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The Street Life of Chicago in the 1970s through these Fabulous Vintage Photos

In the early 1970s, life was good in Chicago city. Railways provided employment, churches influenced many people, the heavy industry remained in the city. The mid-1970s saw the first signs of gentrification in nearby neighborhoods due to the downtown office revival. The political turmoil following Daley’s death in 1976 took headlines away from the nascent downtown revival.

There used to be all kinds of small family-owned businesses along Diversey Parkway and Halsted Street. Besides bakeries, butcher shops, diners, liquor stores, and old-fashioned barber shops, only a few pharmacies.

Today, all those businesses have disappeared and have been replaced by trendy restaurants, upscale boutiques, wine stores, luxury furniture stores, and glassware stores. There are also spas in most of the buildings. Businesses there cater to the yuppies now living there.

These fascinating photos show the street life of Chicago in the 1970s.

#5 Kinzie Street looking west from State Street, Chicago, 1970

#13 Chicago skyline viewed from 333 N. Michigan, 33rd Floor, 1974

#38 On the right beneath the Playdium Parking Bowl sign, was originally the entrance to the Covent Theatre.

On the right beneath the Playdium Parking Bowl sign, was originally the entrance to the Covent Theatre.

The Covent Hotel is still standing today, Chicago, 1970s

#45 South east bound Lincoln on the left and Racine on the right at Diversey, Chicago, 1970s

Written by Aung Budhh

Husband + Father + librarian + Poet + Traveler + Proud Buddhist. I love you with the breath, the smiles and the tears of all my life.

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