Ravenswood, Chicago

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A Chicago 'L' train passes through Ravenswood with the tower of the former J.C. Deagan Company factory in the background.
A Chicago 'L' train passes through Ravenswood with the tower of the former J.C. Deagan Company factory in the background.
Coordinates: 41°57′56″N 87°40′00″W / 41.96556°N 87.66667°W / 41.96556; -87.66667Coordinates: 41°57′56″N 87°40′00″W / 41.96556°N 87.66667°W / 41.96556; -87.66667
Country United States
State Illinois
County Cook
City Chicago
Elevation[1] 604 ft (184 m)
ZIP Code 60640 and part of 60613
GNIS feature ID 1802408[1]

Ravenswood is a neighborhood located in the north side of the city of Chicago, Illinois in the Lincoln Square Community Area. According to the Encyclopedia of Chicago, Ravenswood was founded in 1868 as an exclusive commuter suburb by a group of real-estate speculators. These speculators formed the Ravenswood Land Company and purchased 194 acres of farmland and woods eight miles north of Chicago. The conflation of Ravenswood and Lincoln Square is a common mistake — the two are not interchangeable. The boundaries of the original Ravenswood subdivision, drawn in 1869, were Montrose, Lawrence, Clark and Damen.

Back in the 1920s, the University of Chicago divided the city into 77 well-defined "community areas." Ravenswood didn't make the cut as a standalone entity, rather it was folded into Lincoln Square. In short, according to U. of C., Ravenswood is a subset of Lincoln Square.

The Ravenswood Community Council is clear on this point: "The name Ravenswood remained in popular use, even after the area was officially designated part of the Lincoln Square community area."

Ravenswood is known for its courtyard-style residential buildings. Once considered an "up and coming" neighborhood, Ravenswood has seen its real estate values skyrocket since the 1990s, making it one of the highest valued markets in the city.

The commercially zoned and historic Lincoln Square district is located On the West border of the area (Western Avenue) while most of the neighborhood is residentially zoned except for stretches along Lawrence, Montrose, Wilson, and Damen Avenues. Ravenswood has good transportation access, with the Brown Line running through the neighborhood, bus lines on several major streets, and a Metra commuter railroad station.

Arts and cultural sites[edit]


Residents in Ravenswood are zoned to the campuses of the Chicago Public Schools:

  • Ravenswood Elementary School (PK-8)[2]
    • Ravenswood Elementary was established in 1873 as Sulzer Street School; Sulzer Street was later renamed Montrose Avenue. The school adopted its current name in 1893, when 12 classrooms were added to the building. In 1912 and 1913 wings on the north and south sides of the building, consisting of 12 rooms, were built. The school received additional land in 1923; this land was acquired by CPS in 1910. From 1912 to a period in the 1930s, junior high school level students attended classes at Stockton School instead of Ravenswood School, and in turn first year students (freshmen) from Lake View High School, which was overcrowded, attended classes at the Ravenswood building. As of 2016 Ravenswood Elementary has 500 students.[3]
  • Those west of Ashland are zoned to Amundsen High School while others are zoned to Senn High School[4]


  1. ^ a b "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  2. ^ "Elem North" (). Chicago Public Schools. 2013. Retrieved on September 30, 2016.
  3. ^ "Overview." Ravenswood School. Retrieved on December 24, 2016.
  4. ^ "HS North/Near North." Chicago Public Schools. 2013. Retrieved on September 30, 2016.

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