Hugh Hefner, who died Wednesday at the Playboy Mansion in Los Angeles after spending most of his life there in a silk robe, grew up in the 1920s on a quiet Chicago street lit with gas lamps. Horse-drawn wagons delivered milk and ice. Trains whistled in the distance.
"One of the loveliest sounds in the world," Hefner said decades later.
The address was 1922 N. New England.
It was there, during the Great Depression, that Hefner's extraordinary life took shape - not so much because of what happened there, but what didn't: Affection. Emotion. Love. And certainly not sex, though his parents did manage to have two children.
The rules of the home were strict -...