June 15, 2015

It Began Along the Lake

... and the River 
that Boosted Development
This post includes how the land evolved through time; how mother nature did Chicago a favor; the original inhabiants; the Europeans that reached are shores; the cemeteries that influenced Lake View's developement; and the house that became a 'signature' hotel.
map - HathTrust.org
Read an extensive history on the era
map - Dearborn Magazine in 1922
About 14 thousand years ago during the tail end of the last ice age the area of Lake View Township was under water.
Over three hundred million years ago our area of Illinois was covered with wetlands such as coastal swamps, deltas, and upland forests situated along an estuary bay and probably a much wider Chicago River. - Chicago History Museum
image - Illinois State Geological Survey
 ‘Illinois can boast a significant number of amphibians and invertebrates dating to the Paleozoic Era  (541,000,000 BC to 251,900,000), as well as a handful of Pleistocene periods (2,600,00 BC to 12,000 BC) pachyderms (Woolly Mammoths, Mastodons and other elephant type mammals). For much of the Mesozoic and Cenozoic Eras (250,000,000 BC to 2,000,000 BC), Illinois was geologically unproductive in that period hence the lack of fossils dating from this vast expanse of time. However, conditions improved tremendously during the Pleistocene period when herds of Woolly Mammoths and American Mastodons tramped across this state's endless plains (and left scattered fossil remains to be discovered, piecemeal, by 19th & 20th-century paleontologists). 
image - Illinois State Geological Survey
Joe Devera, has been a geologist with the Illinois State Geological Survey for over 30 years. "Other dinosaurs, such as T-Rex, could be found in Illinois covered up by vegetation and soil.”’ - The Digital Research Library of Illinois
The Modern Era
The Chicago River flowed into Lake Michigan before 1900
In more ancient recent times, Lake Chicago also known as the Glacial Lake Chicago; term used by geologists for a lake that preceded Lake Michigan; was formed when the Wisconsin glacier retreated from the Chicago area, beginning about 14,000 years ago. Lake Chicago`s level, at its highest, was almost 60 feet higher than the level of present Lake Michigan and the lake completely covered the area now occupied by Chicago. Its northern outlet into the St. Lawrence River was still blocked by remnants of the glacier and it drained through the so-called Chicago outlet, a notch in the Valparaiso moraine, into the Mississippi system. Its western shores reached to where Oak Park and La Grange now exist.
"The region destined to be covered by metropolitan Chicago took natural form following the retreat of the North American ice cap 10,000 years ago. Meltwaters from the glacier's Lake Michigan Lobe, pent up for a time behind morainic ridges deposited at the ice sheet's margins, formed glacial Lake Chicago and drained southwestward, scouring what is today the lower Des Plaines valley. As ice receded and water drained away, Lake Michigan remained behind, contained within its modern shoreline. The area straddles what turned out to be a permanent low-lying continental drainage divide between the basins of the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River. The numerous lakes and marshes of the region represent the retreating glacier's messy legacy. By the early nineteenth century a tall-grass prairie environment covered much of the area, with thin strips of forest colonizing sandy beach ridges and shallow valley bluffs."
The People Who Settled Here:
 The Originals 
Tribes were more nomadic so did not believe in the tradition border locations like the European settlers would preferred.
Native Americans did not have set borders but moved around for hunting and agricultural survival. The Europeans did not quit understand this cultural difference.
Map by Vincenzo Coronelli mid 1690's
 A 1688 Map listing Chicago
zoomed below
zoomed more below
text below - Chicagology/Facebook
'Over the course of four distinct periods of glacial melting, stretching as far back as 14,500 years ago, Chicago’s terrain was shaped by the ebbs and flows of melting ice. Through the process of littoral drift, where small bits of sand and organic matter drifted from place to place on the tide, small but distinct ridges were etched into the land. Those natural high grounds, rising no more than 10 or 15 feet above the rest of the terrain, became some of the pathways used by Native peoples as they began to inhabit the area about 11,000 years ago.These high points held obvious value: most of the land was swampy, and very little stayed dry year-round. Indigenous tribes passed down their understanding of the land’s natural features through oral traditions. Incoming European settlers, including French trappers traveling to the area during the 17th and 18th centuries, depended on this knowledge for survival. They also quickly came to understand the significance of the trails, adapting them for commercial and military purposes.'
 a zoomed view below with a settlement 
by in the area of Clark, Diversey, Broadway
zoomed even further ...
