at Dearborn Street and Wabash Avenue. Seven years later, two of Martine's best pupils, Augustus E. Bournique and h is wife, E li zabeth, became instructors and opened their first academy, also

Branded as "gilded hells'' by religiom-minded citizens, dance halli in the 1840s and 1850s were condemned as sinful institutions that promoted lasciviom behavior. From Chicago and its Cess-Pools of Infamy, CHS Library.

84


Yesterday's City downtown, "for [the] thorough and scientific instruction in the Art of Dancing." Within the decade, both of these studios re located in more spacious and elegant quarters that were closer to the wealthy residentia l d istricts. T he expanded faci lities and new branches of th e Bourn iques' and Martine's schools influenced the growing popu larity of dancing among Ch icago's wealth ier fami li es. The Bourniques' $90,000 Queen Anne structure became an institu tion in the Prair ie Avenue neighborhood, a conven ient location for the children of the privi leged to learn the poise and grace that Bourn ique call ed "an absence of rusticity." The lav ishl y decorated studio provided convenient facili ties for those whose houses did not contain a ba ll room, a more common situation as the elite a nd th e aspiring elite bu il t row houses to accommodate narrow city lots and soaring land prices.

ARE THE OLDEST, LARGEST AND MOST ELEGANT IN THE WEST. ("/.J.1/Jl/.\'/.\'(I Al,l, TllE I'll/VA CY AND ELEGANl'E OF THE

JJ/1.l lf/.\"Ci

NINETEENTH ANNUAL SESSION.

{t:ht!il! Jr11dr111ie.'J have a lM·fer Corps of Tr,rwhr1-s, nnd ofJer cidvantages to be fo,ind in no similar institution. .If Season Subscription /01· one .lfca,lemy, admits to all, fjiving the privilege of lessons any or eve1·y rlay in the week. Lady Tearl,rrs meet with all classes. Scliola,rs may enter at any time. Private lessons given at any hozir not occu,pierl by classes. The new rind bemdifu,l ",lfinziet Quadrille" will be tanght rd these Academies.

J.

Edwin Martine opened his first dancing academy in 1860 at Dearborn Street and Wabash Avenue in response to upper-class Chicagoans' growing demand for complete dancing instruction. CHS Library. Volunteer fire departments, such as the Excelsior Fire Company (below), organized fund-raising balls to benefit widows, orphans, and disabled firemen . CHS Library.

,///,,,

.r J/

1

/Jnrlr .

1/00.lf... 1TJ{ TIIE ro.1/FORT OF L.1/101;"

.I.I"// /'Fl/FF.CT DA.VC!Yfr FLOORS.

'---l

(;,1//,fin' /lj' /.) i ,.'1.,1;:i.>ler, .

;,, -

. . ___,_!'1½tn~~.e;;:( < .--...::;_,..

. .-

.I

.

.f

fl

7'

,I

r· Wi/1l1

/,'//~•/'

//,111·1.1· .. _ ............ .. J 1· .f'f1r,1·r!At..

W . .I (' Tri/cl,·

85


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90

86


W!sterday's City Bourniques' and Marline's dancing academies influenced the growing popularity of dancing in Chirago through i11Struction for children (right) and the introduction of new dance steps (left). Augustus E. Boumique and j. Edwin Martine also served as members of the American Association of Professional Dancing Instructors, which passed judgment each year on new dances, such as "17ie Enchantress Schottish. "CHS Library.

proqram .

proqram.

'.t-b.,

'I

I I A,,,f_

FANCY OIi.NC-ES

The growing cosmopolitanism of the city's elite created a problem. Travel to the East Coast and abroad became increasingly common as the century progressed, and Chicagoans, who already suffered from the brash and crude image of their city, wanted to be sure that they would mingle successfully with society in their travels . They wanted to try new dance steps while avoiding a chaos of fads. The solution came in 1879 with the formation of the American Association

byA.J . '/iA.3 .». ••• ...._. l•

11111,1,11, I t • 01 G

Ji.. /I QQI

' • ' ~ ltl

"

of Professional Dancing Instructors, headquartered in New York City. Martine and Bournique were among the seventy members who met twice at the beginning of the fall dancing season to discuss mutual problems, determine the popularity of last year's dances, and pass judgment on new steps. An elaborate trial dance featured the steps proposed by members and a secret ballot. Dancers across the country finally decided whether the Minnehaha or some other step was a hit or a flop, but the approved list meant that the elite in major cities across the country would be familiar with a standard repertoire of dances. Needless to say, the arrangement brought profit to the businesses of Bournique and Martine. Ultimately, as one newspaper writer stated, the new dances "would percolate, drop by drop, to the lower stratum of the social fabric-unti l at last the mere common people, the numberless crowds of dancers for dancing's sake, will be initiated into the mysteries of the novel rite." Dancing fit the elite's desire for predictability in their lifestyles. Their social schedule included a standard list of charity balls and other social events where the dance card established the schedule for the evening. But as dancing styles trickled down the social scale, each step meant a progressive decline of privacy and predictability in the social relations that marked the lives of the wealthiest families. Bournique also gave classes for the upwardly mobile middle class, who showed off their dancing skills. These classes were considerably less selective than were those of the elite, although they did nonetheless 87


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 SPEAKING OF FIRE TRAPS.

' 111 Fl{!¡

\i~F

I

>T IFt~:,.;.

The public dance hall, which appeared in the 1840s and became tremendously popular among the city~ youth by the early twentieth century, was a primary target of antivice efforts by city officials and concerned citizens. From Vice Bondage of a Great City, CHS Library.

benefit from some screening. Large parties provided pupils the opportunity to bring their lady and gentleman friends and to socialize with new acquaintances they had made in class. Public dances were considered less respectable. One favorite event, especially among ethnic groups, was the charity fund raiser. The nineteenth century was the great age of institution building. All across the city Chicagoans strove to build hospitals, orphanages, homes for the elderly, and other institutions, as well as to collect money for the poor. But the success of sporadic, even haphazard, fund raising depended heavily on special events. Amusements provided a painless way to raise money through admissions and the sales of food and beverages. Labor unions also realized the importance of dances and socializing outside the work place in generating solidarity. Fund-raising dances helped to build strike funds and assist injured co-workers. Dances made everyone happy. Dancers filled their weekend evenings, and dollars poured into the coffers of worthy causes. The owners of the several large halls in the city enjoyed a booming 88

business. Newspaper stories indicate that whole families attended these events, which were for the most part free from the disorder of drunkenness, fighting, or sexual misconduct. Public dance halls, which appeared as early as the 1840s, lay at the bottom of the ladder of respectability. The public dance hall was one of several urban institutions that functioned as semipublic spaces. Like the department store, the hotel, and the railway depot, they were privately owned, commercial operations open to all customers indiscriminately. Many Chicagoans believed that the lack of screening contributed to the problems of dance halls. ews accounts of these "dives" constantly stressed the ethnic variety among the criminal lowlife that gathered there. The dance hall also became a prominent feature of Chicago's vice operations as the century progressed, but the segregation of prostitution into specific districts (the most famous was the Levee) isolated Chicago families from the dens of sin so vividly described in the Sunday newspapers. By the end of the century, however, the cordon of respectability that separated the worlds of dancing among the elite and that of society's dregs had begun to disappear. The growing popularity of "slumming," where thrill-seeking children of respectable families made secret group excursions into some of the city's toughest vice spots, began the breakdown . Occasional newspaper accounts of the practice no doubt led to morning-after confrontations between the teenagers and their won-ied parents. The greatest challenge to the perimeter of protection, however, came with the introduction of the dance hall fad during the early 1900s. Saloonkeepers, eyeing the prospective revenue, realized that their upstairs or adjacent rooms could be used more profitably for dancing than for weddings and union meetings. The dance hall fad was the imagined nightmare that had prompted nineteenth-century religious reformers' warnings about the sinfulness of all dancing since 1850. The darkness of the hall compounded the major problem of the unscreened clientele. Anyone who paid the admission and behaved properly-and interpretations of "properly" varied-was welcome. This included lowlifes, such as brothel recruiters, who reportedly cruised the dance floor in search of potential


Yesterday~ City

(

!

I

Annual charily balls were standard social events for the city's elite. CHS, JCHi-21692.

89


Chicago History, Winter 1989-90 The moral crusade against improper dancing grew after thP tum of the century. This si{fltfrom gangster Jim Colosimos restaurant al Twenty-first Street and Wabash Avenue, perhaps tongue-in-cheek, neverlheli!ss reveals the li!gal measures taken to ensure that propriety prevailed during public dancing. CHS, ICHi-21690. Below, society women at the Ball Poudre, a charity ball to benefit St. Lukes Hospital, January I, 1904. CHS, ICHi-21685.

