June 22, 2011

Police & Fire

It's Evolution & the Stories
This post is about the Police & Fire Departments
of Lake View and is related to another post 
photo - Ravenswood Lake View Community Collection
Lake View Town Hall
1884 History of Cook County 
by Alfred Theodore Andreas
The original police department was housed in the Lake View township/city building on the northwest corner 
of Halsted and Addison streets
 Old Town Hall cops & wagon 1889-1907 
from Robert Zamora via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
1920's photo - Calumet 412
The township/city building was replaced by this 
'42nd Precinct' station in 1907
the below photo from Wikipedia shows a more modern look
Stories from 'Old Town' Police District:
'The drama began on November 23rd, 1892, when a man in Lake View was approached by a masked rider who wore a mask covering his eye. Above it was a stiff derby hat and below it a sandy mustache. The “highwayman” ordered him to set all his money on the ground and go away.'....
Troubles on Stratford Place in 1897

A Religious Anarchist in 1888
in the City of Lake View
with the Mayor's Approval

The Lake View Highwayman
The Illegal Pier 
of Cornelia Street in 1894
Police Commander & Water Supply 1896
Courtroom Justice in 1901
Trick & Treat:
Fact or Fiction in 1901
Hotel Vice & Closure in 1909
Sherman Place=Drummond Place
This area was still unofficially regarded as Lake View 
ten years after the annexation 
The Old Guard vs City of Chicago 
the tiny jail
a preserved calaboose in Mt Vernon Illinois
Non-violent prisoners were housed in 'tiny jails' known as calaboose. Apparently, a tiny jail was also located in Lake View Township by 1879. One was apparently located on the southwest corner of
Byron & Clark streets. The wording seems to be in error. The Lake View Town[ship] Hall was never located on Byron & Clark and always at Halsted & Addison streets.
Part of the plaque information is hopefully true
Police Duties within the Township
'It shall be the duty of any member of the Board of Trustees or any policeman of the Town of Lake View to arrest upon view any of the persons here-in-before described and it shall be the duty of any policeman of the town at the request of any person provided such person shall have first made a written complaint and obtained a warrant from an officer authorized to issue one for the arrest of any such vagabond to arrest and bring before the nearest justice or police magistrate any such vagabond wherever he may be found for the purpose of an examination and the said officer making said arrest shall then and there make written complaint against said vagabond unless a complaint has already been made in the case and the said justice or police magistrate before whom any such vagabond shall be brought shall within thirty six hours proceed to try said person accused of being a vagabond and if he pleads guilty or if he be found guilty the said accused person shall on conviction forfeit and pay a fine of not less than twenty dollars nor more than two hundred dollars and costs of suit and in default of the immediate payment of said fine and costs so imposed said vagabond shall immediately be sentenced by said magistrate to hard labor upon the streets avenues and alleys or public grounds or public works of the Town of Lake View or in and about the calaboose of said town not less than five days nor more than six months said vagabond to labor ten hours of each working day under the supervision of a Street Commissioner of said town and the balance of the time to be confined in the town calaboose or the said magistrate in lieu of the above sentence to hard labor of said vagabond may issue a mittimus (warrant to prison) directing the imprisonment of said vagabond in the county jail for six months or until said fine and costs shall be fully paid said imprisonment not to continue longer than six months for any one offense in accordance with the provision of section sixty eight of chapter twenty four of the Revised Statutes of 1874.'
News in 1885-86
Town[ship] of Lake View Annual Report
(Facebook Album)
This non-fiction murder mystery story took place in the City of Lake View in 1889 months before the annexation to Chicago
Police 'Shanty'?
Apparently there were these police mini-stations that dotted the landscape per this 1923 Sanborn Fire Map
About the Police and the Community:
Police reorganization 1960
Kidnapping & Murder of Store Owner 1965
contributor Susan Riebman Groff
Proposed curfew for kids under 12 in 1965
Evictions and Police Response in 1972

When Lake View East was called New Town in 1982
New Town was a real estate idea that did not only last a decade or so - from late 1960's to late 1970's
Vandalism in 1987
 page 2
Community BEAT Policing in 1988


