Although Chicago’s legendary Green Mill jazz club is a pretty small joint these days, it used to be practically palatial, taking up most of the block where it now stands. As I was walking down Broadway near the club this afternoon, I noticed something interesting. A few doors north of the Green Mill, some workers were replacing the sign on the Fiesta Mexicana restaurant – revealing the old name “Green Mill Gardens” carved into the face of the building. This logo is a remnant of the days back when the Green Mill filled the entire building. I rushed home (not far away, fortunately) for my camera and returned in time to snap a few shots of the old name that has been hidden behind the Mexican restaurant sign for many years.
Back when it opened in 1914, the Green Mill included a large “sunken garden,” as you can see in this advertisement announcing the grand opening in the June 26, 1914, Chicago Tribune.
UPDATE: A friend pointed out this photo – http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3083/2613654360_3871083721.jpg?v=0 – which shows that the restaurant sign wasn’t actually blocking out the old name, just hanging near it… and obviously, distracting me from seeing it, since I had never noticed it before.
UPDATE (Dec. 20): If you walk by the Green Mill now looking for the old “Green Mill Gardens” logo I photographed yesterday, here is what you will see: