Southeast Historical Society News
Volume XVI No. 3
HEALTHY NEW YEAR
A Few Words From the President:
Last October 22nd and 23rd, our society
participated in the University of Chicago's "Know Your Chicago"
two day long bus tours of our communities entitled "Lake Calumet, Where
Industry Meets Nature."
Among the tour guides were members of our
society, namely, Rod Sellers, "local native guides" Barney Janecki,
Savastano and myself, Marian Byrnes, and many people from several City
of Chicago departments.
The tour started at the East Side United
Church with welcomes from Rev. Zaki L. Zaki, Alderman John Pope, Rod
and various representatives from local environmental and ecological
other city representatives and the sponsors of the tour.
After boarding the buses we proceeded to
Park and saw the heliport, the U.S. Coast Guard Station and our museum
and then traveled south down Ewing Avenue.
Heading south through the East Side we noted
our civic memorial on 100th Street, many of the local churches and
and the Republic Steel site as we went on to Hegewisch, passing Wolf
and the William Powers Conservation Area and the new manufacturing
on the west side of Avenue O.
In Hegewisch we saw the new South Shore
commuter station, the new library, churches, schools and the commercial
district as we proceeded northward into the southern end of the
campus which will supply parts to the Ford Assembly Plant on Torrence
The wetlands preservation efforts were noted
as we went to 122nd Street and westward to the eastern shore of Lake
again noting the existence of various ecological preservation sites.
After a luncheon at the Harborside Golf Center
and hearing from the representatives of the developer, Ford Motor
and our local environmental preservation activists, we boarded the
and went on to South Deering.
Going through Irondale, the location of
Steel and General Mills and other sights, such as churches and schools,
were pointed out.
Approaching the South Chicago commercial
we saw various old and new business ventures, including the new Metra
We passed Our Lady of Guadalupe with the
Veterans' Memorial across the street. Going north, we saw the
of the old U.S.S. South Works Plant along the lake.
The "local native guides" left the buses near
St. Michael's Church on 83rd Street. We certainly saw commonplace
things with a new perspective!
Mid-December saw Rod and I going to a
meeting of the Chicago Landmarks Commission to add to our request for
landmark status of the Columbus Monument/Drake Fountain on 92nd Street
we had mentioned in our October newsletter. The request will be
up to the commission during the spring (March) and it is hoped on to
City Council for approval later in the year.
We hope that this newsletter finds that you
all had a very nice Christmas and the beginning of a happy new
by Joe Mulac
The Southeast Historical Society
conduct its annual Membership Meeting on Saturday, March 22, 2003 in
Calumet Park Field House at 9801 Avenue G at 11 AM. The officers
presented by the nominating committee will be announced at the
Nominations for officers may be made from the floor. All
are urged to attend and vote on the new slate of officers at this
Refreshments will be served.
For a long time we have wanted to
have community theater for or residents, so the Southeast Community
Group is off and running. Some talented directors, writers,
effects people, and actors are writing and preparing for their first
project in May of this year. It will be the story of the infamous
Memorial Day Massacre which occurred on May 30, 1937. The
Hall, where the group meets on the second Monday of each month at 7:00
PM, is across the street from the spot where the terrible confrontation
occurred at 117th and Avenue O. Anyone interested in more
and/or participating in the production are welcomed to come on
by Frank Stanley
In view of the transfer in ownership of the
housing the offices of United Steelworker Local 1033, which represented
worker at LTV (formerly Republic) Steel, some folks have discussed the
formation of a partnership to erect and display a fitting and suitable
memorial to the Steelworkers' legacy on the Southeast Side with
emphasis on Local 1033 and the famed strike at Republic Steel in
Pastor Zaki Zaki of the East Side
United Methodist Church and new operator of the facility at 11731 S.
