From the President

Vol. XVII No. 1 - SPRING 2006

By: Betty Mayian

Greetings, subscribers and members and those who will be. The Edgewater Historical Society Garden is starting to come alive with another look to our Victorian Garden. It is so impressive that we have been asked to let it be used as a backdrop for a Wedding Party Photo Shoot. It is a real tribute to Sandra Remis and her loyal group of helpers. Thanks, Sandee, and also to Elisabeth Szegho.

I can’t get over our speakers this year. We have been so fortunate to have had Kathy Gemperle in January, sharing the History of Edgewater with us. In February, we celebrated Black History Month with Pam Cash, Vice President of Multi-Media Resources at Johnson Publishing Co. She spent some real quality time with us on the coldest day of our Winter. Thank you, Pam. Pam also donated some books to us and some are in the museum for sale at a discount to the public. March brought Patrick T. Reardon, writer at the Chicago Tribune Sunday Magazine. He focused on his “Alleys Alive” articles and the many things that these alleys provide us in Chicago (home of the most and the longest alleys in the nation/world).

Yes, these speakers have been fantastic, and April should be no exception to this rule. At 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 22nd, Joseph M Casey III, author of “Magnolia Route,” will speak to us about the true history of the link between the Edgewater Beach Hotel in Chicago and the Edgewater Gulf Hotel in Gulfport, Mississippi. Part of the story is how the founders and builders of that Gulfport hotel came to drive the route from Chicago to the Gulf through the highway known as the Magnolia Route. Then he will tell his story of his trip back here from his hurricane Katrina-ravaged home, driving his old Jaguar car. They call him “Jaguar Joe.” See Kathy Gemperle’s story about Mr. Casey.

A special add-on request is making April a bargain month for you. From 6:45 to 7:45 p.m. on Friday night, April 28th, there will be an encore performance by the “Those Were The Days Radio Players” Chicago North Division.

They have held auditions for a number of men and women, and their ranks have grown. Come watch and be entertained by comedy from the Golden Age of Radio, acted out and using sound effects that reflected the actual programs that your parents, grandparents and maybe you listened to all those years ago.

Nostalgia and good fun will be had by all. The time slot for the show is new and we are checking out how it plays and if we should schedule more for the evenings. Our other three Radio Shows for 2006 will be at 2 p.m. on various Saturdays. Let us know what you think.

May will have another author, Karen Kruse of “A Chicago Firehouse, Stories of Wrigleyville’s Engine 78.” She will talk about her memories of the firehouse she lived by and loved. This will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night, May 23rd. Trust me, there is something for everyone and we have it for you every month. Join us and get the latest information and help us choose the type of speakers you would like to see here. This is your own local museum and we want this to reflect the community it represents. The best way to join, if you haven’t already, is by using the membership form within the newsletter. We are still the “Best Bargain in Edgewater.”

A special thank you to Wally Bradford for his many years of service on the Edgewater Historical Society Board of Directors. Wally co chaired the Board Development Committee with Reggie Griffin. We thank him for his efforts in recruiting new board members.

Wally and his wife Joan were helpful in all our various activities. They were involved in our annual home tours and fundraisers. To our regret Wally has chosen to retire from the board this year, but he and Joan have promised to continue to be active with the Historical Society, so they will still be familiar faces at our events.

We are so happy to report that our 2006 fundraising event, “Crossroads: The trails, roads and streets of Edgewater” was a great success. It was held at Leonardo’s Ristorante on North Clark Street. We mingled, we ate, we drank, we bid, we drank and we re-bid on the elusive treasures we most wanted.

A special thank you to the team of volunteers who worked on the Silent Auction. Sam Fazio headed up the group and kept track of everything. It was truly amazing!

The tables were filled with brightly colored Explorers and Settlers Quizzes. The Winner of the Explorer’s quiz was Helen Sclair. The winner of the Settlers quiz was Thom Greene. There were five door prizes!

For those of you who were absent, you missed a great time and we expect to see you in 2007.