Between 2015 and 2018, twenty Lake Forest College faculty, working with undergraduate student research assistants, delved into Chicago’s forgotten or at-risk history to produce digital projects for the public interest.

Their work was supported by an $800,000, four-year grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to Lake Forest College to involve students and faculty in exploring specific sites in Chicago’s history, through urban archaeological digs, innovative digital humanities projects, and complementary coursework in a wide array of disciplines.

In December 2018, Lake Forest College’s Digital Chicago: Unearthing History and Culture project came to its formal conclusion, and the Digital Chicago project website was transferred to an institutional home with the Chicago History Museum.

The relationship between Lake Forest College and the Chicago History Museum, along with other Chicago cultural and humanitarian organizations, continues with the Humanities 2020 initiative, a $1.1 million Andrew W. Mellon Foundation grant, to enhance and advance humanities education through deep engagement with issues of race in Chicago.

Exhibits from Lake Forest College students that share these Chicago stories will continue to be added to the site. View the projects at

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