The Debate Over Chicago’s Six Corners

August 27, 2014

Portage Park Six Corners

For many new Chicagoans, the Six Corners is an intersection in Wicker Park where young transplants go out on the weekends. But for the more established residents of the Windy City, the Six Corners is in Portage Park (above). Both of these are intersections with Milwaukee Avenue along with a north-south street and an east-west street. At that point though, couldn’t one could argue that with so many diagonal streets, like Elston, Archer Avenue, and Milwaukee Avenue, that Chicago has lots of “six corners”?

Apparently the term “Six Corners” does initially come from Portage Park on Chicago’s northwest side. This would be the intersection of Irving Park, Cicero and Milwaukee, the heart of a neighborhood that began in 1841 with an inn and tavern, soon after called Dickinson’s Inn. Chester Dickinson was the owner, and he later became the town’s first supervisor. The Dickinson Inn had some legendary history that range from rumors of Abraham Lincoln staying there to stories of drunken town planning. Sadly in 1929 the Dickinson Inn, then Chicago’s oldest brick building, was torn down to make way for a commercial block.

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