65 Photos From Inside The Old Chicago Main Post Office – Before The Renovations

Originally built to help serve Chicago’s mail order behemoths such as Sears and Montgomery Ward, the Art Deco giant is currently being transformed by a team of 200 construction workers representing 27 different contractors.

The Old Chicago Main Post Office is a 9 story building located downtown Chicago. The original structure was designed by the Architectural Firm of Graham, Anderson, Probst & White and built in 1921. It was quickly expanded in 1932. Its capacity was needed to serve Chicago’s great volume of postal business, swollen by the mail-order businesses of Montgomery Ward (the largest retailer in the United States) and of Sears (its competitor). On May 13, 2016 the building was sold by English real estate developer Bill Davies, who died the next day.*

Upper floors. Decay has taken over the rooms. Buckled floors. Falling ceiling tiles.



Hallways with old carpets and feeling paint vary in degree of decay with top floors having the worst.

View out the northern side as a reflection in 300 W Van Buren. Along the Chicago River to the right.

More hallways with decay – peeling paint and falling ceiling panels.

View of the windows facing northern portion. Drop ceiling with missing panels show original height of the rooms and windows.

Press and equipment storage rooms at the top floors. Morning light hitting the eastern side of the structure.

Sick leave days calendars and statistics in admin rooms at the western top floor.

Sears Tower as seen from the roof before the gravel and stones were removed.

Walking path atop. Shadow on a portion of the mechanical room.

Early morning sun entering the eastern windows of a Chicago Local Call Center at the.



Cloudy day soon outside the windows of decayed rooms. Facing north.

More rooms inside the Old Chicago Post Office. Juxtaposition of office building architecture seen outside the windows.

One of the production floors inside the Old Chicago Post Office. The skyline, seen through unique long windows on a cloudy weekend evening.

Buckled hardwood throughout the open floor space with supporting columns spreading evenly.

South eastern walls of the Old Chicago Post Office. Lots of chipped and peeling paint.

Production and pressrooms with some of the conveyors and other machinery.

Twists and turns of the belts and rollers that carried envelopes and packages from one end of the Old Chicago Post office to the other.

Conveyor belts stack up and meet along the western wall to distribute mail evenly and efficiently.

Traveling each floor had it’s own access points and floor plan evacuation routes.

Exterior balcony along the western portion.

Laboratory rooms with blue walls and green trims sit empty over decades.

Sorting and stacking machinery. Falling ceiling tiles. Bucked floors.

One of the package slides connecting sorting floors.

Conveyor belts as far as you can see into the darkness of each floor at the Old Chicago Post Office.

Lower sorting floors along package slides. Impressive network connecting each floor.



More spiral chutes with locking floors. Unique color combination.

Conveyor control panel at the Old Chicago Post Office. Lock Out Board When Breaking Jams. Authorized Personnel. Do Not Operate.

Office rooms along the mid section of the northern portion.

Yellow testing and laboratory rooms in decay.

Blue and green testing and laboratory rooms in decay.

Inside the security hallways above each sorting room. Making sure no mail gets stolen.

Mid section floors at the old Chicago Post Office.

One of the furnaces at the Old Chicago Post Office.

Northern offices and hallways. Dark, moody, and quite eerie.

Eastern exposure in the early morning. One of the top floor ledges.

Hallways in the lower levels of the Old Chicago Post Office.

The Credit Union for the Old Chicago Post Office Employees.

Conveyor belts.

Conveyor belts.

View of the Union Station and the Presidential Towers from the Old Chicago Post Office.

Main lobby and elevators and the Old Chicago Post Office

Main lobby and elevators and the Old Chicago Post Office

Main lobby with tellers in the background.

Main lobby with tellers in the background.

Main lobby of the Old Chicago Post Office.

Morgan Park 60643 mail bin.

Lincoln Park 60614 mail bin.

Sorting rooms at the south portion.

Blue room with decaying paint at the.

Call center rooms at the Old Chicago Post Office.



Office hallways with old carpets and decaying woodwork.

Mail and package slides at the sorting facility.

Mail and package slides at the sorting facility.

Mail and package slides at the sorting facility.

Mail and package slides at the sorting facility.

Mail and package slides at the sorting facility.

Lower rooftop view. Harrison Hotel sign. Harold Washington Library. Buckingham Fountain. Chicago Stock Exchange.

Mid-roof area looking north at the Old Chicago Post Office. Sears Tower.

Mid-roof area looking north at the Old Chicago Post Office. Sears Tower. Chicago River.

Mid-roof area looking north. Sears Tower. Chicago River.

Sorting area machines decaying.

Sorting area machines decaying.

4 Comments
  1. Renata 1 year ago

    Great photos. Are the sick day charts available for purchase? I would love to know who to reach out to get my hands on those.

  2. Joy bertone 1 year ago

    Thank you so much for sharing these photos.

  3. John 1 year ago

    What an awesome photo series! I especially like that you have shots while it’s sunny and cloudy out. Really gives it a nice spectrum.

  4. Frank 1 year ago

    Thank you for sharing memories of a very productive building.

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