Police District Re-Mapping in 2012
Prior to 2012 the neighborhood of Lake View was administered and patrolled by two police districts in the North Division of Chicago, the 19th and 23rd. A re-alignment occurred in 2012 with the consolidation of and elimination of two police districts; one in the North Division that includes Lake view and the other in the South Division. 
With the construction of the (new) Town Hall planned in 2010 on Halsted and Addison the elimination of either the 19th or 23rd became a reality but not without some resident resistance and a lot of public meetings from both residents of the old 19th that was located on 2452 Belmont Avenue just west of Western Avenue and the Town Hall District. The compromise was the retention of the courthouse on Western Avenue but the loss of 'administrated' patrol and detective manpower to the new building on Addison. The other change was the name of the consolidated district. The 23rd became history and the 19th was remained with a larger presence in Chicago. The new 19th police district borders were north on Lawrence Avenue, south of Fullerton Avenue, west of the Chicago River, and to east the Lake Michigan.
2012 map of the new 19th police district 
with the local 'beats'. 
Established in 1992 the CAPS was designed to ideally bring the police, the community, and other city agencies together to identify and solve neighborhood 'quality of life issues', rather than simply react to their symptoms after the fact. Problem solving by this program at the neighborhood level is supported by a variety of strategies, including neighborhood-based beat officers; regular Beat Community Meetings that involve both police & residents; extensive training for both police and community; more efficient use of city services that impact crime; and new technology to help police and residents target crime hot spots. 
The Chicago Police Department has a great 
data-map portal that list crimes per geographical location and another just for the 19th district. 
Street Gangs of Lake View
(a Facebook album)
Some Testimonials 
by Carter O'Brien
my parents were divorced and living on opposite sides of Lakewood on George (1100) and Wolfram (1300). That little playground on Wolfram and Lakewood was lively, to say the least. Walking back and forth through the area almost daily meant I was recognized as a local, and like Renee alludes to, in general these guys didn't mess with their neighbors, I had friends who fit every stereotypical background from this time, Germans, Irish, Polish longtime residents (St Alphonsus was certainly a large presence), Appalachians, Puerto Ricans, Mexicans... and then came the Yuppies, who I almost felt sorry for, as they seemed so lacking in terms of extended family and deeper ties and community relationships."
and by Alan D. Neal
"I was good friends with PR Stones/very close with Royals. I paid my dues never got in any serious trouble thank god but in those days, you made friends or you had many enemy’s I made friends between several was not easy but it worked for me. We all hung out at jaws submarine shop in Ashland just of Irving park road east side of street." 
the gangs formed in Lake View
19th District
The space was mostly from the school parking lot while the garage was expansive apartment building
photos - Chicago Public Commission
lobby view

neighborhood community room
'This new Police Station will replace the existing police station located at 3600 North Halsted. The current station was built in the 1907 and does not have adequate space or amenities to service the Town Hall District. The new station will consist of a two story 44,000-square-foot masonry building with a design based on the prototype for other new police stations that have been built throughout the City.'
Google Views below
view east
view west
The former space
2007 view east
2007 view of the school 
2007 view of an apartment building and Old Town Hall

Halsted near Fremont Avenue
entire view from Fremont Avenue
2009 views east vs west
The Lake View Fire (Hose) Houses 
Fire stations were referred to as 'hose houses' 
in the 19th century
A fire-tower somewhere in the District of Lake View 1896
photo - Chicago Public Library via Calumet 412 
image - Lake View Saga 1847-1985
The current area station as of 2020 are located at 1052 W Waveland, 2718 N Halsted, 3813 N Damen, and 1200 W Wilson
The 'Hose-House' on Barry
aka Fire House built in Old Lake View
fireman Ray Dwight 
The Barry Firehouse was located at 2214 W Barry Avenue
with a 2011 Google Viewer view as Engine House 56
1929 photos - Chicago History Museum via Explore Chicago
Fire Insurance Patrol No. 8
3921 N Ravenswood Avenue
This former Fire Dept building was built in 1907 according to Redfin. The Fire Insurance Patrol’s job was to go into buildings after firemen and protect goods and assets from water damage and thievery. It was especially concerned with protecting major industrial interests in the city.  The building is currently residential and marketing at over 1 million dollars. A Sanborn Fire Map has the building labelled as Fire Insurance Patrol No. 8. This general area was the location of Curt Teich & Bell & Howell (built movie projectors at the time during the time of Essanay Studio).
2017 residential look from Redfin 


