Oral Histories

In fall 2015, graduate students in the Oral History: Theory and Methods class at Loyola University Chicago conducted several interviews with current and former residents of Chrysler Village and the surrounding area to learn more about the subdivision’s historic value and what it has meant to the community over the years. The interviews below each contain the biographical information of the interviewee, the transcript of the interview, and the audio recording of the interview. Click on the names of the interviewees to listen to their Chrysler Village stories!

The Chrysler Village History Project is seeking to add to this archive of experiences. If you live(d) in Chrysler Village or Clearing are interested in sharing your Chrysler Village story, please contact us or click here for more information. Oral Histories from our August 2016 Community Fest are still in the process of transcription. Stay tuned for updates!

 

Brandon Barr is a teacher in the area and has been integral in getting area students involved in the Chrysler Village History Project. In his interview, he describes his upbringing and the appeal of Chrysler Village to young professionals.

Rob Bitunjac, though not a resident of Chrysler Village, has been an important partner in helping the Chrysler Village History Project get off the ground. As president of the Clear-Ridge Historical Society, Rob offers the historical context for how Chrysler Village fits into the larger community of Clearing.

Cheryl Glab and David Anderson grew up in Chrysler Village during the ’50s, ’60s, and ’70s. They reminisce together about the time spent chasing neighborhood fire trucks and their school along one of the runways at Midway Airport. Their father was very active in the Lawler Park Homeowners’ Association.

Lenny Jennings lived in Chrysler Village at two separate times: from 1946 to 1957, and from 1962 to 1968. He describes in his interview how growing up in Chrysler Village offered unique experiences for a child because of its “newness” and proximity to Midway Airport and important industries.

Duane Oest grew up in Chrysler Village during the 1950s and 1960s. Much of his interview focuses on the social connections he formed with other children in the neighborhood, and he reminisces about the important educational experiences his youth in Chrysler Village afforded him.

Sandra Villalobos grew up in Chicago and has spent the last 33 years living in Chrysler Village. She describes her experience of Chrysler Village as one of neighborly hospitality, appreciating the fact that she and her neighbors take care of each other.

 

The interviews will be available on this site and stored at the Clearing Branch of the Chicago Public Library to be accessed by community members and researchers for years to come.

Search by tag

1930s, 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s, African Americans, Altgeld Gardens, architecture, Back of the Yards, Catholicism, Chicago Housing Authority, Chicago South Side, Chicago West Side, childhood, Chrysler Village, Chrysler-Dodge Plant, Clearing, Clear-Ridge Historical Society, community identity, crime, deindustrialization, Eastern Europeans, employment, ethnicity, family life, Ford City, Garfield Ridge, Hispanics, housing, immigration, industrialization, Joseph Merrion, labor, Lawler Park, manufacturing, Marktown, Midway Airport, migration, neighborhood, New Deal, Pilsen, planned community, politics, postwar, Pullman, race, religion, Richard J. Daley, Saint Symphorosa Parish, schools, segregation, social mobility, Southern Europeans, sports and leisure, suburb, unemployment, violence, women, working class, World War I, World War II

Advertisements