JPAC/Jackson Park home. hydepark.org home. hydepark.org parks home.
Published by Jackson Park Advisory Council, a recognized advisory body to the Chicago Park District, Chicago Illinois
Editor Gary Ossewaarde. Hosted by hydepark.org, website of Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference (owner) by OnShore Communications.
A newly formed bulletin
board committee reported a monthly schedule of topics for features to serve
as teaching tools in JPAC’s bulletin board in the south hallway. Topics
ranged from persons (currently Nancy Hays) to nature (such as the oaks and birds
on Wooded Island) and sports. More topics were suggested. (The bulletin board
also is to include notices of meetings/actions and the Newsletter.)
Discussed was an idea for a self-guided nature tour using trails including in Wooded Island. There might be identification signage, brochures that could be picked up or distributed, and disposable cameras for kids. Fran Vandervoort and others are exploring grants and park district receptiveness to the nature trail idea.
McCurry, Vandervoort and others met with Rosalind Moore of the 5th Ward Office (and Ms. Moore consulted with Park District officers including the region manager) on matters including the process for naming the Wooded Island bridge for Nancy Hays, pursuant to a JPAC resolution passed in December. They are proceeding with paperwork and the gathering of community and stakeholder support. This will include a letter of support from the council with details of the request and why the nominee deserves such recognition. Members were assigned to contact specific groups and stakeholders.
Vandervoort gave a heads up that the Friends of the Japanese Garden is considering one or more festivals or activities for Osaka Garden this year, in which JPAC might participate.
Also per JPAC resolution, potential for a dog-friendly area is being explored, perhaps near the 59th tennis court/inlet harbor sector. The procedure is known and who might have a concern or objection. Those exploring understand the many requirements for approval, the need for caretaking agreements, the costs, and suitability for dogs of different kinds of facilities. Someone would have to start a study and seek grants if interested in such a facility.
Natural areas. Questions were asked about the extent of plant removals in Wooded Island planned this year and beyond, effects of past phased habitat reconstruction, and about relationships between ongoing needs of bird and wildlife the plan’s species for replanting. [Plans can be seen in the JPAC website at http://www.hydepark.org/birds/Woodedsum.htm.] Attention was called to an interesting site called Natural History Chicago (http://www.naturalhistorychicago.com) by Jane Masterson. It has wildlife pictures.
The secretary was asked to inquire of the park district and Care of Trees concerning cost sharing for work this year or next.
Time was directed to be set aside at a later meeting to discuss feasibility and desirability of new facilities in the park, for example a presidential library.
Friends of the Parks will present achievement awards to community and park activist, teacher and historian Timuel D. Black and to JPAC Secretary Gary Ossewaarde February 3 at its annual luncheon at the Chicago Cultural Center. (This event has a cost and deadline – call 312 857-2757 or visit http://www.fotp.org.)
The next issue of the 5th Ward Newsletter will include a feature on Jackson Park and JPAC.
One or more JPAC committees may meet before or after regular meetings in various months.
Being planned – a major community meeting on Jackson Park security. The 5th Ward office will help with invitation to police, stakeholders, and community. All are encouraged to come and bring friends. Date and details will be announced in the next newsletter.
The meeting was adjourned about 8:45 p.m.
Gary M. Ossewaarde, Secretary
JPAC is initiating a request to name the north bridge to Wooded Island for its leader and past JPAC president Nancy Campbell Hays, who passed on May 31, 2007. The following is adapted from her memorial service biography.
Nancy Campbell Hays, 84,
passed away on May 31, 2007. Upon learning of her death, former alderman Leon
M. Despres commented, "She was Hyde Park's photographer, a champion of
the parks, and an extraordinary person." Through her last month, Nancy
remained curious about and alert to happenings in Hyde Park and Chicago; friends
were reading aloud to her from Despres' book Challenging the Daley Machine:
A Chicago Alderman's Memoir.
Nancy was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, on May 26, 1923. An uncle taught her photography when she was twelve, and her father helped her build a darkroom in the family home. She began undergraduate studies in architecture at the University of Michigan. Her parents hoped she would complete her studies there, but she headed instead to the School of Modern Photography in New York City. In 1948, at the age of 25, she was sent by the American Friends Service Committee on a year-long assignment to postwar Europe and the Middle East as a volunteer photographer.
During the 1950s, Nancy established herself as a professional photographer using Campbell Hays as her professional name. She worked through the Monkmeyer Press Photo Service in New York City until the agency closed in 2001. Many of her photographs were used to illustrate school textbooks and the Weekly Reader, distributed to schools across the country.
Nancy moved to Chicago in 1958 and found her life-long home in the Hyde Park-Kenwood community. She did advertising layout and photography for the Hyde Park Co-op and undertook weekly assignments for the Hyde Park Herald, including extensive coverage of children and post-urban renewal Hyde Park. Every year for almost four decades she supported and photographed the 57th Street Art Fair, the Hyde Park Garden Fair, the July 4th parade and picnic on 53rd Street along with countless school and community events.
Beginning in the 1960s, Nancy became deeply involved in saving trees and safeguarding the lakefront and parks. She joined the Hyde Park-Kenwood Community Conference as a member of the Parks Committee and, in 1965, helped form the Daniel Burnham Committee to protest the city's plans to put a freeway and feeder route through Jackson Park. Every Sunday the group tied strips of sheeting around the many trees that would be sacrificed for the road; for this the group was arrested. Her name is associated with all the subsequent struggles to preserve and protect Jackson Park and Burnham Park: the dismantling of the Nike bases, the protection of Wooded Island, the preservation of the 63rd Street Bathing Pavilion, the rehabilitation of the lagoons, and the preservation of the limestone revetment at Promontory Point.
She was instrumental in founding Friends of the Parks in 1975 and served on its board for three decades. She was one of the founders of the Jackson Park Advisory Council in 1983 and served in some capacity with the council ever since its founding, notably as its president from 1999 until her death. Nancy has been recognized for her achievements numerous times including by the Chicago Audubon Society in 1997 and the South East Chicago Commission in 2002.
She bequeathed the entire body of her photographic work--prints, slides, and negatives that span fifty years--and related documentation to the archives of the Hyde Park Historical Society. The collection is stored at the Special Collections Research Center of the University of Chicago's Regenstein Library. "Nancy was one of Hyde Park's great and caring human beings and a superb photographer. Her work will have meaning to generations of people to come." (Stephen A. Treffman, HPHS Board Member and Archivist Emeritus)
Rebecca Graff, graduate doctoral candidate at the University of Chicago, described to a packed hall January 22 at the Hyde Park Historical Society headquarters the 2007 excavation the class she led conducted on Wooded Island and southwest of the Museum of Science and Industry. Test sampling led to thorough excavation of square trenches at the site of the former Japanese pavilion on Wooded Island and the vicinity of the Ohio pavilion near the Columbia Basin and Cornell Drive. The research, and the talk and its stunning visuals revealed much about the infrastructure of as well as what gets left where, and how at such intentionally-temporary huge construction and removal projects as world fairs. Other such sites worldwide hold promise for significant finds—what’s supposedly “gone” may not be!