Chapter 2 of
The Coolest Spot in Chicago:
A History of Green Mill Gardens and the Beginnings of Uptown
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Before delving deeper into the various stories about the Green Mill, let’s try piecing together same basic facts about the place: Where exactly was it during its early years? And how did that change as time went on? And who owned it?
What follows is a chronological outline of key moments … supported with cartographic and photographic evidence … and sprinkled with some puzzles and unanswered questions. It’s a tangled and complicated history.
October 8, 1889: Charles E. “Pop” Morse purchases three vacant lots at the northwest corner of Lawrence Avenue and Evanston Avenue (now called Broadway) for $4,420, or $150,000 in today’s dollars.1
READ MORE about Pop Morse in Chapter 1.
May 13, 1897: A building permit is issued for a two-story frame building containing a store and residential flats at 2059 Evanston Avenue.2
1898: The Chicago city directory lists Charles E. Morse as the owner of a saloon at 2059 Evanston Avenue.
March 10, 1904: Morse purchases the two lots immediately north of the three lots he already owned, paying $5,000 (or $167,000 adjusted for inflation).3
November 12, 1908: Morse dies.4 His estate is inherited by his daughter, Catherine Hoffman.5
1909: Catherine’s husband, Charles Hoffman, takes over the Morse saloon, running it with his brother Frank. The 1909 city directory calls it the Hoffman Bros. saloon.
Charles Hoffman opens a small beer garden on the property, adding a frame pavilion for outdoor entertainment.6 The exact location of this pavilion is unknown, but it seems likely it was on the land that the Hoffmans owned just north of their saloon along Broadway.
Meanwhile, Chicago’s addresses are renumbered, and the saloon’s new street number is 4800.
September 22, 1910: The Chicago Daily Tribune reports that Tom Chamales is leasing the property from the Hoffmans. It’s a 15-year-lease, with an aggregate rent of $158,000 (around $5 million in today’s money). As part of the deal, Chamales is required to make improvements on the property worth at least $30,000 within six months. He also purchases the stock and fixtures of the Morse roadhouse for $20,000.7
1911–1914: The establishment is listed in city directories as the saloon of Thomas Chamales at 4800 Evanston Avenue. At the same time, newspaper advertisements call it Morse’s Cafe & Garden.8 Even though Pop Morse is no longer alive, Chamales seems to understand the value of the Pop Morse name.
February 28, 1913: Chamales signs a new lease with the Hoffmans, which runs from March 1, 1913, to April 30, 1938.9
May 23–September 12, 1913: In a series of transactions, Charles Hoffman acquires the land west of the roadhouse property, extending over to Magnolia Avenue.10
August 15, 1913: Evanston Avenue is renamed Broadway.11
January 27, 1914: Chamales signs an agreement with John F. Butterly, who has been running a saloon in a leased building at 1216–1218 West Lawrence Avenue, west of the Morse roadhouse. Chamales pays Butterly $4,500 to take over his lease, while promising to give Butterly a space within the new Green Mill Gardens building.
As part of the deal, Butterly will move his saloon to the north wing of Chamales’s new building along Broadway.12
February 16, 1914: The city issues a building permit to construct Green Mill Gardens, a two-story brick restaurant building 110 feet wide along Lawrence Avenue and 138 feet long along Broadway.
The architect is C.S. Michaelson.13 Born in Chicago, Christian S. Michaelsen (1888–1960) is the son of a Norwegian sea captain.
Six years after designing Green Mill Gardens, he would form a partnership with Sigurd A. Rognstad. Together, they design a number of iconic Chicago buildings, including the Garfield Park Fieldhouse, known as the “Gold Dome Building,” the North Side Auditorium (which now houses the Metro concert venue), and a few of Chinatown’s most distinctive structures.14
Catherine Hoffman is listed as the property owner on the building permit. Although Catherine and her husband still own the land, it’s Chamales who constructs the building on it. He later says he spends $250,000 on the construction (the equivalent of $7.5 million in today’s money). The Hoffmans say that their agreement with Chamales is that they will own the buildings after his lease ends in 1938.
The contractor is O.W. Rosenthal & Co., a company run by Oscar W. Rosenthal and Joseph B. Cornell.
March 2, 1914: The Chicago City Council votes to allow Chamales to construct a platform inside the new building.15
This City Council document from the Illinois Regional Archives Depository at Northeastern Illinois University’s library tantalizingly mentions “plans on file in the office of the Commissioner of Buildings.”
Does the city government still have plans for this building—or plans for any of the countless other Chicago buildings that history buffs and architecture fans would love to see? I emailed Tim Samuelson, the city’s cultural historian emeritus, about this. He replied:
“Sad to say, there are no known archives of the architectural firms that worked on the Green Mill’s building and its alterations over time, and the City of Chicago does not retain any plans or detailed data on the building and permitted changes. Sadly, the Building Department used to have microfilm records that gave the inspector’s site reports, and more detailed info on the designers and contractors for the ‘Sundry’ permits. As far as I can tell after years of repeated inquiries (and pleadings), I’ve come to the sad conclusion that they likely were discarded long ago.”16
That’s discouraging, to say the least. But not surprising. A lot of government documents have been thrown out or lost over the years. I still hold out hope that these documents might be found someday.
March 21, 1914: The New York Clipper, an entertainment newspaper, reports: “Tom Chamales is re-building Pop Morse’s, and will have one of the best cafes in Chicago, for the North Side. It will also be re-named and will be known as the ‘Red Mill.’”17
Was the Clipper mistaken about the name? Or did Chamales originally plan to call it the Red Mill before changing his mind and settling on green as the color? The name was clearly an allusion to the famous Moulin Rouge, which opened in Paris in 1899. Moulin Rouge literally means “red mill.”
(In 1917, three years after Green Mill Gardens opened, a different venue called the Moulin Rouge would open half a mile away—at Clark Street and Lawrence Avenue. But that place would change its name after just one year, becoming Rainbo Gardens.)
June 13, 1914: An advertisement in the Chicago Examiner says that the Green Mill Sunken Gardens and a restaurant within it called the “Della Robbia” Room are opening tonight. 18
June 26, 1914: An advertisement in the Chicago Daily Tribune says that tonight is actually the opening night of the “Green Mill” Sunken Gardens. As the illustration shows, the gardens west of the building extend all the way over to the next street, Magnolia Avenue, covering the land that Charles Hoffman acquired a year earlier. 19
Note how the picture in the Tribune ad shows letters saying “GREEN MILL GARDENS” on the roof, while the Examiner’s ad shows “GREEN MILL SUNKEN GARDENS.” Did either version of the sign like this exist, or was this artistic embellishment? Note that although the “sunken” name appears in some ads, the place is usually called Green Mill Gardens in sources such as phone books.
Both pictures show a big windmill on the roof near the corner of Broadway and Lawrence. It’s unknown how long this windmill lasted, or why it was eventually removed.
I’ve found two postcard images that other people have posted online, showing Green Mill Gardens from this era.
The Jazz Age Chicago blog credits this one to E.C. Kropp Co.
This one is from Chuckman’s Photos on WordPress: Chicago Nostalgia and Memorabilia.
The layout of the rooms inside the building is unknown. Where exactly was the Della Robbia Room? And what was in the space near the corner of Broadway and Lawrence, where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today?
