I always thought the The Burwood Tap was the oldest bar in Chicago, but I was corrected this weekend: The oldest bar in Chicago is actually Schaller's Pump. Schaller's Pump opened in the 1881 and has been a Bridgeport staple ever since. I did a little digging, and found some very interesting facts about this watering hole:
Schaller's Pump has always been owned and operated by the Schaller family. George “Harvey” Schaller opened the bar, and it's currently being run by Jack Schaller and his son and four daughters. Jack still lives above the bar.
The back room at Schaller's Pump has been a second office for a few of Chicago's most famous mayors, including the Daleys. According to several websites, Daley was known to draft policies back there. And since it's located across from the 11th Ward Democratic Organization you can imagine that it's still a popular spot for Chicago politicians.
The bar got it's name "The Pump" during Prohibition. The Ambrosia Brewery next door (now just a parking lot) would pump beer straight in from its casks. If you wanted to come in for a drink you had to be screened through the peep hole in the south wall; that peep hole is still there.
See that really cool arched wooden door on the front? It's sealed shut, so you have to use the side door. I couldn't find a reason why.
And, of course, since it's located so close to Sox park, Schaller's Pump is home to the biggest Sox fans. The bar is even painted in a black and white theme.
Filed under: Did You Know, Chicago?
Tags: 11th Ward, 11th Ward Democratic Organization, Chicag, Chicago, Chicago 11th Ward, Chicago bar, Chicago history, Chicago mayor, Chicago Mayor Daley, Chicago mayors, Chicago politicians, Chicago Prohibition, Chicago Quirk, Chicago Richard Daley, Chicago's oldest bar, Mayor Daley, Mayor Richard Daley, Prohibition, Richard Daley, Schaller Family, Schaller's Chicago, Schaller's Pump, Sox bar, Sox bar Chicago, Sox games, Sox games Chicago, The Burwood Tap