90

HE CITY OF CHICAGO in exercising its Police Power, have instructed us to inform guests that they will not be permitted to dance with anyone except those seated at their respective tables. ">'-


Yesterday's City victims. After losing her innocence in a nearby roominghouse, an unfortunate girl, too ashamed to return home, might enter a life of prostitution. Public discussion of the problem reached its first peak in 1905 after the suicide of a teenager, Mabel Wright, in the American Dance Hall on Thirty-third Street. In the wake of that event, proprietors employed off-duty policemen to insure compliance with the law, but critics comp lained that the officers were too often asleep, away from their posts, or obviously ignorant of what was happening a few feet away. Growing public pressure to curb liquor sales at parties evoked a fearful response from the ethnic communities that their fund-raising fests might be outlawed along with the sleazy dance halls. To counter this pressure, a politically ambitious Bohemian immigrant named Anton Cermak formed the United Societies for Local SelfGovernment, a federation of ethnic societies that totaled more than 100,000 members. In 1906, two years after it was founded , the group pushed an ordinance through the city council creating an inexpensive one-night liquor license that organizations could purchase for specific dances. The special bar permit law also helped the proprietors of rental halls, whose primary business was in weekend charity dances. They could avoid buying a regu lar saloon license, which cost$1,000 in 1906. Outraged critics of the special bar permit law, led by Hyde Park alderman Charles Merriam, pointed out that owners of disreputable dance halls, whose busiest nights were also on weekends, merely created fictitious social clubs to take out the cheaper license. Moreover, the one-night permits lacked the 1:00 A.M. closing provision found in regular barroom licenses, thus allowing the revelry to proceed nonstop into the following day. The aldermen refused to change the permit law and would not even pass an ordinance prohibiting the sale of liquor to minors in dance halls, though it was presented to them twice during Mayor Edward F. Dunne's twoyear term. On April 18, 1907, the Illinois General Assembly finally enacted a statewide ban on underage drinking. The Chicago police, however, were not eager to enforce it, and the city council refused to consider additional laws that would prohibit public dance halls in unsanitary basements and on the upper floors of wooden firetraps.

Copyr_!.W 1889 by W f f111rfMANN BIIIC,hGO, Ill,.

Dancing academies found a never-ending supply of students among Chicago s upper classes, who sought through dancing to express cosmopolitanism and to dispel the rough and crude image of their city. CHS Library.

The issue disappeared from the front pages during 1908 and 1909, largely because the passage of the 1907 local option law allowed nearly all of the outlying middle-class neighborhoods to vote themselves dry. Parents felt a bit more comfortable knowing that at least the tough dance halls could not appear down the street from their homes. But in 1910 the Juvenile Protective Association of Chicago (JPA) shook the city from its apathy. Formed eight years earlier to help administer the juvenile court law, the JPA conducted extensive investigations during 1910 and 1911 and again in 1917. It found that as many as 86,000 young Chicagoans patronized dance halls on some evenings. The association's reports, with titles such as Our Most Popular Recreation Controlled by the Liquor Interests, condemned dance halls for their proximity to immoral lodging houses, tolerance of profanity, poor fire protection and ventilation, toilet rooms that were accessible only through the barroom, and dancing that included "open embracing." Masquerade and "fancy dress balls" were an especially serious problem because they allowed 91


Chicago History, Winter 1989- 90

Correct Pos,t,oo Si-o«.,n&

the

MbnS:

til'ld Fore''r"fP"

:'"~":!..:: ....,

Ma Elae.J.J,/J.,.. TNCO' a Sm• J ArdcW Tet1CM/16 Tri,,_. R ~ Ho. to D.nce tAc T-.,u, tlt•

)(- __ ...,____ 11 ,

Hnitati°" Walta. tAc On.-St,rp, arwl

neu Vorion.r,.

,,.. •

•••••'-'lll•Ml ....... ••1MI'°"' ,...,_,,,................... ,.•. _.........,_.~ ..........

,.-..,

folllu•-'•\C11•••1•••....... , fhlo. ti.to• ,u, · -

--

·-- ~--· .............. __ ........

,... _ , _ _ . . . . . . .11 ..- - l••iaptlolh

)NI-,._....-,. .. ,..,.,........ --• ... looll.•----••-4-, .--.... 1t> ,mw11-, .. "•"•...--.,_., ... • .a

oto,..,._fl

, . . ._

..... ~,......i.., .... _,, ..., ...... ..........--~----,.w..-,...- .~ .... ,._,fnl·,_•-•-•--lfw_\_,_

I,,.

'"'""'· - · -

n.111rt,,,..lolo1'11ol""•••t,.,,1'1tlo>

W....bia1'1,o,u•-•tM....,.•_...._.,,....,.,

--·

1'1••- - • •- •'11<••

"Tl,,

IQ-"-••"'~•~

•:-, I••

h~ -

u-,t,. ..... , - • TnHT-J.

Uil oll ""....... , • . - ... le f . . . . . wld ....... ..., . , _ ... • ,-rf-,1,..,.. ...._ , ....... • • - . . . . , . 'n,,n~•MttU••-1Ml•III"' i.... ll'ltl .. ,. , - -)1,,,•-IIIO

~----

,n1"'1

...

.n:i .......... , .... 11...i ... , _ . . . . . . . ,.. ,-,..,\ilr.11,,yMr\.• ... - l..... 1. .

1o • -

....,.,.... . . _ . . . . . , .. · ~ · • •· U.lo •.,.... ..,......1,,-u ..fol..__,.. 11,~....... , ..... _ .. ,.., ............, ,._,..,..,..-1.,.l i..,. . . .1,,.,,..,~.,..... ,...... ~_._,. ~._..--i,.,..l<oe.W ,..._.,,,. ....,-'"f'IM'I 111,r,,,.,_.,,,,_ ... ._~_,,,_ ,.._,IO .,..,.:u•-•••••" r_,. •• .,..,.,. w-a,. .... , .._,. u•.., ............... 1111,o -.,... ... n-,,1,.., ........... . , . . .,_1,.._ . . . . . ,1;1 . . .

-.... _,

11,._.

_,_,,..,_.,.,_,,.

.. _

•• .. ••••k, .. t

... ....-"' ..... h•~----•'- •""MllN_,,._

,1.- ................ - .......... .. ........... _ _ _ ....,'?hSl, ... '"illo ....

.. ............. ·- ........-.. - ·- .=:.:?~=

·-•-1~--·-·""i...,.., ,_.., _ .. ·•~--,--.......... •""• ..,.._, ,.,,, ,.,.~, ti* ,.,... O-"'rH•1lwno,J~. ~• , .. .,_••-I•••._._ _, •l<Pf 011. .... ,.. 1 • ..,_,.,_I..,_,., ..., .,, ,._ . .... ,..~.. II ,.,v........ , ............"',., ..."' _._,.t,,, ................ ,"' "" """' ,,f . . . . . . . "-•

t..

..-1,1o1 .. , , ....... , .. - ~ ....... .

.,,,., • .,...._.q,-.,,1\•ll11,,!o<lt"41,._.•Ulor,•N t.l,,t ........ 1',.,._,1,,,,hul!.

_ .......... """'""'"'"'·

..i . . . . . . . . . ..... ..... IO ... _ _, fttv . . . . , .. -

....,......,. •J...tl' rtw ....,1 Ill .....

11-. M • - .,,ho. II" a U,o ... tt,,, N""-, ... _ u,.. ..." ................... ••I., . . . . . . . . . . ,

.., ........, •a.-._.._••y_.._ .,,,i.._ ... ,._-,...,.a..- .. ,.. .....,_.._.,... tw,.. (""""·tw,,• 1:0- ,_,.,.,._..,..._ n.. ..- .. ,a.w1o....,,,.... •-t ..... ,... ._ ............... .. .......... ....,_ • ., ....... ,,~ ..ww...- ~-..._

Tl. 0..-Su, Will U. f•

..,.

.......IIJ .................

_,i:,

•···•""-~'"'·.

.t•- W,t,,-"' a.- Ral,l,f-. lo•••~~--•.,_,,~ 1N• t,.-M .-I ........ 0 • · ,,.., r- oo •

""....,.lpl,l.o"•

n..,....1,, •Mm,,...,.,.. '°'"""<i"'"' • tst,r,. thoff »...i.11, • ....-••u,.,.Nfflw. .......... • ..-.•.. _ _ ,_..,... , .... 1111o111,........

..,_... ,,.,,..,

. . . .1,

•-•,. ... - , , .......... '"•-"'tlM.,._ 1.i ................. " ...... _ , _ . . . , _ _ . .

7 ..1'• ...

ti,,•••..,.,..~ •Ml, m

··-·---t .. """' - ·

......"'"'4 .. ~•loot

11Wfb-,...... ..,. ••• ,.,....,,_....._..,, ... q..., ................

--"'""""""""""'....,.,.•••.,.NilM••dl _, Iii . .L

tllio. ..... 11 . . . . .

. . . . 9' ..........., ~ - - -

pW ... I I L - • - ...

