Monday, January 30, 2017

Navy Pier

A photo of the early construction of the pier showing the many pilings that had been driven from a posting.
Stan Nettis When I went to University of Illinois at Navy Pier we were told it was built on 18,000 pilings.

Frank Pajak commented on the above posting
Nelson Herrera also posted
The construction of Navy Pier in 1914
Cost 4.5 million dollars
James McKay That's $107M in 2016 dollars.
[Some comments indicate that it could not be built today for $107M.]
Matt McClure Streetcar in the center. C&NW line on the south side of the pier.
Jeff Nichols posted
May 1916 photo of men working on train tracks on Navy Pier (which, of course, was then known as Municipal Pier). Chicago History Museum, DN-0066200
Glen Miller posted
Municipal Pier in 1919.
Martin Trombetta Before the warehouse days smile emoticon
After construction when passenger boats used the pier as a pier. The Encyclopedia of Chicago has a brief history of the pier.

Nelson Herrera posted
Navy Pier 1931
[The "white line" is a plane flying by blowing smoke.]
Jeff Nichols posted
Navy Pier, c. 1933. University of Alabama.
Jamie Moncrief commented on Jeff's posting
The City of Holland was a Goodrich boat and regular visitor to the pier...but the stern doesn't look the same.. The Christopher Columbus as well, but her stack was pushed back more towards the stern...
Mike Tuggle posted
Navy Pier, circa 1947.
The University of Illinois had a branch here from October 1946 until February 1965 when the new University of Illinois at Chicago Circle (now University of Illinois at Chicago) opened.

Early 1960's
Anton Wenzel posted , this is an enhanced version by Jerry Jackson
This photo shows that Navy Pier was still a pier in the 1960s.
Eddie Yung posted
The good old "S" curve on LSD. Lake Shore Drive.
Ginny Teister Morton This definitive S-Curve photograph, was taken from the Prudential building in 1963 by the venerable Charles Cushman.
Bob Lalich The white buildings along Ogden Slip were known as North Pier Terminal.
Note that some of the Illinois Central freight houses still exist and that there is still some heavy industry on the north side of the river.]

Kenneth Andresen provided three more views of some ships using the pier from postcard pictures.

Dennis Popiela posted
Navy Pier • Late 60s
The posting has some interesting comments.]
Chicago & North Western Historical Society posted
This is Chicago's "Navy Pier" when it really was a shipping pier. Note the tank cars along the big "boat". They got there courtesy of the C&NW which ran a line from Kinzie Street west of the north branch of the Chicago River all the way out to the pier. Isn't that a City of Chicago fire boat in the foreground?
Don Walsh Even though tank cars were smaller then, it's crazy to see how tiny they look next to the ship.
Makingsalembetter CHICAGO fire academy was located in a building at the eastern end of this pier... actually on the west end of this line of ships.... Logival for it to be moored here... I believe there were rails (two tracks - INSIDE the center of the building as well as on the outside edges that we see here.... The 'auditorium' is just out of the image on the right..... Nice pic.. Nice memory... thanks! ....
I thought this was just a cropped version of the above, but the smoke out of the stack is different.
Johnny Conlisk shared his web page
Navy Pier, possibly in the early 1960s, with 5 ocean-going ships along side. Note the skyline and the FDR Lake Shore Drive Bridge in the distance. This was just after the opening of the St Lawrence Seaway, a system of locks & canals that allowed ships from the Atlantic Ocean to go to the far reaches of the Great Lakes. Only a few years later, the advent of container shipping made it far cheaper to ship containers of goods from foreign ports to US coastal cities and on to Chicago by truck or rail. When that happened the Pier fell into disuse until the 1980s, when it was turned into an entertainment venue. It is currently one of Chicago's most popular tourist destinations. Photo: A Pictorial History of the Great Lakes - Read more about it here…/
[Lots of discussion of post port history in the comments.]

Back when boats actually used it: 1962196219631965, and (barely used) 1981.

Lou Gerard posted
Chicago & North Western train going into Navy Pier in 1975.
Chris West posted
Chicagofest, 1981 - Navy Pier
[You can see tracks are still running along the side of the pier.]
Tina Sifrer posted
Navy Pier
Chicago & North Western Historical Society posted
WE at the C&NW Historical Society archives bet that today's tourists and young people cannot believe that this is a photo of Chicago's Navy Pier (about where the wheel is today). It is a "Port of Chicago" photo taken on August 17, 1963. The SW-8 was, according to Stephen Timko, a C&NW one of a kind.
Jerry Hund posted
American Freedom Train at Chicago's Navy Pier in 1975.

More pictures of the interior thanks to Chicago Fest 1981.

During the 1970s and 1980s there was a concerted effort to move shipping and industry south to the Calumet Lake area. C&NW tracks were removed from the Ogden Slip and thus the pier. The pier has now been redeveloped a couple of times as a tourist attraction, and it has been a successful draw of tourists. Now passenger boats dock along the south side instead of freighters.

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