Tim Samuelson told me that his research indicates that the “interior spaces on the first floor included large rooms that allowed the Green Mill to operate during the winter when the rear beer garden could not be used.”
One advertisement says: “Cool weather accommodations for all in the beautiful Della Robbia room.” While this room is promoted as dining area, Green Mill Gardens begins advertising it in in October as a space for “Public Dancing.”
In November, the indoor space is advertised as the “Green Mill Winter Gardens,” featuring public dancing every evening, along with exhibitions of the latest society dancers, plus afternoon teas (with free instruction) on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays.20
The business doesn’t use the “Della Robbia Room” branding for very long; after 1914, the phrase shows up in only one ad, from 1918.21
July 1914: Green Mill Garden is listed in the Chicago telephone directory at 4800 Broadway. Two phone numbers are listed: Edgewater 8240 and Ravenswood 3010.
1915: The city directory lists the saloon of Thomas Chamales at 4800 Broadway. Is this a listing for the overall Green Mill Gardens complex? Or is it referring to a saloon within the complex? That isn’t clear. The directory does not seem to include any listing under the name Green Mill Gardens.
Meanwhile, John F. Butterly’s saloon is listed at 4812 Broadway, in the north wing of the same building.
1917: The address of Chamales’s saloon now appears as 4802 Broadway in the city directory—with a second entrance at 1210 Lawrence Avenue. His brother William is listed as the manager.
1919–20: The 18th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is ratified on January 16, 1919, prohibiting “the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors” starting one year later. On July 1, the Wartime Prohibition Act takes effect, outlawing the sale of beverages containing more than 2.75 percent alcohol. Prohibition goes into full effect on January 17, 1920.
1920: Green Mill Gardens is listed at 4800 Broadway in the Chicago phone book, with an office, a dining room, and a buffet, all at that address.
By this time, as Prohibition takes effect nationwide, John F. Butterly has closed his saloon at 4812 North Broadway. He moves to Los Angeles.22
Tribune reporter James Doherty visits the Green Mill in 1920 with an editor (according to a story Doherty would write three decades later). They’re shocked when they get a bill for $40—an exorbitant price for the soft drinks and ice they’d ordered. Doherty refuses to pay, and then a cop arrives and arrests him.
A week later, Doherty is summoned to sit down with mobster Ted Newberry at the Green Mill. Newberry apologizes to Doherty for the way he’d been treated by the Green Mill’s manager and head waiter. “I gave them both a damn good beating,” he says.
This episode convinces Doherty that Newberry—a member of the North Side gang that will fight against Al Capone in the coming years—is “one of the owners of the Green Mill.”23
Is Doherty’s story enough reason for us to reach the same conclusion about Newberry’s role at the Green Mill? I haven’t found further evidence to back it up. But Doherty did appear to be a knowledgeable journalist who was on the scene during the Prohibition Era.
August 18, 1921: The city issues a building permit to construct an addition to the Green Mill Gardens building, filling in the 79-by-30-foot courtyard space facing Broadway between the building’s two wings. Chamales is listed as the owner. The architect’s name appears to be D.S. Klaplin, but it’s actually David Saul Klafter, according to a Tribune story.
The Tribune describes this as a 150-by-50-foot addition, but that’s clearly incorrect—the entire complex is less than 150 feet wide. Noting that the new construction will include an “elaborate new entrance to the gardens,” the Tribune reports: “The café will be enlarged 50×100. The present stage will be wrecked and a new one will be built on the north line of the building. The café seating capacity will be increased by nearly a thousand. The outdoor garden also is being altered.”24
March 13, 1922: The construction project is completed. According to a report by the Commission on Chicago Landmarks, “the Green Mill’s courtyard facing Broadway was filled in with a two-story building connecting the north and south buildings. The addition contained offices, shops, a year-round ballroom, and restaurant, but within a year the Green Mill Gardens had closed.”25
June 1922: The Chicago phone book lists two businesses across the street with “Green Mill” in their name: Green Mill Fruit & Vegetable House at 4807 Broadway and the Green Mill Smoke Shop, selling cigars at 4809 Broadway.
July 25, 1922: Catherine and Charles Hoffman sign a warranty deed, turning over a one-half share of their ownership of all their properties at this site to Otto L. Annoreno for $10.26
What exactly is a warranty deed? As a glossary from Cook County’s recordings division explains, a warranty deed conveys a property’s ownership from one party (known as the grantor) to another party (the grantee). The grantor gives assurances that the property has a “good and unencumbered title,” without any liens against it.
Annoreno is a Sicilian immigrant27 who has just run, unsuccessfully, as a Republican candidate for the Cook County board.28 He’s vice president of the F.E. Nellis company of commission merchants,29 serving as a vice president at the Italian Chamber of Commerce of Chicago.30 And he owns Otto Annoreno & Company, large receivers and distributors of fruits and vegetables.31
August 5, 1922: As federal authorities sue Green Mill Gardens for allegedly violating Prohibition laws, Chamales and his business associates submit a court document describing the space occupied by Green Mill Gardens.
They say that Green Mill Gardens includes the first floor of 4806 Broadway, as well as the “summer gardens” in the building’s rear. It also includes “the two-story brick building with the exception of the front rooms thereof, facing said Broadway and Lawrence, which excepted rooms are forty feet in length, measuring from said Broadway and Lawrence Avenue.”
In other words, the spaces facing Broadway and Lawrence—extending back 40 feet from the sidewalk—were not part of Chamales’s Green Mill Gardens business, other than the venue’s entrance at 4806. These spaces were occupied by other businesses. The Green Mill Gardens entertainment space was, therefore, back in the northwest corner of the building’s first floor.32
Looking at the building’s overall dimensions and subtracting 40, the space would have been approximately 98 by 70 feet. This description does not make it clear how tall this space was, but newspaper and magazine articles refer to a space that was two stories high, with balconies and stairs.
It looks like that space was part of the original 1914 building, standing behind the portions that were added in 1921 and 1922, according to diagrams of the building and property.
But wait …
This legal description of Green Mill Gardens doesn’t quite match what’s listed at the time in phone books. The Chicago telephone directory shows 4800 as the address for Green Mill Gardens’ office, buffet, and dining room—the same as it has been for the past few years.
Is there, in fact, a restaurant in that part of the building in 1922? Or is the phone book simply using a different street number than the actual location of the entrance at 4806, perhaps as a holdover from older phone directory listings? That isn’t clear.
(This federal lawsuit against Green Mill Gardens for allegedly violating Prohibition laws will be dismissed after the venue’s manager, Henry Horn, is found not guilty in a criminal trial.)
September 19, 1922: The Hoffmans sign another warranty deed, turning over the other half of their properties to Annoreno for another $10.33
Did any other money change hands, beyond the nominal fees of $10 on each of these transactions? If so, the county’s property records don’t say so. The Hoffmans later allege that they received no “consideration”—the legal term for the value that changes hands as part of an agreement between two or more parties. They say these transactions were “only executed by reason of the threats, intimidations and misrepresentations.”
The Hoffmans deny that they ever intended to convey the properties to Annoreno. They say they were merely giving him a deed as a security for money he was advancing to them, and that they didn’t realize they were losing control of the property.
