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Bernard Horwich JCC or Marriot Hotel
Chicago, IL
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Join the Chicago Jewish Historical Society on their South Side Jewish Chicago Tour, with professional tour guide Herb Eiseman and architect/preservationist Carey Wintergreen. We'll begin on Lake Street where 50 years before the construction of the 'L' on Lake Street, many shops were owned by Jewish merchants.  It was here that that the first synagogue in the Midwest, Kehilath Anshe Ma'ariv, was established in 1847, in a space above a dry goods store.

The 1871 'Great Chicago Fire' prompted the Jewish community's move from Downtown to the Near South Side. By the 1880s, major synagogue buildings and stately mansions owned by Jewish businessmen dotted South Michigan, Indiana and Prairie Avenues. The Jewish community was served by Michael Reese Hospital, founded in 1881 (demolished, 2012).

We will stop at the landmark Kehilath Anshe Ma'ariv synagogue, designed by architects Adler and Sullivan in 1891, and gutted by fire in 2006. We'll drive down the beautifully landscaped parkways on Grand (now, Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard) and Drexel Boulevards that provided a promenade south to Washington Park.

Around the beginning of the 20th century, Jews began moving further south along the Avenues. We will see a number of the substantial synagogues constructed between 43rd and 47th Streets.

By the 1910s prominent Jewish families, among them, the Rosenwalds, Kuppenheimers, Adler, Mandels, and the Leopolds and Loebs (and their infamous sons) were relocating further south to Kenwood. There, we will see some of the substantial homes they constructed. We have arranged a special tour of the landmark KAM Isaiah Israel on East Hyde Park Boulevard (Architect Alfred S. Alschuler, Sr., 1923).  Then we'll head to the west side of Washington Park where middle class Jews constructed their synagogues.

Jews began moving into South Shore in the 1920s and by the 1950s, the South Shore neighborhood had become the center of the South Side Jewish community. Many of the synagogues were new homes for congregations leaving Douglas, Grand Boulevard and Washington Park. We'll see where Jewish businesses thrived along 71st and 75th Streets and other organizations that served the community: Young Mens Jewish Council Youth Center, Hart JCC and Furth and Piser Funeral Homes. We'll discover the only Mikva built in South Shore.

By the 1970s, Jews began to flee South Shore and headed north. By 1980, South Shore had become almost exclusively African American and the Jewish community disappeared. On the South Side today, only Kenwood-Hyde Park still has a small, but viable, Jewish community. We will see some of the almost two dozen current and former synagogues that remain.

Come join us in discovering or recalling the rich history of South Side Jewish Chicago.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

11:30a  5:30p Bernard Horwich JCC, 3033 West Touhy Ave.
12:00p  5:00p Marriott Hotel, 540 N. Michigan Ave. (Rush St. Entrance)

$40 Members / $45 Non-members

For more information: Leah Axelrod, 847-432-7003 or sales@chicagojewishhistory.org
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Bernard Horwich JCC or Marriot Hotel (View)
3033 West Touhy Ave. or 540 N. Michigan Ave. (Rush St. Entrance)
Chicago, IL 60645
United States


Education > Tours

Kid Friendly: Yes!
Dog Friendly: No
Non-Smoking: Yes!
Wheelchair Accessible: No


Owner: Chicago Jewish Historical Society
On BPT Since: Aug 10, 2012
Chicago Jewish Historical Society


Question: Is there free parking at the JCC?
Answer: Yes, parking is free at the Horwich JCC.
Question: Can we park for free at the JCC?
Answer: Yes, parking is free at the Horwich JCC.

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