If you don’t know what this means, Google it or go to Urban Dictionary-better yet, skip Urban Dictionary-they probably have a much sinister definition.
Anyway, I wandered over to Powell’s on 57th street Monday and found a gem. I suppose it has been 20 years since I held a copy of Devereux Bowly Jr.’s “The Poorhouse: Subsidized Housing in Chicago, 1891-1976.
My first meeting with this out of print study was at the library at Northern Illinois University where I was studying (if that’s what you call it) Interior Architecture in the late 1990’s. I wish I noticed the subtle hint I should have switched to Urban Planning instead.
Anyway, the book combined my interests of Chicago History, South side history and housing issues that I began to notice as I got older. During my college years, the Lake Park Homes on the south lakefront were imploded live on television, kicking off the CHA’s Plan for Transformation. Bowly profiled the evolution of subsidized housing in the city from its beginnings as an interest of philanthropists to full involvement of local and Federal entities. Bowly also described in detail the successes and failures in housing efforts during this time.