(red line should be Clark Street)
DNAinfo article
In 2013 artifacts were discovered within 
the City of Chicago at Rosehill Cemetery 

WEST RIDGE — Ancient artifacts from an "enormous" Native American settlement were uncovered along a gravel and sand ridge that passes through the land that is soon to become a city park near Rosehill Cemetery, officials said. Phil Millhouse, an archeologist with the Illinois Archeological Survey, said he and his colleagues performed "shovel tests" on the site earlier this year when they came across fragments of arrow points, knives, ceramics and possibly a cooking kit. "It turned out there was a very large prehistoric village on that ridge of sand and gravel that runs off the lake," he said. The "enormous" site surrounded by wetlands had been occupied possibly thousands of years before Europeans settled the area.

  image via Calumet 412
The above image shows (Evanston Road) Broadway and north of Lawrence Avenue indicates Clark Street as a high ridge path 
early 19th century.  Almost all of the mounds in the Chicago area were lost due to development and the lack of understanding of this cultural importance of the indigenous peoples of our area.
This illustration is an example of the markers or landmarks that Native Americans nurtured, more than likely indicate direction or some sort of sign language. Settlers simply called them 'Indian Tree'.
by WBEZ Chicago
an extensive & well researched article
The Native American burial mound apparently was once located between Oakdale & Wellington east of Sheffield according to this article by WBEZ
"Early settlers destroyed hundreds if not thousands of ancient sculptures, along with the historical record. They plowed under mounds to farm the land or leveled them and built homes on the sites. In some cases, early settlers claimed to have asked local Native Americans about the origins of the mounds without receiving a clear answer. John Low, a Potawatomi Indian and professor of American Indian studies, says he’s suspicious of these accounts given that they took place during a power struggle over land. “[The Natives] may have said that because they aren’t going to share with people, [who] they regard as the enemy, the special-ness they know about a site.”  
- Read more from the above title link.
An article about the trails 
that formed the settlement of Chicago
(click to enlarge)
The Native American Tribes 
& U.S. Territories in 1812
a zoomed view below
The People Who Next Settled Here:
The Europeans
first came the Spanish, French, and English
image - Wikipedia
image - Wikipedia
image below - GeoCurrents
Early History of Illinois Region
by Historical Review of Chicago & Cook County
Rendering of Chicago 1779 that features 
the first non-native to settle - Jean Baptiste De Sable
British territory as of 1775 that included 
the Northwest territories in 'sky blue in color'
  interactive image - Accessible Archives-Facebook
at one period in time our area belonged to Connecticut
below is a 1771 map from Ebay
established after the Revolutionary War 
once British territory as well that include Illinois
image - University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign
a zoomed view below
The United States by 1818
Illinois earned statehood that year
the nation would expand westward as shown below
A Brief pre-State History
images - The Geography of Illinois by H O Lathrop

The State of llinois Facts by 1822
Henry Charles Carey & Isaac Lea Map 
The establishment of the counties along the rivers came first due only economical transportation route at the time - rivers
Cook County was not established at this time
let alone a Lake View Township within it
(images below from the link above)












Before the European settlements were established Chicago there was a Potawatomi village apparently located in the general area of Fullerton, Lincoln, and Clark Streets as late as the first quarter of the 19th century. By the first quarter of the 19th century a physical separation and border had been established between the Native American population and the Europeans that existed in the Chicagoland area. 'The Indian Boundary line came about in 1816, when the Fox and Sauk tribes ceded land to the United States through the Treaty of St. Louis. Before that time, the United States had acquired from the Indians the greater part of what is now Illinois but not the lands adjacent to Lake Michigan, including the Chicago Portage.'
'For more than 100 years our region was contested ground, due to the wars between the French and British empires over control of land and resources. When the eastern British colonies began to challenge French dominance in our region, local tribes were forced to choose their allegiances. Most tribes in the Great Lakes region allied with the French because of trade and family connections according to the Evanston History Center'. 
