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- 02/03/15--05:54: Home Histories: Robert Taylor Homes
- 03/03/15--06:12: Pullman Earns National Monument Status
- 11/17/15--12:19: Lots to Love
- 04/26/16--19:42: Building Blocks
- 09/20/17--12:15: Best of the Far Southeast Side 2017
The location of the homes was no coincidence; in accordance with the laws of the time, the residents of a housing project could not alter the racial makeup of the area.
Pullman could finally see the revitalization that preservationists have been working toward for years.
“We were one of the original five black families on the block,” says Handy, who still lives in the family home. In those days, Handy says, “block clubs only did parties,” because “the neighborhood had young families with kids.” Today, most of the residents are older, and most of the children have grown and moved away. “One of the challenges when [the Ridgeland Block Club Association] started was finding a reason to exist,” Handy says, “we are trying to be more relevant in our focus for our residents.”
There are so many little things that make living in Calumet Heights special, insignificant things really, but the older I get, the more I realize that little things are what matter most to me in life. My neighborhood has no great monuments except for a few charming churches where neighbors gather to give thanks each Sunday. The parks I enjoyed in my youth can’t rival their more famous cousins downtown. Our major thoroughfare, Stony Island, is a workhorse that funnels suburban commuters to the north, not one of the beaux arts visions that sprang from the minds of Burnham or Olmsted when our city was keen to flex its muscles to the world. Even the sleepy little street where I grew up, Ridgeland Avenue, is eclipsed by its more famous sibling to the west, but despite these things I couldn’t be more proud to call this place home.