Located on the southwest side of Chicago, 12 miles south of the loop, Evergreen Park is bordered to the north, east, and south by Chicago itself with Oak Lawn to its west. The city takes its name from the evergreen trees planted in a park, originally named Evergreen Park, at 97th Street and Homan Avenue, and it takes its nickname, the Village of Churches from its 13 churches.
Originally, the namesake park, which changed its name from Evergreen Park to Klein Park in 1968 to honor one of its mayors, was to be the star-shaped center with the then village extending out along eight streets following the plan similar to the one for Paris. The commercial growth didn’t follow the original plan, however. So the park is located in a residential section, and city’s center grew up around 95th Street and Kedzie Avenue starting in 1875 with the building of the first school just to the west of that intersection. Whether the residential or the commercial area, though, STS Electric is prepared to light Evergreen Park as brightly as Paris, the City of Lights.
The expansion of Evergreen Park’s commercial growth began with the opening of St. Mary’s Cemetery in 1888. Taverns and restaurants opened to offer food and drinks to those taking the train to attend funerals or visiting the cemetery. Over the next five years, Chicagoans returned to Evergreen Park to enjoy the beer gardens, dance halls, and parks, and the city attracted hundreds of visitors as a recreation center.
During a financial recession and panic sparked by failed international investments in Brazil, many of the other small villages and cities around Chicago voted to be annexed into the city. The 1950195residents of Evergreen Park, however, chose to preserve the promise of their strong business district, and they voted 41 to 50 to incorporate to be certain that they could not be annexed. The incorporation became official on December 20, 1893.
Little Company of Mary Hospital opened in Evergreen Park in 1930 and became the site of the first successful organ transplant on June 17, 1950. Ruth Tucker received a kidney during the operation, which was performed by Dr. Edward T. Maloney. While most residents of Evergreen Park commute to work in Chicago, Little Company of Mary Hospital is the city’s largest employer.
Evergreen Plaza, later renamed The Plaza, was built by Arthur Rubloff in 1952. Later, he enclosed the mall to create Chicagp’s first indoor shopping mall. The Plaza covered 1,200,000 square feet within two stories and drew 7,000,000 visitors annually. On May 31, 2013, The Plaza closed and underwent redevelopment to reopen as Evergreen Marketplace on October 18, 2018. Evergreen Park receives most of its income from the sales taxes collected by this shopping destination.
Tony DeSantis founded the six theater Drury Lane Theatre group in the Chicago area. He named the theaters after the Theatre Royal Drury Lane of London. Drury Lane Evergreen Park began with plays held at the Martinique Restaurant in Evergreen Park. The Evergreen Park theater provided a center of local entertainment for 45 years before closing in 2003, but the Drury Lane Oakbrook Terrace remains open.
STS Electric has been there since 1980 to provide all the electrical services for all of the businesses and residences in Evergreen Park.