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The Palmer House: Next Door to Everything

On September 26, 1870, the Palmer House Hotel opened for business. The crown jewel in the holdings of department store mogul turned real-estate developer Potter Palmer, it was a wedding present to his wife, Bertha. Throughout its three incarnations, the Palmer House Hotel was the pinnacle of grandeur and luxury in Chicago and was for decades the hotel of choice for visiting presidents, dignitaries, and businesspeople. 

In light of the recent news that the Palmer House Hotel faces a $338 million foreclosure suit, CHM staff members revisit its storied history on the blog. Read the blog post.

Images from left: Half of a stereograph of the Palmer House ruins after the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. CHM, ICHi-026749; P. B. Greene, photographer. An engraving entitled “Working at Night on Palmer’s Grand Hotel, by Calcium Light,” 1871. CHM, ICHi-002930. An undated postcard of the third Palmer House Hotel, Chicago. CHM, ICHi-069672.

CHM Blog

The Chicago History Museum’s blog is a space where we give you a look behind the scenes, highlight items in our collection, and share Chicago stories that you won’t see elsewhere. From examining items in our Marshall Field & Company Collection to documenting LGBTQ history, the blog gives you a window into the work we do. Visit the blog.

Chicago History Museum Sharing Chicago Stories