Pullman, South Chicago

Update: Completely new and expanded commentary and additional photographs from the vault in August of 2023.

The planned industrial suburb of Pullman, nowadays within the borders of the City of Chicago, remains one of the most important and influential of numerous communities constructed by paternalistic factory owners in the Nineteenth and early Twentieth Centuries. The town is now a National Historical Park.

In this case, it was George M. Pullman, whose pioneering work in the railroad gave his name to a famed type of sleeper car.

But the benevolence came with a price: strict obedience. The infamous Pullman Strike of 1894 was put down with incredible violence, showing that industrialists and the government would not tolerate worker organizing or unionization.

Like many planned communities in Western Civilization, there are major buildings serving as focuses of long vistas, while houses and other ancillary structures on other axes.

Rowhouses predominate, as in many cities.

The Pullman Company is long gone, but its built environment legacy is still here.

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