The 1833 Treaty of Chicago, which concluded the Blackhawk War, forced the Potawatomi to sell all remaining tribal lands (outside those given in land grants) that forced the removal of all Native Americans from State of Illinois - west of the Mississippi River.
With the Potawatomi removed the white settlers from the East came in greater numbers.
The Illinois Land Mass 
... was 98% prairie before Europeans arrived. The area just north of the existing City of Chicago was described at the time as "a waste of sand and scrub oaks" bordering along the lakefront.
 images - Geography of Illinois by H O Lathrop (1940)
The Chicago Region
The colonists cometh
by Historical Review of Chicago & Cook County
image - Chicago in Maps by Robert A Holland
Fort Dearborn - Chicago - 1812
This illustration is inspired by a diorama from the 
1933 Century of Progress Exposition that speaks about an unnamed 
Native American, the Kinzie house, Fort Dearborn. This account of the early years of the Chicago settlement aka Fort Dearborn creates a debate of what truely happened during that time in history.
A Fort before Dearborn?
by Historical Review of Chicago & Cook County
map via Paul Petraitis-Facebook
top right along the river was the fort
from Kenneth Swedroe via Original Chicago-Facebook
images - The Digital Research Library of the Illinois 
History Journal 
Read more about the fort's history!
image - Chicago: growth of a metropolis
with a zoomed view south of Fullerton Avenue at the top
... a lot of trees & brush
 Mouth of Chicago River - from Card Cow
map via Joe Sonderman/Forgotten Chicago Discussion Group
 a 1832 view
Chicago History Museum Collection 
via Paul Petraitis, Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
a 1853 view - Michael Thomas 
via Forgotten Chicago-Facebook
1830 map - via Chicago Past
another view more detail 1830
photo - via Patrick McBriarty Windy City Historians-Facebook
This hand drawn map was created 
by the Commander of Fort Dearborn. 
1818 Matthew Carey's  Potawatomi map 
image - Early Chicago.com. 
The Territory of Illinois became a State of the 
United States that year
Settlers vs Natives
The years 1832 & 1834 mark the end 
of Native Americans east of the Mississippi 
an article from 1832
images - Ebay
an article from 1834
Anthony Finley Map David Rumsey Map Collection 1831
1833 map via Chicagology
Town of Chicago 1832 - Calumet 412
 mouth of the Chicago River
image - Ebay
Treaty of Chicago of 1833 was the end of influence and the end of most hunting grounds for Native American tribes along the greater Great Lakes region.  The United States drafted this treaty with the several villages of Potawatomi in Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Michigan. Two years later a charter was granted by
State of Illinois for a town called Chicago. 
an early illustration - Ebay 
Northeastern Illinois was again colonized by settlers from the United States beginning in the 1830's following the survey and sale of 
Canal Lands within the canal corridor to private interests. This enormous planned development by the federal govenment meant jobs for courageous easterners willing to move out of the 'comfort zones' to terrific terrian.
'In 1833, Congress appropriated funds to improve the harbor and construct piers to fortify the channel. The investment opened the river for larger ships and increased Chicago’s standing as a center for cross-continental trade.' Read this comprehesive article
image - Imgur
Henry S Tanner Map David Rumsey Map Collection 1836
Chicago, if not Lake View Township
"The streets of the village in the fall soon became deluged with mud. It lay in many places half a leg deep, up to the hubs of the carts and wagons, in the middle of the streets, and the only sidewalk we had was a single plank stretched from one building to another. The smaller scholars I used to bring to school and take home on my back, not daring to trust them on the slippery plank. One day I made a misstep and went down into the thick mire with a little one in my arms. With difficulty I regained my foothold, with both overshoes sucked off by this thick, slimy mud, which I never recovered." 
