Edgeville Buzz

What’s In a Name? Discover the History Behind Chicago Street Names

Thorndale Avenue street sign. Credit: Jeremy Bressman

Here’s a fun time-suck for your afternoon, courtesy of the Chicago Historical Society: a searchable document listing the history behind the naming of Chicago’s streets, avenues and boulevards, from Abbott to Zion.

Half the city’s residents will be disappointed to know they live on a block memorializing some long-dead real estate developer, or his wife, daughter or friend. (Picture Trump Tower dwellers 150 years from now.) Particularly, developer John L. Cochran, who is credited with creating and naming the Edgewater community, also had a hand in selecting many of the street names you’re familiar with today.

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