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Check Out These Remarkable Photos of Logan Square in the Early 1900s

Nearly 100 photo postcards will be on display throughout September. Here’s a sneak peek.

Photos: Courtesy of Logan Square Preservation

If you’re surprised by how much Logan Square has changed in the last year, just think of what’s happened in 100. Logan Square Preservation’s new archival exhibition, “Greetings from Logan Square: Real Photo Postcards,” offers a window into the neighborhood in the early 20th century.

Andrew Schneider, president of the group, procured nearly 100 photo postcards from a collector who amassed the relics over decades of fairs and trade shows.

“People will be surprised how, in some ways, little has changed, and in some ways, how much it’s changed,” Schneider says. “Logan Square is so well preserved. Many of our vintage buildings remain unchanged. You could go to certain streets and take the exact same photograph today that was taken in the early 1900s.”

Those photos, with accompanying captions, will be on display starting September 3 at the Comfort Station (2579 N. Milwaukee Ave.), with the opening reception from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. The exhibit will run through the end of the month.

Here are some of the photos you’ll see at the exhibition:

Milwaukee Avenue and Humboldt Park Boulevard

“Some photos, like this one of Milwaukee just south of Logan Square, are remarkable when you can pair them with ads and other information about the shops. In this case, ‘Ohse & Quast, 2555 Milwaukee Avenue Through to Logan Boulevard’ was advertised in another archival piece, as offering ‘Finest Groceries and Canned Goods; Fresh Vegetables, Fruits and Berries; Eggs and Butter Fresh Daily; Choicest Cheese of All Varieties; Finest Meats on the Market; Best Ham, Bacon and Sausage. Nothing but the best, and at same prices which some charge for goods of inferior quality,’” Schneider says.

Blue Line Stop

“Logan Square used to be the end of the line for what we today call the Blue Line,” Schneider says. “This photo is unusual because it captures what looks like it might have been rush hour (most of these were taken of largely empty streets) and it also shows the amazing detail and high quality of the medium.” A close-up of this image, below, shows how many people were out and about on Kedzie Avenue, north of Albany.

Postcard to a Friend

“Often you would see postcards with an ‘X’ [marked on the photo]. This is typical at the time to show friends and relatives the view of the street on which people lived, like in this card from 1908,” Schneider says.

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