Best of the South Side 2014 | Chatham

Chatham

LUKE WHITE

Lanisha Byron steps out of Target and into the early evening on 86th Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue, laden with bags of back-to-school supplies and worry etched into her face. “All I’m saying is that if he doesn’t do his homework on time this year, there’s gonna be consequences,” she laughs. Cottage Grove is busy at this time of day—with places like the strip mall here, Walgreens down the road, and a multitude of local businesses, it’s been one of Chatham’s commercial lifelines since the early 1940s. Even along relatively quiet stretches, Byron passes by people who greet her cheerfully on the sidewalk—the smiling men outside the neighborhood mosque, mechanics taking a break outside the auto shop, and Houston Myers, her neighbor and a resident of Chatham for three years. Continue reading