~lll-ll•n~ .................. - ~..

.... t',,n,., "'""'· """ , ... , ......

...... _

...................... -

_......, T'"'•"'J"•----·"'""'""' ....· ...

lo-._..,._,...

,._1.,r1,

•..-• .. . - 1'-t•W-M 14••---..-

mu1-11.1-•w .... "".,...,...,,..i..a.,ltfl

-r\A"", . . . m .......... , .w. ........ _. • • r,a, __ ..., .. _,,, ..n ,............, -·•-- ..... ...,...,_...,_,i,w10•,-.•,,ct-,tr1I•.,_..,••• ..~·

,i,,,.,o,M-••-•Ml 1""7•P-i.t•

... ,

tMt It..,.-..•-• .....,_ 1-•-•

OOJ' •u. ..-,.. ,..........

_

........,..,~,,..,.1o ... ,..._.._.. .........,........_._,,__,... ......... , ........ . _,_. -

•11- Ma., """"...,1,,1,.w •11,.,.. ,, 11... f - 11N,llil.• • ~ A , - f , - )1....,-r ._. .... I u.,.

.................. ,.

W ..... ,... ...... ,...,_

•I- Ill,.,.,_.,. IL•- ....,-.,.. fiw In ""' ,....1,.,,......,.,.,,....,1111•-•-.1""-•"'1""

IIA\,=t,,.a~-•1•-to .....• • •.......1

11 ...........

n,. • ...,.. ..

ftt.,..,c•u••i

n. Sandco Trih.nc.

n....ies•-•-..

"-- ......

a.,. ..... , .... etrl t - • •~ ..........

•"-•-• .... ... •............ CM_M_,..,.

'-•"°""

~•UJ

•I &I

,,,_,,. .,.,., w m,1<•• -• • .., •11• • _..,.

Miu Joni. Hoa

SmtR.,J tit• NH, St-,.. botll ot Homa onJ ,Al,roaJ. Site I• an Upnf Doncn W SIN Con TELL HOW Site Dlutce• • WJ1111~Dancu. 0-eo/Har WUI Appear EocA Wed in

I

_

___ ...==~·:-·.: ·-·""""""--"-"•"·-----n~• ,~ r• .,,,

l-lt:,.nd Gu•d•Mi, the G•rl W,th Thumb

__ . .

T_, ,,_.

o

,o -

_::w~~MI~::::~•

••

= 7".:!--.: ~~---------, :..'=:.u:.-:..~1=M, ..,.. ,w.. 1

•• ........ ,.., -"•'-'"1""''.,...M.

::,.:~~~-r.:':!,;

Janisgrams on Dancing.

~::::::~":•~

.,.,.. _, fl.,., 11, .__.._,.,_.,,th ... "'""

! ~~,';: :~--:: ::.-~.. '::. ~:-..:;~.,

a.JI,..._..,

,~U:1.~. .:•;":,~:.:.:=;:~. ":.::. .

,_

I

<wto

~;';":::~=:::=.:.:.: lrl -

6,w .. ,,_._ - - ......

~"'"'1: :?.: ~:... ~.: '! 'i:::~::::: :-...:::-=.: ::.·.!.'":.i;~~.:.::,,":":. '='.! ,;..:· ;'. : ::: ,.....,_,,,....:.--.i---....--_at.__., Iii••"" ,..,y-•\o ,._ .-n;.::r '°' • ~::t:~ :J;:~0.?.:7:~; =:.-:-~r;- -:::.=,!:;.•~ ;:~ ,.,_..,,.,.Ml"tlc·,_.,11'...,._.,,...,....a.. .... ......,. ....................... - ..- ... a-.-.. -n,,..-•t,,,,,n~,..--.-..,. L•w __ _:_ , ::.,:....,-• •-...-.-,---.-----,.---'.. = .:!"' 9 .:._ '"'!... ~:;." ''" :r:t.,.--: :',,.."';,!"'::.=,-;di .._ ""-""·""" ..........................-. r,.._ •., ....,.,,_,.,..,.,1 •• _...,..., .. _ ... _1..........,......... ~' ! •w!.,.;:.-.2 ::.:.?~~~ ::-:-: ':t,~:!.-;n.~=.-:. ..:~~- ~•:.,:.:=.=:-:.~"°._ .......... . , ......_........ _... " __.,u,..,,... _..._ ___ ......,..,,i:,__ I 111 .. to~, ... , . - -

~, I -:t, k-•·· i!Lot

• -

ol r•u. •

a.1 , _ _ ... ,.,~ I

Jril.Q,.ft(u..,,.(lo..,• ............. tlal, _ _

'-"_ ....... _ . _ lof"

ltt<I,,'

wJ

k

Mun,,l(w. .....

ltf, yu,..

11,, .., _ _ _ , , _ -

,,,..L

n,.,..• .., _ _.. 11-••rl,,...,_n _ _ ._ ...

~...,_a,,l.,._la

• ...,..., _ _

1'«1l••klo•-1--K,...

: : . -;.:• tt •·· ............. ,......., . - . ....... ft

_.. . .,. . . ,. . . . . . . . --ntoot .. 'ftl~l • t1,,,-,111._._.

,.., ...... loo•• ..........

T.h,fnl'._._._

..ui .., .......

.._..,.,..,w,.,.w .....w,._.,.,.._.... it,, -

.i...., '"'"" oho ..

.., •• ,11.................................. .. ~N( ............

.._.,u ...:. ~•

11...,l,o,.t,,o_l-. . . ,!-,to"'"'Y ...... .,

,....,_.,1.~,.... ... --- ..., .. _ ~------••.i...t••"""""'"'··· .... ...- ..... ~. A_, Will ,,_ T,,_,,,. .,.. __ ._ ....... ··~ :::u~_-.,:_~..,:,::.~:-:.~ :"rt..•:..:~~-•=-;~":=~ lobo_,__

__

.S-

_

....... , r a , • l f t t • l l l . , • - l l l l ......

.,, .--..

& 0-

~..,.-.,.....,1,.,..,.. ...,,..,..,,..,.__,, __ 1 o. .....

. . . . . o,fwfhoo-1,,~lff.• . . &ll#"-t

"- -

.... as1- ..... dio• -

.......

--•11ot••---

,,....,1 ........,_•<rt• ........... .... - . . u -r--._lifllll .. _-..,11.......... ,1.,,-w .., 1 ~ ___ _ ?C._.. ...,.,_.,,"'............... ..,....,11_ -r.-1·1

•ulM-~ 1,___. ..... _,_,_..,. .....,,..., _ _


Yesterday '.s City dance hall patrons to conceal 1heir idcn1itics, wear indccenl costumes, and ah,111don respectable behavior. Some of 1hese evenls were no doubl inspired by 1he famous First Ward Ball, held each year by denizens of 1he Levee. Pro. 1itu1cs, pimps, gamblers, thieves, narcolics dealers, and other shady characters donned 1heir versions of fcirmal auire and c11gagcd in a night of drunken revelry. The press ,,~joyed describing the First Ward Ball as a bizarTe digression from the usual news, but lhis brazen parody of lhe gatherings of the eli1e also signified a decline in respeCl for 1hc social and moral leadership of Chicago's prominent families. As 1hc dance hall conlrovcrsy progressed, news stories and editorials drew comparison. belween lhe dancing practices of 1he upper and lower levels of society, especially I he lendcncy for 1he activities of the former to legi1imizc bad behavior among the latter. For instance, in 1900, an a11onymo11s letter appeared in the Chirngo 7hbunt' complaining that 1he "bowery dance" had invaded 1he youth parties of 1hc prestigious Oak Park Club. "Some football crank musl have devised 1hal hold," lhe wriler gnrmblcd. "The girl has scarcely any option in the ma11er. She musl come and recline on Willie's bosom, and, 10 1ell the 1ru1h, she rather likes it. Their hcacls snuggle down over each other's shoulders in 1he most confiding fashion." Reports after 1900 increasingly charged that wealthy par nts were unaware that many of 1heir children could be fi>Und in ~omc of 1he 1oughes1 dance halls in the city. Later, the idea of conforming to a standard set of acceptable dances began to disappear among the aduil eli1e. During their .June 1912 meetings, the national dance instruc1ors associa1ion members agreed lO resisl pressure to teach the grizzly bear, bunny hug, turkey trot, and similar dances. In October of that year, they jointly vowed thal ragtime music, which they denounced as leading lo the downfall of girls, would never be heard in their halls. The dance teachers also resisted the invasion of the tango in 1913, but clearly tJ1ey no longer acted as the arbiters of taste. The new Latin dance was so popular that society women held "tango teas" and rushed to buy specially designed dance clothing and jewelry. Other Chicagoans, mainly ministers, were not amused, leading the city council to adopt a resolution on October 6, 1913,

WHEN

TH£ TANGO CRAZE MEETS TH£ FOOTBAU CRAZE.

