Chicago Ale & Malt Company
Life Span: 1860-1868
Location: South Shore, south of Douglas Grove, Cleaverville
Chicago Tribune, August 22, 1860
The Chicago Ale and Malt Company.—Our city has won a wide reputation among the considers of malt beverages, for the quality of its products from several well known establishments. Probably no better ale is made in the country than in Chicago. The Chicago Ale and Malt Company have within the past few months purchased the extensive Brewery premises of John O’Neill on the lake shore at Cleaverville, and have already established for their manufactures a permanent and growing favor and demand. Their ale is by good judges pronounced among of the finest and purest in this market. Their establishment is in charge of a practical brewer of large experience, and celebrity, and the utmost pains to secure a pure and choice article will bs taken. The office is on Dearborn street near South Water, (the old American Express office,) but the ale is drawn largely by at his saloon in Loomis’ Building on South Clark street. The Company in question, principal among whom is H. G. Loomis, Esq., have gone into the manufacture with plenty of capital and every prospect of success to be derivable from results thus far.
Chicago Evening Post, April 17, 1869
$70,000— One of the finest pieces of manufacturing property in the city located on the lake shore, lying between the Illinois Central Railroad and Lake Michigan building 60x10O, three stories; pier in front of property formerly known as Chicago Ale and Malt Company. This property has engines and machinery all ready for running order and will be sold for the above price or it will be leased for a term of years to a good tenant.
Chicago Tribune, July 2, 1863
Cleaverville.—One of the prettiest and most promising suburbs of Chicago, so near as to be within the city limits itself at no distant day, is Cleaverville. It already boasts a very excellent neighborhood, which the terminus of the horse railroad, half a mile distant, is fostering, to say nothing of the facilities by the Illinois Central railroad, from, the station there established. The Salem Church and Society (Congregational,) under the pastoral care of Rev. S. S. Smith, are enlarging their church edifice, and will make it a very tasteful structure. An auction sale of some of the most desirable lots in Cleaverville takes place at 2 p. m. to-day, advertised elsewhere.
Chicago Tribune, March 4, 1900
One of the most delightful and even famous of Chicago’s southern suburbs, Oakland, is known now to fame only in the memory of its older residents and in the name of the station on the suburban lines of the Illinois Central. It was known first at Cleaverville, from Charles Cleaver, who established a soap factory and built a residence there in 1853. His house, which he named Oakwood Hall—whence Oakwood boulevard—stood where 3938 Ellis avenue is now, and was widely known for its hospitable host’s sake. Ellis avenue, by the way, which runs by its site, commemorates the name of Samuek Ellis, the pioneer tavern-keeper of the South Side.
Cleaverville prospered from the start. Its factory gave it business standing in the community, and its founder was a man of enterprise. In 1854 he built the first church erected south of Van Buren street, known after ward as the Oakland Congregational Church. This and the natural advantages of the site induced rapid settlement by good people, and after the war the place grew rapidly in popularity as a suburb for fine residence.
The name “Oakland” was substituted for Cleaverville in 1871 by common consent of the populace, suggested by te oaks which lined the streets. Cleaver was a lover of trees, and many old-time names of streets in the suburb—Elm, Locust, Maple, etc.—were bestowed by him on account of the trees he caused to be planted when the thoroughfares were laid out.
Chicago Tribune, October 29, 1893
Charles Cleaver, for many years one of the leading real-estate men of the city and also one of Chicago’s earliest settlers, died at the home of his son, C. S. Cleaver, No. 4741 Kellwood avenue, Friday. Mr. Cleaver had lived in Chicago since October, 1833. His widow, two sons, and four daughters survive him. The funeral arrangements have not yet been completed.
