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Celebrating Togetherness

Every Sunday, we’re featuring a story submitted to our community-based initiative, In This Together, which collects digital records that capture personal experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This week, we’re sharing an excerpt from Joan Mulcahy’s story about spending time with her grandchildren in new ways and being reminded that everything is going to be all right.

“Saturday evening something wonderful happened, right in the middle of a pandemic. My daughter Cathleen, my son-in-law Paul and two of my grandchildren came by for a visit. Amelia is 8 years old, Augie is 6 . . . I had a gift for them [too]. I bought the biggest box of colored chalk I could find, 36 colors, because I know they both love to draw. Amelia asked me to sit in my chair, all straight, and fold my hands on my lap. I posed, and she set out drawing my likeness in chalk, sitting in a white wicker chair. Every color was a match, blue for my jeans, purple for my shirt, flesh for my face. After she finished, she laid down right on the sidewalk, next to the drawing of ‘chalk me.’ Augie laid down too, and put his arm around ‘chalk me.’ Amelia made her dad, standing above, take a picture of it. It is a gorgeous photo of two grandchildren hugging a chalk grandma.” — Joan Mulcahy, Chicago 

Read the full story.

Joan Mulcahy’s grandchildren posing with a chalk drawing they did of her, May 2020.

Chicago, we want you to share your stories! Our community-based initiative, In This Together, seeks to collect digital records that capture personal experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. If you live in Chicago or its surrounding metropolitan area, we invite you to share your story or that of your community through content such as photographs, audio/visual recordings, and interviews. Submit your stories.

Chicago History Museum Sharing Chicago Stories