- G. Sproat June 1887
Chief Waubonsie of the Pottowatomis
‘In 1835, [Chief] Waubonsie, then more than 70 years old, traveled to Washington, D. C. to meet with delegations from other tribes. Waubonsie had an audience with President Andrew Jackson and addressed him as "Brother-Brave." Nothing of any great importance was accomplished with this visit. In 1837 all the Indians were rounded up and sent to Chicago.  There, they met other bands of Pottawatomie from Michigan and Indiana, and began a harrowing walk to Missouri and Kansas that later became known as the 
image - Wikipedia
The last Native American area was located in the Evanston Township area know as Ouilmette according to Evanston History Center. "The Ouilmettes built a cabin for their family of eight children at Lake Street and Lake Michigan in what is now Wilmette (named for them, though the spelling was changed). Their home was a well-known stopping place for traders and travelers, and their farm continued to supply the growing settlement in Chicago. Archange and Antoine lived on the reservation until about 1838 when they joined fellow Potawatomi that had been removed to Council Bluffs, Iowa. It was there that Archange died in 1840 and Antoine in 1841. In 1844 their heirs petitioned the U.S. Government to sell the reservation’s land. The government purchased the land (640 acres) for $1,000 and then gradually re-sold it to real estate developers."
“Early Chicagoans, like most Americans in the 19th century, were brutal pragmatists. They valued progress at any cost. In 1835, city dwellers shed few tears over the scattering of the area’s original inhabitants, the Potawatomi, despite the Potawatomi’s own lamentations—800 warriors marched across Chicago’s early wooden bridges in a ceremonial leaving of the lakeshore. Their native fishing and hunting grounds having been over-taken, they’d accepted a brokered agreement to move beyond the Mississippi River into what is now Iowa. It was a deal they couldn’t refuse.”
Trading posts dotted the landscape around Lake Michigan
This photo above is of the Bailly Trading Post 
Between 1816-28 troops of Fort Dearborn dug up the sandbar to create a channel to the river's mouth. 
1839 map - Harvard Digital Library
By 1837 most of the channel was completed allowing growth of commerce and more easterners to move here.

images - Online Archive of California 

images - Online Archive of California 
The Story of Chicago
by Jennie Hall
 and part of my collection
This book written by a woman who survived the earlier days of Chicago. The book was published in 1911 and the author was in her 80's. These pages highlight her memory of the 1830's shortly after her family's arrived from New York. 
Here are selected pages ...




The United States in 1842
map - Murray Hudson.com
Chicagoland Area by 1850
Transportation routes in 1850 
from a book called Chicago: growth of a metropolis
Green Bay Road (Clark Street) and Old Fort Road (Lincoln Avenue) appeared to be the main roads to the future Lake View Township that happened seven years later. According to this publication 'a century of marvelous growth' occured. Taverns popped up along the roads -  taverns at that time were like road-stops where traveler would stay over night have dinner/breakfast lodging and then more on to their distination. The first major road-stop tavern was along Green Bay Road and apparently a short distance yet to be built Old Town Hall on Halsted & Addison streets. 
Lake View, east of Green Bay Road (Clark Street), were like most of the lands near to the lakefront composed of 'sandy soil' that included 'some gravel / 'stony soils' 
our township's location
 images - HathTrust.org
from a book called This is Cook County




Ridgeville Township predate Lake View Township by 5 years.
Ridgeway Township would be subdivided into Lake View and Evanston townships in 1857.
According to a research report from Chicago Magazine large 
population clusters to Cook County began between 1870 to 1900 and were mostly either German, Irish, Swedish/Norwegian making up 1/2 of the population during this time period 
while the other half migrated from the East Coast.
The Annexation of Townships
that created the Chicago
via Chicagology
a zoomed view below
the legend from map
Cook County's Townships 
S. H. Burhans & J. Van Vechten via Library of Congress
Each box-like section represent a township
 zoomed views
and zoomed some more
'The framers of the Constitution did not provide for local governments. Rather, they left the matter to the states. Subsequently, early state constitution generally conceptualized county government as a branch of the state. In the twentieth century, the role of local governments strengthened and counties began providing more services, acquiring home rule and county commissions to pass local ordinances pertaining to their unincorporated areas. In some states, these powers are partly or mostly devolved to the counties' smaller divisions usually called townships, though in New York, New England, Wisconsin, [and in 19th century Illinois] they are called 'towns'. The county may or may not be able to override its townships on certain matters, depending on the state constitution.' - Wikipedia
Before Lake View Township ...
and a man named Major Edward Harris Mulford
1850-1857
text - a book called Evanston
An Account by Chicago History of Illinois and Chicago
'The name Ridgeville first officially appeared in 1850. Ridgeville’s first election was held on April 2, 1850 with 93 votes being cast. Ridgeville’s first town assessment took place in 1853, estimating the value of the property at $6,000.00. Among the names of Ridgeville’s first residents were: General Huntoon, Eli Gaffield, William Foster, Paul Pratt and his wife and O.A. Crain. The 1850 census shows 443 settlers in this township (the population of Chicago at that time was about 28,000), which was approximately eleven persons per square mile. A post office with the name of Ridgeville was established at one of the taverns. However, no formal municipality existed yet.' 
