North Shore (Chicago)

North Shore (Chicago)

North Shore (Chicago)

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Description:
The North Shore is a term that refers to the suburbs north of Chicago, Illinois bordering the shore of Lake Michigan.

History





Europeans settled the area sparsely after an 1833 treaty with local Native Americans. The region began to be developed into towns following the opening of Northwestern University in Evanston in 1855 and the founding of Lake Forest College two years later, and the construction and launch of railroads serving the colleges and their towns.

Electric rail lines were also run from Chicago, parallel to steam commuter lines, and streetcars flourished throughout the suburbs from Evanston on north. The North Shore today is noteworthy for being one of the few remaining agglomerations of streetcar suburbs in the United States.

This area became popular with the affluent wanting to escape urban life, beginning after the Great Chicago Fire, and grew rapidly before and just after World War II. Large mansions were built, along with less lavish homes.

Socioeconomics and Culture

Today the North Shore remains one of the most affluent and highly educated areas in the United States. Seven of its communities are in the top quintile of U.S. household income, and three of those (Lake Forest, Kenilworth, Winnetka), are in the top 5 percent. From Evanston to Lake Bluff, only Highwood falls below the national median.

The North Shore is also the home of the Ravinia Festival, a historic outdoor music theater in Highland Park, Illinois. The Ravinia Festival, originally conceived...
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