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Going Alone: 1907

Going Alone: 1907

Chicago circa 1907. "Illinois Central Railway station." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative by Hans Behm for Detroit Publishing Co. View full size.

 

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A classic

Reminds me of the Wyeth painting "Christina's World".

Weather vane

Is that lofty wind vane a train? How high up is it?

I'm always amazed that these high structures were built without modern cranes; scaffolding?

[They would have used 1907 cranes. Which were modern at the time. - Dave]

Grand Picture

One of the best yet. Surreal.

Number 2 Park Row House

A 1901 photo with a similar view can by found here. At the left of this photo you can see how close Lake Michigan used to come to the station which was near the corner of present day Michigan and Roosevelt Avenues. The extract from the 1904 Talbot Railroad and Industry Map below shows the beginnings of how they filled in Lake Michigan to expand the park that was already along the lake shore. The large number "8" near the bottom of the map is where the station was located. The Google map view here, shows how the park looks today.

The station was operational from 1893 - 1972, but it was demolished in 1974. In addition to the Illinois Central, the Cleveland, Cinncinati, Chicago & St. Louis (CCC&StL), the Michigan Central, and the Wisconsin Central railroads all used the Illinois Central station in 1904, but many other railways had track rights over the course of the station's existance.

The Labey & Wirsing Saloon shown in the both photos, actually at 2 Lake Park Place despite the inscribed wording at the top of the building, was the establishment of Harry W. Labey and Harry Wirsing. Labey was an English immigrant born in 1871, and Wirsing was a German immigrant born in 1862. In 1900 they were both living in the upstairs rooms of the building. They ran this business from 1897 until at least 1907. Labey later ran a saloon at 108 LaSalle Street next to the old Chicago Stock Exchange.

Pomp and mobility

I am always amazed about how much our modern airport architects still have to learn from the train station architects of yore.

So far I have only seen very few airports which have the quality, the feel, the celebration of mobility and travel, the sheer pride of those old train stations.

An opposing view

Earlier we saw the view from the other direction, looking north out from the station.

Chicago

I would have preferred Wrigley Field, but this is acceptable :-)

Why?

I just cannot understand why such a grand building was demolished in 1974. What were people thinking in the 1970s?!

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