Saturday, April 24, 2010

What'sa Chicago Indian Boundary?-- Part 3

The Treaty of St. Louis ceded land for white settlement along a 20-mile corridor. Today, Rogers Avenue and Forest Preserve Drive roughly follow it. Although, it was never a straight-through street.

Sometime around 1900, the name Indian Boundary Road was changed to Rogers Avenue which is why today so few Chicagoans know of its historic significance.

However, there is an Indian Boundary Park along Rogers Avenue. The field house has a bas-relief of a Indian head on one of the entrances.


So, who was this Philip Rogers who had the road named after him and for whom the Chicago neighborhood of Rogers Park was named after?

He was born in Ireland in 1812. He immigrated to the US and came to the area that is now Rogers Park at the northeast corner of Chicago and bought 600 acres of land from the government for $1.25 an acre. Eventually he expanded his holdings to 1600 acres.

He first lived in a log home at the corner of today's Lunt and Western avenues and he established a trading post. As of 1925, the house Rogers later built still stood on the northwest corner of Rogers Avenue and Clark Street, but no efforts were made to preserve it. Today its site is in the parking lot of a Walgreens.

The area Rogers owned was named after him in 1844 and it became a village until annexed by Chicago in 1893. Rogers died in 1856 and was buried in Lincoln Park, but his remains were relocated to Calvary Cemetery in 1863. His son-in-law, Patrick L. Touhy, inherited the land. (There is also a Touhy Avenue in Chicago.)

Some Chicago History. --RoadDog

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