Archiver > IRISH-IN-CHICAGO > 2002-10 > 1035920813

From: KayB <>
Subject: Re: Chicago Hennessys, etc.
Date: Tue, 29 Oct 2002 13:46:53 -0600
References: <> <00e601c27ef6$d94f4260$e269530c@carole>

Dear Carole,
The number of the address that you have in 1880
isn't relevant now. Newberry Ave. only ran for 5 blocks
and the numbers would have been from 1204 S to 1730 S.
The streets were renumbered in 1908 in a plan suggested
by Edward P. Brennan (what a name). I'll quote you the
"...was the first to envision Chicago as a giant
piece of graph paper...he proposed that Chicago adopt a
uniform streeet-numbering system and designate State and
Madison streets as the base lines, their intersection
becoming ground zero.
"The new numbering system, should indicate how far an
address is from the State and Madison baselines, and odd
and even numbers should be used to indicate the side of
the street on which a house is located.
...the council ordained that State and Madison
would, indeed be the baselines for a street numbering
system under which each 800 in an address would indicate
a mile.
Thus, today, a home in the 1600 block of north Maplewood
Ave. is about two miles north of Madison St. and a
business on the 2400 block of west Pershing Rd. is about
three miles west of State St. On the South Side the
numbering system is slightly less precise because
certain streets, such as 12th Street (now Roosevelt Rd.)
were not renumbered when the Brennan plan went into
effect. Roosevelt Rd is only one mile-not a mile and a
half-south of Madison St. In fact, east-west street on
the South Side do not conform to the city's
800-to-a-mile address system until south of 31st St.,
when the distance between 31st St. and Pershing Rd.
(39th St.) is exactly one mile.
Along east-west streets today, thanks to Brennan,
even numbers are on the north side and odd numbers are
on the south side of the street. Along north-south
streets, even numbers are on the west and odd numbers on
the east side of the street. In addition, every city
block is divided, for addressing purposes, into numbered
20-foot segments. A house is given the address of the
20-foot segment within which its front door is located."

The above was taken from "Streetwise Chicago" by
Hayner and McNamee.
This is probably more information than you want to
know, but that is how are beautiful city is basically
set up. There are a few diagonal streets that don't
conform to the grid system, but you can find your way
around if you just know how many hundred north, south,
east or west the address is.
There are still a few flaws in the system in that
streets on the south side are not necessarily the same
name as the streets on the north side. But, again, if
you know how many hundred north, south, east or west a
street is you can still find it no matter what its name.

The address you gave: 2155 N. Kilbourn Ave. is 2100
north and 4500 west. It is on the northwest side of the
city. The neighborhoods are usually named for the
police district or vice versa. There are now some
neighborhoods that are named because of something that
is popular in the area such as: Wrigleyville or
DePaul. They are not really neighborhood names.
Usually neighborhood names are used on the north side,
while parish names are used on the south side. This is
not, however, written in stone.
The Chicago Historical Society has a map of the
neighborhoods of Chicago. You can find the map at:

Kathleen Brennan Mammoser
Researching Brennan, Kennedy and Gallagher in Co. Mayo
and Brennan in Co. Sligo

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