May 02, 2011

Sharing Lincoln Park

A Joint Administration
1870ish-1889
Lincoln Park - Harper's Weekly 1887
This post is a detailed historical review of the relationship between two governmental units - Township/City of Lake View and the City of Chicago with the park, Lincoln Park
Lake View Township/City and the City of Chicago had joint administration of the park from early 1870's to 1889. After the annexation the old guard of 5 members remained on the Board years after that causing some bitter political infighting about representative taxation. In the early 1870's the expansion of the park was routed north of Webster Avenue to Fullerton and then to Diversey. Fullerton Avenue was always the southern border between Lake View and Chicago until the annexation of 1889. During this time period the park would be populated with monuments mostly of literary masters of Europe that was approved by the Lincoln Board of Commissioners. When the park's geography was north of Fullerton Avenue the Lincoln Park Zoo, that was established in 1868, also was shared the existing Board. The Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners remains today as a functional entity but with much less political authority or political battles to fight than in this period of time when the park finally reach beyond Lake View to Edgewater & Rogers Park. 
The other interests in this post are 'Monuments of the Park', 'Lincoln Park Zoo', the Conservatory, and finally an interest segment called 'The Lake Shore Ditch' that was established before the park was established. 
(click to enlarge any image/article)
1893 photo - Detroit Publishing
This 1853 map highlights the area before the establishment
of Lake View Township (1854-87) & the park itself
University of Alabama Digital Collection 
via Phelps Fanning & Company
Notes: Green Bay Road became Clark Street; Little Fort Road became Lincoln Avenue by the end of the 19th century.
An Account 1893
Chicago, The Garden City
 by Andreas Simon  
Mr. W.C.Goudy was a resident of Lake View Township who was the first president of the original Lincoln Park Board
Let's Begin ...
A park called Lincoln Park was established by the State of Illinois in 1869. This small park would a decade later absorbed the 60 acre cemetery called simply Chicago Cemetery as well as the existing Catholic and Jewish cemeteries. Later in the 20th century the park space expanded northward along the lakefront. The Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners, the governing body for the parkland and the roadways along the lakefront, planned for the park's expansion northward along with the expansion of 'North-Lake Shore Drive'. The Board of 5 members would link the then 120 acre park to the city's neighbor to the north - the Township of Lake View by the early 1870's. While the membership of the Board was split between representatives of Chicago and the old township the maintenance and expansion revenue was split between two assessors, Lake View and (then) North Chicago townships. Early Chicago was comprised of North, West,& South Chicago townships.
This 1863 Charles Shober map shows the original park space (yellow), Chicago Cemetery (green), and Catholic Cemetery (yellow) south of the park space.
The zoomed version of the 1863 map of the original park space that apparently shows some sort of rain water drainage system called Lake Shore Ditch later be called the '10 mile ditch'. University of Chicago Digital Map Collection
The original design by landscape by gardener Swain Nelson
image - unknown source
Below are a set of articles that indicated the 
Chicago's vision/dream of a 'drive' 
and upon that drive expanded park space
1867  The 'Avenue' along the Shore
1868 image - University of Chicago Digital Map Collection
This 1868 Charles Shober map shows the annexation of Chicago Cemetery and an apparent conversion of the old cemeteries below Lincoln Park. Zoom with a view of the this 1869 map that in detail shows Lake View Township.
photo - University of Chicago Digital Map Collection
This 1873 Stedum, Brown & Lyon map still shows the cemetery during the time of re-interment as well as the planned 'avenue' along the existing lakeshore.
Note: the lower blue area south of North Avenue 
while not labeled is the Catholic Cemetery.
1882  The linked road from the park to the 
Township of Lake View planned

This last article demonstrates that the township and years later the City of Lake View were interested in a roadway along the lakefront as well. Under the Lincoln Park Act of 1869 a small section of land that was currently part of the township (north of Fullerton Avenue to Diversey) was granted to the Lincoln Park Commission. Because of that the commissioners were chosen ... half from the City of Chicago and and the other half from the Township/City of Lake View so to supervise the expansion and maintenance of the park
& the planned 'avenue' northward on new landfilled land.
1877  Chicago Cemetery 
begins to disappear from the landscape
 O.W. Gray and Son via 1876 U. of Alabama Digital maps
These edited Chicago city maps shows the transformation from cemetery and the original park space
O.W. Gray and Son via 1883 U. of Alabama Digital maps
edit image - University of Alabama Digital Maps
This Rand McNally map (produced before annexation) shows that Lincoln Park was located both in City of Chicago 
and the City of Lake View before June 1889

