For decades, the concrete statues of the Animal Court Playground on Chicago’s near west side stood as icons of the local landscape. And though they were removed in the early 2000s as part of a massive development overhaul by the Chicago Housing Authority (CHA), a new project is hoping to bring them back home.... Read More →
Wrigley Field was originally built as Weeghman Park in 1914 for the Chicago Federals baseball team. In 1916, the Cubs moved in, and in 1926, it was renamed Wrigley Field after William Wrigley Jr., who bought out the shares of the team’s other owners before the 1920 season.
Since then, the ballpark -- now the second-oldest venue in the Majors after Boston’s Fenway Park -- has seen its share of history. Babe Ruth’s called shot in the 1936 World Series and Ernie Banks’ 500th career home run in 1970 both happened here. The stadium is also home to the Curse of the Billy Goat (it’s best just to Google it) and the Steve Bartman incident during the 2003 National League Championship Series. (One thing Wrigley Field has never seen is a World Series championship).
But beginning in 2009, preservationists and baseball fans alike began to worry if some of the ballpark’s historic fabric -- and perhaps some of the history that went along with it -- might be lost.
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When National Trust employee Joan Menzer was in elementary school in the 1970s just outside of Washington, D.C., her father would occasionally drive the family past the Craftsman bungalow he had spent the first few years of his life in near the Palisades neighborhood of the city. And though the house -- which her great-grandfather, a streetcar driver, had built in 1927 -- had remained within her extended family into the 1980s, Menzer had never stepped foot inside.
Then, this past April, curiosity got the best of her. After talking it over with a few friends who own historic properties in the area, Menzer decided to write the owner a letter, offering up history of the house. The owner responded with an invitation to visit, and Menzer took her parents -- who had since moved away from the area but were back visiting -- to see it.... Read More →
In 2009, when locals began to consider demolishing the Art Moderne, Edward Novak-designed bathhouse at the Municipal Swimming Pool in Decorah, Iowa in favor of erecting a structure over the existing outdoor pool, Kyrl Henderson decided to do something about it.... Read More →
For as long as the game has been played, baseball has been a mirror for our society, reflecting American culture and values, and serving as an arena for the competition of ideas. Racial equality, principles of democracy, and ethical controversies have all played out on its fields. And while it’s the game that has given the fields their purpose, it is the fields that have added to the character and soul of the game.... Read More →