About This Item
remarkably designed unglazed red terra cotta figural lion head salvaged from the c. 1895 ywca building (chicago, il). sadly, sometime between 1950-70 the facade (i.e., red brick and decorative terra cotta) was painted over in white and blue paint. there were a total of six deep relief figural lion heads located above the central portico. only one survived the demolition because that particular area was deemed unstable and too dangerous to retrieve by hand. the wall was pull in by the backhoe. the seven-story ywca hotel was designed by chicago architect john m. van osdel ii, nephew of prominent chicago architect john mills van osdel. construction of the property was completed in 1895. the late 19th century hotel is one of the oldest ywca buildings in the country. the ywca originally used to house working women newly arriving in the city. in later years the building was known as the 830 michigan avenue hotel, and eventually the headquarters for johnson publications. the badly dilapidated building has been left abandoned for nearly thirty years.