In a legal filing, Charles and Catherine Hoffman will claim that Annoreno and Chamales “were for many years close friends, and were business partners in various enterprises.” The Hoffmans allege that these two men “conspired and confederated together to discourage” the Hoffmans about the value of their real estate, “with the intent … to eventually get the possession and ownership … and to divest these defendants wholly or in part of the title.”34
Chamales denies that any of this is true. Even the story that he’s Annoreno’s longtime friend and business partner is false, Chamales says. And he “denies that he entered into any scheme with … Annoreno” to cheat the Hoffmans.35
September 30, 1922: Now that Annoreno has full ownership of the properties, he signs a warranty deed, conveying a half-ownership to Tom Chamales “for and in consideration of the sum of $10, in hand paid.” 36
1923: The city directory lists Green Mill Gardens restaurant, owned by Tom Chamales, at 4800 Broadway. But on the page for restaurants, it’s listed with an address of 4804.
A curious thing has happened since the beginning of Prohibition. Saloons have disappeared from the city directories and telephone books, of course. The 1916 city directory had more than 11 pages filled with a list of Chicago saloons—roughly 7,000 of them. The 1923 city directory lists zero.
But there’s a new sort of business, filling more than five pages in the 1923 directory: “Soft Drinks—Retail.” The pages list roughly 4,400 of these soft drink joints, including Green Mill Gardens.
May 7, 1923: Tom Chamales and his wife, together with Otto L. Annoreno and his wife, take out a trust deed on the land to secure a $200,000 loan from Chicago Title and Trust Company (or $3.5 million in today’s money).
May 20, 1923: The Tribune reports that the Balaban & Katz company plans to build “a gigantic … moving picture playhouse” in an L shape north and west of the Green Mill Gardens building.
According to the Tribune, Tom Chamales and Otto Annoreno sell a portion of their land to Balaban & Katz for $400,000, or $7 million in today’s money. (Cook County’s tract book lists the warranty deed as a deal between Tom Chamales and his wife et al as the grantors and Barney Balaban et al as the grantees.)37
The Hoffmans later allege that Chamales and Annoreno owe them “a very large sum … from the sale of said property.”38
The land purchased by Balaban (shown in pink on the above map) cuts across the county’s lot lines.
It encompasses the entire western area where Green Mill Gardens’ outdoor space was located, as well as a 10-foot-wide slice of the property under the building’s north end. Balaban buys the west 48 feet of the lots along Broadway, while Chamales and Annoreno retain ownership of the east 110 feet of those lots (shown in green on the map).
Balaban et al buy an L-shaped chunk of the lot at the northeast corner of the Green Mill Gardens building. (It’s labeled “2” on the map. Confusingly, it’s one of two lots called “Lot 2,” the result of an earlier resubdivision.) Chamales and Annoreno retain ownership of this lot’s southeast corner, a piece that’s 110 feet by 15 feet.
The small chunk of property just west of that lot (labeled “Q” on the map) had been an alley. But the City Council passed an ordinance vacating it on April 5, 1923—the month before this land deal.
Construction begins soon the Uptown Theatre, taking over the space once occupied by the garden of Green Mill Gardens.
Michael Medina (a Chicagoan with encyclopedic knowledge of local history who runs the terrific Twitter account @mckiesdjlounge) posted these remarkable photos showing the construction of the Uptown Theatre. This picture shows the old garden area behind the Green Mill building being prepared for the project. An outdoor stage is visible along Magnolia Avenue.
In this picture, looking west from Broadway across the land where the Uptown Theatre would be constructed, the northern wall of the Green Mill Gardens building is visible to the left, showing how a small portion of the structure had been demolished to make room for the theater. As a result, the length of the Green Mill Gardens building’s frontage on Broadway is reduced. This change probably reduces the size of the venue space in the building’s northwest corner.
June 1923: Tom Chamales and his brother William are listed in the Chicago phone book with a real estate office at 4802 Broadway, apparently on the second floor.
July 14, 1923: The Chicago Daily News reports that former Green Mill Gardens manager Henry Horn—recently acquitted of federal criminal charges that he’d illegally sold alcohol—is reopening the venue under a new name, the Montmartre Cafe, on July 20. It’s not clear exactly when Green Mill Gardens had closed.39
Like the Green Mill name, the Montmartre moniker refers to Paris. The Montmartre neighborhood is adjacent to the Moulin Rouge cabaret. Both names clearly were an attempt to evoke a sense of Parisian nightlife in Chicago.
November 1923: The Montmartre Cafe appears in the phone book, listed at 4806 Broadway. At the same time, the Green Mill Gardens office and buffet are still listed at 4800 Broadway, as they had been earlier, but there’s no longer a listing for a Green Mill Gardens “dining room.”
One of the phone numbers listed for the Montmartre (EDG wtr-0024) is also the phone number for the Green Mill Gardens office. Was the Montmartre occupying the space that the phone book previously identified as the Green Mill Gardens “dining room”? Was there a separate buffet area, still operating under the Green Mill Gardens name?
These listings remain the same when the next phone book is published, in June 1924.
November 1924: Green Mill Gardens is not listed in the new Chicago phone book. It appears that there’s no longer a business operating under that name. Meanwhile, the Montmartre Cafe is still listed at 4806 Broadway. These phone book listings remain the same through mid-1926.
August 18, 1925: The Uptown Theatre opens.40
The marquee boasts: “An acre of seats in a magic city.” With 4,381 seats, it’s the world’s largest theater at the time, a distinction it holds until New York City’s 6,500-seat Radio City Music Hall opens seven years later.
The above close-up of a Chicago Daily Tribune photo from the theater’s opening week shows the entrance of the Montmartre Cafe, with a nearby sign for Yellow Cabs. A hat shop is visible just north of the Montmartre, and a sign in the window south of the cafe says “Duffy’s.” Upstairs, the words “REAL ESTATE” appear to be painted on an office window. See the full Tribune photo in a “Vintage Chicago Tribune” article.
In two other photos from 1925, awnings are visible around the corner on Lawrence Avenue, saying “DRUG STORE” and “ICE CREAM.” And a sign is above the sidewalk at 4802 North Broadway saying “JEWELER.” In the above photo, the jewelry shop also has an awning with a picture of a diamond ring and the word “CASH.” Did it also function like a pawn shop?
The frame for what looks like a billboard is on the roof (at the corner spot where the windmill used to be), but there was no billboard at the time this photo was taken.
November 20, 1925: A Fanny May Candy Shop opens in a new 25-foot-wide building sandwiched between the Green Mill Gardens structure and the Uptown Theatre.41
This “ornate, two-story terra cotta commercial building … was constructed to fill the space between the demolished portion of the Green Mill Building and the new theater,” according to the Commission on Chicago Landmarks.
This small Spanish Baroque Revival structure was designed by Rapp & Rapp, the same architects who’d designed the theater next door.42 (In more recent years, it was occupied by Shake Rattle & Read, and it is now the Provisions Uptown liquor store.)
June 4, 1926: United States district judge Adam C. Cliffe issues a permanent injunction, shutting down the Montmartre Cafe for violating Prohibition laws.