Although darter m1lmrl1m pr,fnTPd tmrlitwnal lwo-st1•p danres like "'llig N1ot /,ou"(below), llw Jmblir clamored lo Imm the tango and nrw 011e-<l1•/J dance.<, 11tr/1 as the lurk1y trot, the gri:uly bem; the Trxas 7bmmy, 011d 1111' gaby gl,d.e. UIS /.1brary. IINulm of the Chicago Tribune roulrl leam th, new 1tepsfrmn FL1il'ja.11i.1 or be runm,rl fry john 7: McCutchnm'i h1111wrm~< r1,pictio11 of llu• allure of the tango. Chica~o Tribune , Ortob,r 12, /913 mu/ October 3, /913, Chicago Tribune Company.

-6YJ(l5[Pl1 fj[ARl)I

SONG 50 l~t>

W 0RCt1t:.5TllA f,()

"'1.\~l>OUN ~OI.O 50 MANOO.r... OUITo\ll' SO

l. '-t.4.NDO, & OlllTA~ 60

~\~(.)\)_'l~'t..~'t..\l t'.t\l-e.\_\S'°"l'.US

24\ \'11>.'i',b,~," ~'K {::\\\C.-W:.C

93


Chicago Hi.story, Winter 1989-90

While the elite frequently sponsored elaborate costume balls, such as the Butchers and Bakers Ball shown here, c. 1912, dance hall versions were deemed dangerous because they allowed participants to conceal their identities and encouraged disrespectful behavim: CHS, ICHi-2/686.

that denounced "the Tango and similar dances" that had trickled down from the parties of the wealthy to the public dance hall level. Social class relationships also permeated the heated issue of cafe dancing. On July 30, 1913, the city council passed an ordinance to outlaw dancing in restaurants. Opponents charged that the dance hall owners were behind the measure, but aldermen resisted efforts to modify it. Finally, the owners of some of the city's finest hotels challenged the law in court. On the night of January 15, 1913, they summoned the police to the Blackstone Hotel, where a lone dancing couple was taken into custody. The owners of the Blackstone Hotel, the Drake Hotel Corporation, went to court. In March a circuit court judge threw out the ordinance, but the city appealed. On June 22, 1916, the Illinois Supreme Court overturned the law. Hotel attorney Levy Mayer exclaimed, "We contended that the right to dance was as sacred as the right to pray and that the City

94

Council could no more prohibit the one than the other." The justices agreed, noting that as long as the cafes did not charge admission to dance, telling individuals what they could or could not do would be an invasion of privacy. Most significant, for the first time semipublic businesses, whose clientele was drawn from among affluent locals as well as travelers, would go to court to uphold dancing in public. The dance hall issue continued for several more years, with settlement houses and even the city itself attempting to lure patrons away from the tougher commercial dance floors. During the 1920s the Aragon and Trianon ballrooms provided public dancing space more grand than anything the wealthy had seen. Martine's survived into the Great Depression and Bourniques' until 1953. However the nineteenth-century dancing hierarchy that emphasized the social separation of the elite and standardized dance styles met its demise.


Index to Volume 18 This index includes author, title, and subject entries . Entries are listed under proper names, under broad subject headings, and under titles of books, films, and other works. Each Chicago History article is listed under both title and author(s) as well as under its various topics and points of information. Compi led by Lesley Martin.

A AAGBL. See All-American Girls Baseball League AAGSL. See All-American Girls Softball League Abbott, Grace, social reformer: promotes reform of employment agencies, l: 72 Ackerman, Daniel W., alderman, 3: 96 Addams.Jane: supports state-run employment agencies, 1: 71; leads playground movement, 2: 9; illus., 4: 59 Addison, Illinois: as possible home for Ch icago White Sox, 2: 71 Aerial views: popularity of, 3: 52-53; of Chicago, illus., 3: cover, 41, 54-67 AFL-C lO. See American Federation of Labor-Congress of lndu trial Organizations AFM. See American Federation of Musicians African-Americans: at International Harve ter, I: 49; in music industry, 2: 40-59; in meat-packing industry, 3: 68-85; migration to the North, 3: 69; as. slaves in Illinois, 4: 66-81 Airports. See names of individual airports All-American Girls Baseball League (AAGBL): emphasis on femininity, I: 34, 35, 36, 39; racial discrimination in, I: 35; promotion of, 1: 36; finances, I: 37; recruitment of players, I: 38. See also Baseball, women in; names of individual teams All-American Girls Softball League (AAGSL): illus., 1: 29 Allyn , Arthur C.: purchases Chicago White Sox, 2: 69 Allyn, John: purchases Chicago White Sox, 2: 69 Amalgamated Meat Cutters and Butcher Workmen: illus., 3: 83 Amateur Softball Association (ASA): founded 1934, I: 30 America First Committee: illus., 3: 12, 17- 18 American Association of Professional Dancing Instructors: formed, 1879, 4: 87; meet to approve new dances, 4: 87 American Federation of Labor-Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO): urges unions to eliminate segregation of Local , 2: 54 American Federation of Musicians (AFM): mergers of black and white Locals, 2: 41, 53, 54, 57, 59, illus., 2: 40, 54-55, 59; segregation of, 2: 4 7, 50, 53 Local 10: resists integration, 2: 41, 47, 50, 56-57 Local 208: first black musicians' Local, 2: 42; illus., 2: 42, 43; increasing success of, 2: 42, 44, 46 American Giants, Negro League baseball team: play at South Side Grounds, 2: 63

American Institute of Architects (A IA): and creation of McMillan Commission, 4: 34 American Musicians Union: formed to compete with AFi\1. 2: 50 Armant, Alexander, director 8th Illinois band: campaigns to integrate musicians' union, 2: 41 Armour & Co., meat-packers: employment of AfricanAmericans, 3: 69; sets up butchering institute at Wabash YMCA , 3: 80; Armour Jubilee Singers, '.1: 81; illus., 3: 82 ASA. See Amateur Softball Association

B Balaban & Katz, motion picture theaters, 2: 35 Band Box, nightclub: illus., 2: 4 7, 51 "Banding Together," by Clark Halker, article, 2: 40-59 Baseball: women in, I: 26-41, illus., I: 26-27, 28, 33, 34 , 36, 37, 38; and teamwork, 2: 5; amateur: illw., 2: 67; company teams: illus., 2: 19, 3: 81; Comiskey Park, 2: 60-71. See also names of individual teams; names of individual leagues Basketball: illus., 2: 19 " Bathhouse John." See Coughlin, John J. "The Battle of the Two Colonels," by J ames C. Schneider, article, 3: 4-33 Bennett, Edward, architect: and Plan of Chicago, 4: 39; made supervising architect of Federal Triangle, 4: 45; illus., 4: 40 Berry, William, president AFM Local 208, 2: 42 "The Big Picture," photo essay, 3: 52-67 Black Code. See Code Noir Blacks. See African-Americans Blue Note, nightclub: advertisement, illus., 2: 47 Bournique, Augustus E., dancing master: opens sc hool, 4: 84; instruction for middle class, 4: 87; dance academy survives until 1953, 4: 94 Bowling: popularity among workers, 2: 15; illus., 2: 20-21 Boxing: and ethnic groups, 2: 11; illus., 2: 16-17, 18 Boyd, eva, Hull-House group worker, 4: 49 Briggs, Winstanley, "Slavery in French Colonial Illinois," article, 4: 66-81 Brotherhood Park: potential site for Chicago White Sox, 2: 62 "Building a Better Life," by Catherine Sardo Weidner, article, 4: 4-25 Building Trades Council and Carpente rs ' Union: as employment agency, 1: 70 Bureau of Physical Education: states its aims, 2: 14 Burnham, Daniel H.: and Plan of Chicago, 4: 26, 39, 41, 45; proposal for Lake Front Park, 4: 26; and City Beautiful movement, 4: 26-45; selected for McMillan Commission, 4: 34; and plans for Washington D.C., 4: 35, 36, 41; named to Cleveland ci ty planning commission, 4: 38; and plans for San Francisco, Manila, 4: 39; named to Commission of Fine Arts, 4: 42, 45; illus., 4: 30, 40 Bushne ll , George D., "Yesterday's City: The Buzz Saw Reformer," article, 3: 86-96 Butler Theater, motion picture theater, 2: 34

95


Cahn

C Cahn, Susan, "No Freaks, No Amazons, No Boyish Bobs," article, I : 26-41 Cahokia courthouse: illus., 4: 80 Calumet Harbor: illus., 3: 54 Campbell, James L., alderman: sues George Cole for libel,