 garage or no garage look

photo - Karls' Fire Photos via Smug Mug
This firehouse was built in 1907
the crew in 1930 photo - DNAinfo
'The firehouse at 3921 N Ravenswood Ave. is a little different in that it housed a private insurance patrol, according to the Fire Museum of Greater Chicago. From 1871 to 1959, fire insurance companies operated patrols that salvaged furniture, machinery and other items in burning buildings. Patrols also did maintenance work on sprinklers, roofs and doors to protect them. "Patrol units responded to fires with lights and sirens along with regular fire units and, in an emergency, would man a hose line, raise ladders or render first aid to fire victims," wrote museum director Ken Little in 2006. "This service was performed at no charge, and whether the occupants had fire insurance or not."' - 
 2016 ground floor photo - Redfin
 2016 second floor photo - Redfin
Wooden Water Mains
'The term 'fire plug' dates back to the early 1800's, when water mains were made from wood. The fire department (usually volunteers) would head out to the fire, dig up the cobbles down to the main, then chop into the main so that they could secure the hoses from their pumpers. When finished fighting the fire, they'd seal the main with -- you guessed it -- a "fire plug." The next time there was a fire in the neighborhood, they'd dig up the plug and not have to cut into the main.  Hence the term fire plug. The first firefighters to put water on the fire were paid by the insurance companies. [Sanborn Fire Maps Company were paid by insurance companies for that reason - location and to save money] The competing local fire departments would often fight, coming to blows, over the privilege and the payout afterward.  Engine crews, knowing that whoever controlled the water would extinguish the fire, would send the meanest, toughest, goons they had ahead of the pumper to guard the plug.  Anyone from another crew who came near it would have to fight him.' - Irving Park Historical Society
Historical Fires of Lake View:
The Chicago Fire of 1871
The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 caused the citizens of Lake View Township some concern. The fire nearly blew across Fullerton Avenue at one point - the southern border with Chicago. Apparently, rain and wind saved the day but some residents of the township were watering down their homes just in case. Apparently, a few terrified Chicagoans who traveled north found safe harbor in homes from township citizens and as far north as Belmont Avenue.
(click on image to enlarge)
The Experience
These sample pages from a book I purchased by Ebay - Chicago and the Great Conflagration 
by Ellas Colbert & Everett Chamberlin 1872
tells a tale of the terror that was the Chicago Fire


Fleeing toward Lincoln Park, the park
illustration - Ebay
According to this book about the fire, "the principal officers of this body [CFD] are appointed to their places through political influence, which is saying perhaps saying enough of to indicate the degree and direction of their talents."(p 370)
The Chicago Fire of 1871 led to a reorganization of the 
Fire Department that included military-style disciplines. The City was divided into 18 battalion districts, the companies in each comprising a battalion, under the charge and the administration of an Assistant Fire Marshal or Battalion Chief. But it was not until 1889 with the annexation of City of Lake View did the City of Chicago have any authority.
Lake View High School Fire 1885
1885 photo - Chicago Public Library
Lose of Historical Landmark 1889

A Procedural Issue in 1895
The days of using horse-drawn equipment ended in February 5, 1923. The last day included a fire alarm from box #846 at State Street and Chicago Avenue that was pulled at 12:40 p.m. The horses scrubbed and groomed, the old steamer rolled out of the swinging doors for the last time. 
30 Cars didn't make it in 1907
Postcard Fires
part of my private collection
pre 1909 address 1054 N Lincoln Avenue
post 1909 address 3155 N Lincoln Avenue
It must have been a hot day!
apparently a series of buildings on the 2900 block of 
Lincoln Avenue - see article below
 a July 25th 1910 article listing the fires the previous day
 with a zoomed view of the fires in Lake View only
The Northwestern Terra Cotta Fire of 1911
 This company is also highlighted another post called Blue Collar Lake View. This factory was located in the 
Township/City of Lake View.
The First Fire in 1911
 page 2
and rebuilt that same year 
The Second Fire in 1934
Lake View Mercantile Company
a before & after view
 once located 1054 N Lincoln Avenue south of Belmont Ave.
the buildings post-1909 address was 3155 N Lincoln Avenue
Nelson near Lincoln Avenue Fire

 Fire in 1906 on the on Nelson & near Lincoln
both photos - Ravenswood-Lake View Community Collection
3400 Block N Lincoln Ave Fire 

another view of it via Ebay
3-11 Alarm on Lincoln Avenue in 1933
The Commodore Apartments 1935

