Masks required in Abakanowicz Research Center; optional for rest of Museum MORE

“What shall I wear at the World’s Fair in Chicago?”

CHM research and insights analyst Marissa Croft writes about the gap in experience between high society dress and visitors to the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition who traveled in from all over the world to attend. If you’re taking a trip to an unfamiliar place, one of the first questions you might ask yourself is “What More

CHM Staff Spotlight: Lesley Martin

After nearly three decades with the Chicago History Museum, CHM reference librarian Lesley Martin is retiring this October. In this special staff spotlight, she reflects on her time as an editor and librarian at CHM. CHM reference librarian Lesley Martin (right) with patrons in the Abakanowicz Research Center, 2015. All photographs by CHM staff.   How More

Have a good summer! CHM’s Yearbook Collection

June is graduation season! In this blog post, Abakanowicz Research Center page Brigid Crawley highlights the Chicago History Museum’s collection of yearbooks, which spans from 1858 to 2012. A stack of yearbooks ranging from 1938 to 2011. All photograph by CHM staff While yearbooks often evoke a feeling of nostalgia, they are also frequently used More

The Chicago Origins of the National Council of Jewish Women

May is Jewish American Heritage Month. In recognition, CHM curator of religion and community history Rebekah Coffman highlights materials from the Abakonowicz Research Center related to the National Council of Jewish Women. The National Council of Jewish Women is the result of a gathering of Jewish women that took place during the 1893 World’s Columbian More

Exploring the Chicago Sun-Times Digital Images

In 2018, the Chicago History Museum acquired the Chicago Sun-Times photography collection, which spans from the 1940s to the early 2000s—one of the largest newspaper photograph collections ever acquired by an American museum. In this blog post, CHM metadata librarian Izzy Westcott explains how the massive collection was processed and made searchable to the public. 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

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