The extension phases 1863-73
image - Art Institute of Chicago via Explore Chicago
(click on image to enlarge)
The original park space was small compared to its current size and design - park between Fullerton and Diversey Parkway was redesigned during the expansion and extension of Lake Shore Drive by 1942. 
Early Maps via Chicagology
 1863 to the right & 1870 to the left from North to Diversey 
 the park in 1873 from North Avenue to Diversey
the park space in 1899
The original park space had neighbors to its' south - 
Chicago CemeteryCatholic Cemetery, and a smaller private Jewish cemetery as well as a space for the confederate Civil War dead. The original space expanded first south so to absorb the discredited cemeteries. The Catholic Cemetery was the last piece to be annexed and converted into park space. The creation and construction of an 'avenue' along the lakeshore could have only been completed if land/landfill was created west of the existing lakeshore aka west of private property along the lakeshore. 
postcard - CashCow
Built on of the old Catholic Cemetery on North Avenue was the residence of of the first Catholic cardinal in Chicago, Archbishop Feehan (1880-1902) 
Governance of the Park:
The Lincoln Park Board 
of Commissioners in 1889
The Township of Lake View became a city for only two years between 1887-89. The city was annexed to the City of Chicago in 1889. When the two year old city was annexed in 1889 the existing Lincoln Park board members became citizens of Chicago but the new Chicagoans loyalties were squarely with the old city and with its new political clout would be a force to be reckon with in Chicago's city hall almost a decade after. 
(click to enlarge article)
'towns' in this article meant 'townships'
image- section of Harper's Weekly via Ebay
the park 1880's according to Ebay
In 1887 May 
 The article below is about the plan 
to build this new roadway along the lakefront
1887 December
Citizens of the City of Lake View
 begin to complain about the park's levies (taxes)
existing shoreline before the outer drive & Sheridan Road
1894 Sanborn Fire Map
zoomed jpeg - University of Alabama Digital Maps
This edited 1889 shows the park and the then southern section of City of Lake View (1887-1889). While the park was geographically part of the City of Chicago the administration of the park was still governed by the Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners (still then representatives of the old township/city of Lake View and Chicago).
zoomed photo - University of Chicago Digital Maps
The original lakeside road through the park was called 'Breakwater Carriage Drive and Sidewalk Drive' 
View of roadway between the lagoons the lake from the then existing 'High Bridge' pictured from this 1908 postcard- Ebay 
a closer view toward Diversey
image University of Chicago Digital Collection
The blueprint lithograph - mid 1880's. The park is extended to Diversey Street (Parkway) with plans to establish a lagoon at Diversey and Belmont Avenues. Diversey was to be the final parks/boulevard link of the city's boulevard system - it did not happen. Diversey was called a street, avenue, boulevard and final a parkway to the park. In fact, I published a post within the blog about the proposed Diversey Boulevard link to the Grand Park System of south, west, north parks.
photo of Lincoln Park - Detroit Publishing via Ebay
 1893  Plan to Expand the Park to Belmont Avenue
1894 The Old guard is Out per New Governor
The Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners 
(The park was established by the State of Illinois in 1869)
The representatives from old Lake View were not happy
 page 2
1897 The Battle of the Park
This 1897-99 Rand McNally map 
University of Chicago Digital Collection
This map indicates the proposed extension of the park northward into the now District of Lake View. The Diversey lagoon has been created and the Belmont proposed lagoon is planned. Belmont Harbor was open to the public by 1913.
1897 Compromise Reached 
 
image from Ebay
The Lincoln Park Board 
of Commissioners Governance:
photos - Ravenswood-Lake View Community Collection
 the Conservatory (Palm House) building and its gardens
all photos from 1904
A Public Interest Story:
1901 The 'King of the Park' is Gone
  This 1902 Rand McNally & Company map 
shows the existing lakefront with Lake View Avenue and Belmont Avenue ending at the existing lakeshore
canoeing in 1906 with the High Bridge in the background
Chicago History Museum via Explore Chicago Collection
1908 photo of the new boat house
Chicago History Museum via Explore Chicago Collection
1901 Taxes Raised
1902 Asking Lake View
1903 Beach Planned @ Diversey 
(click on article to enlarge)

