Wednesday, October 4, 2017

October 4, 1982 -- Sears on State Recommended for Landmark Status

October 4, 1982 – For the second time in four years, city planners recommend landmark status for the original Sears State Street store, finding that the structure, “adds to the State Street mall’s inviting pedestrian circulation.” [Chicago Tribune, October 5, 1982] The store, originally built for Levi Z. Leiter, an early Chicago merchant, was originally recommended for landmark status in 1979, but attorneys for Sears opposed the landmark designation for the building.  It is unknown how Sears will greet the new recommendation for the 1891 building.  William McClenahan, the director of the city’s Landmarks Commission, says that the building is “an important landmark in the city and an effort to have it so designated is worth another try.”  On January 14,1997 the store finally received landmark status and rightfully so.  As the city’s website on landmarks states, “Renowned as one of the nation’s most important early examples of skeletal-frame commercial architecture, this building is discussed in every major history of American architecture.”

October 4, 1969 – At the conclusion of a march sponsored by the Students for a Democratic Society from Grant Park to the Federal Building and back in which 350 protestors demand the immediate withdrawal of all troops in Vietnam, two protestors, armed with guns, knives, and swords, are arrested in Old Town.  The cache is discovered in a camper from which the two men from California apparently are selling weapons to be used between October 8 and 11 at protests planned by the Weatherman faction of the S.D.S.  The occupants of the truck, Dennis Sleeth and Daniel Brucher, both from California, are arrested after police find a 20-gauge shotgun, 25 rounds of ammunition, a 22-caliber pistol with 58 rounds, five Samurai swords and 13 knives in sheaths.  At the same time the subversive unit of the police department raids the S.D.S. national headquarters at 1608 Madison Street and arrests Caroline Tanner of Pennsylvania for her involvement in the beating of four policemen in front of the Federal Building on September 24.

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