Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Gasometer in Blue Island

David Daruszka's comment on Scott Griffith's posting

While studying some photos of the old layout of railroads in Blue Island, I saw a picture with a gasometer in the background.

This was the Public Service Company.
Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA
Manufactured Gas Plant in Blue Island, located at approx. Ann St. & James. Long since demolished, this property was remediated in 2009 and is awaiting reuse.

Postcard from Blue Island Historical Society collection.

Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA
Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Blue Island Gas Plant (12-4-1913)

Piles of coal in the foreground power the Blue Island Gas Plant. This station was built by Sam Insull's North Shore Electric Co. and began operation on July 4, 1907. The plant was also operated by NSEC successors the Public Service Company and the Northwestern Gas Light and Coke Co.
At the time of this photo the large gasometer had a capacity of 200,000 cu. ft. The smaller gasometer, its frame visible to the right and behind the purifying and generating houses, held 50,000 cu. ft. Improvements to the plant continued, and at the time of its closure in 1928 the plant boasted a rated capacity of 4.5 million cu. ft.
Since demolished.

Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Stony Creek Spillway (8-29-1924)

Spillway lost to Cal-Sag Expansion. Manufactured Gas Plant demolished.
Ann St bridge over Stony Creek is still standing, the LAST of the bridges built by the Sanitary District of Chicago (now MWRD). Visit it today! It still leads to the old Blue Island Gas Plant site, now a barren lot.

Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Looking west from the Rock Island ROW (10-6-1914)

Digging the Cal-Sag Channel around Ann Street. The narrow body of water to the north (right) of the channel was the remnants of the Calumet Feeder. Built in the 19th C., it carried water from the Little Calumet to the Illinois and Michigan Canal, emptying north of Lemont.

Norman Rexford Flickr  CC BY-NC-SA

Manufactured gas is made from coal. You can see the industrial spur that provided the coal cars.

1938 Aerial Photo from ILHAP
Flickr from John W. Barriger III IHB Album
Bob Lalich 5y 
I believe this is looking SE toward the GT crossing in Blue Island. Track on the right is GT connection. Large Gasholder in the distance was located between B&OCT and IHB, next to B&OCT Chicago Heights branch. The small gasholder is seen in photos IHB 33 and 35.
[The comments on this photo discusses another one closer to Clearing Yard.]

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