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Nelson Algren’s Favorite Saloon

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Lotties

Floyd Sullivan, 2017

Lottie’s Pub, one of Nelson Algren’s favorite local spots, now serves as a sport's bar that has taken over the whole building on the corner of Winchester and Cortland. Lottie’s started as a grocery store in 1928, but converted to a bar when owner Walter “Lottie” Zagorski bought the pkace. It was then known as Zagorski’s Tarvern. Zagorski was a six-foot transvestite and maybe hermaphrodite. The…  read more

Lottie’s Pub, one of Nelson Algren’s favorite local spots, now serves as a sport's bar that has taken over the whole building on the corner of Winchester and Cortland. Lottie’s started as a grocery store in 1928, but converted to a bar when owner Walter “Lottie” Zagorski bought the pkace. It was then known as Zagorski’s Tarvern. Zagorski was a six-foot transvestite and maybe hermaphrodite. The basement, accessed through a private door and known as “Zagorski’s Rathskeller,” served as a gambling hall, prostitution den, and strip tease joint that attracted gangsters, politicians and neighborhood people. According to the Chicago Bar Project, “It is said that the gambling operation was run by Andy ‘The Greek’ Lochious, working for Joseph ‘Joe Gags’ Gagliano, a syndicate gambling and loan shark boss.” Lottie was arrested as the leader of the bookmaking ring a couple of times and, following a joint crackdown by the FBI and IRS, and subsequent grand jury testimony, she died of natural causes in 1973. Zagorski's closed a year later.

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