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Robert S. Gruhn papers

Identifier: MSS0075

Scope and Contents

The Robert S. Gruhn papers contain reports by the Chicago Land Clearance Commission (CLCC) to the government agencies named in the Blighted Areas Redevelopment Act of 1947 specifying that a land clearance commission must receive affirmation from the municipal body and the State Housing Board to acquire land in these designated areas and approval for redevelopment. The reports propose redevelopment projects and provide research that analyzes the conditions of blight in those areas. The primary focus of these papers is on three redevelopment projects in Chicago between 1949 and 1951: the Lake Meadows Project, located in Chicago’s South Side Bronzeville neighborhood; the Normandy Village project on Western Avenue and 79th Street; and a West Side project bounded by Canal Street, Roosevelt Road, Polk Street and the proposed expressway. Documents include reports to both the governing bodies of the City of Chicago and to the insurance company that is underwriting the redevelopment plans. The files also include press releases, architectural plans, area maps, survey data, and Chicago area research.


  • 1931-1954

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Biographical / Historical

Born in Racine, Wisconsin, Robert S. Gruhn (1920-2008) graduated from University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Law School. In addition to practicing law, Gruhn was a member of the Chicago Land Clearance Commission (CLCC) during the 1940s and 1950s, ultimately serving as Assistant Executive Director of the organization.


2.5 Linear Feet (2 boxes)

Language of Materials



The Robert S. Gruhn papers are organized into two series: 1. Chicago Land Clearance Commission (CLCC); 2. Urban Planning. See series-level arrangement notes for additional details.

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

In 2007, the family of Robert S. Gruhn donated his historic Chicago-related items to DePaul University Special Collections. Included along with forty-two books and pamphlets related to urban planning, history, transportation and architecture in Chicago were papers from his time with the Chicago Land Clearance Commission (CLCC). These have been processed as an archival collection.

Processing Information

M. McCoy 2012

Guide to Robert S. Gruhn papers
M. McCoy 2012
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the DePaul Special Collections and Archives Repository

John T. Richardson Library
2350 N. Kenmore Ave.
Room 314
Chicago Illinois 60614