Chicago Polish Triangle


Initial historical Polish patches

St. John Cantius Roman Catholic Church, one of Chicago’s ‘Polish Cathedrals’.

In Polish the ending ‘owo’ in e.g., Bronislawowo functions similar to English ‘ville’ in Johnsville or ‘ton’ in Charleston. When added to a name of a saint, it indicates a Polish sounding town or a village. This is a colloquial phenomenon, not present in educated Polish; however, it persists in the names of different Polish areas of Chicago.

Polish Downtown- (Pulaski Park, River West, Bucktown, Wicker Park, East Village, and Noble Square)

Trojcowo – The area around Holy Trinity Polish Mission
Stanislawowo – The area around St. Stanislaus Kostka in Chicago
Kantowo – The area around St. John Cantius in Chicago
Mlodziankowo – The area around Holy Innocents in Chicago
Fidelisowo – The area around St. Fidelis
Helenowo – The area around St. Helen
Marianowo – The area around St. Mary of the Angels in Chicago
Jadwigowo – The area around St. Hedwig’s in Chicago

Lower West Side

Wojciechowo – The area around St. Adalbert’s in Chicago
Annowo – The area around St. Anns in Chicago
Romanowo – The area around St. Roman’s
Kazimierzowo – The area around the former St. Casimir’s


NMP Nieustajacej Pomocy – The area around St. Mary of Perpetual Help
Barbarowo – The area around St. Barbara in Chicago

Back of the Yards

Jozefowo – The area around St. Joseph’s in Chicago
Janowo – The area around St. John of God
Sercanowo – The area around Sacred Heart

South Chicago

Niepokolanowo – The area around Immaculate Conception in Chicago
Michalowo – The area around St. Michael’s in Chicago
Magdalenowo – The area around St. Mary Magdalene
Bronislawowo – The area around St. Bronislava

Subsequent historical Polish patches

Later as Poles grew in number and advanced economically, they migrated further out into outlying areas. The result was that the West Town/Logan Square settlement in Polish Downtown spread westward along North Avenue and northwestward along Milwaukee thereby creating a “Polish Corridor” which tied in contiguous areas such as Norwood Park, Jefferson Park, Portage Park, and Belmont-Cragin. The same kind of advance occurred in the other original areas of Polish settlements so that Poles from both the Lower West Side and the Back of the Yards moved into both sides of Archer Avenue, giving rise to sizable Polish settlements on the Southwest Side of the city such as McKinley Park, Garfield Ridge, Brighton Park and Archer Heights. On the far Southeast Side, the South Chicago “steel mill settlements” spilled over into Pullman, Roseland, East Side, Hegewisch and Calumet City as well as into Lake County in Northwest Indiana, where thriving Polish communities were found in North Hammond, Whiting, the Indian Harbor section of East Chicago and several neighborhoods in the newly built industrial city of Gary.

North Side of Chicago

Lincoln Park

Jozafatowo or Kaszubowo – The area around the parish of St. Josaphat’s in Chicago which was initially heavily Cassubian

Lincoln Square

U Przemienienia – The area around the parish of Transfiguration

Avondale Chicago’s Polish Village:

Jackowo – The area around St. Hyacinth Basilica
Waclawowo – The area around St. Wenceslaus

Irving Park

Polskie Wille – The landmark Villa District, historically known as the “Polish Kenilworth”
Niepokalanowo/ Małe Kaszuby – The area around Immaculate Heart of Mary, also known as Little Cassubia

Portage Park

Władysławowo – The area around the parish of St. Ladislaus in Chicago

Jefferson Park

Konstancowo – The area around the parish of St. Constance

Norwood Park

Teklowo – The area around the parish of St. Thecla

Belmont Cragin

Jakubowo – The area around St. James
U Biskupa/ Biskupowo (Stanislawowo) – The area around the parish of St. Stanislaus Bishop and Martyr

Humboldt Park Franciszkowo – The area around the parish of St. Francis of Assisi

South Side of Chicago

McKinley Park

Piotropawlowo – The area around the parish of Ss Peter and Paul

Archer Heights

Brunowo – The area around the parish St. Bruno

Garfield Ridge

Kamilowo – The area around the parish of St. Camillus by Midway Airport

Brighton Park

U Pieciu Braci – The area around Five Holy Martyrs
Pankracowo – The area around the parish of St. Pancratius

South Lawndale

U Dobrego Pasterza/ Pasterzowo – The area around the parish of Good Shepherd

West Elsdon

Turibiuszowo – The area around the parish of St. Turibius


Salomejowo – The area around the parish of St. Salomea


Florianowo – The area around the parish of St.Florian

Over the course of the city’s development as the city’s Polish community climbed further up the economic ladder and were followed by new waves of immigrants the concentration of Poles shifted to different areas of the city.