1915: Victor Gasket Manufacturing builds their headquarters in the Central Manufacturing District (CMD)
Built in 1915, as a headquarters and manufacturing plant for Victor Gasket located in the oldest industrial park in the country. The CMD straddles the South Branch of the Chicago River in the Bridgeport/McKinley Park neighborhoods. In earlier years, the CMD was host to many names linked to Chicago’s history - names like Armour, Spiegel, Sears, Swift, among others.
1947: Spiegel purchases the building
In 1947, Spiegel purchased the building to supplement their cluster of buildings located nearby on 35th Street.
1963: Illinois Insulation and Construction purchases building as distribution center.
The building was purchased, in 1963, as a new distribution center for Illinois Insulation and Construction.
1981: Price Family purchases building
The building was purchased by the Price Family and served as a fabrication and distribution facility, and headquarters for the Price Family businesses until 1998.
2003-2007: An Experiment in Artist Lofts.
The Prices moved into a “Watchman’s Residence” on the 5th floor of the building and began to renovate the warehouse into lofts, under the name of “Iron Studios,” with the goal of providing exhibition space and arts-based rental spaces to fill the gap created by the gentrification of arts-based communities on the Northside of Chicago. During the Iron Studios experiment, the building hosted a diverse group of tenants including web designers, photography studios, cabinet makers, as well as other entrepreneurial businesses.
Also during the Iron Studios era, the building hosted a number of exhibitions, including the Chicago Artists Coalition Exhibition(2007), Version Fest (2007), the Renaissance Society Annual Fundraiser, (2007), PEEP SHOW, and the Chicago Swing Dancers. These exhibitions took place in the second floor exhibition area. During the short term that Iron Studios existed, it achieved critical acclaim for bringing something different to the near South Side. However, due to the economic changes and restructuring taking place in the audio production and arts based markets, Iron Studios had proven to be worthwhile but unsustainable enterprise for its owners.