Valentine Boys & Girls Club Totem Poles - Chicago, IL
Posted by: adgorn
N 41° 49.896 W 087° 38.694
16T E 446450 N 4631280
Quick Description: Located in the heart of the Bridgeport neighborhood at 3400 S. Emerald, the building entrance is protected by two 50 foot replicas of Alaskan Coastal Indian totem poles on the flanks and an eagle sculpture overhead.
Location: Illinois, United States
Date Posted: 9/13/2009 9:04:05 AM
Waymark Code: WM779E
The Valentine Chicago Boy's Club was built in 1938. L.L. Valentine was a wealthy retired furniture manufacturer who made large contributions to help establish sites for the Chicago Boys Clubs in the 20' and 30's. This location is a 2 story building with basketball courts, swimming pool, gyms, and auditorium, band practice rooms and originally a useable open air roof. The architects were Childs & Smith.
A 9/12/1937 Tribune article states that the "main entrance on Emerald will be flanked by two giant totem poles, replicas of genuine specimens at Chicago's Field Museum. Mr. Valentine, and authority on woods, will select the timber and the boys will carve it under expert supervision."
However an April 8, 1941 Milwaukee Journal article says "Two 5-ton red cedar totem poles were delivered to a Chicago Boys Club 2,500 miles away. Ernest Gebert, veteran woodcarver from Seattle Washington, considers the poles one of his artistic triumphs. They are 45 feet tall and took 14 months to complete."
So it looks like the totem poles were really built by a professional.
Learn more about the club at (visit link