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Showing posts from January, 2020

Riverview Amusement Park

The entrance gate at Riverview Amusement Park. Published by Curt Teich & Co., Inc., of Chicago. From the postcard archives at the Newberry Library in Chicago  Memories and a few postcards are some of the only things left of Riverview Amusement Park. The park has given many Baby Boomers some of the fondest memories of their childhood, as it has for Alice Belmont, a resident living in a northwest suburb of Chicago. Belmont remembers visiting the amusement park at least once as a child.   “I don’t remember which rides I went on, but I do remember the big sign with the [man wearing the turban],” she said. The massive cutout of an image of the man with the turban was at the entrance of the Aladdin’s Castle funhouse exhibit. The Blue Streak roller coaster. Postcard published by Curt Teich & Co., Inc., of Chicago. From the postcard archives of the Newberry Library in Chicago. Not far from the castle was the freak show exhibit, which at one time featured a gir

The Rust Belt City

The Chicago skyline and the Kennedy Expressway in the 1960s . Published by Dexter Press, Inc., of New York. Dirt and grime from almost a century of manufacturing in Chicago began to take a toll on the downtown area in the 1960s.  The unrecognizable skyline in the postcard above shows an aging Chicago that looks more like the present-day skyline of Detroit. Chicago was just another Rust Belt city. The steel industry in particular was a booming business here. The steel mills were so numerous that the sky would glow orange and red at night over the southern part of the lake.  Surrounding the downtown area were industrial factory and warehouse buildings. The chimneys on these buildings spewed pollution into the air. Ironically, many people these days live in these old brick buildings, now referred to as “luxury lofts.” Chicago’s location in the middle of the country made it a perfect place for industry. Iron ore was easily transported to Chicago via boats and trains from uppe

Chicago at Night

State Street near Adams Street at night in 1914. Published by the Max Rigot Selling Co. of Chicago. Light emanating from the windows of buildings, headlights on vehicles and advertisement signage transform Chicago into a “wonderland” during the evening hours. Just like the first people who saw the twinkling blue stars in the sky, people continue to be fascinated by the phenomenon of light and its elements, including the numerous lights that now emanate from modern-day cities. The Old Water Tower and Palmolive buildings. Published by Curt Teich & Co., Inc. The bright city lights can impact the way people feel too. For adults, it might influence them to stay out late and maybe go out for a drink, while kids are simply satisfied as they gaze up with wonder at the lights of tall buildings. One beautiful building to see at night in Chicago is the Wrigley building. Floodlights shine on the 30-story building showing off its white Spanish