I found these girls playing on the new Sunnyside Mall before construction was even complete. They were so happy that you’d think they were ready to take over the mall, if not the world. The energy and enthusiasm of Uptown’s kids constantly amazed me. They didn’t have much, but they had each other. And they knew how to have fun despite the poverty.

Note the graffiti on the new planter in the background. Back in the mid-1970s when I took this shot, Sunnyside was the center of Gaylord activity in Chicago’s Uptown Neighborhood. I am not implying that the girls were responsible for the graffiti, nor am I implying that they had anything to do with the Gaylord gang.