Sin in the Second City by Karen Abbott
At the dawn of the 20th century there existed the most famous and notorious brothel in America. Anyone who has read Erik Larson’s “Devil in the White City” or has affection for the city of Chicago will thoroughly enjoy this book. It is a concise account of the Everleigh Club and Chicago’s Levee district and the Reformers who sought to bring down prostitution by preaching upon soap boxes in the streets of the Levee. Parades and mass demonstrations were often held resulting in violence and rioting to the point that the Federal government stepped in finally closing the door on vice permanently with the enactment of the Mann Act. I read this book just before traveling to Chicago this summer and, as a fan of architecture, was amazed at how well preserved those neighborhood building are with new developments steadily going up all around this thriving metropolis.