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Ramadan Mubarak: Places of Prayer and Community Celebration

CHM curator of religion and community history Rebekah Coffman talks about the significance of Ramadan and shares a brief history of Chicago’s Muslim communities. Sundown on March 23 marks the beginning of the Islamic month of Ramadan, a time of prayer, fasting, and personal and community reflection. Ramadan is the ninth month of the Hijri More

CHM Resources on Lucy Parsons, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, and Jane Addams

In 1987, Congress officially designated March as Women’s History Month to commemorate, learn about, and reflect on women who have been history makers on their own terms. Chicago has had its fair share of influential women who have shaped not only the city, but the entire nation through their activism and work. In an effort More

Legendary Coach Dorothy Gaters

To kick off March Madness and Women’s History Month, CHM content manager & editor Heidi Samuelson writes about Dorothy Gaters, a history-making basketball coach. Coach Dorothy Gaters, c. 1992. STM-034072572/Chicago Sun-Times The 2023 Illinois High School Association (IHSA) girls’ basketball 4A, 3A, 2A, and 1A state final tournaments are being held March 2-4 in CEFCU More

“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust”

To mark the start of Lent, CHM curator of religion and community history Rebekah Coffman talks about the meaning of ashes on Ash Wednesday and shares a brief history of Chicago’s Holy Name Cathedral. Sister Laurienne Normand (right, wearing glasses) burning palms for Ash Wednesday at Holy Name Cathedral, 730 N. Wabash Ave., Chicago, 1975. More

The Bronzeville Origins of Black History Month

In 1913, a sturdy brick and limestone building was completed and opened to the public; standing at five stories tall, what would come to be known as the Wabash Avenue YMCA was the result of community fundraising from area residents and the Chicago philanthropist Julius Rosenwald of Sears, Roebuck & Co. fame. While the building More

Celebrating the Lunar New Year and Chicago’s Asian Communities

To mark the Lunar New Year, CHM curator of religion and community history Rebekah Coffman highlights a Year of the Rabbit item from our Asian American Small Business Association collection of visual materials. Happy Lunar New Year! Sunday, January 22, 2023, marks the beginning of the Year of the Rabbit 4720/2023. Lunar New Year celebrations More

The Bowman Dairy Company of Chicago

January 11 is marked on the calendar as National Milk Day, commemorating the day the first glass bottled milk deliveries began en masse in the US, starting with the state of New York in 1878. And while Chicago’s strongest bovine association has been to the Union Stock Yard, the dairy industry was also a lucrative More

The Abakanowicz Research Center’s Top 5 Most Requested Items of 2022

Interested in learning something new in 2023? In our latest blog post, CHM director of research and access Ellen Keith reveals the top five most requested collection items at the Abakanowicz Research Center in 2022. What do people want to see in the Abakanowicz Research Center? Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, so we More

A Vivian Maier Mystery Solved

As a young girl, Rev. Christine V. Hides loved to read and dreamed of solving mysteries. Now Hides has helped the Chicago History Museum solve one. After visiting the Vivian Maier: In Color exhibition, she identified the location where Vivian Maier took a photograph after recognizing two stained glass windows in an image. Rev. Christine More

The Trianon Ballroom: What Would Have Been 100 Years

Chicago has had more than its fair share of big band and jazz dance halls across the city to accommodate nearly everyone’s musical taste. On December 6, 1922—100 years ago—at 62nd Street and Cottage Grove, in the Woodlawn neighborhood, the Trianon Ballroom opened its doors and counted itself among the city’s nightlife destinations. An undated More