Chicago Commons Association Photograph Collection

Institution: Chicago History Museum
1601 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
Phone: (312) 642-4600
Date: 1896-1969
Extent: 6.4 Linear Feet
Finding Aid

Biographical/Historical Note:
Founded in 1894 by Graham Taylor at 140 N. Union Street; incorporated in 1895; moved to Grand Avenue and Morgan Street in 1901; established Farm Camp near New Buffalo, Michigan, in 1923; merged with Emerson House, 645 N. Wood Street, in 1948; headquarters moved to Taylor House, 915 N. Wolcott Avenue, in 1958; opened Jackie Robinson House in the Henry Horner Homes (Chicago Housing Authority), 124 N. Hoyne Avenue, in 1965; Olivet Community Center, 1441 N. Cleveland Avenue (founded 1888) merged with CCA in 1966; Mary McDowell Settlement, 4630 S. McDowell Avenue, merged with CCA in 1967; Benton House, 3052 S. Gratten Avenue, merged with CCA in 1967.

Scope and Content Note:
Photoprints document the activities of Chicago Commons Association settlement houses on Chicago's near West side. Includes activities for adults, children, teenagers and senior citizens--such as handicraft, educational, vocational and social activities. Also includes scenes relating to nutrition, physical fitness and sports for children and teenagers; children's summer camp (ca. 1920-1969); portraits of various clubs and committees--Choral Club, Mother's Club, Peace Committee; theatrical presentations, parties, and dances. Photoprints show interiors and exteriors of facilities at four locations. Includes views of people of undetermined ethnicity and depressed economic conditions of the surrounding neighborhoods, particularly around Grand Avenue and Morgan Street, ca. 1896-1920. One album and one scrapbook belonging to staff members Lea Taylor, Ida Noetzel and another small album document early years at the settlement houses. A few photoprints are portraits of executive staff members--Wm. H. Bruekner, Mrs. Wm. M. Collins, Clarence Lipschutz and Dan Nagel, ca. 1950-1969.

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