Frogtown and the North Ridge: An Evanston Neighborhood Tour

Click here to purchase a .pdf of the tour

With the arrival of spring, we are pleased to offer a new self-guided Evanston neighborhood tour.  The North Ridge, from Emerson to Central Street, provided a natural attraction to human habitation and development.  The adjacent wetlands held abundant wildlife, including a vociferous bullfrog population. Early accounts labeled this area “Frogtown” for the ubiquitous sound of their croaking.

The tour uncovers the many stories of the north section of Ridge Avenue, from Native American vestiges, through the early white farming community of Ridgeville, to the development of Evanston. The geography informed the location of the hospital, the canal, the railroad, and the earliest houses, farms, and factories. Discover the surprising remnants of Evanston’s oldest community and how their impact is still being felt today.

The tour includes many little-seen historical photographs of the area. It is available in a .pdf and can be purchased for $20 by clicking here.

If you have any questions, please contact Kris Hartzell at