Museum open on Monday, 6/19. IL residents get free admission MORE

The Hidden Life of Artifacts

Introduce students to historical inquiry through hands-on exploration of artifacts. Each lesson can be adapted for use with objects from any historical era. Artifact Analysis In this lesson, students will explore and analyze the items in an artifact kit, an important first step in developing historical empathy. The interpretation of these artifacts encourages students to More

Lincoln’s Undying Words

Explore Abraham Lincoln’s changing views toward slavery and racial equality through five of his key speeches: A House Divided (1858); his first and second inaugural addresses (1861, 1865); the Gettysburg Address (1863); and the speech on Reconstruction (1865). Use the two PDFs to help your students interpret and investigate the legacy of Lincoln’s presidency as More

Facing Freedom in America

In the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, the Founding Fathers set out to define American freedom. But they didn’t have the last word. Since then, generations have built on and challenged this foundation. Experience four ways Americans have defined freedom for themselves: defending it through armed conflict, struggling with it in respect to race and More

Fiorucci: A Splash of Fun at Water Tower

Water Tower Place, a seven-story, 758,000 square-foot vertical mall, opened its doors on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile in October 1975. At the time, it was almost completely vacant with the exception of its anchor stores, Marshall Field & Company and Lord & Taylor. However, due to its almost immediate success and prominent location on North Michigan More

What Didn’t Make the Cut

Planning an exhibition such as Chicago Styled: Fashioning The Magnificent Mile® requires combing through the entire costume collection to find the most appropriate garments. We start this process by looking through our collection database and old catalog cards and then pulling the actual garments from storage to examine in person. For Chicago Styled, we pulled More

The 1968 Exhibit

In case you haven’t heard, The 1968 Exhibit is now on view at the Chicago History Museum. This unique traveling exhibition takes a look at one of the most turbulent years in American history and features stories and objects from across the nation. The show, which originated at the Minnesota History Center, is organized as More

The Chemistry of Conservation

Editor’s note: In 2001, Eunice Johnson commissioned an ostrich feather coat and skintight 1930s-style beaded gown with a separate face-framing hood from Bob Mackie. Costume curator Virginia Heaven describes the ensemble as “part fairy princess, part Vegas showgirl, part Barbie doll.” In this post, curatorial assistant Alex Aubry takes us to meet Julie Benner and More

A National Treasure

Beginning Saturday, November 9, 2013, the Museum will host a national treasure: a printed copy of the Emancipation Proclamation signed by Abraham Lincoln, Secretary of State William H. Seward, and John G. Nicolay, Lincoln’s private secretary. The document has been generously lent by the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum in Springfield and will be on More