Saturday, December 22, 2018

Four photographs of North, South, East and West View of Devon & Western Avenues in 1914 Chicago, Illinois.

A Brief History of Devon Avenue, Chicago, Illinois.
Devon Avenue was originally known as Church Road. It was renamed in the 1880s by Edgewater developer John Lewis Cochran after Devon station on the Main Line north of Philadelphia. 

Initially known for its cabbage and truck farms and greenhouses, North Town, as it was then called, began to attract residential and commercial development in the early 1920s. Developer Henry B. Rance opened the area’s first real estate office in a frame shack at the corner of Devon and Western Avenues.
Western and Arthur Avenues, Chicago, 1920s.

This is Devon Avenue in 1914, looking East from just East of Western Avenue. The people (from L to R) are B.F.'s Great Aunt, his Mother, Grandmother, Uncle, and another Grand Aunt. They were walking from Angel Guardian's Church (the steeple is barely visible in the background on the far right-hand side, just above the tree line) back to a Truck Farm on the S.W. corner of Rockwell and Devon, where B.F.'s Grandparents worked.

Additional Reading:


  1. I grew up at Touhy & Sacramento in the 70s. It’s almost unthinkable now to imagine the entire area as empty farmland, even though I was told our house was built on farmland just after the war (essentially only 30 years after these pictures were taken). And this also answers why the movie theater (which opened in 1931) was named the “Nortown”, over on Western Ave. I never knew why before.

  2. I grew up there in the 50's and 60's. Amazing to see these photos. Thanks much for sharing them.

  3. This was mind blowing. I'm particularly intrigued by photos of a specific landmark surrounded by their landscapes from a different (much older) era in time. Any property, facades or even trees in these photos that still exist? Thank you fir sharing.

  4. When one considers this history is just a tad over 100 years ago, well, it's really kind of mindblowing!

  5. The roads looked in better shape.


The Digital Research Library of Illinois History Journal™ is RATED PG-13. Please comment accordingly. Advertisements, spammers and scammers will be removed.