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Inside the Collection – Garden of Eden Serpent Skin

  Inside the Collection is a video series that invites you into the Chicago History Museum’s storage spaces to explore unusual, interesting artifacts from our vast collection. In this installment, senior collection manager Britta Keller Arendt shows us the skin of the serpent that tempted Eve in the Garden of Eden. This artifact came to More


Fighting for the Right to Vote

For Women’s History Month, head into storage with CHM collection technician Jessica McPheters for a closer look at two artifacts that document twentieth-century political strife and women’s suffrage in Chicago. In the summer of 2016, the collections team began working on an inventory of the Decorative and Industrial Arts (DIA) collection at the Chicago History More


Bundled Up for Freezer Storage

As part of Monday Night Nitrates, our weekly photograph series, the Chicago History Museum collections staff is blogging about the process of digitizing approximately 35,000 nitrate negatives, a project funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. In this post, CHM paper conservator Carol Turchan writes about how the negatives were prepared for digitization More


South Side Girls

                                  Marcia Chatelain. South Side Girls: Growing Up in the Great Migration. Durham, NC, Duke University Press (2015). This is a very important study of lives of black girls during the Great Migration. At its core are the girls themselves, More


Mabel Mabel Tiger Trainer Screening

Mabel Stark was a superstar in the steel arena. She was the world’s first female tiger trainer. Told no WOMAN could train tigers, undaunted, with no training she stepped into the steel arena and worked up an act that included up to 20 tigers. The film uncovers the real story behind the most famous woman of her time More


Searching for African American Voices in the Research Center

To cap off Black History Month, CHM cataloging and metadata librarian Gretchen Neidhardt writes about her search for the voices of African American servicemen in our archives. While in the process of digitizing the last of our paper card catalog for 6,000 small manuscript collections, I noticed that several items mentioned “Negro Troops.” (Our card More

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