The decree notes that the club was “the first floor, i.e., the ground floor of the building located at 4806 Broadway.”43 During this prosecution, Chamales and Annoreno acknowledge that they’re the owners and proprietors of the business. 44
November 1926: The Montmartre Cafe is no longer listed in the phone book, but there’s now a place called the New Green Mill Cafe at 4806 Broadway. The Daily News reports: “The new Green Mill cafe … will blossom forth with a lavish production Wednesday evening, Nov. 17, featuring Joe Lewis, who reigns as the king of jesters, with a strong supporting cast.”45
November 1927: Joe E. Lewis ends his gig at the Green Mill, and begins performing instead at the Rendezvous Cafe at Diversey Avenue and Clark Street. Soon afterward, Lewis is stabbed and beaten at his hotel room on November 8.
Before he was attacked, Lewis had told Chicago police Captain Joseph Goldberg that he was being threatened by Vincent Gebardi, a.k.a. “Machine Gun” Jack McGurn, a member of Al Capone’s mob. “The way Lewis put it was that McGurn had an interest in the Green Mill and was going to take him for a ride if he went to the other cafe,” Goldberg tells the Tribune.
But the Green Mill’s owner at this time, Danny Cohen, insists: “McGurn hasn’t a nickel in my place. If he went after Lewis, it wasn’t on our account. McGurn is a customer of the Green Mill, but that’s all.”
Almost a century later, the story that McGurn was part owner of the Green Mill persists. (Some people even say that McGurn’s boss, Al Capone, was himself the Green Mill’s owner.)
There may have been some truth to Lewis’s suspicions about McGurn, but the facts are in dispute. In a 2012 biography of McGurn, Deadly Valentines, author Jeffrey Gusfield concludes that the story of McGurn’s ownership is “patently untrue.”46
On the other hand, the Green Mill’s current owner, Dave Jemilo, told me in 2020 that he believes the story about McGurn’s ownership, based on what he heard from former owner Steve Brend and others. Here’s what Jemilo said:
“That’s absolutely true. Machine Gun Jack McGurn had a 25 percent interest in it. … McGurn was Al Capone’s guy. … The mobsters were able to get liquor into the joint, because the Chamales brothers didn’t want anything to do with it. So those Chamales brothers gave him like a management contract. … When they say he owned 25 percent, it’s kind of like—I don’t know how much you know about how bars work and stuff, but a lot of people say, ‘I own that bar,’ and they don’t really own it. They have a management contract to run it. But the liquor license isn’t in their name. You know what I mean? That’s apparently—from what I understand—the Chamales brothers still owned it, but let those guys run it. So when they say they own it, it’s kind of true and kind of not.”
It’s not clear if the Green Mill stays open after Lewis’s departure, or for how long.
A phone book published in November 1927 appears to have no listings for the Green Mill—other than the Green Mill Cigar Shop, across the street at 4809 Broadway, and a place called the Green Mill Lunch Room in a different part of the city, 638 North State Street.
1928: A reverse street directory published by R.L. Polk & Co. lists all of the businesses occupying spaces in the building. At this time, there’s no business called the Green Mill or anything similar, and no entertainment venue in the building.
4800: Frank Pendergast and M.B. Siegel Inc., cigars
4802: “Wolfes’ Jewel Shop Inc.” Later newspaper reports said this store was on the ground floor, so it seemed to cover at least some of the space where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today. Harry Iglow, who lived at 821 West Sunnyside Avenue (five blocks away), owned a small chain of stores called Wolf’s Jewelry. Court records identify Iglow as a tenant with space in the Green Mill Gardens building.47
4802: This street number is also listed for “Green Mill Bldg,” apparently referring to the entrance for second-floor tenants, which are listed under seven “Rooms.”
Room 1: Eva Conheim, physician; Herbert Rattner, physician; S.L. Rubens, dentist; Edw. Sager, physician. Room 2: Vacant. Room 3: Knipp & Shapiro, real estate. Room 4: Tom and William Chamalas [sic]. Room 5: C.F. Gustafson, tailor. Room 6: Vollrath Dancing School. Room 7: Gypsy Tea Cup Inn restaurant.
4804: Harrison’s Orange Huts Inc.
4806: Middlewest Photomaton photos.
4808: Riviera Frock Shop.
4810: Mrs. Brauer Birdie, milliner.
4812 (in the adjacent building): Fanny May Candy Shops.
The directory doesn’t list any addresses on the building’s south side, along Lawrence Avenue between Broadway and Magnolia.48
1928: The Sanborn Map Company publishes an atlas of fire-insurance maps of the Uptown neighborhood, showing this diagram of the Green Mill Gardens Building and the Uptown Theatre, and the narrow building sandwiched between them at 4812 North Broadway.
The copy I saw (at the Illinois Regional Archives Depository at NEIU) has a copyright renewal notice from 1956 pasted onto the title page, and it includes “corrections” (updated portions of maps, reflecting changes to buildings) up through 1972. However, it isn’t known when the various corrections were pasted onto the maps, or how complete those changes were.
So, it’s hard to say precisely what year this map shows, as far as how the Green Mill building was configured. You can see two or more places where paper was pasted onto the map, with slightly different shades of pink.
Note that the map shows an L-shaped balcony in the northwest part of the building—the cabaret space, which is roughly 90 by 71 feet, according to the map’s scale. The 25-foot-wide space at 4806 North Broadway is labeled “ENT.,” apparently an abbreviation for “entrance.”
The building’s southeast corner appears to be configured a bit different from how it’s set up today. There’s a small store at the corner, roughly the same size as the restaurant space that exists today, occupied by Broadway Grill & Chicken.
But the area where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today is split up into two storefronts in this map: one with an entrance at 4802 North Broadway, and another one with an address shown as 1208 West Lawrence. The map seems to shows a wall dividing these spaces.
If that’s indeed what the map means, then it seems like this diagram wasn’t “corrected” to show the building as it looked in 1972. That back area toward the rear of 4802 is where the Green Mill’s stage has been located for a very long time. My guess is that the corrections pasted onto this map may have shown how the building was arranged at some point in the 1930s.
In this diagram, I added lines approximating the various portions of the Green Mill Gardens complex—and showing how it changed over the years.
September 1, 1928: General Outdoor Advertising Company signs a five-year lease with Tom Chamales, allowing the company to use “the entire roof of the building” as a location for billboards in exchange for a monthly rent of $250. “Tenant may erect, place and maintain advertising sign structures on the said roof and post, paint, illuminate and/or maintain advertisements on said structures.”49
October 10, 1928: Otto Annoreno signs a warranty deed, conveying his half-ownership of the property to Catherine Hoffman for $10.50 On the same day, Catherine and her husband take out a trust deed on the property to secure a $168,000 loan from Chicago Title and Trust Company (nearly $3 million in today’s money).
November 1928: The phone book lists Ye Old Green Mill Cafe at 4806 Broadway. There’s also a business in the same building called the Green Mill Beauty Shoppe at 4802 Broadway. These listings remain the same through 1929.
December 29, 1928: Writing in the Chicagoan magazine, Francis C. Coughlin describes the Green Mill’s space at 4806 Broadway:
A tall room done in the Aztec (or is it Inca?) manner with two guardian Indians on illuminated glass flanking the orchestra platform, a double stair down either side of the stage, ceiling and walls in red and yellow, a populous balcony on three sides, and brisk tables in military formation around the central dance floor—such is the Green Mill. A cross between dance hall and night club, and a rallying place for dancing couples who would rather dance than eat and—one would imagine to the chagrin of a club management—probably do.
