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A Fighter for Workers’ Rights

In this blog post, CHM curatorial intern Brigid Kennedy recounts the life of labor organizer Lucy Parsons. The details of Lucy Parsons’s early life in Texas are murky, and she herself provided different accounts of her youth and heritage. Her race was the subject of public debate, but she claimed only Mexican and Muscogee Creek More


The 1959 Pan American Games

To commemorate the sixtieth anniversary of the 1959 Pan American Games in Chicago, CHM editor Heidi Samuelson compiled some highlights from the Museum’s collection. Sixty years ago, the third Pan American Games were held in Chicago from August 27 to September 7. This was the first time they were held both in the United States More


Small Manuscripts: Show and Tell

In part two of this series, project cataloger Emma Florio explains more about the process of cataloging collections from scratch and the detective work it requires. Learn more about this retroconversion project, which was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. While digitizing the catalog cards for the Chicago History Museum’s small manuscript More


Small Manuscripts: Ensuring Access

In part one of this series, project cataloger Emma Florio discusses the process of retroconverting CHM’s small manuscripts collections from catalog cards to digital records. Learn more about her work, which was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services. When I took on this project last summer, the Museum was in the final More


The Red Summer of 1919

This Saturday marks one hundred years since the Chicago Race Riot, which began on July 27 and ended on August 3, 1919. In this photo essay, CHM assistant curator Julius L. Jones recounts the events of that tumultuous week, as well as the legacy of activism that came from it. All images are from the More


Affirmative Action and Black Achievement

Collections volunteer Robert Blythe writes about Chicagoan Paul King Jr., a building contractor and social justice advocate, fifty years after the Coalition of United Community Action led a demonstration on July 22, 1969, demanding that building trade unions provide on-the-job trainee positions for minority groups. Many Chicagoans were taken aback in July 1969 when two hundred More

Chicago History Museum Sharing Chicago's Stories