At the perfect height for young visitors, our much-loved dioramas were constructed by German artisans in the early 1930s using maps, photographs, letters, and other artifacts. At the time considered a new exhibit technique, the seven dioramas depict how Chicago changed during the 1800s from a settler-colonist trading outpost in 1804 to the bustling city that hosted the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893.  

Depicting locations such as Sauganash Tavern (1833) and Rush Street Bridge (1860) and events such as the Great Chicago Fire (1871), these dioramas show remarkable craftsmanship that still delights visitors today and provide a snapshot of history-telling from nearly a century ago. No other Museum artifacts have been on display longer! 


The dioramas and the history behind them was a fantastic surprise!


I took my nephews age 8 and 5 and they loved it. I chose what I thought they would like best and what I remember loving from when I was a kid (dioramas have always been my favorite).

Translate »