Harry W. Lum


The son of immigrants from China, Harry W. Lum (1889-1941) was born in San Francisco. When he was about 20 years old, he ventured east to Chicago. During World War I, Lum served overseas in the American Expeditionary Force. He sailed for France as a private in the 88th Division in August 1918 and returned home in 1919. In about 1925, he moved to Evanston and was hired as manager of the newly-opened (1924) Phoenix Inn restaurant at 611 Davis Street. Lum would serve in that role until his death in 1941.

Over the years, many of the restaurant’s staff and co-owners were members of the Lum family. In the restaurant’s first years, many of its staff were new immigrants from China. In 1967, Kee Lum announced that the Phoenix Inn would be moving across the street to 608 Davis Street. When the restaurant closed in 2016, it was believed to be Evanston’s oldest (continually operating) restaurant.


1889 - San Francisco, CA


1941 - Evanston, IL

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