Parks and Pleasure Grounds

For outdoor amusement during the early twentieth century, Chicagoans headed for the city’s parks and beaches. During the early part of the century, however, private enterprise and the city often vied for ownership and control of such spaces and their activities. Though large city parks had been established in the mid-nineteenth century, other outdoor recreational spaces, including cemeteries, amusement parks, and beer gardens remained in private ownership, much to the dismay of those concerned about the unchaperoned mixing of men and women or the casual intermingling of people from different classes, races, or ethnic groups. Likewise, many of the city’s beaches were privately owned up until the early 1930s. Public control of the lakefront represented in part an attempt to reign in the behavior of less conservative beach-goers, including those who used the beaches as a venue for love-making or the procurement of illicit booze.


Amusement Parks
Riverview ParkWhite CityForest ParkSans SouciSmaller Amusement Parks

Bathing Beaches
Uptown Beaches

Other Parks and Pleasure Grounds
Garfield ParkWashington ParkSummer Gardens and Picnic Groves