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Hyde Park Federal Savings

In 1960 Hyde Park Federal was the first savings and loan in the United States to make loans on a non-discriminatory basis.

It was also among the few S & L’s which came into being from grass roots community action. In Hyde Park -Kenwood, the heart of innovative urban renewal planning, it was impossible to obtain a residential mortgage. If you were white, no Chicago bank would give you a mortgage because your home was on the same block with an African American family. If you were African American, you couldn’t get a mortgage on your home because of the color of your skin.

Tenacious Hyde Park and Kenwood families met together as they had so often done in the past – moderate income whites and African Americans raised sufficient money to open a viable savings and loan., They succeeded to the extent that other Chicago Area S & L’s saw Hyde Park Kenwood as a good place to invest. HPFS’ Board of directors was representative of the several racial, ethnic and religious groups in the community. The savings & loan opened 1961.

The following pages were designed to show a diversity of patrons of Hyde Park Federal. These ads- an idea of Bruce’s that I ran with- emphasized savings, illustrating this by what material item, as well as money, was saved. I dare think that Nancy Hays and I enjoyed researching and photographing these pages more than they brought in savings dollars. But fun it was and to this day, the pages are a bellwether of how Hyde Parkers think.

Hyde Park Federal ads, including one which won a coveted “”Hermes” award from the Chicago Federal Advertising Clubs, ran for two years. The series came to an abrupt end when Paul Berger-( the president of the board, ) learned his large lake front apartment was being converted to a condominium. He did not want the conversion, thus instituted a different series of ads protesting the “condominiumization” of Hyde Park.

I understand that today 80% of Hyde Park apartments have been


Marylou says, ” the Feb 23-March 2 issue of NewYorker celebrates their 90th birthday of publication and is a great fun issue to read.”

(click on the images for a full size version)

Hyde Park bathtub lgs