This article is headlined “Adventures in Insomnia: Those Wilson Avenue Hells.”
Noting that the venue’s capacity is 785, it refers to it simply as “the Green Mill.” The Chicagoan continues using that phrasing in entertainment listings and other articles about the venue over the next two years.51
April 29, 1929: Tom Chamales files a lawsuit against Catherine Hoffman, her husband, and other parties, asking the Cook County Circuit Court to partition and divide up the property—so that Chamales and the Hoffmans would no longer share ownership of it.52
Chamales is essentially seeking the real estate equivalent of a divorce.
The Hoffmans respond with allegations of fraud against Chamales and Otto Annoreno.
Summer 1929: The phone book lists Wolf’s Jewel Shops Inc. at 4802 North Broadway. Wolf’s Jewel Shops Inc. also has locations at 4118 West Madison Street and 1007 East 63rd Street.
September 11, 1929: New owners Leonard Leon and Leon Sweitzer reopen the Green Mill.53 (It’s not clear when it had closed.)
December 12, 1929: The Daily Times reports that Texas Guinan, a popular nightclub hostess in New York, “has purchased the Green Mill cabaret” and will begin performing there on December 20.54
According to later reports, Guinan was actually leasing the venue from Leon and Sweitzer.
March 23, 1930: During a performance by Guinan, her manager, Harry Voiler, allegedly shoots and wounds Leon Sweitzer, who was trying to collect rent from him.
When Sweitzer describes the incident, he says that he walked “upstairs to the offices on the mezzanine floor.”55
The Tribune reports that he “ran down a stairway from a balcony pursued by two men shooting at him.” Almost as soon as the police arrive at the shooting scene, city officials shut down the Green Mill.56
May 2, 1930: Unable to pay back the $200,000 loan to Chicago Title and Trust Company, Chamales borrows more money, taking out “two extension coupons of $7,000 each” to cover the interest payments that are due. The due date for the $200,000 (plus interest) is extended until May 3, 1931.57
Summer 1930: The Green Mill is not listed in the new Chicago phone book.
But there is now a proliferation of businesses in various parts of Chicago using the Green Mill name: Green Mill Beauty Shoppe, 4802 North Broadway; Green Mill Cigar Shop, 4525 North Clifton Avenue; Green Mill Fruit Store, 1208 West Lawrence Avenue; the Green Mill Hotel, 518 North Green Street; and the Green Mill Lunch Room, 638 North State Street.
October 18, 1930: An ad in the Daily Times announces the opening tonight of the Lincoln Tavern Town Club, “formerly the Green Mill Cafe,” at Broadway and Lawrence, under the “Personal Management” of Jack Huff.58
Winter 1930: The Lincoln Tavern Town Club is listed in the phone book at 4806 Broadway. This listing remains the same through 1931.
April 4, 1931: The Daily Times reports that the Lincoln Tavern Town Club, “dark for the last couple of weeks,” has moved to Dempster Road in Morton Grove, where the name is shortened to “Lincoln Tavern.”59
May 23, 1931: The Tribune reports that Walgreens has signed a 10-year lease for a 2,200-square-foot space in the building’s corner at Broadway and Lawrence Avenue.60 This seems to be the same space that the Broadway Drug Company had previously occupied, as late as 1930.61
The exact layout of the Walgreens space is unclear, but if that square footage is correct, it was larger than the restaurant that currently occupies the corner, Broadway Grill & Chicken. Did the Walgreens extend into the space where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today?
Wolf’s Jewelry apparently continued to occupy 4802 North Broadway, immediately north of the Walgreens. So, my best guess is that the Walgreens was L-shaped, taking in the rear area of where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today, and maybe the space where Carmela’s Taqueria is now at the building’s southwest corner, 1206 West Lawrence Avenue. An arrangement like that could have covered 2,200 square feet.
Summer 1931: Walgreen Drug Stores is listed in the phone book at 4800 Broadway.
November 15, 1931: The Tribune reports that new Green Mill Ballroom, run by Earl J.F. Stein, is leasing “the old Green Mill Garden.”
The newspaper adds: “The old cabaret floor is being ripped up and the establishment is being converted into a ballroom.” It’s not clear exactly what that means, but it appears that it was converted from a two-story-high space into a ballroom that was just on the second floor. The ballroom opens in late November.62
March 24, 1932: Judge Stanley H. Klarkowsi rules that Chamales and the Hoffmans each own half of the Green Mill Gardens property, but both parties owe large debts on it. He orders that “a division and partition of all of the said premises be made.” 63
Summer 1932: The Green Mill Ballroom is listed in the phone book at 4806 Broadway.
June 30, 1932: The Illinois Supreme Court dismisses the Hoffmans’ appeal of Judge Klarkowsi’s ruling. The Hoffmans complain that the local court never even considered their allegations of fraud.64
December 27, 1932: The property is sold at a public auction, going to the highest bidder, Chicago City Bank and Trust Company as Trustees under Trust No. 1157, for $300,000 (the equivalent of $6.6 million in today’s money).65
Trusts obscure the identity of the people who own a property, but the Tribune later reports that John L. Patten becomes the new owner as a result of this sale.
Patten is the son of the late James A. Patten, a Chicago Board of Trade member known as the “wheat king,” who’d left an estate of $18 million when he died. Earlier in 1932, the younger Patten made news when he “let it be known that he is retiring from business,” even though he was only 36 years old.66
In spite of this court-ordered property sale, Tom Chamales somehow manages to stay involved in his old building, although the details about this are unclear.
April 26, 1933: A fire causes a reported $100,000 damage ($2.3 million in today’s money) to the Green Mill Gardens Building.
Reports about the fire list the businesses occupying the building: Walgreens, 4800 North Broadway (where the fire reportedly began); Wolf (or Wolff) Jewelry, 4802; the Stop and Eat restaurant, 4804; the Green Mill restaurant, 4806; a vacant store, 4808; and the Excell Photo Studio, 4810.
Portions of the ground floor cave in, collapsing into the basement. The Green Mill Ballroom on the building’s second floor suffers “a total loss” from the fire.67 According to the Tribune, Wolff Jewelry, Stop and Eat, Excell Photo, and the Green Mill Ballroom are all “destroyed.”
The newspaper also describes the building itself as “destroyed,” adding: “Tom Chamales, owner of the two story structure, announced that he planned to replace the building with one of similar proportions.” (Was the Tribune unaware that Chamales had recently lost the building? Or was Chamales somehow clinging to ownership?)68
These pictures show details of a Chicago Daily News photo in the Chicago History Museum’s collection. (Chicago History Museum DN-A-0821, Chicago Daily News, 1933.)
The sign above the entrance at 4806 North Broadway says: “GREEN MILL BALLROOM / DANCING”
The Stop & Eat restaurant is visible at 4804.