The territory (zoom on map) included the most of Evanston Township (City of), Rogers Park, and Lake View Township and North Chicago Township north of North Avenue. 
The township lasted no more than seven years until it was subdivided into two townships by 1857. 
This zoomed map highlights taverns that would serve as stops for refreshments (for both horse and owner) and lodging such as Schulzer, Sliipy, M. Trader, and Anderson Hoods. There was also The Seven Mile Tavern due to its distance for central Chicago. By 1860 the residents of the Germanic states and principalities of Europe was the largest foreign group of immigrants to IllinoisUnited States census records show Illinois to have a population of 1.7 million. A total of 7,628 are African Americans. About 707,000 Illinoisans were native to the state. The largest number of non-natives came from: Ohio (131,000); German states of Europe (130,000); New York (121,000); Ireland (87,000); Pennsylvania (83,000); Indiana (62,000); Kentucky (60,000); England (41,000); Tennessee (39,000); Virginia (32,0000). 
The Township/City of Lake View 
township
1857-1887
city
1887-1889
from Fullerton Avenue to Devon Avenue, 
the existing lakeshore 
to Western Avenue
the same territory as the former township
When Conrad Sulzer’s family settled in the area later to be known as the Township of Lake View, north of Chicago, these ten square miles of the township along the lakefront were of empty prairie, shrubs, and lakefront marsh. Most of the original settlers of this area that arrived during the same time period of Dr. Sulzer's family were mostly from the German and Swedish populations of Chicago and the Luxembourgers who were alsoGerman speakers from Europe. This populations sought expanse space and opportunity for renewal and growth without fear of European repression and/or from Town/City of Chicago ever growing governmental regulations.
A book was written by A.T. Andreas about the Cook County of which there is a section about the Township of Lake View
pages 708-744
Township to City
Map of Lake View by 1887
That year the legal status change to the City of Lake View while keeping all the former township borders intact
The River Border to the West
By 1870 a small section of the township was granted to Chicago from Fullerton Ave./Western Ave. to the Chicago River
The Price was Right!
(Disregard the outlining of Lincoln Park 
- only drawn for orientation purposes.)
The land value assessment per square mile as of 1836 
two years after Dr. Sulzer's arrival to the Lake View area
The University of Chicago map illustration above indicated established subdivisions between 1844-1862. It is to be noted that this map was drafted in 1933 (so no Lincoln Park at the time), Sheridan Road proposed extension, and the rail lines were added to help the viewer with geography.
Land values assessment per square mile as of 1873-79 years after the incorporation of Lake View Township and 16 years before the annexation to Chicago.
A 1879 Encyclopedia map (to be zoomed) show streets and communities in Lake View Township such as Pine Grove, Andersonville, Ravenswood, Bowmanville, and a community called Henry Town. Also shown are the cemeteries of Rosehill & Graceland. Also, during this time period community of Rogers Park had earned its' distinction as a township seceding from Evanston Township.
The Then Existing Shores
The shoreline - pre development
postcards - Ebay
and another typical shoreline in 1903
photo - UIC via Explore Chicago Collection
Maps of the Shoreline in 1894
 1894 Sanborn Fire Map the shoreline consisted of street-end beaches; a time before Sheridan Road and the northward landfill & expansion of the park
A Place to Sleep, Drink, & Party 
along with shed for your horses
one of the first tavern hotels of the old township
image - 'Challenging Chicago' by Katy Crowley
Sunnyside Inn 
1890's photo via Chicagology 
'The grand opening was on a Wednesday evening in December, 1866 and reporters from the major Chicago papers were brought to the gala affair in a huge four-horse sleigh. Hyman declared to all,
“I would like you gentlemen of the press to understand that this affair will be straight to the wink of an eyelash. All the ladies are here on their honor, and Mrs. Hyman will see to it that nothing unseemly takes place.”' - excerpt from a site called Chicagology
The talk was that the establishment use for prostitution.
