Near West Side, IL

About Near West Side, IL

The Near West Side, one of the 77 defined community areas of Chicago, is located (west of the Chicago River), adjacent to the downtown central business district (the Loop). The rich history of the Near West Side of Chicago has its genesis in the Hull House phenomenon. It was at the turn of the nineteenth century that Jane Addams and Ellen Starr chose the Near West Side slums to found America's first settlement house. The world renowned Nobel Peace Prize winner labeled that immigrant community, "The Hull House Neighborhood." Once a bubbling cauldron of European immigrants, its business districts:--(Greek Town, Maxwell Street and Little Italy)--remain as vestiges of the mass migration from southern Europe during the nineteenth and early part of the twentieth century. Only the Italian enclave continues to endure as a vibrant on-going community. Taylor Street Archives

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