Chicago Cultural Center (old Chicago Public Library) , 78 E. Washington St., Photo Credit by Eric Allix Rogers
The commitment and contributions of long-time Chicago preservation activist, Charles G. Staples, 87, were celebrated at the Chicago Cultural Center, a building he personally helped to save from demolition.
Mayor Emanuel and Mark Kelly, Commissioner of Cultural Affairs and Special Events, designated May 3rd, 2017 as “Charles G. Staples Day” during a ceremony at the Chicago Cultural Center.
The Chicago Cultural Center/old Chicago Public Library located on Michigan Avenue is a hugely popular cultural attraction and heavily visited by Chicagoans and tourists alike. The spectacular 38-foot, Tiffany Favrile art glass dome (the largest Tiffany glass dome in the word) in the glorious Preston Bradley Hall is a not-to-be missed destination experience for visitors to Chicago. While today it is difficult to comprehend, there was a time when this extraordinary building was threatened with demolition.
“Charles G. Staples played a significant leadership role in the preservation campaign to save the magnificent Chicago Cultural Center from possible demolition in the 1960s and 1970s. He successfully led an effort to landmark the Chicago Cultural Center, which is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.” Said Jamey Lundblad, a spokesman for the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (Hyde Park Herald, May 10, 2017)
“I was not going to let this beautiful building fall to the wayside,” recalled Staples. “I’m proud to see my efforts paid off.” (Hyde Park Herald, May 10, 2017)
Preservation Chicago applauds Charles Staples for all of his lifetime achievements including his efforts to try to save the old Federal Center by Henry Ives Cobb and other efforts to protect some of Chicago’s great landmark buildings.