St. Ignatius Church

From HistoryWiki

St. Ignatius Church Soundex Code C620

Present: 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, Original: 6435 N. Sheridan Road.

Chicago, IL 60626

St. Ignatius Church was included in the 1992 Annual Fall House Tour also published in the 1997 House Tour Booklet.

Listed in: Rogers Park 2016, page 29.

The history of St. Ignatius began in the late 1880s on Chicago's West Side. There the Jesuit fathers had founded the Holy Family Parish, at one time, the largest in the United States. As the demographics of the area changed, however, fewer Catholics settled there and the Jesuits sought a new site to fulfill their dreams of expansion. Their vision included a new Catholic college and another parish.

On March 9, 1906, the Jesuits purchased a 20-acre tract of unimproved land along Lake Michigan from the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul Railroad at a cost of $161.254. The land was called Hayes Point. It was bordered by Lake Michigan on the east, Sheridan Road to the west, Pratt Avenue on the north, and Devon Avenue on the south. This is when the area was mostly open country with forests of birch trees and windswept sand dunes. The groundbreaking for the original church occurred on August 27, 1906.

The first mass at the original building was celebrated on February 24, 1907.

In reporting the sale of the lakefront property, The Catholic New World] noted that: A church will be erected at once on the site, 6435 N. Sheridan Road, and it is the intention to follow as soon as practicable with the building of a college which may in time attain the dignity of a university.

On September 16, 1917, the new (2nd) St. Ignatius Church was dedicated.

The "new" St. Ignatius Parish is located in the heart of the Rogers Park neighborhood in Chicago. From its founding in 1906 until the year 2000, St. Ignatius was staffed by the Jesuit Order. Since 2000, the parish is staffed by priests of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Until recently Saint Ignatius Church was administered by the members of the Jesuits. They had a long and rich history here. A brief sketch of which follows below: St. Ignatius Church at 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue (Loyola Avenue and Glenwood Avenue) on the north side of Chicago was founded by the Jesuits from St. Ignatius College on 12th Street (now Roosevelt Road) in Holy Family Parish.


RPWRHS photo A008-0104 shows St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, September 1972.

RPWRHS photo B012-0101 shows a young Mary Berry standing in front of the new St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue while it was under construction, circa 1916.

RPWRHS photo B012-0102 shows St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue under construction with Mary Berry in front. October 1916.

RPWRHS photo B012-0105 shows the laying of the cornerstone for the new St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, circa 1906.

RPWRHS photo B012-0107 shows the original St. Ignatius Church at 6435 N. Sheridan Road, circa 1907.

RPWRHS photo B012-0109 shows Mary Berry outside St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, after it was completed.

RPWRHS photo C036-0103 shows the construction of the Northwestern Elevated Railroad elevation of its tracks just south of what is now the Loyola Avenue Station, 1200 W. Loyola Avenue. After 1908 the Northwestern Elevated Railroad was extended to Howard Street on the tracks of the Chicago, Milwaukee & St. Paul Railroad. The elevation of the tracks began in 1914, but, due to material shortages caused by World War I, was not completed until 1921. The rear of the original St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, can be seen at the left. The Granada Theater, 6427 N. Sheridan Road, was built in this site in 1926.

RPWRHS photo L009-0125 shows the St. Ignatius Street Fair on August 25, 1984, at 6659 N. Glenwood Avenue.

RPWRHS photo L009-0331 shows St. Ignatius Street Fair, at 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue on September 25,1984.

RPWRHS photo L027-A55 shows an interior shot of St. Ignatius Church, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue. No date given.

RPWRHS photo R044-0238 shows the original St. Ignatius Church, 6435 N. Sheridan Road, circa 1910.

RPWRHS photo S013-0806 shows a front shot of the St. Ignatius Church's main entrance, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue, March 1978.

RPWRHS photo S013-2299 St. Ignatius Church, 1992 House Tour, 6559 N. Glenwood Avenue. September 1992.