located on Grace Street & the then existing lakefront
The old Huntley House renamed Lake View House by 1854
The Lake View House owned by Elisha Huntley and co-managed James Rees and then co-owned to be used not only as a resort but a meeting place to discuss real estate, particularly Mr. Huntley's holdings in the old community of Pine Grove beginning in 1853 until 1890-ish. I have a open petition to the 46th Chicago ward office to create a landmark status of the current garden space that will memorialize this hotel of old Lake View. This was accomplished in 2016 with the assistance of the caretaker of community garden, the alderman, and The Ravenswood-Lake View Historical Association. 
image - John Falk via Chicagopedia-Facebook
from a book called 'Chicago and It's Makers'
The caption highlights what was once 'Wright's Grove' around the Diversey Parkway area
The Depiction from above
German Saengerfest (singing festival) was the event.
"Chicago became the festival city for the second time when the twenty-second great Saengerfest of the North American Saengerbund was held here in 1881. For weeks and months ahead, preparations were enthusiastically pushed, and the festival committee, under the guidance of the festival president, Louis Wahl, did everything in its power to insure the success of the event. When the first festival day, June 29, finally arrived, the out-of-town guests were first of all taken by the reception committee to their quarters, where they received an excellent meal for thirty-five cents." 
An Article of the Event 
At the corner edge of the old Lake View
 Jerri Walker via Forgotten Chicago on Facebook
Bowmansville on Devon east of Western Avenue in 1914
Jerri Walker - Forgotten Chicago on Facebook
Chicago River north at Lawrence Street Bridge 1909 
Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago
photo & info - Friends of Cuneo-Facebook 
 Two adults and a child along the Northwest Rail Company rail tracks that once was route through the 
old township within the community of Buena Park
 Read the text above 1887 ... that year the township of 
Lake View was chartered as a City in Illinois
 The turn of track that is now West Sheridan Road 
and once called Graceland Road (Irving Park Road)
 Leland Avenue looking west 1891 
 Leland Avenue near Dover_Street 1891 
 
 Looking west from Seeley Avenue towards Western Avenue 1890's
Sam Brown Real Estate Office 
for the Sheridan Drive Subdivision 
that was located at Clark and Wilson 1891 
 Sunnyside Avenue looking west for that street
Wilson and Evanston (Broadway) Avenue prior to the construction of the elevated tracks in 1907 with a 
new version it by end of 2015
Wilson Avenue looking northwest on Malden Street 1891 
 Wilson and Magnolia 1891
Wilson Avenue at Malden and Magnolia 
Note: these photos are from Sulzer Regional Library and are gathered and stored by the Ravenswood- Lake View Historical Association that is housed in this particular library
the corner of the former township/city
from a section of a book called Chicago: growing metropolis
photo below - Calumet 412
Montrose Avenue looking west toward Ravenswood Avenue in 1905 years before the elevated tracks would be constructed photo 
And the Bridges that Connect the Landmasses
Forty miles north of downtown Chicago, the Chicago River begins its journey in Park City, Illinois, where a small storm-water channel enters the Greenbelt Forest Preserve and forms the headwaters of the Skokie River, according to The Friends of the Chicago River. In suburban Niles the river enters a different phase called the Upper North Branch that continues until Wolf Point in Chicago. In this segment of my blog I will highlight the bridges that connected the landmasses of each side the North Branch of the Chicago River that influenced development near old Lake View. Those bridges are on the streets of Montrose, Irving Park Road, Addison, Belmont, and (Fullerton Avenue-once the border between Chicago & Township/City of Lake View).
2020 Google map highlights the bridges with an X
After a severe storm in 1885 caused the river to empty large amounts of sewage-polluted water into Lake Michigan, plans were begun to reverse its flow through the construction of a canal, which was completed in 1900. [The only mayor of the City of Lake View William Boldenweck was the Drainage Broad president during this period of time.] The river now flows inland—through the south branch and into the Illinois Waterway (Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal and the Des Plaines and Illinois rivers) to connect with the Mississippi River. The reversal of the river’s flow is considered one of the greatest feats of modern engineering. The south branch of the river was straightened between 1928 and 1930, which moved the river 0.25 mile (0.4 km) west, according to the Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica
the first one was ...
