Patroness of the Road that Never Was: Loyola’s Madonna della Strada Chapel

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Madonna della Strada Chapel postcard

This week’s installment of Flashback Friday brings us to a rare type of architecture: ecclesiastical Art Deco. The Madaonna della Strada Chapel is a unique cultural icon on Loyola campus, with its front door on the lake.

The beautiful view outside of the sanctuary was planned to be much different than what exists today.

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The Other Side of Old Town: Remnants of Swede Town and Little Sicily

Gabriel X. Michael 6 comments
Viewing east towards the Near North skyline, from 900 block of Hudson Avenue. Vacant former site of Cabrini Extension South high-rises in foreground.

Viewing east towards the Near North skyline from 900 block of Hudson Avenue. Vacant former site of Cabrini Extension South high-rises in foreground. Gabriel X. Michael/Chicago Patterns

Located just north of downtown and on the eastern side of Chicago’s man-made Goose Island and North Branch Canal, the Lower Near North Side has been called many names, and served as home to Chicago’s poor working class and multi-ethnic waves of immigrants.

It was notably put under a microscope by urban sociologist Harvey Warren Zorbaugh in his highly-influential and precedential book The Gold Coast and the Slum (1929), where he chronicled its notorious living conditions, detailed its socio-economic makeup, and elucidated tangled patterns of dysfunction sustaining this “slum’s” existence, blocks from one of Chicago’s wealthiest communities to the east. Central to his philosophy was the idea of “natural areas” within a city–the unplanned, organic enclaves that emerge out of a coincidence of physical geography and cultural segregration: the Lower Near North Side being a prime example of this urban phenomena.

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Pilgrim Baptist Church and Kehilath Anshe Ma’ariv Synagogue

Andi Marie 17 comments
Andi Marie/Chicago Patterns

Andi Marie/Chicago Patterns

In order to learn about this landmark, we must first look back at the beginning of Kehilath Anshe Ma’ariv (K.A.M.). Founded in 1847, Congregation of the Men of the West K.A.M. Isaiah Israel is the oldest Jewish Congregation in Chicago.

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St. Henry’s Catholic Church at Devon and Ridge

John Morris 1 comment

St. Henry's Catholic Church

St. Henry’s Catholic Church, now Angel Guardian Croatian Church at 6346 N. Ridge Avenue was built in 1905. It features Franz Mayer and F. X. Zettler stained glass windows.