3: 94 Caroll Dickerson Orchestra: illus., 2: 48-49 Catholic Schools Athletic League: and recreation movement, 2: 11 Catholic Youth Organization: illus., 2: I 9 CDAAA. See Committee to Defend America By Aiding the Allies Cermak, Anton, Chicago mayor: as leader of United Societies for Local Self-Government, 2: IO ; 4: 91 Chain stores: use by workers , 2: 24, 27; numbers in suburbs in 1926, 2: 27; use by middle class, 2: 27; illus., 2: 26 Chartres (in Illinois): founded 1718, 4: 70 Chicago Cardinals, football team: play in Comiskey Park,

2: 72 Chicago City Council: efforts to reform, 3: 86-96; illus.,

3: 91, 92, 93, 96 Chicago Commons, settlement house , 4: 6, 7, I 0 Chicago Community Trust on Americanization: on Poles in Chicago, 4: 18 Chicago Daily News: on U.S. entry into World War 11, 3: 7-33, illus., 3: 14; on military preparedness, 3: I 0-1 I; and 1940 presidential campaign, 3: 24-27; reaction to Lend-Lease Bill of I 941, 3: 28-29, 31, 33; supports city council reform, 3: 94 Chicago Defende,~ on U.S. entry into World War 11, 3: I 0, 13, 14, I 5, illus., 3: 1 I; opposes conscription bill , 3: 11; on British war government, 3: 19; and 1940 presidential campaign, 3: 25; reaction to Lend-Lease Bill of 1941, 3: 31 Chicago Electric Transit Company: illus., 3: 91 Chicago Federation of Labor: organizes WCFL, 2: 37; illus., 2: 38 Chicago Hebrew Institute: illus., 2: 4 Chicago journal of Commerce: on military preparedness, 3: I 0-11, 20; on U.S. entry into World War ll, 3: I 3; on British war government, 3: 19 Chicago Pirates, baseball team , 2: 61 Chicago Plan. See Plan of Chicago Chicago Record: on graft in city council, 3: 89-90, 95 Chicago Times-Herald: supports city council reform , 3: 94, illus. , 3: 91; on Plan of Chicago, 4: 30 Chicago Tribune: opens building competition, I: 5; promotion of, I: 8, 11 ; cultural influence , I: 11-12; view of Chicago as world leader, I: 21; exposes emplo)'ment swindles, I: 63; on start of World War II , illus., 3: 6; on U.S. entry into World War II , 3: 7-33, illus., 3: I 0, 32; on military preparedness, 3: I I ; on British war government, 3: 19; and 1940 presidential campaign, 3: 2427; reaction to Lend-Lease Bill of 1941, 3: 27-29, 33; on If Christ Came to Chicago, 3: 89; on Plan of Chicago, 4: 30; on Lake Front Park, 4: 3 I ; on tango, illus., 4:

92, 93 Chicago Tribune Tower Competition, I: 4-25; announced, I: 5; suggested by Joseph Patterson, I: IO; winning design, I: 13, 23-24; illus., I: 6, I 0, 11

96

Chicago Wanderers Cricket Club: pl ay al South Side Grounds, 2: 62 Chicago White Sox: play at South Side Grounds, 2: 62; play at Comiskey Park, 2: 66, 67, 70; change owners, 2: 69, 70; decision to leave Comiskey Park, 2: 70, 71,

illus., 2: 68 Chicago World's Fair. See World 's Columbian Exposition "Chicago's Cathedral of Commerce," by Katherine Solomonson, article, I: 4-25 Chicago's City League: minor league baseball, 2: 15 Churches. See names of individual churches City Beautiful movement: and Daniel Burnham, 4: 26-45; and unifonn height a nd width of buildings, 4: 38; economic goals of, 4: 41 City planning, 4: 26-45 Civic Federation, reform organization, 3: 90 Civil Rights Act of 1964, 2: 54 Cleveland city plan: European influences on, 4: 38; World's Columbian Exposition influence on, 4: 38; illus., 4: 39 Cleveland Guide: on military preparedness, 3: I I Code Noir: as adapted in Illinois, 4: 75, 77, 78 Cohen, Lizabeth , "On Their Own Terms: Mass Culture and the Working-Class World ," article, 2: 22-39 Cohen, Stuart, architect: initiatesâ&#x20AC;˘Âˇ Late Entries to the Chicago Tribune Competition" exhibition, I: 25 Cole, George E., reformer, 3: 86-96; illus., 3: 86, 89; attempts to reform city counci l, illm., 3: 92 "Coming Together," by Mar)' Ann .Johnson , photo essay,

4: 46-65 Comiske)', Charles: description of character, 2: 61; purchase of land for playing field, 2: 62-63; r~jects first design for Comiskey Park. 2: 65; illus. , 2: 6 I Comiskey Park: choice of site, 2: 61, 62; decision to leave, 2: 61, 70, 71, illus., 2: 68; architecture of, 2: 65, illus., 2: 63 ; grand opening, 2: 65, ill11.1., 2: 64, 65; problems in construction of, 2: 65-66; 1927 renovation of, 2: 66-67; deterioration of surroundings, 2: 67; updating of, 2: 67, 69, 70; site for concerts, political rallies, 2:

72; illus., 2: 60, 66, 67, 70-71, 72 Commercial Club: support5 Pla n of Chicago, 4: 30; illus., 4: 40 Commercial Theater, motion picture theater, 2: 34 Commission of Fine Arts, 4: 45 Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies (CDAAA), 3: I 8, 28; illus., 3: 26 Coughlin, .John J. ("Bathhouse .J o hn "), alderman: confronts George Cole, 3: 94-95; illus., 3: 95, 96 Courcurs de bois in Illinois , 4: 70, 72 Credit purchases: use by workers, 2: 25-26, 31; use by middle class, 2: 26 Curtiss, James , Chicago mayor: questions spending for lakeshore protection, 3: 47; illus., 3: 49 Czech Sokols, 2: I 0

D Daley, Richard.). , Chicago mayor: and AFM officials, illus.,

2: 40 Dance halls: opening of, 4: 83; rise in popularity, 4: 83, 88; and vice, 4: 91; illus., 4: 84, 88. See also names of individual dance halls


Hoffman Dancing, in Chicago: firemen's balls, 4: 83, illus., 4: 85; regarded as sinful, 4: 83; as social skill, 4: 84, 87; rise in popularity among wealthy, 4: 85, 87; charity balls, 4: 87, 88, illus. , 4: 89, 90; masquerade balls, 4: 91, 93, illus., 4: 94. See also dance halls , tango Davis, Zachary Taylor, architect: lays Comiskey Park cornerstone, 2: 61; designs Comiskey Park, 2: 63, 65; designs Shibe Park, 2: 65; designs Wrigley Field, 2: 67 Davis Square Theater, motion picture theater, 2: 34 de Nancrede, Edith, Hull-House group worker: directs theater and dance clubs, 4: 49; illus., 4: 55 Department stores. See names of individu al stores Dewey, Thomas E., as 1940 presidential candi date: supported by Tribune, 3: 20 Dixon, Willie and his Big Three Trio: illus. , 2: 50 Dodge, John C., alderman: promotes protection of lakeshore, 1850, 3: 46-48 Dorsey, William, musician, 2: 42 Douglas, Stephen, congressman: negotiates with lllinois Central Railroad , 3: 49 Duis, Perry R.: "Yesterday's City: Prey for Work ," article, I: 60-72; "Yesterday's City: Tripping the Light Fantastic," 4: 82-94 Dulf, George, secretary AFM Local 208, 2: 42; campaigns to integrate music ians' union , 2: 41 Dunne, Edward F., Chicago mayor, 4: 91 Dziennik Zwiazkowy: on Polish National Alliance, 4: 19; on Polish language, 4: 23; on World War I, 4: 23

E East Lake Terrace: illus., 3: 34 Eighth Illinois Band, 2: 41-42 Einhorn, Eddie: purchases Chicago White Sox, 2: 70 Einhorn, Robin L., "A Taxing Dilemma: Early Lake Shore Protection, " article, 3: 34-5 1 Ellsworth, James E., parks commissioner: suggests Burnham make plan for lakefront, 4: 26; executes plans to link open spaces, 4: 31 Employment: of immigrants, I: 45, 65, 72; affected by railroads, I: 62; and recreation programs, 2: 19. See also Employment agencies Employment agencies: fraudulent, I: 60-70; organized by unions, associations, 1: 70-71; state-run, I: 71, 72 Ethnic groups: employment of, 1: 45, 72; 2: 5; employment swindles of, I: 65, 66; and sports, 2: 4-21, illus., 2: 4, 5, 6-7, 9, 11 , 12-13, 14, 15, 16- 17; "Ame ricanization" of, 2: 5, 14; 4: 4-25; and drinking, 2: 7; rivalries among, 2: I 0-11; and motion pictures, 2: 32; and mutual benefit societies, 4: 12; illus. : 4: 4-23. See also names of individual nationalities

F Farm Equipment Workers (FE): attitudes, I: 42, 47; workers at International Harvester vote to join, I: 46; expelled from CIO, I: 48; Loca ls, I : 48, 49, illus., I: 52; merger with UE, I: 48; ties to Communist party. I: 48; vote to strike International I larvester, 1952, I: 51; absorbed by UAW, 1: 59. See also International Ha,-vester Company Strike, 1952

