Thursday, December 26, 2019

Rowhouse Chicago: 1900s through 1920s

After the 1890s it became much harder for me to find row houses.  Since this isn't exactly a scientific study it's possible I'm just missing them, but it seems to be more than that...

My guess is that that urban land became expensive enough to usher in the era of larger apartments.  Also, more affluent buyers were drawn to the expanding first tier suburbs, which had increasingly strong public transit connections and were far from the pollution and political unrest of Chicago.

Anyway, I'm hoping to add more examples from these decades as I find them.

201-217 N. LeClaire, 1900.
I had to restore one demolished unit based on photographs (second from the right).  And I know an emergency demolition permit was issued to demolish another unit, so it really doesn't look this way any more.  This row basically creates an instant village, so it's disappointing to see it deteriorating.

5344-5350 S. Wabash, 1914.
Here's a strong example a classical revival design unified by the decorative parapet.  I had to restore some altered porches and balconies and cornice sections.  I'm impressed by the use of bays to bring in more light, but I don't know if the porches were quite big enough to provide much benefit. 

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