Smoke obscures the part of the building at 4800 and 4802 North Broadway. That sign at 4802 is likely for the jewelry store. Note that the building’s façade here is peaked, as just at it had been in this drawing of the 1914 Green Mill Gardens complex:
In another Daily News photo (Chicago History Museum DN-A-0823, Chicago Daily News, 1933), the Walgreens sign hanging at the corner can be seen amid the smoke.
A wider detail from the same photo also shows the building’s second-floor windows.
The fire hits just as Prohibition is coming to an end. On the same Daily News front page with the Green Mill fire, another story runs under the headline: “Repeal Bill Is Passed by Legislature; Beer Law Awaits Horner Approval” (referring to Illinois governor Henry Horner). Prohibition would be repealed at the federal level on December 5, 1933, when the 21st Amendment was ratified.
November 1, 1933: The city issues a building permit to “repair fire damage” at 4800 Broadway.
Only the index card for the permit is available—this is one of the “sundry” permits that Tim Samuelson says were apparently destroyed. So, we don’t have information about who paid for this repair work. Was it Chamales? Patten? Someone else? 69
When the building was repaired, was the peaked brick façade above 4800 and 4802 North Broadway changed? Or did that happen later? The photo below shows how the building looks today, with a flat top to the façade in that portion of the building.
But note how this part of the building has some decorative masonry below the roofline—a horizontal line, with a squarish shape at its center. This same element appears in pictures of the building from 1914, 1925, 1933, and 2023.
February 1935: The Green Mill Tavern, 4802 North Broadway, is listed in the yellow pages, along with the Green Mill Restaurant, 4804 North Broadway.
When I interviewed the current Green Mill current owner, Dave Jemilo, he mentioned that “the doorway behind our coat rack went into the restaurant for the Green Mill.”
1937: Tom Chamales’s brother William appears in the Chicago white pages, with “tavern, 4802 N Bway” listed after his name, indicating that he was the proprietor. Tom is listed with a real estate office at the same address.70
April 28, 1938: A lawsuit filed by John L. Patten against Tom Chamales and his wife ends with a court-ordered public auction for the Green Mill building’s property. Patten makes the highest bid, $210,335.57 (or $4.5 million in today’s money).71 Other details of this litigation are unclear. The archives department at the clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court was unable to find the file, other than a few pages.
Seven months later, Patten transfers the property to City National Bank and Trust Company of Chicago, as Trustee Number 21739.72
1939: The building’s former cabaret and ballroom space is renovated, reopening as the Paradise Ballroom.73 An older Paradise Ballroom was still operating at the time on the West Side,74 and it’s unclear how long the space on Broadway operated under this name. It does not seem to appear in any telephone books, even the ones for 1939 and 1940.
“The larger hall space was actually rebuilt following the fire,” Samuelson told me, “and although no longer a cool customer destination due to competition from places like the Aragon, it still limped along largely as a rental event space for banquets, club meetings, dances, etc.”
By 1939, Tom has disappeared from the Chicago phone book, leaving his brother William as the only Chamales with a listing in the city.75 (Tom Chamales had been living in north suburban Wilmette since at least 1930.76)
August 11, 1939: As the 1938 transaction selling the property becomes official, the Tribune reports: “It is understood that the property was purchased for investment and the new owner has no changes in contemplation.”77
Just before the sale becomes final, a court-appointed receiver files a report listing the building’s tenants and how much rent they’re paying.
A company called R.M. Corp. is running the Green Mill Tavern at 4802 North Broadway and paying $235 a month in rent.
Next door, John Batsis is paying $250 monthly for the Green Mill Restaurant. And the Paradise Ballroom is paying $400 a month for the space at 4806.78
It’s around the time that Steven Brend begins working at the Green Mill Tavern. On his draft registration card in 1940, he lists his employer as RM Corporation, 4802 North Broadway.79
Brend would describe three Chamales brothers— Tom, Bill, and George—as “the owners I worked for” when he’d started working there in 1938 or 1939.80
1942: According to Robert Ebisch’s 1982 Chicago Reader interview with Brend, “The design of today’s Green Mill Lounge interior was done in 1942, when the Chamales brothers, who owned it through its golden years, sold out.”
The Green Mill’s current owner, Dave Jemilo, said he believes that much of the space’s decor was actually in place before 1942. “The ceiling was lowered in 1942 for the air conditioning. That was the last major reconstruction of anything,” he said. “I bought the joint from Steve Brend. He was working there since 1938, and he’s the one who told me it was the same except the ceiling was lowered in 1942.”
1949: The Palladium Ballroom at 4806 North Broadway—the old space where the Green Mill Ballroom was in the early 1930s—is mentioned for the first time in newspapers. The last time it’s mentioned is 1956.81
* * *
When Art Cohn was writing The Joker Is Wild, his 1954 book about Joe E. Lewis, he visited Chicago and stopped into the Green Mill. He described what he found:
It was an ordinary bar, as standardized as its tens of thousands of counterparts throughout the land. In the window, next to a box of faded pink paper flowers, was a sign: “Scotty Highlanders—No Cover Charge—Lilyan Cole Nightly at the Hammond Organ.” Inside, a Stan Kenton record was spinning on a one-hundred-record player. Four people were drinking, three of them beer, at a long bar on one side of the narrow room. Only one of the booths that lined the other wall was occupied, by a young couple, intently tapping the beat of the music.
Cohn seemed to find it hard to believe that this “little cocktail lounge” was the same place where Lewis had performed in 1927. Cohn apparently didn’t realize that the Green Mill of 1927 had been in a different location, just up the street.82
In 1982, Robert Ebisch initially made a similar mistake as he was sitting in the Green Mill and interviewing Brend, who’d bought the venue in 1960 and would run it until 1986. As Brend regaled him with stories about Texas Guinan, Ebisch asked, “She used to stand at that door right there?”
Brend corrected him. “No, no,” he said. “This wasn’t the main door then. Come on. I’ll show ya.”
As Ebisch recounted in his Reader article, Brend took him outside and showed him the entrance to the Fiesta Mexicana restaurant at 4806 North Broadway. That’s where the Green Mill’s entrance was in the 1920s, Brend explained. Ebisch wrote:
One would hardly suspect that … the tuxedoed celebrities of a gilded age used to pass through a doorway that now gives entrance to the Fiesta Mexicana fast-food joint. But look at the sign and you see, engraved in the old pitted stone of the building face, Green Mill Gardens. And then you realize that the original two-story entrance is still there, with concrete scrollwork around the top and stone gargoyles on each side. The door was much larger then, the entire taco shop front now occupies it. You can see the original stone trim around its perimeter.
Those words etched in the building’s façade were apparently visible when Ebisch wrote his story in 1982. Now, they’re hidden behind the Fiesta Mexicana sign83 … another piece of history obscured from public view.
So, what’s the upshot of all this?
There’s a widespread perception that the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge has been in the same space since the Prohibition Era of the 1920s, or even longer. The evidence shows that isn’t true—but in my opinion, this doesn’t diminish the historic importance of this spot.
That space at 4802 North Broadway was part of the large Green Mill Gardens complex that opened in June 1914. It’s not clear exactly what was in this part of the building at that time—quite possibly a bar.
After the building was expanded in 1921 and 1922, the venue for live entertainment was in a different part of the building—the entrance at 4806 led back into a two-story space.
