The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: daveg ()
Date: April 17, 2011 05:20PM

I recently heard about an area in Rogers Park called The Jungle. I found a few things via a Google search then wondered what I could learn here. I have since found a 1991 reference to a Juneway Terrace, which apparently was translated to the less civil name mentioned.

Does anyone have first hand experience with this area?

I understand the implication of the name and I'm not trying to "start anything".

Just interested in the history of the area after just last week attending the FC presentation about Rogers Park and West Ridge. Great presentation by Jacob Kaplan BTW.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/17/2011 06:01PM by daveg.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: Chipast ()
Date: April 18, 2011 06:12PM

I guess they referred the area to a more tougher part of Rogers Park. Which was probably for about 50 years or so, Known to be a notorious district of Rogers park. With the tenaments & such.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: appleuzer ()
Date: April 19, 2011 03:02AM

i believe it's the only stretch of the city that extends north of Howard along Juneway Street and Jonquil Terrace. The neighborhood is kind of cut off due to the lake on one side and Howard Yard on the other.

<iframe width="425" height="350" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" src=",+Chicago,+Cook,+Illinois+60626&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;hl=en&amp;geocode=FR8xgQIdXUDG-g&amp;split=0&amp;sll=42.02077,-87.806581&amp;sspn=0.006295,0.019443&amp;hq=&amp;hnear=W+Jonquil+Terrace,+Chicago,+Cook,+Illinois+60626&amp;ll=42.021148,-87.670368&amp;spn=0.00915,0.018604&amp;z=14&amp;output=embed"></iframe><br /><small><a href=",+Chicago,+Cook,+Illinois+60626&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;hl=en&amp;geocode=FR8xgQIdXUDG-g&amp;split=0&amp;sll=42.02077,-87.806581&amp;sspn=0.006295,0.019443&amp;hq=&amp;hnear=W+Jonquil+Terrace,+Chicago,+Cook,+Illinois+60626&amp;ll=42.021148,-87.670368&amp;spn=0.00915,0.018604&amp;z=14&amp;source=embed" style="color:#0000FF;text-align:left">View Larger Map</a></small>

-Mike Damian

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: Elaine W ()
Date: April 20, 2011 12:39AM

Around 1970, I knew a few folks who lived in that area. In my recollection, it was called "Juneway Jungle" (never just "the jungle"). As noted, it's the only part of Chicago north of Howard. My friends were college kids, hippies, political activists, and the like, and that area had very cheap housing (at the time--that's probably no longer true). The low rent attracted my friends, as well as a variety other low-rent dwellers who were probably more unsavory than the people I knew.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: tseals ()
Date: April 20, 2011 11:51PM

Yes; It's currently refered to as the 'Jungle" Up until about ten years ago it was still pretty wild with drug dealing, shootings and murders. Two prominent gangs still cultivate the area along with Triangle park. Not as bad as it use to be... but still not that good. "Welcome to the jungle" -Guns & Roses. ( no association with G & R.)

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: davey7 ()
Date: April 27, 2011 03:41PM

I know a few people who live there. Once you are known as living there, the locals leave you alone, but outsiders are easily id'd. I was there during the house tour two years ago and people sitting out on stoops were very friendly.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: olafrance01 ()
Date: July 13, 2011 08:16PM

I lived in "the jungle" right near the corner of Juneway and Sheridan from 1969 through 1972 as an NU student. Does anyone else remember the giant “Standard” sign flashing its message all through the night?

Contrary to another poster’s opinion, it was called “the jungle” far more often than “Juneway Jungle”, at least by everyone I knew. It was an interesting neighborhood then, a mixture of some left over Jews, a fair number of students, a sizable number of working class whites including some Appalachian transplants, and a few Hispanics, Blacks, and Asians. Everyone got along. I never had any problems there and I was in the habit of walking from the Howard L late at night (I’m a guy. I wouldn’t let my gf do that alone, but that’s just common sense city smart).

I have some good memories. The Juneway beach, Gulliver’s, various bars including the Pickle Barrel, the liquor store at Sheridan and Rogers that never asked for ID, a Mexican restaurant I can’t remember the name of on Paulina, getting on the L and being in the heart of the city in no time,…. There was a butcher shop on Howard – I wish I could remember the butcher’s name. He knew I was a “starving student” and would suggest good cheap cuts and how to prepare them. When I got hamburger he’d always add a little more after he weighed it – a bigger “little more” if it was my gf at the counter.

Later, I was curious about how “the jungle” came to be called that. The name certainly predates the late 60s and has nothing what-so-ever to do with Black people. Blacks were a small minority when I was there.

Apparently the Juneway Jungle got the appellation for the “sinful” activities (speakeasies, prostitution (?), etc) that went on there during and after prohibition. I think that would have been during the time that Rogers Park was heavily Jewish. If anyone has better information, please post it.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: shoreline ()
Date: July 15, 2011 01:27AM

I also remember the Standard sign on the west side of Sheridan and north of Juneway at the curve. The Mexican place you mentioned was known as La Choza. It was on a block with a great rib restaurant called Talbots.The Pickle Barrel at Howard and Western and Gullivers located on Howard immediately east of California were neighborhood favorites from the early 60s.Thinking of the Pickle Barrel makes me want to throw peanut shells on the floor.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: olafrance01 ()
Date: July 22, 2011 12:18PM

The previous posts rekindled my interest in the history of the little Chicago appendage north of Howard - once my home and known as the “Juneway Jungle.”

