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Table of Contents > Chapter 11

South Lakefront (continued)

South Shore
South Shore has always been a special place for South Siders. Located south of 67th Street from Stony Island Avenue to the lake and running as far south as 79th Street, it has been the destination for countless middle-class families since the 1890s.

One of the first settlers in the district was Ferdinand Rohn, who operated a farm near 71st and the lake in the 1850s. Rohn traveled into Chicago to sell his produce, and the round-trip took him anywhere from twelve to sixteen hours. The area must have seemed fairly forbidding at the time. South Shore was mostly swamp land with some high ground over which rough trails had been cut. Sparsely settled, the community had to wait until 1881 for the Illinois Central Railroad to open its South Kenwood Station at 71st Street and Jeffery Boulevard connecting it with Chicago.

By the early 1890s a small settlement was established near the IC station in an area which became known as Bryn Mawr-the train station soon adopted the name which it still has today. Just west of Bryn Mawr, a neighborhood called Parkside developed. This district ran from 67th to 71st Street. South of Parkside to 75th Street another small settlement took the name of Essex. It was an outgrowth of a small residential area organized by Paul Cornell, the father of Hyde Park.

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