So, if you visit Fiesta Mexicana (which is not a “fast-food joint,” as the Reader called it in 1982), try picturing it as the corridor where crowds entered during the Roaring Twenties.
Toward the back part of the restaurant is where you would have walked into the space described by the Chicagoan magazine as “a tall room done in the Aztec (or is it Inca?) manner with two guardian Indians on illuminated glass flanking the orchestra platform.”
This space continued operating as a cabaret off and on during the 1920s, under various names—the Montmartre Cafe, the New Green Mill, the Green Mill, Ye Old Green Mill, and the Lincoln Tavern Town Club—before being converted into a second-story space, initially known as the Green Mill Ballroom.
There’s contradictory information about what was going on at 4802 North Broadway after the 1922 renovations. It may have continued functioning as a Green Mill Gardens restaurant for a couple of years. But by November 1924, it was no longer listed in Chicago phone books. By 1925, a jewelry store had taken over the space, alongside a drugstore at 4800 (which may have included portions of the space where the Green Mill Cocktail Lounge is today).
Did a secret speakeasy ever operate somewhere within the Green Mill Gardens Building during this era? Maybe. I haven’t found any evidence of that, but it’s also hard to disprove.
“The big Green Mill venue was never a secretive ‘Joe sent me’ clandestine speakeasy,” Tim Samuelson told me. “The booze flowed freely throughout—just as it did before Prohibition. There was just more discretion on how it was offered and served—and the Chamales brothers had the connections and payoffs to operate fairly freely without interference. When occasionally closed down, there was no reason for patrons to flee or hide. It was all pretty routine for entertainment and booze-seeking patrons.”
The fire in 1933 caused extensive damage to the drugstore, jewelry store, and ballroom. After repairs, the building was open again by 1935, with the Green Mill Tavern operating at 4802, the same space where the jazz club is now.
Does all of this history make that room any less interesting? I don’t think so!
The next two chapters will delve into the earlier history of the area we now call the Uptown neighborhood. After that, I’ll return to the stories of Tom Chamales and Green Mill Gardens.
Read the new chapter: Topography, Tombs, and Tolls.
<— PREVIOUS CHAPTER / TABLE OF CONTENTS / NEXT CHAPTER —>
Sources include city directories at Fold3.com and Ancestry.com, and telephone directories at the Chicago History Museum and the Library of Congress’s U.S. Telephone Directory Collection, https://www.loc.gov/collections/united-states-telephone-directory-collection/?fa=location:illinois.
1 “Local Real Estate Transactions,” Chicago Daily Tribune, October 10, 1889, 9; Tract Book 543 A-2, 217, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division.
2 Real Estate and Building Journal, May 29, 1897, 431, https://hdl.handle.net/2027/uiuo.ark:/13960/t0ps1fv78?urlappend=%3Bseq=435.
3 “Real Estate Transfers,” Chicago Daily Tribune, March 24, 1904; Tract Book 543 A-2, 225, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division.
4 Cook County, Illinois, Deaths Index, 1878-1922, at Ancestry.com.
5 Estate of Charles E. Morse, 4-8818, Probate Court of Cook County.
6 Commission on Chicago Landmarks, Landmark Designation Report: Uptown Square District, October 6, 2016, https://www.chicago.gov/city/en/depts/dcd/supp_info/chicago-landmark-designation–uptown-square-district0.html,13.
7 “‘Pop’ Morse Roadhouse Leased,” Chicago Daily Tribune, September 22, 1910, p 13.
8 Advertisement, Chicago Daily Tribune, December 31, 1911.
9 Samuel Kersten v. Tom Chamales et al, Circuit Court Case B86710C, 1922, Clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court Archives.
10 Tract book 543 A-2, 249, 252, 253, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division,
11 “Evanston Avenue Becomes Broadway With Midnight,” Chicago Daily Tribune, August 15, 1913.
12 Document 5382042, Book 12722, 560-561, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division.
13 Permit 20109, file 55525, Feb. 16, 1914, Chicago Building Permit Ledgers Reel UID CBPC_LB_14 246 (original 177), Chicago Building Permits Digital Collection 1872-1954, University of Illinois at Chicago Library.
14 Julia Bachrach, “Michaelsen & Rognstad: Architects of Fanciful Jazz Age Buildings,” Julia Bachrach Consulting, November 1, 2019, https://www.jbachrach.com/blog/2019/10/31/michaelsen-amp-rognstad-architects-of-fanciful-jazz-age-buildings.
15 Journal of the Proceedings of the City Council of the City of Chicago, Illinois, vol. 74, March 2, 1914, 4141, https://archive.org/details/proceedingsofcit74chic/page/4140/mode/2up.
16 Tim Samuelson, email to author, February 1, 2023.
17 “Chicago Vaudeville,” New York Clipper, March 21, 1914, . https://idnc.library.illinois.edu/?a=d&d=NYC19140321.2.172&srpos=2&e=——-en-20–1-byDA-img-txIN-%22pop+morse%22———
18 Advertisement, Chicago Examiner, June 13, 1914, 11.
19 Advertisement, Chicago Daily Tribune, June 26, 1914, 4.
20 Advertisements, Chicago Daily Tribune, August 26, 1914, 9; October 11, 1914, 56; November 11, 1914.
21 Advertisement, Chicago Daily Tribune, March 13, 1918, 38.
22 1920 U.S. Census, California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles Assembly District 63, Enumeration District 0149, Sheet 6B, at Ancestry.com.
23 James Doherty, “Portrait of a Gangster,” Chicago Daily Tribune magazine, March 11, 1951, 6-7, 10.
24 Permit 61297, file 95994, Aug. 18, 1921, Chicago Building Permit Ledgers Reel UID CBPC_LB_20 173 (original p. 325); Al Chase, “World’s Famous Midway Gardens to Be Reopened,” Chicago Daily Tribune, September 4, 1921, part 8, 22.
25 Landmark Designation Report: Uptown Square District, 23.
26 Judge Stanley H. Klarkowsi, decree, March 24, 1932, Tom Chamales v. Catherine Hoffman et al, Circuit Court Case B180140C, 1929, Clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court Archives.
27 U.S., World War I Draft Registration Cards, 1917-1918, and Pierce-Boyles family tree, at Ancestry.com.
28 “Here’s the Crowe Slate,” Chicago Daily Tribune, February 4, 1922, 12.
29 “West Side Banker Buys $30,000 Evanston House,” Chicago Daily Tribune, December 18, 1921, 118.
30 “Gil Italiani neglu Stati Uniti,” Il Carroccio: The Italian Review 15, no. 2 (February 1922), 280. https://hdl.handle.net/2027/mdp.39015073737390?urlappend=%3Bseq=294%3Bownerid=13510798895484215-302.
31 Giovanni E. Schiavo, The Italians in Chicago: A Study in Americanization (Chicago: Italian American Publishing, 1928), 137, https://hdl.handle.net/2027/mdp.39015035313256?urlappend=%3Bseq=141%3Bownerid=13510798889979513-169.
32 Answer of Green Mill Gardens, Thomas Chamales, William B. Wierz, and Henry Horn, August 5, 1922, 2, Equity 2842, U.S. v. Green Mill Gardens et al, U.S. District Court for the Eastern (Chicago) Division of the Northern District of Illinois, National Archives at Chicago.