FE. See Farm Equipment Workers Ficlde, Gerald, secretary-treasurer FE, I: 4 7 First Ward Ball , 4: 93 Foner, Eric: curator, "A House Divided: America in the Age of Lincoln," 4: 67 Fort Dearborn: ceded to Chicago by War Department, 3: 36 Fort Dearborn Addition, 3: 39-40; illus., 3: 38 Foster, Rube, manager American Giants, 2: 63 Foster, William: killed in 1nternational Harvester Company Strike, 1: 55 Foster, William Z., leader Stockyards Labor Counci l, 3: 69; illus., 3: 76 French in Illinois: as slave owners, 4: 66-8 I; illus. , 4: 6667 " From the Editor," by Russell Lewis, I: 3; 2: 3; 3: 3; 4: 3

G Gage, Lyman: as leader of Civic Federation, 3: 90 Garment Workers Strike of 1910-11 , 4: 14- 15; illus., 4: 14 Garrick Lounge, nightclub: illus., 2: 56 Gayety , motion picture theater, 2: 34 Gems, Gerald R. , "Not Only a Game," article, 2: 4-21 German Turners system: adopted by Chicago schools, 2: 9-I0;illus.,2: II Germans in Chicago: and Saengerfests, illus., 2: 8 Gillette, Howard F.,Jr., "White City, Capital City," article, 4: 26-45 Gilpin, Toni, "Labor's Last Stand," article, I: 42-59 Goldblatt's Department Store: use by immigrants, 2: 3132; foreign language advertisement, illus., 2: 30 Grant Park: illus., 3: 44, 45; 4: 32. See also Fort Dearborn Addition; Lake Park; Lake Front Park Gray, Harry, president AFM Local 208, 2: 44, 57; illus., 2: 48-49 Grocery stores: chain stores, 2: 27, illus., 2: 26; neighborhood , 2: 27, illus., 2: 22-23, 26 Guerin, Jules, artist: illustrates Plan of Chicago, 4: 41

H Halas, George, owner Chicago Bears: plays on company sports teams, 2: 15; illus., 2: J 9 Halker, Clark, "Banding Together," article, 2: 40-59 Harper, Lucius, Chicago Defender columnist: on U.S. entry into World War II, 3: 13 Harrison , Carter H ., Jr. , Chicago mayor, 4: 31; appoints Special Parks Commission, 2: 9; condemns city council graft, 3: 90, illus., 3: 88 Hart , Schaffner and Marx: and Garment Workers Strike of 1910- 11 , 4: 15; illus., 4: 14 Haymarket Riot: sparked by shooting of strikers, 1: 46; illus., I: 45 Hickey. Hugh T.,judge, 3: 45 "Hinky Oink" Kenna. See Kenna, Michael Hockey: illus. , 2: 19 Hoffman , Rhona, gallery owner: initiates "Late Entries to the Chicago Tribune Competition" exhibition, I: 25

97


Holy Trinity Church Holy Trinity Chu,·ch: illus., 4: 21 Hood, Raymond, architect: designs home for Joseph Patterson, I: 7; wins Chicago Tribune Tower competition, I: 13 "A House Divided: America in the Age of Lincoln," exhibit, 4: 67 Howell , Cyrus H. , alderman: illus., 3: 94, 96 Howells, John Mead, architect: wins Chicago Tribune Tower competition, 1: 13 Hull-House, settlement house: and playground movement, 2: 9; and group work , illus., 4: 46-65

I If Christ Came to Chicago, by William T. Stead, 3: 86, 89; illus., 3: 87 Illinois and Michigan Canal: work resumed in 1845, 3: 41 Illinois as French colony, 4: 66-81; incorporated into Louisiana, I 71 7, 4: 74; illus., 4: 74 Illinois Central Railroad: granted lakeshore right of way, 3: 35, 49; builds breakwater on South Shore, 3: 49, 51; illus., 3: 35, 45 Immigrant aid societies: as employment agencies, I: 70 Immigrants. See Ethnic groups Immigrants Protective League, 4: 6, 7, I 0 Indians: as slaves in Illinois, 4: 66-81 Inter Ocean: fails to support city council reform , 3: 94 International Harvester Company: and labor unions, 1: 42-59; employment of ethnic groups, 1: 45; formed from McCormick Company merger, I: 45; employmem of African-Americans , I: 49 McCormick Works: built, I: 45; illus., 1: 45; closing of, l: 59 Tractor Works: built, 1910 , I: 45; illus., 1: 45; closing of, I: 59 Twine Mill: closing of, I: 49, 50; illus., 1: 50 International Harvester Company Strike, 1952 , I: 42-59; publicity, 1: 51-52, 54, 55, illus., 1: 56; pickets, 1: 53, 55, 58, illus. , l: 2-43, 53, 5 7; William Foster killed , I : 55; settlement of, I: 5 7 Irish in Chicago, I: 65 Irving Hall , dance hall, 4: 83 Italians in Chicago: employment of, I: 65, 68, illus., 1: 6667; reasons for emigrating, 4: 7-9; and intent to return to Italy, 4: 8; and neighborhoods, 4: 9; and schools, 4: l I, 14, illus., 4: 11 ; and religion, 4: 11-12, illus., 4: 4; "Little Hell," illus., 4: 1O; and citizenship, 4: 12; and mutual benefit societies, 4: 12; weddings , illus., 4: 12; and home ownership, 4: 14; and World War I, 4: 15, illus., 4: 15; illus., 4: 6, 8, 9, I 0, 13

J J.

Walter Thompson, advertising agency: on "embourgeoisement thesis ," 2: 23-24 Jewish People's Institute, 2: I I "Johnny de Pow. " See Powers, John Johnson, Mary Ann, •·coming Together, " photo essay, 4: 46-65 Johnstone, Jack, leader Stockyards Labor Council, 3: 69 98

Joim Committee on Lake Shore Protection , 3: 46-48 Joliet, Louis, 4: 69 Juvenile Protective Association of Chicago UPA): investigates dance halls, 4: 9 1

K Kart , William [?] ('"Blind Billy") , alderman , 3: 96 Kaskaskia: founded 1703, 4: 70; map, 4: 79 Kaskaskia Manuscripts, 4 : 75 Kenin , Herman, president AFM: replaces James Petrillo, 2: 53; and segregation of union Loca ls, 2: 54, 56, 57, 59 Kenna, Michael ("Hinky Oink"), alderman: confronts George Cole, 3 : 94-95 Kennedy, Thomas, head of AFM Local I 0: and segregation of Chicago musicians ' union, 2: 41 Kenosha Comets, women's baseball team: illus., I: 38 Kirkland, Walla ce , photogra pher: directs Hull-I louse mens' and boys' clubs, 4: 48; photographs Hull-House groups, 4: 48-49 Knights of Columbus: and recrea tion movement, 2: I I Knox , Frank, publisher Chicago Daily News: and ent,-y of U.S . into World War 11, 3: 7-'.13; appointed Secretary of the Navy, 3: 19; illz~r., 3: 5, 19 , :30-31

L Labor Sports Union: holds Wo ,·ker's Olympics, 2: 19-20 "Labor's Last Stand," by Toni Gilpin, article, I: 42-59 Ladies Christian Union: as employment agency, 1: 70 i .ake Front Park, 4: 26 Lake Michigan: financing of breakwaters in, 3: 34-51; protection from iakeshore erosion of, '.t 34-51; high water levels, illus., 3: 34; breakwaters in , illus., 3: :36, 37, '.19; view of from Auditorium, 1907 , 1llw., 3: 4 7; lakeshore in 1928 , illus., 3: 49-50 Lake Park, 3: 40 Lake Shore Dri\'e: illus., '.l: 54 LaSalle, Robert Cavelier de: illus., 4: 70 "Late Emries to the Chicago Tribune Competition" exhibition: illus., 1: 25 Law, John, comptroller general of France: illus., 4: 71 Lawrence, George, Chicago photographer, 3: 53 League for the Protection of Immigrants: investigates employment age ncies , I : 72 Lend-Lease Bill of 1941: reaction of press to. 3: 27-31, 3:3 L'Enfant, Pierre: plan for Washington, D.C., 4: 35, illtis., 4: 37 Levee: and dance halls, 4: 88; and First Ward Ball, 4: 93 Lewis, Russell, "From the Editor," I : 3; 2: 3; 3 : 3; 4: 3 Lindberg, Richard , " Ye terday's City: The South Side's Baseball Facto1-y," article, 2: 60-72 L 'italia: on World War l, 4: 15 Lithuanians in Chicago: music, illus., 2: 24 "Little Hell." See Italians in Chicago Louisiana territory: map, 4: 68-69 Louisville Courierjoumal: reaction to Lend-Lease Bill of 1941, 3: 29


