Thursday, November 6, 2008

Michigan Avenue Bridge: sculptures and markers..



The Michigan Avenue bridge, a designated Chicago Landmark, has many interesting features. Here the focus is on the sculptures and markers on the bridge that spells it's history and engineering feats ..



Chicago Landmark..
The Michigan Avenue bridge and the Wacker Drive Esplanade was designated as a Chicago Landmark in 1991 ...
Conceived as part of Daniel Burhnam's 1900 plan of Chicago the Michigan Avenue Bridge and the wacker Drive were designed to improve transportation and to enhance Chicago's riverfront. The opening of the bridge in 1920, followed by the esplanade in 1926 and the monumental sculptures in 1928 provided an impressive gateway to North Michigan Avenue and led to its development of city's premier throughfares.
# For more.. click here..



Most famous is the relief sculptures named..
Defense, Regeneration, The Pioneers, and The Discoverers..
By James Earle Fraser and Henry Hering..
Completed: 1928
Description: Carved limestone
Each bridge tower is adorned with a bas relief sculpture commemorating important events in Chicago history..
Southwest Tower: Defence - By Henry Hering
Southeast Tower: Regeneration - By Henry Hering
Northwest Tower: Pioneers - By James Earle Fraser
Northeast Tower: Discoverers - By James Earle Fraser
# For more.. click here..



A plaque in honor of Louis Jolliet & Pere Jacques Marquette..
the first white men to pass through the Chicago River in 1673..
Location: Northeast corner, Michigan Avenue bridge..
# For more .. click here..



A plaque in honor of La Salle & Henry De Tonti..
who passed through the Chicago River on their way to the Mississipp in 1681..
Location: Southwest corner, Michigan Avenue bridge..
# For more.. click here..



Celebrating the date of bridge opening..
on May 14th, 1920..
Location: Southeast corner and Northwest corner, Michigan Avenue bridge..
# For more.. click here..



The Chicago River..
The marker spells out the importance of Chicago River in the early development of the city..
Location: Southwest corner, Michigan Avenue bridge..
From 1673, commerce and civilization followed the natural waterway from the seaboard to the heart of the continent.
The statergic importance of the early American development of the junction of the Chicago River and the Lake Michigan led to the establishment here of Fort Dearborn and to the founding of the City of Chicago...

# For more.. click here



Markers along the Wacker Drive..
The granite squares are engraved with the names of individuals and businesses who have sponsored the planting of a tree. The trees are planted as part of The Chicago Gateway Green Committee's efforts to a greener Chicago Metropolitan Area..
# For more.. click here..



Site of Fort Dearborn...
Address: Intersection of Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive
Fort Dearborn: Year built: 1803, destroyed: 1812 ...
Second fort erected on the same site: 1816, demolished 1856 ..
The site has been designated a Chicago Landmark on September 15, 1971 ..
# For more.. click here..



Bust of Pointe DuSable..
Sculptor: Erik Blome
Installed: 2009
Location: Pioneer Court..
To the north east end of the bridge is the bust of Jean Baptiste Pointe DuSable...
DuSable is popularly known as "The Father of Chicago", was the first known settler in the area which is now Chicago, Illinois. Du Sable was recognized by the State of Illinois and the City of Chicago as the Founder of Chicago on October 26, 1968...
# For more.. click here..



Site of Pointe DuSable House..
The north-east of the Michigan Avenue bridge is the site of DuSable house, "Kinzie Mansion" [1784-1832], home of Pointe Du Saible, Le Mai, and John Kinzie. Chicago`s `First Civilian'. Here was born, in 1805, the city`s first white child, Ellen Marion Kinzie. The site has been declared a National Historic Landmark..
# For more.. click here..



Dont miss - the bridge tower top..
Looks like a Ram head..
Symbolic??
Any information is welcome..
I really am not aware if the Ram's head has any meaning..
Although symbolically, Ram's head is a symbol enery, power, vilatily..

For more on.. [click on the link]
# Defense, Regeneration, The Pioneers, and The Discoverers..
# Plaque in honor of Louis Jolliet & Pere Jacques Marquette.
# Plaque in honor of La Salle & Henry De Tonti..
# Celebrating the bridge opening....
# The importance of Chicago River in early Chicago development..
# Granite squares commemorating Chicago Gateway Green committee efforts..
# Site of Fort Dearborn...
# Bust of Pointe DuSable.. click here..
# Site of McKinzie Mansion...

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