The Greenmap Project
New East Side/Streeterville
Manson Bell, Sebastian Campos, Min-Young Chang, Soon-Ah Chang, Hyung Jun Chun, Russell Dow, Andrea Falker, Ada Rima Grybauskas, Tim Harms, Byung Kim, Jae Won Kin, Peggy Kottos, Chiae Lee, Julie Lee, Soo-Yeon Min, Manana Negron-Quinones, Jose G. Saenz, Jeremy Scidmored
Documents on the history of Chicago's West Loop/Town show that the area in which our class has been mapping was originally woods that had been cleared for farming use by the first settles from fort Dearborn. these people were mainly immigrants and others looking for a better future in the West during the 1800's. The first prominent ethnic group was the Germans and the Polish. Soon after Russians, Italians, Jews, Bohemians, and Greeks became the area's main inhabitants with few American upper class neighbors who had been in the states for more than one generation. The area had wooded and stone homes that usually were for single families and some multi-family homes.
In 1871 the Great Chicago Fire destroyed most of Chicago and left few buildings standing as most of them were built of wood. After the fire Chicago set forth to rebuild itself. It was an opportunity for immigrants looking for a better life to find work and fortune. From word of mouth, many immigrants came from the province of Arcadia and Laconia and settled in the West Loop area. They found work in the market area in Chicago, Holy Trinity on Halsted in 1897 and followed by building their business along the street. As it was then, today's Greek Town is still the main business district of the Greeks as they can get a taste of home at one of the many restaurants or wares from the stores.
The Modern West Loop
In the mid fifties, the University of Illinois acquired land near the southern part of the West loop to build Circle Chicago Campus. In doing this, a large portion of the area's residential blocks were demolished making way for this University. Since then, the area has been in flux. Most of the inhabitants left the area or moved further west into other parts leaving much development for industrial business. Today the neighborhood is a mix of companies and new residential lofts in old warehouse buildings.
Randolph and Fulton Markets
The Randolph and Fulton markets are an extension of South Water Market. At one time all produce and meats would have had their wholesale stores and packing houses east of the interstate 90 94, as this was the market of the best quality produce in Chicago. In the past, any produce remaining at Summer Water Market would make its way to Randolf Street and sold at cheaper prices by Saturday afternoon to avoid spoil and waste. Near by groceries and butchers would buy their supplies to offer the best price in the area. Today, the Market on Randolf and Fulton are the main Wholesale center. In recent years posh restaurants have opened for business on the market area making this a hip dinning sector of Chicago's night life.