The Fires at St. Luke's Parish

images - 'Lake View' by Matt Nickerson
Fire destroyed interior 1899 
image - 'Lake View' by Matt Nickerson
The new church and original school 1960
image - 'Lake View' by Matt Nickerson
St. Alphonsus Parish Fires
and The Theater Fire 1939
 The Church Fire 1950
 image - 'Lake View' by Matt Nickerson

  photo - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 photo - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 photo - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 photo - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 photo - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
  photos - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
The fire included the Athenaeum Theatre  
  both photos - Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 both photos -  Jeff DeLong via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
 North Lincoln Avenue fire at Newport in 1933 with the story below
Firemen & Their Trucks
full page - 'East Lake View' by Matthew Nickerson

Located at 1529 Belmont Avenue 1936 photo - Engine 21

800 Block of Belmont Avenue 1959

 another view of it
The Bowling Alley Fires at
image from a book called 'A Chicago Firehouse: 
Stories of Wrigleyville Engine 78'
a postcard view - Ebay
1950 Sanborn Fire Map of the building

 photo - Ebay
part of chain - Ebay
 photo - Dr. Jake's Bowling History Blog 
There was this late 19th century building with a bowling alley and a second floor dance hall that apparently had a floor   collapse in 1948, a reputation in late 1950's, and a fire in 1961 that gutted the building and the building north of it.- 3 strikes and you are gone I guess.
A Dance Floor Collapse in 1948

A Reputation by 1958
 photo - An Engineers Aspect
photo - An Engineers Aspect
Curtiss Candy Warehouse Fire of 1956

The Mister Softee Arson Fire of 1965
 The fire destoyed a 'Mister Softee' fleet of 56 trucks on 3100 block of Halsted Street in 1965. It was part of mob-related arson attempt to have the owner of the fleet sell his company and for him, the owner, to leave town.
The garage had a tunnel that connected the boiler room to an apt building next to it.
This is one of several articles about it 

The Melrose Fire of 1963
photos & video via WGN TV
2012 photo of Rick Vega 
a young Rick Vega
Eddie Groya & Rick Vega
In 1963 Eddie Groya saved a then 5-year-old Cuban refugee from a burning apartment building. That little boy was Lieutenant Rick Vega, a Chicago firefighter working out of the same station as Mr. Groya on Halsted just south of Diversey.
Arson was common in the Hood 1970's
Continous fires caused by arson rocked 
Lake View during the 1970's. 
Here is a sample article - one of many
located at Byron and Hermitage Avenue - unknown date
the corner of Hermitage & Byron decommissioned
photo - WBEZ City Room
More Arson in Lake View in 1976
more in the same year
 page 2
In 1978
An important date in the mid-20th century for the Chicago Fire Department was January 1, 1958, with the establishment of the Bureau of Fire Investigation within the fire department. Prior to that date the sources of many of Chicago's fires particularly arson went unresolved without independent & private forensic research. Knowledge of the causes of fires has proved to be extremely valuable in the prevention of potential fire and in the assistance to insurance companies in their investigations. This innovation was tested during the 1970's & early 80's when arson was a common occurrence. 
Hawthorne House Blaze 1969

