White City

Chicago’s White City.

Located at 63rd Street and South Park Avenue on Chicago’s South Side, White City employed hundreds of entertainers, including Dan Blanco, founder of Rush Street’s Club Alabam.

The $1,000,000 pleasure park opened on May 27, 1905, proving a perfect venue for Dan Blanco and his troupe of “Rathskellerians.”  They played the park’s Rathskeller for many summers and, years later, Dan Blanco continue to hire his musical friends at Club Alabam.

White City’s diverse programing included a band concert, gondola rides, a fire show (a three hundred  foot street scene, complete with police, pedestrians, and a burning building, ultimately saved by men from three fire companies!), and thrill rides that “bumped the bump.” The famous and novel infant incubators, fresh from the Saint Louis World’s Fair, were on display. Midget City was a popular feature. There was a photograph gallery, an observation wheel, and a ballroom ready to accommodate 2,400 eager dancers.


If you enjoy local history, especially the world of entertainment, follow me at joannelyeck.com or on the Facebook page: The Blackest Sheep.

The Blackest Sheep: Dan Blanco, Evelyn Nesbit, Gene Harris and Chicago’s Club Alabam is available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and many other online bookstores.