|This Chicago Tribune article is the first in that newspaper that mentions the Catholic-owned grounds in its coverage of the plan for construction of the new Lake Shore Drive. Five months later, the Chicago Fire ravaged the landscape, lengthening the process of connecting Lincoln Park to Pine Street (now Michigan Avenue.) What appears to have begun as a simple right-of-way approval escalated through the next two decades all the way to the Supreme Court. In the end, the Catholic Bishop prevailed, and acquired more acreage on the grounds from Astor Street to Lake Shore Drive.
Chicago Tribune, May 14, 1871
The North Shore Drive is being pushed forward, and the extension from Lincoln Park southward to Chicago avenue has been placed on a footing that insures its completion within a year or two. Under the authority of the Lincoln Park act, Messrs. Ernst Prussing, J.B. Calhoun, and Eli Bates have been appointed to condemn land and assess benefits on adjoining property. The right of way for the road has been all secured, the Catholic Bishop of the diocese having granted the right of way along the lakefront of the Catholic cemetery, and some of the submerged lots south of the cemetery having been condemned. The road will be 200 feet wide, and will be constructed nearly along what is the present margin of the water. Considerable filling up will be necessary, and the refuse matter from the North Division of the city will probably be deposited there during the summer to aid in filling up.
The following records are transcribed and reproduced from the Lincoln Park Proceedings, courtesy of the Chicago Park District's Special Collection Archive.
July 22nd 1873
The Secretary reported the Deed of the Bishop for the right of way for the proposed Lake Shore Drive.
August 28, 1877
The Atty of the Catholic Bishop of Chicago presented a request that the agreement heretofore made for a Right of Way for Pine St Drive across the tract owned by him between North Avenue and Schiller Street be surrendered & cancelled and a new grant be substituted conforming to the route of the Drive – referred to the Secretary.
September 11, 1877
The Secy submitted an amended contract for the Right of Way for the Pine st Drive across the property of the Catholic Bishop which was ordered filed for the record.
January 10, 1882
A communication was received from Archbishop Feehan relative to improvement of North Avenue. It was ordered that the filling of North Avenue be proceeded with as rapidly as the work is done by other adjacent owners.
The Secy was directed to advertise for bids for the new road. The supt reported that he had accepted the offer of O’Connor & Rowland to furnish compost.
. . .
Archbishop Feehan asking that the board make a Quit Claim deed of the tract embraced between the west line as originally granted by the Catholic Bishop as a Right of Way for the Pine street Drive north of Schiller street and the line subsequently granted & now used at the West line of said Drive.
. . .
The Secretary reported that Gen Smith counsel of the Arch Bishop had notified the board that until we obtained the consent of the City Council to run the proposed drain into the Lake the Arch Bishop was unwilling we should proceed with the work north of Burton place.
August 8, 1882
A communication was received from Arch Bishop Feehan asking privilege of Dredging sand out of the Lake East of his tract and of transporting the same by cars across the Pine st Drive for filling his grounds West of the Drive.
The Superintendent was authorized to issue a permit to the archbishop on certain conditions the permit to be revoked if conditions are not complied with.
July 22, 1884
The Catholic Bishop of Chicago having made a proposition to the Commissioners of Lincoln Park to cede to the Commissioners, the “Riparian Rights” attaching to the Lake frontage, between Burton Place and North Avenue, upon condition that the Commissioners allow the said Catholic Bishop of Chicago at his own expense to lay and maintain a sewer across the Lake Shore Drive either at North Avenue or Burton Place as may be deemed most practicable. Resolved that the proposition of the Catholic Bishop of Chicago be accepted.
Resolved that permission and authority is hereby granted to the Catholic Bishop of Chicago to lay and forever maintain at his own expense a Sewer across the Lake Shore Drive either at North Avenue or Burton Place, as he may deem most advisable, and the necessary piers or breakwaters for the protection thereof on the Lake Shore: such sewer to be connected with a sewer running through the alley between Astor street and the said Lake Shore Drive from North Avenue to Schiller Street and to be used as an outlet for said last mentioned sewer into Lake Michigan, the acceptance of said proposition to be of no force or effect upon either party until permission shall have been granted by the City of Chicago to discharge the sewerage for said sewers into Lake Michigan.
July 20, 1886
The secretary reported that Gen Smith counsel of the Arch Bishop had notified the Board that until we obtained the consent of the City Council to run the proposed drain into the Lake the Arch-Bishop was unwilling we should proceed with the work north of Burton place.
January 27, 1887
A communication was received from Arch Bishop Feehan asking that the Board make a Quit Claim deed of the tract embraced between the west line as originally granted by the Catholic Bishop as a Right of Way for the Pine street Drive north of Schiller street and the line subsequently granted and now used as the west line of said Drive.
On motion the secretary was directed to have a Q.C. Deed executed by the Commissioners in accordance with prayer of petition -