PNA

M

N

McCaffrcy, John , president International Harvester, I : 46; and 1952 strike, I : 51 McCormick, Robert R. , publisher Chicago Tribune: background of, I : 7-8; choice of Tribune Tower design, I: 23-25; and entry of U.S. into World War 11 , 3: 4-33; view of military affairs, 3: 11 ; illus., I: 7; 3: 4; condemned by prointervcntionists, illus., 3: 21 McCormick Company: merges with other companies to form International Harvester, I : 45 McKim, Charles, architect: selected for McMillan Commission , 4: 35 Mc Mill an, James, senator: establishes Senate Parks Commission (McMillan Commission), 4: 33 MacMonnics Columbus Fountain: illw., 4: :1 1 MacVcagh, Franklin: on Plan of Chicago, 4: 30 Mahoney, Olivia: curator, "A House Divided: America in the Age of Lincoln, " 4: 67 Manicrre, George, alderman, 3: 45 Marquette, Father Jacques, 4: 69 Martin, Charles, alderman: illus., 3: 96 Martine, .J. Edwin , dancing master: opens school, 4: 84; illus., 4: 85: dance academy survives until Great Depression, 4: 94 Mary Mac Dowcll Settlement House: illus., 2: 12- 13 Mass transit: graft in devel o pment of, 3: 89-90, 96; illus., 3: 91 Maxwell Street: illus., 2: 28-29 Meat-packing industry: employment of African-Americans, 3: 68-85, illus., 3: 68; unioni1ation of, 3: 72-73, 81, 85, illus., 3: 83, 84; " killing gangs," 3: 79-80, 82, 85; illus., '.~: 70-71, 73, 77, 78-79, 80. See also Stockyards; names of individual companies Melodcon I !all, dance hall: opening in 1852 , 4: 83 Merchants Club: supports Plan of Chicago, 4: 40, illus., 4: 40 Merriam, Charles, alderman, 4: 91 Meyerhoff, Arthur: buys AACBL, I : 28 Michigan Avenue (Pine Street): in 1919 , I: 9-10; illus., 3: 42-43; in 1855 , illus., 3: 40: in Plan of Chicago, illus., 4: 43 Milwaukee Avenue Co-op: illus., 2: 31 Mirasole, Giovanni, dancing master: opens school, 4: 84 Moore , Charles: unofficial member of McMillan Commission, 4: 35; named to Commission of Fine Arts, 4: 45 Motion picture theaters: neighborhood , 2: 32-35; segregation of, 2: 34-35. See also names of individual theaters Motion pictures: response of workers to, 2: 25, 32; and ethnic groups, 2: 32 Mulcahey, Robert, alderman: illus., 3: 94, 96 Mundelein, Cardinal: and "Americanization" of ethnic groups, 2: 14 Municipal Voters League, 3: 92; attempts to reform city council, 3: 90 Musicians, black: ca mpaign t0 integrate musicians' union, 2: 40-59; create first black musicians' union Local, 2: 42; illus., 2: 42, 44, 45, 48-49, 50, 55, 59 Muskegon Lassies, women's baseball team: illus., I: 26-27 Mutual benefit societies: and ethnic groups, 4: 12, 18-19

Nancredc, Edith de . See de Nancrcdc, Edith ational Association of Women Stenographers: as employment agency, I : 70 National Girls Baseball League ( GBL): as rival of AAGBL., I : 33; illus., I: 33 cgro League: American Giants, 2: 63; plays in Comiskey Park, 2: 72 Ncttlehorst, Louis, president Board of Education, 2: I 0 New Biloxi: illus., 4: 72-73 New Calurnct, motion picture theater, 2: 34 New York Times: on British war government, 3: 19 NGBI.. See National Girls Baseball League Nightclubs: illttS., 2: 4 7, 51, 56. See also names of individual clubs "No Freaks, o Amawns, o Boyish Bobs," artiLlc, by Susan Cairn, I: 26-41 Northwestern Railroad terminal : illus., 3: 62 Norwegians in Chicago: illus., 2: I 0 "Not Only a Game," by Gerald R. Gems, article, 2: 4-21

0 Oakes, Grant, president FE, 1: 4 7 Olmsted, Frederick I.aw, Jr. , landscape architect: selected for McMillan Commission, 4: 35; named to Commission of Fine Arts, 4: 45 "On Their Own Terms: Mass Culture and the WorkingClass World, " by Lizabeth Cohen, article, 2: 22-39

p "Packinghouse Blues," by Paul Street, article, 3: 68-85 Panic of 18'.~7: effect on Chicago's boosters, 3: 39 Parks, in Chicago: differing uses of, 2: 7, 9; "turr¡ for ethnic groups, 2: I I; in Plan of Chicago, 4: 31. See also names of individual parks Pa tterson, Joseph Mcdill, publisher Chicago Tribune: background of, I: 5, 7; suggests competition for new building, I: I 0; as promoter of culture, I: I I; choice of Tribune building design, I: 23-25; illus., I: 7 Pete's I ntcrnational , motion picture theater, 2: :H Petrillo, .James, president AFM: heads AFM Local I 0, 2: 46: and segregation of union Loca ls , 2: 53-54: illus., 2: 46; with Harry Truman , illus., 2: 52-5:l Phonograph: use by ethnic groups, 2: 27: foreign language advertisements, illus., 2: 24; records, illus., 2: 24 Pinc Street. See Michigan Avenue PiUsburgh Courier: on military preparedness, 3: 13 Plan of Chicago: pres reaction to, 4: 30; sponsorship by Commercial and Merchants Clubs, 4: 39, illus., 4: 40; economic goals of, 4: 41; failure to address social issues, 4: 41; promotion of, 4: 45; illus., 4: 42, 43; proposed civic center, illus., 4: 44-45 Playground Association, 2: 9 PNA. See Polish National Alliance 99


Poles in Chicago Poles in Chicago: reasons for emigrating, 4: 15-1 7; and mutual benefit societies, 4: 18-19; and religion, 4: 1920; and schools, 4: 21; and citi7enship, 4: 23; and home ownership, 4: 23; and World War I, 4: 23; illus., 4: 5, 7, 16, 17, 18-19, 22, 23 Polish-American Musicians Union: merges with AFM Chicago Local 10 , 2: 50 Polish and Lithuanian Falcons, 2: I 0 Polish National Alliance: popularity of, 4: 18-19; illus., 4: 19 Popular culture: and working class, 2: 22-39 Powe1·s, John ("Johnny de Pow"), alderman: and graft, 3: 90; illus., 3 : 95 Prairie du Rocher: founded 1720, 4: 70 Prostitution: recruitment for, I: 68, 72 Public Schools Athletic League. See Bureau of Physical Education Pullman, George Mortimer: founds Pullman Athletic Association, 2: 8 Pullman Athletic Association: founded by George Pullman, 2: 8

R Racine Belles, women's baseball team, I: 28; illus., l: 28, 34 Radio: response of workers to, 2: 25; ethnic programming, 2: 35, 37-39; advertisement, illus., 2: 36; "Silent ights," 2: 37; illus., 2: 35. See also names of individual stations Railroad stations. See names of individual stations Railroads: effect on employment, I: 62, 64; illus., I: 63 Ramova theatre: foreign language advertisement, illUJ ., 2: 33 Reinsdorf, Jerry: purchases Chicago White Sox, 2: 70 Republican Convention of 1940, 3: 20 Richards, Bernard , president AFM Local l 0: and efforts to merge Chicago locab IO and 208, 2: 56, 57; illus., 2: 40, 58 Riots: 1919 Race Riot, 3: 72, illus., 3: 74-75; Haymarket Riot: illus., l: 45; sparked by shooting of strikers, I: 46 Robert's Show Club, nightclub: advertisement, illus., 2: 4 7 Rockford Peaches, women's baseball team, l: 28; illus., I: 36 Rockola, women's baseball team: illus., I: 33 Roosevelt, Franklin D.: appoints Frank Knox Secretary of the Navy, 3: 19; illus., 3: 7, 19 Ruth , Babe: hits first Comiskey Park "roof shot," 2: 67

s St. Adelbart's Church: illus., 4: 20 Saint-Gaudens, Augustus, sculptor: selected for McMillan Commission, 4: 35; illus., 4: 35 Ste. Genevieve: founded 1740s, 4: 70 St. Phillippe: founded I 720, 4: 70 St. Stanislaus Kostka Church: illus., 4: 7 Samuels, William Everett, secretary AFM Local 208, 2: 44; illus., 2: 40 100

