Wentworth Gardens
Wentworth Gardens

Wentworth Gardens

Hood(s) Armour Square;

37th Street on the north, Pershing Road on the south, Wentworth Avenue on the east, Princeton Street on the west

Lifecycle 1944 – 1945, Construction;
Controlling gangs Gangster Disciples; Mickey Cobras;

In the year 1944 the Chicago Housing Authority decided to build another public housing complex in this area to house African Americans because the nearby Bridgeport Homes were only for whites, the CHA hired designer Loebl & Schlossman to construct this 422 unit 2 row house complex.

These projects were started in 1944 and were finished in 1945 as African Americans found the projects to be ideal living quarters and this positivity would remain through the 1940s, 1950s and most of the 1960s.  In the later 1960s CHA screening of new tenants became heavily lax as criminal elements were able to move into the row houses and soon gangs like Black Gangster Disciples and Black P Stones arrived.

In the 1970s these projects became more unsettling and less tended to by CHA as crime and drugs flowed freely in this small community.  The 1980s and 1990s were the worst decades in these projects as they were left to face deterioration and drug problems.  Gang warfare between Black P Stones and Gangster Disciples ripped through these projects and this brought about a bad reputation for going to a neighboring White Sox game because of the crime and violence in the Wentworth Gardens.  In the 2000s decade these projects were renovated but still experience higher crime although not as bad as in past years.