During the 1910s and 1920s, as more and more Chicagoans upgraded from apartments in the older parts of the city to new bungalow-style single-family residences on the city’s periphery, they found the Loop an increasingly inconvenient place to shop and enjoy themselves. Outlying business districts, such as the one located along West Madison Street near Crawford Avenue (now Pulaski Road), developed in response to the city’s shifting demographics. By providing many of the same services and institutions available downtown, the West Madison district was a popular destination for many West Siders. Certain establishments, such as the Paradise Ballroom, attracted customers from throughout the city, many of whom utilized either the area’s well-developed transportation network or their own private automobiles in making the cross-town journey. Possibly in an attempt to link the reputation of the Madison-Crawford business center to that of one of New York City’s most famous urban gathering spots, some of the area’s boosters referred to the district’s main intersection as “Madison Square.” But the name never gained widespread acceptance.

Department Stores




Dance Halls and Cabarets


Parks and Pleasure Grounds


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