Sanita1,• and Ship Canal: construction of, illus .. I : 69 Saunders, Red, drummer and band leader: illus., 2: 44, 58 Schneider, James C., " The Battle of the Two Colonels," article, 3: 4-33 Schools: adopt the German Turners ' training system, 2: 91O; and physical education, 2: 9-10, 14: and ethnic groups, 4: I I , 14, 21 Schumacher's, motion picture theater, 2: 34 Scoll, Martha, 11 ull-J--louse group worker: illus., 4: 54 Senate Parks Commission. See Washington, D.C.: McMillan Commission Sengstacke,John 1--1., ed itor Chicago Defender: on U.S. entry into World War ll , 3: 13 Settlement houses: as emp loyment agencies, I: 70; festivals, illus., 2: IO; and ethnic groups, 4: 6, 20; and group work , illUJ., 4: 46-65; illw., 2: 9. See also names of individual settlement houses Seward Park: illus., 2: 6-7 Sherman , Francis C., Chicago representative, 3: 46 Slavery, in Illinois, 4: 66-81; of Afi-ican-Americans, 4: 6678; of Indians, 4: 78-8 I "Slave1·y in French Colonial Illinois," article , by Winstanley Briggs, 4: 66-81 SLC. See Stockyards Labor Council Smith, Henderson, musician, 2: 42 Soccer: illus., 2: 14 'oftball: increasing popularity of, I : 30, 31; women in, I: 31, illus., 1: 29, '.{ I, 35; illus., I: '.30, 32 Solomonwn, Katherine, "Chicago's Cathedral of Commerce, " article, I: 4-25 South Side Grounds, Chicago White Sox playing field , 2: 62; leased to American Giants, 2: 63; illus., 2: 62 Spalding, Albert G., sporting goods magnate, 2: 5 Sports: and women, I: 29, ,HJ; and ethnic groups, 2: 421; as tool of "Americanization, " 2: 5, 8-9, 14; as mean, of upward mobility, 2: 14-15; and labor relations, 2: 19: 3: 81. See also names of individual sports State Street: illus., 4: 27 Stead, William T., author: writes If Christ Came to Chicago, 3: 86, 89 Stevenson , Adlai E., Ill inois governor: leads Commillee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, 3: 18 Stevenson, Letitia Green (Mrs. Adlai E. Stevenson): illus., 3: 26 Steward, A.T., president AFM Local 208, 2: 44 Stockyards: illus., 3: 60-61, 63. See also meat-packing industry Stockyards Labor Council (SLC). 3: 69; illus., 3: 76 Street, Paul , "Packinghouse Blues," article, 3: 68-85 Strike Call, publication of black FE members, I: 55 Strikes: International Harvester, I: 42-59, illus., I: 4243, 50, 52, 53, 54, 57, 58; meat-packing industry, 3: 72, illus., 3: 72; garment industry, 4: 15, illus., 4: 14 Suder, Henry, supervisor of schools' physical education program: resigns as a result of anti-German sentiment, 2: 10 Sullivan, Louis: opinion of Tribune Tower, I : 13 Swedes in Chicago: Swedish Old People's Home, illus., 2: 25 Swift, George B., Chicago mayor, 3: 69; 4: 31


Yerkes Swift & Co., meat-packers, 3: 72; sets up butchering institute at Wabash YMCA , 3: 80; An-ow, in-house newsletter, 3: 81; Swift Premiums baseball team, 3: 81; illus., 3: 81

T Taft, William Howard: names Burnham to Comm ission of Fine Arts, 4: 42, 45 Tango: popularity in the 191 Os, 4: 92; illw., 4: 92, 93 Taxation: attitudes toward, in Chicago, 3: 35-36; special assessments for lakefront property owne r~ , 3: 41 "A Taxing Dilemma: Early Lake Shore Protection, " by Robin Einhorn, article, 3: 34-5 1 Thompson , J. Walter, advertising agency. See .J. Walter Thompson Throop, Amos G., alderman: lobbies for special assessmems to lakefront property owners, 3: 48; illllS., 3: 48 Tibbets, Benjamin, co ntractor: constructs Lake Michigan breakwater, 3: 44-45 Tigerman, Stanley, architect: initiates "Late Entries to the Chicago Tribune Competition" exhibition, I : 25 Tribuna ltaliana: on religious festivals, 4: 12 Tribune Tower: construction of, illllS., I: 8, 9; opinion of Louis Sullivan, 1: 13; European influ ences on, I: 20, 23, illllS., 1: 13 ; fragments of famous buildings imbedded in, I: 20, illllS., I: 22; illus., I: cover, 4, 12 , 20, 21, 24. See al.10 Chicago Tribune Tower Competition Tribune Tower Competition. See Chicago Tribune Tower Competition Trowbridge, Raymond W. , architect: photogi¡aphs of Tribune Tower, illllS., 1: 14- 19 True Story Magazine: on "embourgeoisement thesis," 2: 23, 25 Truman, Harry: with James Petrillo, illus., 2: 52-53 Turley, Murray F., judge: and Municipal Voters League, 3: 93

u UAW. See United Automobile Workers UE. See United Electrical Workers Unemployment. See employment Union Station (Washington, D.C.), 4: 35, 42; influence of World 's Columbian Exposition on, 4: 36; illllS., 4: 38 Unions: and International Harvester, I: 42-59; as employment agencies, I: 70; and music industry, 2: 4059; and meat-packing industry, 3: 72-73, 83, 85; and garment industry, 4: 15; and Italian immigrams, 4: 15 United Auto Workers (UAW): raids on FE locals, I: 48; absorbs FE, I: 59 United Elecu¡ical Workers (UE): expelled from CIO, I: 48; merger with FE, 1: 48 University of Chicago: strike against war and fascism, 1935, illus., 3: 22-23, 24 University of Chicago Settlement House , 4: 6, 7

V Veeck, Bill: on comrast between \Vrigle) Field and ComiskC) Park, 2: 67; purchases Chicago White Sox, 2: 69, 70 Vo)'ageurs in Illinois, 4: 75, 79-80

w Ward , Haro ld: charged with murder of William Foster, 1: 55 Was hington, D.C.: and City Beautiful movement, 4: 33; influence of World\ Columbian exposition on, 4: 33; Pierre l.'Enfant 's plan for, 4: 35, illllS .. 4: 37; Union Station, 4: 35, 36, 42, illllS., 4: 38; Mall , illus., 4: 38; building height limitations, 4: 41; illus., 4: 33, '.H Lincoln Memorial: debate O\'er site, 4: 42; design by Burnham, illllS., 4: 44 McMillan Pl an: influence of World 's Columbian Exposition on, 4: 35; European influence on, 4: 36; illus., 4: 36, 37, 41; and failure to addre~s social issues, 4: 38 Watchrnan of the Prairie: on dancing, 4: 8'.i Waters , Muddy , blues musician: illus., 2: 45 WCFL: organized by Chicago Federation of Labor, 2: 37 WCTU. See Women 's Christian Temperance Union Weidner, Ca therine Sardo, "Building a Better Life ," article, 4: 4-25 " White City, Capital City," by Howard F. Gillette, Jr., article, 4: 26-45 White Sox. See Chicago White Sox Wilkie , Wendell, presidential candidate, 3: 24 Woman 's Alliance: as employment agency, I: 70 Women 's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU): as employment agency, I: 70 Worker's Olympics: held by Labor Sports Union, 2: 1920 Working class: and popular culture, 2: 22-39 World War I: and Chicago Italian recruits , 4: 15; and Chicago Polish recruits, 4: 25, illllS., 4: 24 World War II, U.S. entry into: debate over, in Chicago, 3: 7-33, illus., 3: 8, 21, 26; military preparedness, 3: I 0, 11, 13, 20 World 's Columbian Exposition: influence on city planning, 4: 26; influence on Plan of Chicago, 4: 30, 33, 40; influence on Washington, D.C. city plan, 4: 35; influence on Cleveland city plan, 4: 38; illllS., 4: 28-29, 30, 31 Wodd's Fa ir. See World's Columbian Exposition Wright's Grove: illllS., 2: 8 Wrigley, Philip K.: founds AAGBL, 1: 27; sells AAGBL to Meyerhoff, I: 28 Wrigley Field: designed by Zachary Taylor Davis, 2: 67; attitude of fans toward, 2: 70

y Yerkes, Charles Tyson, transit magnate: and graft, 3: 90; loses control of city council, 3: 95 101


"Yesterday's City" "Yesterday's City": "Prey for Work," by Perry R. Duis, article, I: 60-72; "The South Side's Baseball Factory," by Richard Lindberg, article, 2: 60-72; "The BuZ7 Saw Reformer," by George D. Bushnell, article, 3: 86-96; "Tripping the Light Fantastic," by Pen-y R. Duis, article, 4: 82-94

102

YMCA: as employment agency, I: 70, i//m., I: 70; reading room, illus., I: 71; and recreation movement, 2: I I ; holds butchering institute, 3: 80 Young Communist League: strike against war and fascism, 1935, illus., 3: 22-23 Young Men's Christian Association. See YMCA Young Women's Christian Association. See YWCA YWCA: as employment agency, I: 70


Chicago History | Winter 1989–90  
New