Writers Workshop: 6459

6459 N. Glenwood Avenue, Chicago IL 60626. From Google Maps.

If we were told that we’d have to move out of our house and move back to a place we lived before, this would be it.

We moved to 6459 North Glenwood in October 1962 and lived there until the end of June 1971. A lot of things happened in that time: Dad died, Jim and I both graduated from St. Ignatius Grammar School, we celebrated nine Christmases, Easters, and Thanksgivings, 40 birthdays (9 each for Mom, Jim, Kip, and myself, and 4 for Dad), 3 First Communions and Confirmations, and a lot of days with us just being together.

It was a big place. The living room had a sun parlor where we used to put the tree at Christmas, and when we had parties just about everyone would fit in there. There was a long hallway along which sat our bedrooms and the bathroom, which was split, the toilet in one room, the sink and tub in an adjoining room. We had a good-sized dining room, a pretty good-sized kitchen, and a back porch lined with knotty-pine paneling.

The window to my room, also known as my bachelor pad. Google Maps.

My room was along an alley behind Arthur Avenue. I had a good view of the steeple at St. Ignatius Church, which was exactly one block from home.

So, why there? Why not, say, Mary’s family’s building, where we lived on the second floor? For one thing, it’s gone, torn down about ten years ago. For another, this place is about three times the size of that. Why not the house in Northfield? Again, this was bigger.

The only other place I can think of that I’d like to return to is here…

52 North Ridgeview Drive, Indianapolis IN 46219. We lived behind the door on the left. Google Maps

We only lived here for one year (1959-1960), and it wasn’t an especially happy one, based on what Mom told me, but for some reason I remember it very well. What was my room had a door to an outdoor porch that overlooked the back yard; I’ve always thought that room would make a great home office. It had a partially-finished basement, a big kitchen, a good-sized living room-dining room, and three bedrooms and the bathroom on the second floor, which also had access to an attic via a pull-down staircase.

I just hope I don’t have to move again…

22 thoughts on “Writers Workshop: 6459

  1. I love seeing the photos! Isn’t it amazing how we can pull those up on the internet and peek around our old neighborhoods? Your top choice is so neat looking. I’ve always had a think for brick. Beautiful building!


    1. Both of them, Glenwood and Ridgeview, were brick. I miss that here. If I were shopping for a new house now, I’d go with a brick ranch. There are some really nice ones in the area.


    2. John,

      This is Victor Hong. My family bought the two-flat in 1968 from Earl and Bertha Rabbitt. Your family lived on the second floor. My dad passed away in 2019, and my mom moved to Manhattan in 2021.



        1. I have been in Manhattan NYC, Manhattan Beach CA, and then back to Manhattan NYC since 1985. My mom has moved here too, after selling the place in May 2021.
          Peter lives in North Carolina.


  2. It’s fun to think back on different places and times we’ve lived isn’t it. You spent some formative years in 6459!
    My oldest brother’s in-laws now live in the house where I grew up. I haven’t been there since my parents were both alive, and bro’s in-laws talk about having a get together there. I kind of don’t want to go because I know the house is very different now, and I want to preserve the memories I have.


    1. The way I see it, it’s not home anymore, whether someone in the family now lives there or not. It’s the old “You can’t go home again” thing. I have great memories of the places I’ve lived, but don’t care to go back because it’s all different. The Rogers Park (neighborhood of Chicago where I grew up) of 2022 is much different from the one almost 60 years earlier.


      1. Almost all the two-flats have been turned into off-campus Loyola student housing. Very few young families there now.


  3. Nice memories. We currently live in the largest home I’ve ever lived in so i highly doubt I’d want to go back to any from my past. In fact, I’d probably be surprised at just how small they had been! But they were good at the time, for sure.


    1. That wasn’t an option in this case: it said if I HAD to move… I’d want to stay here, too: it’s paid for and I can still cope with the stairs…


  4. Your first place sounds so nice and I bet a European built it because of rhe bathroom. I always thought it made more sense to have the toilet on one room with a small sink and the other in a different part. That Is very European. I would choose my family home out in the country. It was just so serene and I miss the country.


      1. My understanding is that Frank Lloyd Wright designed many of the homes in the immediate neighborhood of Glenwood and Arthur, as moonlighting. The Prairie style there is obvious.


  5. Out of all the places I lived, I wouldn’t want to go back and live there again. A few years ago I looked up my childhood home (Orlando, Fl) via Zillow and found it was totally renovated and it looked fabulous. To my knowledge, it is also 10 times more than the original price. I love your Indianapolis house and it looks a lot like the house where my aunt and uncle lived in Sturgis, MI.


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