(no photo)
Before the first bridge at Fullerton Avenue could be built, the street had to be extended from Ashland Avenue to the river.  The municipalities of Chicago and the [Township of] Lake View both contributed to construction costs 3/4 and 1/4 respectively. [Both Chicago & Lake View bordered on Fullerton Avenue.] The bridge opened in 1874. It was a fixed iron bridge.  It was 225 feet long and 20 feet wide. Construction costs were $5,000. The bridge was removed in 1877. The second bridge at Fullerton Avenue was a wood and iron hand operated swing structure.  According to Chicago Architecture Center website Swing Bridges were set up like a spinner in a board game, which resulted in ships crashing into them, and vehicle collisions on them were common. It was funded with contributions from [City of]Chicago (2/3) and [Township of]Lake View (1/3).  Construction costs were $7,444. The bridge was removed in 1894-5 [five years after the annexation of the City of Lake View to Chicago in 1889.] 
[As of 2018 this bridge was on its 4th design.] 
(no photo)
In 1875 when the first Belmont Avenue Bridge was built. On both sides of the North Branch of the Chicago River at Belmont were the [townships of] Lake View on the east and Jefferson on the west. The Belmont Avenue Bridge was an iron fixed bridge.  It was 77 feet long and 17 feet wide. It was designed and constructed by the King Bridge Company. Total constructed costs were $3290. Three governmental entities shared in the costs; Jefferson ($1,491), Lake View ($1,097), and Cook County ( $694). This bridge was a 77-foot-long and 19 feet wide bridge.  In 1889, the city of Chicago annexed [the City of]Lake View and [the Township of]Jefferson and took over ownership of the bridge. The bridge was removed in 1893. [As of 2018 this bridge is on its 4th design.] 
photo - Bridge Hunter.com
The first bridge opened September 1896 [when Lake View was a still a relatively new ‘district’ of Chicago and seven years after the annexation of the City of Lake View in 1889.] It was 184 feet long and 35 feet wide. It was a steel-hand operated swing bridge. 
1902 photo - Ravenswood-Lake View Community Collection
map image - Ebay
Designer is apparently unknown. The Superstructure Contractor was Lassing Bridge and Iron Company [originally a Township/City of Lake View business.] The Substructure Contractor was Lydon and Drews Company. The cost was $31,345. [As of 2018 this bridge was on its 2nd design.]
The Other Bridges Mentioned
The Initial Irving Park Road Bridge 
photo - Ravenswood-Lake View Community Collection
Working Along the River
a 1887 view from Fullerton to Belmont
 1887 map - Historical Informational Gatherers
with a zoomed view from Fullerton to Wellington
An industrial area developed along the north branch of the Chicago River from Fullerton to Diversey what today would be called a Industrial Park. Manufacturing was the norm in this country particularly in the Chicago area. Property values was more expensive in the City of Chicago so a few manufacturers located their businesses along the river in the Township/City of Lake View. Locating a business near a river or railroad tracks were the main means of transport for their customers in the region until better roads and trucks entered the scene. The notalbe manufacturers on this river area were the following: William Deering & Company - later to be called International Harvester/Deering Works, Northwestern Terra Cotta Company, Illinois Malleable Iron Works.
A 1894 map below of the manufacturers
"The question of the houseboats’ legality was about as murky as the river water. When the squatters’ camp started growing during the ‘20's, the city’s Sanitary District tried to evict the occupants, citing water pollution and navigation concerns. When a judge issued an injunction preventing the houseboats from being ousted in 1930, the colony grew. The Sanitary District of Chicago had by then completed its channelization project along the north branch which connected to the North Shore Channel."
The Entertainment Along the River
a 1905 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map
It opened on July 2, 1904 as the German Sharpshooter Park, at the intersection of Belmont and Western Avenues. Targets [for shooting] were set up on an island in the north branch of the Chicago River, when deer roamed its' woods. But wives and children complained they had nothing to do while the men hunted; so two years later, the owners commissioned a carousel consisting of five-row wooden carousel with 70 [wooden] horses handcrafted by Swiss and Italian woodcarvers from the Philadelphia Toboggan Coaster Company according to WTTW.
a vintage postcard of the park - Ebay

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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!