To sites 28 (continued)
located in the heart of
the Commercial Avenue shopping district
28) South Chicago Commercial Avenue Shopping District (Commercial Avenue 95th to 83rd)
Although all of the neighborhoods had their own shopping and entertainment
districts, the largest and most popular was along Commercial Avenue and
was centered at the intersection of 92nd Street. When residents of the
other Southeast Chicago neighborhoods were going shopping along Commercial
Avenue, they said they were going "Uptown" as opposed to going "Downtown",
which meant State Street in the Loop.
Calumet National Bank (9117 S. Commercial Avenue)
Calumet National Bank was built in 1909 and is located in the shopping and banking center for the community. The building is in near perfect condition. Calumet National Bank was part of a group of banks, including Roseland Trust & Savings Bank , Cottage Grove State Bank, Interstate National Bank and Hegewisch State Bank. As of 1925, according to the Calumet Record, a neighborhood newspaper, these six banks made more than nineteen millions of dollars, making them the strongest financial group in the outlying districts of Chicago. During the Depression however, this group of banks went out of business.
Store (8952 S. Commercial)
The store located on 8952 S. Commercial Avenue was designed by architect Franz Roy and built in 1925 in a classical style at a cost of $9,000. It is deemed to be worthy of landmark recognition due to its excellence in design and craftsmanship,but has not yet received that designation. Noteworthy features of the site are that the building retains an original first floor commercial display area with wooden trim, and parapet wall shaped like the top of a star.
People's Gas Store (8933 S. Commercial)
Commercial Avenue continued to develop in the 1920's with the erection of the People's Gas South Chicago Neighborhood Store at 8935 S. Commercial Avenue. This structure wa completed in 1925. This building is worthy of being a landmark because it has exceptional quality of design overall. Other factors contributing to its landmark essence are: its quality in craftsmanship, detail in Terra Cotta, and its association with an important architect, Elmslie & von Holst. Some noteworthy features of the site are: symmetrical elevation, with tall elaborately detailed piers at its corners that standin front of and above the rest of the facade, framing it. This building is the only officially designated landmark in the four southeast Chicago communities.
29) Immaculate Conception Church (8758 S. Commercial Avenue)
Immaculate Conception Church at 88th and Commercial Ave. was organized as an ethnic parish in 1882 to serve Polish families in South Chicago. Ethnic or national Catholic parishes were organized to serve non English speaking Catholics. Although the services were in Latin, the sermons, bulletins, and social activities of the Parish were conducted in the native language. Architect Martin Carr designed a Classical Revival styled building. In 1898 work began on the superstructure of the church and it was dedicated on April 23, 1899. As a result of the enormous growth of the Polish population in this steel mill district, Immaculate Conception parish was divided three times to form the Polish parishes of St. Michael, St. Mary Magdalene, and St. Bronislava. In 1900, 950 children attended the parish elementary school.