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|Introduction The market Urban blues Protest Buildings and Businesses|
This page highlights the storefronts and street scenes that made Maxwell Street such an iconic place. From Jim’s Original Hot Dog Stand to the Heritage Blues Bus music store to the clothing stores, churches and public spaces, the area combined an old world aura with the essential Chicago spirit. The tailors of Maxwell Street were legendary; proprietors like Hal Fox and Smokey Joe’s introduced the zoot suit in the 1940s. Nate’s Deli was a good example of the kind of cultural mixing that defined Maxwell Street: an African-American owned deli that specialized in traditional Jewish delicacies. Taught the ancient lore of pickled herring and knishes as a teenage employee of Lyon’s Deli, Nate Duncan went on to buy the place in 1972. The exhibit concludes with images of the final demolition of the old neighborhood.