O has agreed with the notion of a tribute to the memory of the
their contributions to the community, and their place in the history of
the region. Rev. Zaki, director of "The Zone", the new name for
facility that has opened its doors to the community, agrees that a
display inside the building would forever remind visitors of the memory
and history of the Steelworkers and help educate a new generation of
Siders to that heritage. For further information contact the
Historical Society or Tom Shepherd (773-928-0664 or
by Tom Shepherd
East Sider Makes Good
James Fattore, a resident of the East Side,
his career at Calumet College of St. Joseph in 1960. He is a
of management and directs the Calumet College Management Institute
he founded in the late 1980's. During the 1980's
helped organize and staff the College Degree Completion Division which
operated accelerated programs that lead to a bachelor's
Fattore earned a Master of Business Administration degree from DePaul
in 1951. It is estimated that Fattore taught approximately half
all Calumet College of St. Joseph graduates, some 4,000, during his 42
year tenure. Eighty five per cent of those graduates reside and
in northwest Indiana and Chicago. Calumet College of St. Joseph
announced the creation of the college's first endowed
The "James L. Fattore Endowed Chair in Business" will provide a lasting
tribute to the professor of management and to his dedication and
teaching. The effort is led by a group of alumni. Professor
Fattore plans to retire within the next two years.
on a job well done.
by Alex Savastano
Do you remember Frank Kralj's (Frank King's)
on 95th Street? Well, the statue of the hunter is still
The figure was created by a German blacksmith and stonecutter who died
in 1911. The story ends there until Gerry Michaels inquired at
museum about a baby picture taken at one of Frank's annual picnics held
for families of his clientele. Gerry relates that a prize was
to the cutest and fattest baby from among those in attendance at the
We put Gerry in touch with Diane and Edward Kralj, now residing in
to see if the baby pictures still exist. (I think the picture is
of Gerry but he does not admit it.) The Kralj's were happy to
from us and say they love the Florida weather and their beautiful
but miss their many friends here. Oh, yes, They will inquire
to see if anyone can shed any light on the lost baby pictures.
by Frank Stanley
Our society continues as a partner
in the Cultural Connections Program sponsored by the Field Museum's
for Cultural Understanding and Change. Currently there are twenty
one members in this partnership. Partners in the program conduct
presentations reflecting an annual theme chosen by the member
This year's theme is "With Our Hands: Crafting Culture". On May
2003 the Southeast Historical Society will be conducting a tour of the
Southeast Side looking at the "built environment." The tour
is as follows:
"Join us for a tour of the built
environment on Chicago's Southeast Side. See industrial sites
drew workers to the area. See different styles of houses and
built by those who lived in the area. See commercial structures,
parks, churches, and schools which served the
See some of the new economic initiatives under development on the
Side. The tour will begin at the Southeast Historical Museum, and
conclude with a hearty ethnic meal in a local establishment."
The fee for the tour is $17 ($15
if you are a member of the Southeast Historical Society).
you are interested in attending the tour call 312-665-7474 or e-mail
Cultural Connections Office at firstname.lastname@example.org Make arrangements
our tours have sold out quickly for the past two years.
information about the Cultural Connections Program, including links to
partner organizations, is available on our web site
) or at the museum.
Come South for a Taste of the North
Frank Savastano, son of Alex Savastano former president of the
Historical Society, is opening Savastano's Pizzeria and Restaurant in
Oklahoma a suburb of Tulsa. The restaurant will have a Chicago
with "Chicago Style" pizza being the main entree along with pastas and
Italian sandwiches. Frank invites all southeast siders traveling
through Bixby to stop in for a taste of Chicago while you are on the
by Alex Savastano
Museum Audio Donation
Historical society member John Clasby recently
donated eleven tapes of various "old time" radio shows. They were
mainly vintage Chicago radio such as the Breakfast Club from the
of Tom Konard who runs the Aircheck Factory of Wild Rose
John makes the suggestion that we ask you, our newsletter audience, if
you have any original tapes of Chicago shows and fringe market stations
like WGRY, Gary (1962-64), WWCA, Gary (1950's - 1970's) etc. If
are interested in more details call John at 773-646-6366. He is
interested in the listed tapes compiled by the Aircheck Factory (copy
the Southeast Historical Museum).