1909 photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
Some Images of the Park 
from my personal collection



This 1903 - Lake Michigan Coast Chart ...
shows the existing lakefront (at the time) along with the old Lake View Township Crib - with this link
1904 Riparian Rights Concerns
1910 A Planned Bathing Beach 
from Fullerton to Diversey 
This is a 1911 U.S. Engineer Department map of the 
existing lakefront. The blue area indicated a depth of 10 feet of water, pinkish area indicate at least 21 feet, and the outer green more than 21 feet. The park ended at Diversey Ave. Belmont (Yacht ) Harbor opened to the public in 1913.
The Revetments: Shoring up the lakefront
According to a pdf called 'ShoreLine History' the protection of the now existing shoreline began by 1910 and continued unembedded until 1931. Illustrations of these types of revetments are below from a pdf called Shoreline History.
(click on image to enlarge)
These edited maps below are from the 
University of Chicago Digital Map Collection 
Rand McNally 1913
These series of zoomed images indicated the proposed plan to extend Lincoln Park from the existing park area to the old Lake View Township/City border to Devon Avenue - the former northern border of old Lake View.
 
from the original park area to Diversey 
Diversey Harbor to Belmont Yacht Harbor
This section shows the Yacht Harbor as a lagoon 
and landfill ending at Cornelia Street - 1914 
This grainy image show the northward expansion to Devon Avenue with number of lagoons planned
(click on image to enlarge)
not a harbor yet at Belmont Avenue
image - Art Institute of Chicago
WPA 1937-1942
A More Direct Link Though the Park
It took a destructive storms in 1929 in both spring and fall and stimulus monies during the depression of the 1930's to realign a more direct roadway link through the park. This new link through the park finally and directly link the Loop area of the city to its northernmost point at the time Foster Avenue. The federal government granted construction aid between 1937-1942 to not only widen but expand further the Drive along the shore. The federal dollars were used to realign the existing park - call it a stimulus package from the Feds.
 Pre-realigned image of the park space as of 1935
Lincoln Park realignment by 1942 
- both photos Hidden Truth
So, by 1942 parkland and harbors were created by landfill along the mad-made shoreline with direct governmental assistance where at one time there were cliff formations, small bluffs, and street-end beaches (my other blog post) 
The Monuments in the Park
image - Chicagoan
These monuments were commissioned and installed prior to 1900. The administration of the park was shared with the citizens of old Lake View and the rest of Chicago while the revenue for the park was raised and administered by the residents of then District of Lake View and the geographically are of North Chicago Township. This arranged began when the Lincoln Park of Commissioners (governing body) expanded the park space north of Fullerton Avenue (southern border of the township/city of Lake View) northward. The governmental integration of the old township with the City of Chicago probably took a decade or more to resolve. The Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners still hold meetings probably less argumentative from the days of battling riparian rights, outer drive plans, and the battles of power & influence since its inception.
 
page 2 
 page 3
 page 4
within the neighborhood of Lake View along the lakeshore
photo -  Alan Scott Walker
photo - Andrew Horne
Ulysses S Grant 1891
photo - Public Art of Chicago
Signal of Peace 1894
within the neighborhood of Lake View along the lakeshore
image - Allan Scott Walker
image - Allan Scott Walker
Carl von Linné Monument 1891
Originally located on Fullerton Avenue in the park north the the original conservatory once called 'The Palm House'
image - Ebay
photo - Jennifer Ames
Hans Christian Andersen 1896
photo - Allan Scott Walker
Benjamin Franklin 1896
photo - Allan Scott Walker
Other Notable Monuments after 1900
photo - Public Art in Chicago
a gateway to neighborhood of Lake View
photo - Alan Scott Walker
photo - Alan Scott Walker
photo - Andrew Home
photo - Tutt's Art
photo - John Angel
photo - Alan Scott Walker
Some of the Missing ....