33 Document 7690076, listed in Tract Book 543 A-2, 226, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division; copy in Chamales v. Hoffman.
34 Catherine Hoffman, Charles E. Hoffman, and their solicitors, Hutson & Traeger, answer to the bill of complaint, June 28, 1929, 8, and cross-bill of complaint, September 25, 1929, 3, 8, 20, Chamales v. Hoffman.
35 Tom Chamales and his solicitors, Simons, Godman & Stransky and Rathie, Weseman, Hinckley & Barnard, answer of cross-defendant, October 10, 1929, 2, 6, Chamales v. Hoffman.
36 Document 7838476, listed in Tract Book 543 A-2, 218, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division; copy in Chamales v. Hoffman; Klarkowsi, decree.
37 Tract Book 543 A-2, 219, 226, 250, 252, 254, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division.
38 Catherine Hoffman, et al, answer to the bill of complaint, June 28, 1929, 10, Chamales v. Hoffman et al.
39 “Fun Spots Around Town,” Chicago Daily News, July 14, 1923, 11.
40 Landmark Designation Report: Uptown Square District, 21.
41 Advertisement, Chicago Daily Tribune, Nov. 20, 1925, 2.
42 Landmark Designation Report: Uptown Square District, 25, 50.
43 Equity 5147, U.S. v. Montmartre Cafe Inc., Otto L. Annoreno and Thomas Chamales, decree for permanent injunction, June 4, 1926, U.S. District Court for the Eastern (Chicago) Division of the Northern District of Illinois, National Archives at Chicago.
44 Answer of Otto L. Annoreno, October 6, 1925, snd Answer of Tom Chamales, December 28, 1925, Equity 5147, U.S. v. Montmartre Cafe et al.
45 “Fun Spots Around Town,” Chicago Daily News, November 13, 1926, 29.
46 “Cabaret Man’s Fears Told as Stabbing Clew,” Chicago Daily Tribune, Nov. 9, 1927; Jeffrey Gusfield, Deadly Valentines: The Story of Capone’s Henchman “Machine Gun” Jack McGurn (Chicago: Chicago Review Press, 2012), 127.
47 “Kidnaping Story Investigated,” Chicago Daily News, October 2, 1930, 3; Tom Chamales and his solicitor, Francis E. Hinckley, bill of complaint for partition, April 29, 1929, 5, Chamales v. Hoffman.
48 Polk’s Chicago (Illinois) Numerical Street and Avenue Directory, 1928–1929 (Chicago: R.L. Polk & Co., 1928), 93, http://chsmedia.org/househistory/polk/menus/polkb.pdf.
49 Lease agreement between Tom Chamales and General Outdoor Advertising, September 1, 1928, copy in Chamales v. Hoffman et al.
50 Document 10195740, listed in Tract Book 543 A-2, 226, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division; copy in Chamales v. Hoffman.
51 Francis C. Coughlin, “Adventures in Insomnia,” Chicagoan, Dec. 29, 1928, 11. http://chicagoan.lib.uchicago.edu/xtf/view?docId=bookreader/mvol-0010-v006-i07/mvol-0010-v006-i07.xml#page/13/mode/1up.
52 Tom Chamales and his solicitor, Francis E. Hinckley, bill of complaint for partition, April 29, 1929, 1, Chamales v. Hoffman et al.
53 Advertisement, Chicago Daily Tribune, September 9, 1929, 35.
54 “Come On Suckers! Guinan Buys Club,” (Chicago) Daily Times, December 12, 1929, 43.
55 “Charges Shots at Guinan Club to ‘Hood’ Rule,” Chicago Daily News, March 24, 1930, pp. 1, 3.
56 “Little Club Must Close,” Chicago Evening American, March 24, 1930, 2.
57 Document 7972232, listed in Tract Book 543 A-2, 226, Cook County Clerk’s Office, Recordings Division; copy in Chamales v. Hoffman.
58 Advertisement, (Chicago) Daily Times, October 18, 1930, 20.
59 “Dancing Clubs and Cabarets,” (Chicago) Daily Times, April 4, 1931, 18.
60 Al Chase, “Walgreens Gets Broadway and Lawrence Site,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May, 23, 1931.
61 Tom Chamales, transcript, October 8, 1930, 22, Chamales v. Hoffman.
62 “Old Green Mill Leased for Use as a Ballroom,” Chicago Daily Tribune, November 15, 1931.
63 Klarkowsi, decree.
64 Supreme Court of Illinois, order dismissing appeal, June 30, 1932, Chamales v. Hoffman.
65 Judge Hugo M. Friend, decree approving master’s report of sale, December 27, 1932, Chamales v. Hoffman.
66 Al Chase, “Famed Uptown Night Spot of ‘Dry’ Era Sold,” Chicago Daily Tribune, August 12, 1939; “John L. Patten,” Chicago Daily Tribune, March 24, 1932, 2; “$500,000 Suit Filed Against Patten Estate,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 3, 1935, 17.
67 “Fire Sweeps Green Mill; Six Injured,” Chicago Daily News, April 26, 1933, 1, 3.
68 “Acts to Rebuild Green Mill, Lost in $100,000 Fire,” Chicago Daily Tribune, April 27, 1933.
69 Chicago Building Permit Street Index Reel UID CBPC_IND_012 3903.
70 Illinois – White Pages – Chicago – June 1937 A through NAAF, 210.
71 Document 12156135, Cook County clerk’s office, Recording Division, Book 34286, p. 314.
72 Document 12241790, Cook County clerk’s office, Recording Division, Book 34751, pp. 327-328.
73 Al Chase, “Famed Uptown Night Spot of ‘Dry’ Era Sold,” Chicago Daily Tribune, August 12, 1939.
74 Charles A. Sengstock, That Toddlin’ Town: Chicago’s White Dance Bands and Orchestras, 1900–1950 (Urbana: University of Illinois, 2004), 164.
75 Illinois – White Pages – Chicago – June 1940 A through LAUFF, 222.
76 1930 U.S. census, Illinois, Cook County, New Trier, Enumeration District 2210, sheet 7A, at Ancestry.com.
77 Al Chase, “Famed Uptown Night Spot of ‘Dry’ Era Sold,” Chicago Daily Tribune, Aug. 12, 1939.
78 John L. Patten v. Tom Chamales et al, Superior Court Case 37S12665, 1937, Clerk of the Cook County Circuit Court Archives.
79 U.S., World War II Draft Cards Young Men, 1940-1947, at Ancestry.com.
80 Jacki Lyden, Landmarks and Legends of Uptown (Chicago: Jacki Lyden, 1980), 29, 31; Robert Ebisch, “Whatever Happened to Green Mill Gardens?” Chicago Reader, October 29, 1982, 1-2, 20, 22, 24.
81 “Gemen Memorial Club to Hold Benefit Dance,” Chicago Daily Tribune, April 24, 1949, 83; Herb Lyon, “Tower Ticker,” Chicago Daily Tribune, May 14, 1956, 53.
82 Art Cohn, The Joker Is Wild: The Story of Joe E. Lewis (New York: Random House, 1955; New York: Bantam, 1957), 253.
1 “John L. Patten,” Chicago Daily Tribune, March 24, 1932, 2.