South Lawndale Community Collection

Dates 1911-1952
Size 2 linear feet, 21 photographs
Repository Chicago Public Library, Harold Washington Library Center, Special Collections, 400 S. State St., Chicago, IL 60605
Collection Number Archives_SLCC
Provenance The collection was originally housed at Chicago Public Library's Legler Branch Library. In the 1980s, with a grant from the Dr. Scholl Foundation, Special Collections transferred and processed the collection to make it fully available for research by the public. Supplement 2 was a donation from a private individual in 2003.
Access No restrictions
Citation When quoting material from this collection the preferred citation is: South Lawndale Community Collection [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections, Chicago Public Library.
Processed July 1989

Historical Note

South Lawndale began to experience development when the general westward expansion of Chicago began to bring residents to the area around 1885. Germans and Czechoslovakians moved westward on 22nd Street (which would later become Cermak Road), and the rest of the area, west of Crawford Avenue (which would later become Pulaski Road) was annexed to the city in 1889. Meanwhile, the outward movement of industry to sites along the railroads near South Lawndale brought in many workingmen’s families, as did the McCormick plant (later the International Harvester Company) and the Western Electric Company’s Hawthorne Works in Cicero, just northwest of the area. By 1914 the area had reached residential maturity, with only a few vacant lots remaining.

South Lawndale developed rapidly, reaching a population of 84,000 by 1920. The area did not change substantially from 1920-1950. The population declined steadily until 1960. In 1950, the largest nationality group was Polish, followed by Czechoslovakians and Germans. African-Americans also moved in slowly during this period. Since 1960, the area has become predominantly Hispanic.

Scope and Content

The South Lawndale Community Collection has been arranged in the following subject series: Biographical Data; Business Establishments; Churches; Clubs & Organizations; and School. All photographs and other audiovisual materials have been removed from the manuscript portion of the collection and placed in the Neighborhood History Research Collection/Audiovisual Collection.

Cross references have been provided for related subjects appearing in different series or record groups. Newspaper clippings in the original collection which were duplicated in the library’s newspaper holdings have been indexed in this guide, but not physically included in the manuscript collection.

Materials contained in this collection include newspaper clippings, programs, school publications and other materials, newsletters and minutes.

Notable features of the South Lawndale Community Collection include:

  • Gerringer, August (publisher of the Chicago Daily Svornost)
  • Farragut High School
  • Harrison High School

Related Material

Persons interested in FARRAGUT HIGH SCHOOL (folders 1:5 through 2:2) should see also the Lawndale Crawford Community Collection, folders 4:23 through 4:28, which contain records of Farragut High School as well. Thirty-four photos of Farragut High School classes are also in the Lawndale Crawford Community Collection—see photos numbered LCCC 1.467 through 1.500.

Persons interested in GARY SCHOOL should also see a photo of the school building in the Lawndale Crawford Community Collection, photo number LCCC 1.501.

Container List

Series 1: Biographical Data

Box 1 Folder 1 Geringer, August—Biography, undated; Promotional material for the CHICAGO DAILY SVORNST, undated
Lorenz, Matthias E. See: Chicago Daily News, 1944 Apr 28
Melberg, Marie—Newspaper clipping, undated

Series 2: Business Establishments

  CHICAGO DAILY SVORNOST See: August Geringer, 1:1, above
Oversize Folders SL-1 and SL-2 Western Electric Company (Hawthorne Works)—THE MICROPHONE (newsletter), 1928 Dec 31; 1952 Feb. See: Oversize folders SL-1 and SL-2

Series 3: Religious Institutions

Box 1 Folder 1a John Huss Methodist Episcopal—Commemorative plaque; undated
Box 1 Folder 2 St. Andrew’s Evangelical—programs; 1911, 1912, 1917
    Sts. Peter & Paul Croatian Greek Catholic SEE: CHICAGO DAILY NEWS, 1939 July 22

Series 4: Clubs and Organizations

    Civic Youth Council SEE: CHICAGO DAILY NEWS, 1938 Sep 28
Box 1 Folder 3 Harrison [High School] Historical Society—Minutes; 1938 Apr 14

Series 5: Historical Sketches

Box 2 Folder 12 Mayer, Harold M., “South Lawndale—An Island in the City of Chicago” Real Estate magazine; 1941 Nov 1

Series 6: Schools

Box 1 Folder 4 Burns School—Programs; 1938, 1940, undated
Box 1 Folder 5 Farrugut High School—Handbooks; 1938, 1951, undated
Box 1 Folder 6 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1935
Box 1 Folder 7 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1936
Box 1 Folder 8 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1937
Box 1 Folder 9 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1938
Box 1 Folder 10 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1939
Box 1 Folder 11 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1940
Box 1 Folder 12 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1943
Box 2 Folder 1 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1946
Box 2 Folder 2 Farragut High School—Yearbook; 1947
Box 2 Folder 3 Farragut High School—Programs; 1935
    [See also Lawndale-Crawford Community Collection, Box 4, Folders 23-28 and Lawndale-Crawford Community Collection Photographs 1.467-1.500.]
Box 2 Folder 13 Gary School—Correspondence and programs; 1937-40
Box 2 Folder 4 Hammond High School—Graduation programs, Jan 27, 1939; June 22, 1939; June 20, 1940; List of graduates, 1940.
Box 2 Folder 5 Hammond High School—COTEC magazine; 1919 Nov, 1920 Jan, Dec, 1921 Apr
Box 3 Folder 1 Harrison High School—HARRISON HERALD (newspaper); 1939-41, 1944 (not inclusive)
Box 2 Folder 8 Harrison High School—Felt patch swimming championship, 1919; picture of bldg.; programs, 1920s; tickets, 1920s [See also: CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 1939 May 14, 1941 Feb 2]
Box 2 Folder 6 Harrison High School—HARRISONIAN (yearbook); 1920
Box 2 Folder 7 Harrison Technical High School, Harrisonian (yearbook), 1936
Box 2a Folder 1 Harrison Technical High School, Harrisonian (yearbook), 1937
Box 2a Folder 2 Harrison Technical High School, Harrisonian (yearbook), 1939
Box 2a Folder 3 Harrison Technical High School, Harrisonian (yearbook), 1940
Box 2a Folder 4 Harrison Technical High School, Harrisonian (yearbook), 1941
Box 2 Folder 9 Hay School—Class list, 1939; newspaper clippings, 1948-49; programs, 1938-43; promotional booklet, circa 1940
Box 2 Folder 10 McCormick School—Programs; 1938-39
Box 2 Folder 11 Whitney School—Class lists, 1938-47; History, undated; Programs, 1938-



Photograph 1.1 Hitchcock home, 25th Street & Central Park Avenue, circa 1902


Photograph 1.2 Robert Burns School, exterior, 1938
Photograph 1.3 McCormick School, class of February 1938
Photograph 1.4 Eli Whitney School, class of February 1938
Photograph 1.5 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1938
Photograph 1.6 Eli Whitney School, class of February 1939
Photograph 1.7 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1940
Photograph 1.8 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1940
Photograph 1.9 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1941
Photograph 1.10 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1941
Photograph 1.11 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1942
Photograph 1.12 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1942
Photograph 1.13 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1943
Photograph 1.14 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1943
Photograph 1.15 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1944
Photograph 1.16 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1944
Photograph 1.17 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1945
Photograph 1.18 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1945
Photograph 1.19 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1946
Photograph 1.20 Eli Whitney School, class of June 1946
Photograph 1.21 Eli Whitney School, class of January 1947
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