Rogers Park Revisited

Re: The Rogers Park Issue, February 5. Please see the stories and listings at for much more.

The postcard in last week’s table of contents (“A Great Big Hello From Rogers Park”) should have been credited to We apologize for the omission.

The editors

In regards to: the Rogers Park/West Ridge volunteerism section I enjoyed the depiction of Rogers Park, the neighborhood I live in and love, but I’m troubled because you haven’t included Howard Area Community Center, one of the oldest and most vital community organizations in the neighborhood, as a place with myriad volunteer opportunities. This organization has provided 42 years of service to the Howard area of the Rogers Park community.

We offer a GED and ESL classes and tutoring, counseling to help people overcome various challenges, we provide childcare, an alternative high school servicing students aged 16-20, legal clinic, dental clinic, services for specific needs like AIDS/ HIV and domestic violence as well as a food and clothing pantry.

If folks from Rogers Park want to help their neighbors, they can find out more at

Maya Marshall

Literacy Tutor Advisor

Howard Area Community Center

[Alderman Joe] Moore helped pass Mayor Daley’s proposal to privatize parking meters for 75 years and to double meter rates over the next two years [“MVP or Mope?”]. Moore explained to me that he supported it because the economy has hurt city revenues (for the next 75 years?).

Two weeks later, Moore helped pass Mayor Daley’s proposal to acquire the land now occupied by Michael Reese Hospital for $180 million [It was 86 million. —Ed.]; if the city can’t spin the property off to another buyer in a specified amount of time, taxpayers will have to pony up. This made no sense in light of Moore’s earlier vote being based on the city’s “hardship.”

These two contradictory votes by Joe Moore have one thing in common: They’re both examples of shameless genuflection before the Almighty Mayor Daley, who brooks no dissent and has never shown interest in community input unless it conforms to his own objectives.

Marc Lawrence

The antique mall was never a Jewel in my lifetime & I’ve lived in RP since 1950 [“The Savages of Time”]. The Jewel on Broadway was on Rosemont, east of Broadway. Now it’s the Ismaili mosque. If you mean the antique mall on the west side of Broadway between Devon & Rosemont, that used to be Lambert’s Bowling alley.

Un-indicted Co-Conspirator

Actually, the Jewel and Pacific Stereo were located on the north side of Rosemont at Broadway, where the parking lot for the Ismaili Center is. The center used to be Xanadu Restaurant (a Lettuce Entertain You enterprise). However, I’m fuzzy on what it was before and after.

Save Street End Beaches

The parking lot for the Ismaili Center was the parking lot for Jewel & later the discount grocery Dominick’s ran for a couple of years. The building next to the L, which is also now part of the Ismaili property was the Jewel; before 1953 it was a garage for the Chicago Motor Coach Co.

The correct spelling of the restaurant is Zanadu & it was a Mel Markon restaurant, not a Lettuce one. It closed in January, 1979, during the blizzard with the best out-of-business sign I’ve ever seen on a restaurant (“Closed for extant roof repair”)!

Un-indicted Co-Conspirator

Regarding Bill Savage’s excellent synopsis of Rogers Park/West Ridge history [“Borders and Boundaries”], there is one minor error. He writes: “The Chicago and North Western Railroad’s Milwaukee Line came through in 1873.” Actually the line came through in 1855; however a stop at Rogers Park was not added until later. A 1872 timetable shows a stop at Rogers Park as does also a 1873 map. A 1868 timetable does not show a Rogers Park stop.

LeRoy Blommaert

Bill Savage replies:

Thanks for the clarification. The sources I read considered the line irrelevant to the development of Rogers Park until the stop was built in 1873. Timetables often included stops for stations that were anticipated but not yet built.