 page 2
A Chicago firefighter tries to free up an ice-encrusted hose while battling a blaze at 648 W. Cornelia, 
February 1979 photo by William Yates
Fire on Belmont/Clark 1978
 northwest corner building, pre-Dunkin Donunts corner and currently the Target corner
photos - Jeff Burk via Forgotten Chicago Discussion Group
 below - the building view in 1950's  
- part of my collection
The Dominick Fire 2005
An extra-alarm fire gutted a Lakeview supermarket Sunday evening, casting gray smoke over the area and wreaking havoc with neighborhood traffic. The fire started about 5:25 p.m. in Dominick's Finer Foods, 3012 N. Broadway according to  Fire Department spokesman Josh Dennis said per the Chicago Tribune. Read more about from the link above.
all photos - Eric Herot via Flick
Road 66 Fire 2013
2013 photo - LakeView Patch
'Fire crews spent more than two hours battling a fire that overtook a Wrigleyville building occupied by several businesses as it spewed smoke that could be seen from the Loop. The fire, at 3330 N. Clark St., erupted in a building that is shared by a bar, Roadhouse 66, Thai Classic and Samah, a hookah bar, located just south of the "L" tracks that straddle Roscoe Street. Fire department spokesman Mark Nielsen said the blaze began in Samah and was called in by Roadhouse 66 just before 5 p.m. Investigators are working to identify the cause of the fire, he said.' - DNAinfo article
2013 photo - DNA info
2013 photos - DNA info
Fire on Mansfield 2016
2016 photo - DNAinfo
'A large, smoky fire broke out north of the intersection of Lincoln, Ashland and Belmont on Monday evening, officials said. The flames started around 5 p.m. and involved three buildings around 3338 N. Marshfield Avenue, near Dinkel's Bakery and Lake View YMCA. "It is an apartment fire that started on the West Side of Marshfield and it jumped porches. It seems they have it under control," said Melani Domingues, owner of The Green Lady at 3328 N. Lincoln Ave. "We were both getting home from work. This our daily walk," Cohen said. "It's scary to know that older buildings can catch fire in Chicago. It's scary how fast a fire can spread. I hope everyone got out OK."' - DNAinfo article
investigate more of this fire from Chicago Fire Wire
2016 photo - Chicago Fire Wire
2016 photo - DNAinfo
The Diner Grill Fire 2016
A fire that broke out late Christmas Eve has shuttered the Diner Grill, but its owner plans to rebuild. The fire began around 9:30 p.m. Christmas Eve, after employees had gone home for the one day a year when the 24-hour diner isn't open, owner Arnold DeMar said Tuesday. Chicago firefighters were called to the fire around 10:20 p.m. Saturday and found no one inside the diner, the department said. A dozen fire trucks and engines responded. A cause of the fire has not been determined, but investigators have narrowed the fire's origin to refrigeration compressors in the back room, DeMar said. – DNAinfo article

Rocks Lake View Fire 2017
It will take several months to rebuild 'ROCKS Lakeview' after a fire ripped through the building Wednesday, but its owners are hoping to help out its employees in the interim. The fire began around 7 p.m. in the kitchen and spread throughout the building, owner George Manta said. With its insurance, ROCKS will be able to rebuild, but it will take several months. "Our plan is to most definitely reopen, but we're in no position to make guesses on that time frame," Manta said. No one was injured in the fire, but the bar suffered "significant damage," Manta said. About 35 staff members are subsequently out of work, and although Manta said he and fellow co-owner Tim Shepardson are trying to help them find new jobs, "it's going to take awhile," Manta acknowledged according to DNAinfo. 
'Rocks' reopened that same October.
photo below - YouTube
Reusable Fire Houses 
The Firehouse on Byron
1732 W Byon Street
 photo - Midwest Fire Depts via Smug Mug 
built in 1907 and closed in 2012
2010 photo - Karl's Fire Photos via Smug Mug
below 2018 photo - Google Maps
The Firehouse on School
(Facebook Album)
1501 W School Street
built in 1940 and decommissioned in 1979
and then used as the 44th Ward Streets & Sanitation House
Below is a view of it in 2018 via Google Maps
1950 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map
with a zoomed view below
the building conversion plan in 2019
to be converted into three condo units
Wrigleyville's Own

(Facebook link)
 part of my personal collection 
published in 2001
According to this book the station house was first established in 1884 when Lake View was a township. It was located 3217 N Clark Street (pre-1909 address of 1692 N Clark). According to my research the pre-1909 address on Waveland Avenue was 1306. The number corresponds the directory of 1909 with a new address of 1052. Interesting though I do not see the station house on Waveland on the 1894 Sanborn Fire Map. With this same 1894 I do not find the Clark Street address either. So, not sure why I can not find the firehouse on Waveland in 1894 nor the Clark street address with the numbers given in the book unless the dates are not correct.
a 1894 Sanborn Fire Map view
a 1923 Sanborn Fire Map view 
The firehouse according to this book was constructed from wood - believe it or not. The framed firehouse made of wood was literal moved to its current location on Waveland. In 1915 the firehouse was replaced to its current brick construction but between the demo of the wooden and the construction of the brick the station was relocated to Halsted Street at Aldine. This old warehouse constructed by a former department store - Mandal Brothers served Engine 78 until the new construction on Waveland was completed - I believe the Mandel building would have been a better choice due to its size but distance from the new baseball park must have been the a major issue at the time.
Fire District 2
Battalion 5
Units E78 & A6
 images from her book

 a scene at Wrigley Field in 1961
Voting Station in 1991
photos - Ebay
2016 photo below from their Facebook page

Post Note:
Finally, some extra reading for CFD history fans!

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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