by Frank Stanley
Local Authors Panel Discussion
On November 11, 2002 a panel discussion with
of our local authors was held at the Vodak East Side Library. A
presentation of their respective books and what it takes to be an
ensued. Present were: Kevin Murphy author of Degrees of
a murder mystery which takes place in the Calumet region; Rod
co-author of Chicago's Southeast Side and author of Chicago's
Southeast Side Revisited; James Klekowski author of South
Chicago U.S.A.; and , sitting in for Beatrice Lumpkin who was
of town, was Miriam Balanoff retired judge and former State
Beatrice is author of Always Bring a Crowd, the story of
her husband Frank's leadership in the struggle to secure justice for
displaced employees of the former Wisconsin Steel Plant which closed in
1980. A good crowd attended and participated in an interesting
and answer session. All of the books are well worth your
and are available for sale at our museum.
by Frank Stanley
Who was the first woman to be awarded an
Life Membership in the East Side Chamber of Commerce?
Courtesy of Gloria Novak
Due to the retirement from
of our Museology Coordinator, Rod Sellers, the Museology Class is not
offered this year. Steps have been taken to recruit another
to conduct this unique, award winning program. A prospective
has been found and steps are being taken to insure the resumption of
class next fall.
Over the years the Museology Class
has created numerous exhibits and conducted several projects which have
contributed to the museum collections. Among the major projects
have been completed by the class are the following:
Chicago's SE Side Web Site
In addition the students in the class
organized and cataloged numerous museum exhibits and collections,
slide and video presentations, and the 1997-98 class helped with
Chicago's Southeast Side, our first pictorial history book. This
is truly an amazing list of accomplishments. We look forward to
resumption of the program.
History of the Southeast Mexican Community Hegewisch History
General Mills South Chicago Plant
Wolf Lake History / Veterans Memorials Project
World War II Oral History Project
SE Side: History, Culture, Ecology
Environmental History of the SE Side
Cultural Institutions of the SE Side
Cultural Institutions Calendar 2003
Shoah Community Oral History Project
Among the many interesting
to our museum recently was Morton Wendt Tucker, an artist from
Indiana. Morton was doing research for some potential works of
dealing with scenes of Lake Michigan. He shared materials which
to the early development of Calumet Harbor and the light houses which
ships to the entrance of the Calumet River. He was looking for
of the original stone tower built in the 1850's and a the first wooden
pierhead light in the 1870's. Can you help?
While Mr. Tucker was at the park,
he looked at the murals of Native Americans and early French explorers
to the region which are located in the second floor gymnastics area
an auditorium and stage) in the Field House. These murals were
in the 1920's and are beginning to show signs of wear and tear.
is water damage and mildew on these largely unknown works of art.
Perhaps restoration of these murals could become a goal of our
One of our partners from the
Connections Program, the Polish Museum of America, has donated some
from their collection which relate to the Southeast Side Polish
Among the donations were three copies of a May 1932 issue of "Aerial
magazine which detailed exhibition flights of K. W. Kunau, a Polish
flier who lived at 8823 Muskegon Avenue. He was also the
of the magazine. We also received a copy of the lyrics for "W
Fabryce" ("The Steel Mills Polka"). Can anyone help us translate
these lyrics? Another interesting donation was a copy of pages
a 1905 Polish Business Directory which related to South Chicago.
It listed South Chicago businesses with Polish owners. According
to the directory, in 1905, there were 13 midwives, 7 barbers, 35
6 bakeries, 17 meat markets, and 64 saloons among other
The 1905 directory and restoration of an old
faded picture raised some questions about addresses and street names in
early South Chicago. The directory listed H. F. Gosewicz Clothing
Store at 230 92nd Street, Ostrowski Meat Market at 418 88th Street, and
Ronkowski's Saloon at 272 83rd Street. There are other listings
similar types of addresses. Can anyone explain the street
system in use at the time?
When space permits in future
we will share some interesting e-mails with the readers.
Trivia Answer: Frieda Zimmerman (deceased),
wife of Dr.
Harold Zimmerman and contributor to our Museum and columnist for the