The area was known as Germania in the early 1900s. It was also known “No Man’s Land” because it was part of Evanston, but didn’t receive much in the way of services since it was cut off from the rest of Evanston by the lake, cemetery, and L tracks. As a result, people living there favored annexation by the city of Chicago.

At the same time, Evanston was a hotbed of temperance activities. Many Evanstonians felt it was easier to get rid of the area than continue trying and failing to control its numerous blind pigs (aka speakeasies). By consent of both cities the area became part of Chicago on Feb 8th, 1915.

It seems clear that the activities that cause the area to be called the Juneway Jungle were in full swing by 1915. However, there is no mention of the term “Juneway Jungle” as of that date in the references cited above or elsewhere that I can find. By the late 60s the term was in common use. Unfortunately, I cannot find any reference to when, in the intervening 50 years, the area was first called “Juneway Jungle” nor do I have any first hand knowledge that predates the late 60s.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: Berwyn Frank ()
Date: July 06, 2012 11:27PM

I was browsing e-bay and I saw this Chicago Daily News photo from January 1978 showing the demolition of a large apartment building on Juneway Terrace. The blurb on the back of the photo refers to the neighborhood as "The Jungle."

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: Business7007 ()
Date: March 23, 2013 12:47AM

If you check Goggle Maps, the part that gets down to street-level pictures you will see that most of the area has been redeveloped with new and very attractive housing. Whatever it was as far as the seedy-side appears to be gone.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: mkmcclure63 ()
Date: March 26, 2013 01:09AM

I lived in that area in the 1980s and 1990s. Wild is an understatement. CPD performed occasional raids and HUD rehabbed a handful of buildings. Overall, very little changed. Eugene Field Elementary School on Ashland is in the midst of all of these active sites. All of this is east of the El and north of Howard. Juneway Terrace is 7800 North, the northernmost street in the section. the entire area was originally call "Germania" around 1900 owing the prominence of German immigrants. The area was part of Evanston until Chicago annexed since it was south of the cemetery that forms the southern border of Evanston east of Chicago Avenue.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: olafrance01 ()
Date: June 05, 2014 11:24AM

I just found the attached despite its having been published in 1988. It’s by far the most plausible explanation of the origins of term “Juneway Jungle” I’ve heard.

The last paragraph I take issue with. The area was widely and affectionately known as the “Juneway Jungle” or just “the jungle” in ’68, at least by NU students and the Loyola students I knew. Probably well before too, although that predates my first hand knowledge.

No doubt some “Archie Bunker types” appropriated the name “Juneway Jungle” for racial reasons. But they didn’t resurrect it and did so at a later time. The area was quite diverse in the late 60’s / early 70’s and the black population was in no way disproportionate. In fact, it was relatively small. I’d guess maybe 10% based on personal observation. No one could have reasonably characterized the area as anything even remotely approaching “ghetto” as late as ’72. True, it’s hard to notice gradual change, but I didn’t even notice a change in the general character of the neighborhood in the years I lived there.


To some people it's the Jungle, or the Juneway or the Jonquil Jungle. Most people seem to assume that this designation is somewhat racist. But a woman who lived in the area for more than 50 years explains that the name originated with a hobo camp that sprang up when a railroad was pushed through the area in the late 1800s. The hobo jungle moved on. The name lingered.

During World War II the name surfaced again. Evanston and most of the other towns on the North Shore were dry. The area around Howard and Paulina held the first legal drinking spots south of Waukegan. The North Shore railroad stopped at Howard Street, just west of Paulina. It also stopped at Fort Sheridan and at the Great Lakes naval base. The results were not surprising. During the war the area ran wide open. More than 40 bars lined the two streets. The woman remembers that the MPs and shore patrol took to keeping a few railroad cars waiting on a siding. When things got out of hand, as they often did, the unruly were loaded onto the cars for an unscheduled trip back north. She remembers that a visiting serviceman was supposed to have said he'd felt safer in the jungles of Guadalcanal than he did in the one along Howard and Paulina.

The war ended and college students replaced soldiers on the bar stools and again the name was all but forgotten.

In the late 1960s blacks started to move in. It was then, the woman says, that Archie Bunker types resurrected the old name. Nobody who loves the neighborhood calls it the Jungle, she says.

Re: The Jungle area in Rogers Park?
Posted by: bingobastard ()
Date: June 14, 2014 03:20AM

I always assumed that "jungle" was a play on words (or maybe a [i]mis-hearing[/i]) of "Jonquil," the name of the street that runs through the middle of the area.

Calling that part of RP "the jungle" might seem like an offensive reference to the crime rate. But it makes more sense as a play on words if the nickname existed (as you say it did) before it became gang territory.

If it weren't for the crime, it would be a sweet part of town. Right by the lake near Evanston, close to the trains, beautiful houses on tree-lined streets. Too bad the gangs are keeping it so scary.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 06/14/2014 03:43AM by bingobastard.

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