Through the 1920s Uptown experienced a building boom that had some speculating that the neighborhood might eclipse the Loop...—Lynn Becker, ArchitectureChicago Plus

Compass Rose Cultural Crossroads is a small, not-for-profit publisher with specialties in history, mythology, culinary lore, and the preservation of folk traditions.


Historic Images of Uptown Chicago

We are pleased to announce that many of the historic postcard images from our collection are now available as enlargements, suitable for framing. All images are printed on 8 x 10 photo paper.

Due to the nature and size of the original postcards, the enlargements will not measure 8 x 10 exactly, but will have a white border. These are unretouched photos, with historic handwritten notes and cancellation stamps on some of the images.

You may order your images through the Web site, or by sending a check or money order to the address below, made payable to “Compass Rose Cultural Crossroads.” Please indicate which images you are interested in when sending payment by mail. All prices include postage and handling. As these are special-order items, be sure to allow two to three weeks for processing.

To see framed samples of the enlargements, visit Fat Cat Bar and Grill on Broadway Avenue, just north of the Uptown Theatre.

Compass Rose Cultural Crossroads, Inc.
PO Box 409095
Chicago, IL 60640-9095
Aragon Ballroom Interior

Aragon Ballroom Interior (click to enlarge).

Aragon Ballroom Interior

A 1930s image of the dancefloor of the Aragon Ballroom, looking toward the stage.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Aragon Ballroom Lounge

Aragon Ballroom Lounge (click to enlarge).

Aragon Ballroom Lounge

An interior view of the Aragon Ballroom at Lawrence and Winthrop, showing one of the lounges where couples could rest between dances.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Clarendon Municipal Beach

Clarendon Municipal Beach (click to enlarge).

Clarendon Municipal Beach

Clarendon Municipal Beach was the largest bathing beach in the country, attracting 425,000 paying visitors the first summer it opened in 1916 and almost 2 million a year by 1929. It had two towers, separate locker areas for men and women, a playroom, and a laundry facility. It could accommodate more than 9,000 swimmers and had a promenade for thousands of spectators.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Clarendon Municipal Beach Overview

Clarendon Municipal Beach Overview (click to enlarge).

Clarendon Municipal Beach Overview

An image of Clarendon Municipal Beach looking southward, with hundreds of bathers.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Clarendon Municipal Beach Pavilion

Clarendon Municipal Beach Pavilion (click to enlarge).

Clarendon Municipal Beach Pavilion

A close up of the pavilion at Clarendon Municipal Beach. When Lincoln Park was expanded up to Foster Avenue, Clarendon lost its lake frontage. The city converted the building into a community center, and a major renovation in 1972 resulted in the removal of the elaborate towers and roof tiles. Today, it holds a gymnasium, boxing ring, fitness center, and meeting rooms. Programs include after school sports, aerobics, and preschool activities.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Clarendon Municipal Beach Crowds

Clarendon Municipal Beach Crowds (click to enlarge).

Clarendon Municipal Beach Crowds

Image of Clarendon Beach, showing the extensive crowds that would visit on a hot summer’s day.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Edgewater Beach Apartments

Edgewater Beach Apartments (click to enlarge).

Edgewater Beach Apartments

The Edgewater Beach Apartments is all that remains of the vast complex that was the Edgewater Beach Hotel. Its pink facade is a well-known local landmark.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Edgewater Beach Hotel

Edgewater Beach Hotel (click to enlarge).

Edgewater Beach Hotel

Edgewater Beach Hotel, looking westward, with the Uptown/Edgewater neighborhood in the background. When the EBH lost its prime lakefront due to the extension of Lake Shore Drive, it was the beginning of the end for the hotel.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Edgewater Beach Hotel, Lounge

Edgewater Beach Hotel, Lounge (click to enlarge).

Edgewater Beach Hotel, Lounge

A beautiful black-and-white image of one of the many lounges that graced the Edgewater Beach Hotel. Like the Aragon Ballroom and the Uptown Theatre, the EBH had decorative painted beams in many of its public areas.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Honolulu Harry

Honolulu Harry's (click to enlarge).

Honolulu Harry's

Back in the 1930s, Hawaiian-themed bars and nightclubs were all the rage. Honolulu Harry’s was located on Broadway near Wilson Avenue.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Kemper Insurance Building

Kemper Insurance Building (click to enlarge).

Kemper Insurance Building

Does the old Kemper Insurance Building, located at Sheridan and Lawrence, look strange to you? That’s because it’s actually shorter in this image than it is now. Four more stories were added some time after its initial construction.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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New Lawrence Hotel—Postcard With Map

New Lawrence Hotel—Postcard With Map (click to enlarge).

New Lawrence Hotel—Postcard With Map

The New Lawrence Hotel was originally an upscale apartment hotel, designed by Ralph Huszagh and Boyd Hill, the architectural team responsible for the Aragon Ballroom.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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New Lawrence Hotel Postcard

New Lawrence Hotel Postcard (click to enlarge).

New Lawrence Hotel

An alternate view of the New Lawrence Hotel, located on Lawrence at Kenmore.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Rainbo Gardens Exterior View

Rainbo Gardens Exterior View (click to enlarge).

Rainbo Gardens Exterior View

Once located at 4812 Clark near Lawrence, Fred Mann’s Rainbo Gardens was one of Chicago’s premier entertainment venues. Larry Fine of the Three Stooges was first discovered here!

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Sheridan Plaza Hotel

Sheridan Plaza Hotel (click to enlarge).

Sheridan Plaza Hotel

The Sheridan Plaza Hotel, built in 1919, was one of Uptown’s first full-service, upscale apartment hotels.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Sheridan Trust Bank

Sheridan Trust Bank (click to enlarge).

Sheridan Trust Bank

The Sheridan Trust Bank was originally located in this building before it moved across the street to what is today the Bridgeview Bank Building. After the bank moved out, it became the Loren Miller Department Store, then Goldblatt’s, and was closed for many years before being restored as a branch for Borders Books.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Uptown Station

Uptown Station (click to enlarge).

Uptown Station

The Uptown Station was conceived and designed by architect Arthur Gerber, who also designed the McJunkin Building across the street.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Via Lago Restaurant

Via Lago Restaurant (click to enlarge).

Via Lago Restaurant

The Via Lago Restaurant, once located on Wilson Avenue, featured a glass dance floor.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Wilson Avenue Beach

Wilson Avenue Beach (click to enlarge).

Wilson Avenue Beach

Bathers at Wilson Avenue Bathing Beach.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Wilson Avenue Street View

Wilson Avenue Street View (click to enlarge).

Wilson Avenue Street View

Wilson Avenue, looking east toward the Sheridan Plaza Hotel and Lake Michigan.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Wilson Beach People

Wilson Beach People (click to enlarge).

Wilson Beach People

Close up view of bathers enjoying the beach at Wilson Avenue.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Wilson Avenue Station

Wilson Avenue Station (click to enlarge).

Wilson Avenue Station

A very early image of the Wilson Avenue train station.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Wilson Theatre

Wilson Theatre (click to enlarge).

Wilson Theatre

A rare image of the Wilson Avenue Vaudeville Theatre. The building, one of the few remaining remnants of the era, today houses a bank.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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Edgewater Hotel Yacht Club

Edgewater Hotel Yacht Club (click to enlarge).

Edgewater Beach Hotel Yacht Club

The Yacht Club at the Edgewater Beach Hotel.

Price: $25.00 (includes postage)

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