When Charles Cleaver came to Chicago he became immediately identified with the commercial interests of the town and subsequently founded Cleaverville, now Oakland. This he did by building a house in 1853 on the property lying between Oakwood avenue. Brook street (so called by Mr. Cleaver because of a brook that ran there), Cedar, and Elm streets. The house since has then has been enlarged and divided, but its integral part remains at the residence, No.3938 Ellis avenue. This house was built subsequent to Mr. Cleaver’s removal from the house he occupied where Standard Hall is now situated—Thirteenth street and Michigan avenue and was built there because of its contiguity to the soap and rendering works which Mr. Cleaver ereeted in 1851 near the foot of Thirty-eighth street. This house was the nucleus around which clustered the settlement of Cleaverville and the germ out of which sprang one of the favorite suburban residence regions of Chicago.
At that time, 1851, there were only a few fishermen told woodchoppers there, and there were but four or five houses south of Twelfth street. Mr. Cleaver bought twenty-two and a half acres from Samuel Ellis, who at that time lived at Lake avenue and Thirty-fifth street, and kept tavern near the site of the Douglas monument. and then bought seventy-one acres of Henry and Loring Graves, this property forming Cleaverville. There Mr. Cleaver erected numerous houses, spending $60,000 in one year in building purposes. In 1854 he built a meeting house, which was also the first church in Hyde Park. To the Illinois Central Mr. Cleaver paid $3,800 a year to get it to run trains to his settlement. Hundreds of trains pass and repass the same property daily new.
When Dearborn Seminary was organized, January, 1854, Mr. Cleaver was one of the trustees. He also belonged to the old Volunteer Hook and Ladder Company No. 1, with S. B. Cooke, P. F. W. Peek, Medford, Sherwood, and others. A letter written by Mr. Cleaver in 1833 in regard to the lumber interests of of Chicago says the stock of lumber at that time in the town did not exceed 10,000 feet, and that prices ranged from $60 to $70 a thousand. iTwo sawmills, some six miles up the North Branch, cut such timber as grew in the vicinity. It was generally of small growth and of varieties not valuable for building purposes—mostly oak, elm. poplar, and white ash. Mr. Cleaver was authority for the statement that the first bridge across the North Branch of the river was built in the winter of 1831-32. and that the first bridge over the South. Branch was built in the beer of 1832-33. The abutments were built of heavy legs in the shallow water near the banks. These bridges were ten feet wide. Mr. Cleaver remembered driving across the first bridge over the North Branch.
Charles Cleaver was born at Kensington Common, London. July 21, 1814. He attended the semi-military academy of H. O. Stone at Bexton for seven years. Leaving London Jan. 18, 1833, and arriving in New York March 13, 1833, he had to wait until April 22 for the canal to open. He left Buffalo Aug. 26 and arrived in Chicago Oct. 23, 1833. In 1857 discontinued his soap factory and engaged in the real estate business. In 1866 Cleaver Hall was built. This used a general meeting place for a number of years, qnd is now used as a dwelling at Fortieth street and Grand boulevard. His borne was called Oakwood Hall and thence was derived the name for the boulevard. Mr. Cleaver married March 6, 1838, Miss Mary Brooks. whose father was one of the first Justices of the Peace of Hyde Park. Mr. and Mrs. Cleaver had six children, all of whom are living. Charles S., Frederick W., Louisa, now Mrs. John Barwick, Myra, Emily, and Fanny. Mr Cleaver witnessed the growth of Chicago and largely contributed to the prosperity of the new town. Until within the last two years, he lived on Ellis avenue, but of late resided with his son at No. 4741 Kenwood avenue. He has taken no active part in business affairs in recent years. He was a member of St. John’s Episcopal Church (Langley av. and 37th st.), and his religious beliefs entered into the daily duties of his life.
Chicago Tribune, July 14, 1912
MRS. MARY CLEAVER, widow of Charles Cleaver, an early Chicago settler, died last Monday in Canton. She came to Chicago from England with her father.
Samuel Brookes, in 1833 in a sailing vessel when the trip took three months. Her marriage took place in 1838 and for many years she and her husband lived in a log cabin on the west bank of the Chicago river, near Madison street, In 1850 they moved to Thirty-ninth street and Ellis avenue, a locality still called Cleaverville.