 photo - OAC the online archive of California

postcard images - my from collection
along with the Doughboy
The Lincoln Park Zoo
1902 photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
1903 photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
Cy DeVry feeding a peccary from a bottle in 1903 
Chicago History Museum 

via Explore Chicago Collection
1909 photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
'The zoo was founded in 1868, when the Lincoln Park [Board of] Commissioners were given a gift of a pair of swans by Central Park's Board of Commissioners - New York City. In 1874 the swans were joined by a bear cub from the Philadelphia Zoo; the first animal purchased for the zoo. The bear became quite adept at escaping from its' home and could frequently be found roaming Lincoln Park at night.' [from 1873 Chicago & Lake View Township had joint responsibility of the park/zoo through the Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners] - Wikipedia edited
Population of the Zoo in 1893
(click on image to enlarge)
image - Chicago, The Garden City by Andreas Simon 1893
Some Early Postcards of the Zoo
from my personal collection


A new arrival in 1937

The Conservatory

 The original conservatory was called the 'Palm House'
and its outside garden



A New Palm House
the new building, constructed by 1893
 images - Chicago, The Garden City by Andrea's Simon
‘The Lincoln Park Commission constructed the Lincoln Park Conservatory in phases between 1890 and 1895, replacing a small greenhouse that dated from the 1870s. Nationally renowned architect Joseph Lyman Silsbee designed the Conservatory in collaboration with architect M.E. Bell. A "paradise under glass," the Conservatory supported 
"a luxuriant tropical growth, blending the whole into a natural grouping of Nature’s loveliest forms. "Historically, aquatic plants propagated in tanks in the Conservatory were planted outside, in artificially-heated lily ponds. The exotic plants were so popular that in 1897 the Egyptian government requested seeds from Lincoln Park's water lilies. The rocky-edged ponds once meandered along what is now the fence line of the Lincoln Park Zoo.’ - Chicago Park District
1902 photo inside the new Palm House
photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
 1902 photo inside the new Palm House
photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
1903 photo inside the new Palm House
photo - Chicago History Museum 
via Explore Chicago Collection
The postcards below are from my personal collection that I purchased from Ebay during the course of one summer. 

 The Lake Shore Ditch
While looking at some vintage maps of the second half of the 19th century I continued to see this line in the maps called the 'Lake View Ditch' to be later referred to as the '10 mile ditch'. I thought this of interest - a before sewers interest. As mentioned I am assuming this ditch was a water/drainage ditch from Lake Michigan overflow. I am guessing it was initially meant to keep the cemeteries dry in particular Chicago Cemetery, the only northside placement for the dead within the City of Chicago. The location of a cemetery along the lakefront may have seen scenic it became apparent that it did not work-out so well when the winds & waves of the lake would crash to the shore sometimes with vengeance during a storm. After a while the medical field discovered the connection between drainage/drinking water and the soaked deceased.
a David Rumsey map 1869 edit
the red highlighted area indicate the border 
between City of Chicago & Lake View Township
Road named after a government official of the township. 
In 1869 the park was governed by the Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners. In accordance to a 1869 map the 10 mile ditch stretched from North Avenue through the original/initial Lincoln Park, the park toward & through southern portion of Lake View Township ending north of Wilson Avenue. 
this is zoomed view of David Rumsey 1869 map edit highlights the continued route of 'Lake Shore Ditch' through the township as well a roadway called 'Lake Shore Plank Road' known day as Broadway.
This zoomed David Ramsey map has the ditch fading away somewhere north of Wilson Avenue once known as Shippey 
I have published a post about the cemeteries that were established in Lake View Township that was a direct connection to the failed location of cemeteries along the existing lakeshore called 'Cemeteries to the North'. In fact, my thesis is based on the founding of the several cemeteries that within Lake View Township; visits from relatives from Chicago brought interest to the township - inexpensive land for development and continued growth for new families and for those who like the 'country life' of a then rural Lake View.

Post Notes
Listen to a tale of the lost and forgotten burials in park as well as the latest find in 2013. 
For more of an in depth view read about the history of the park from Hidden Truths by Pamela Bannos

Important Note: 
These posts are exclusively used for educational purposes. I do not wish to gain monetary profit from this blog nor should anyone else without permission for the original source - thanks!


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