Chicago Park District Records: Photographs

Photographs from the Chicago Park District document how the city’s parks have grown, changed and been enjoyed for more than a century.
Woodcut print featuring a portrait of a Black man surrounded with images of African Americans at work, at graduation, and walking around town. Image is from Burdens Unbound, a 1930 Methodist worship booklet.
African AmericansCivil War

Philip David Sang Collection

The Philip David Sang Collection contains unpublished and published works and ephemera united by its focus on the struggle of Africans and African Americans through the Middle Passage to the Civil Rights movement.
A black and white drawing depicts a woman looking through a monocle. Her hair is styled into a high bun.

Chicago Theater

Playbills and programs for drama, opera, vaudeville, dance and music at early Chicago theaters, 1848-1922.
Completed assembly of Cloud Gate, also known as The Bean, outside in Millennium Park. SBC Plaza is still under construction and there is construction equipment scattered around. The tall buildings of Michigan Avenue are visible behind the sculpture.

Millennium Park U.S. Equities Realty Collection

See a rail yard transform into a dynamic urban park.
Mayor Washington smiles and points to the crowd while riding on the back of a convertible.
African Americans

Remembering Harold Washington

Chicago’s first African American mayor served from 1983 to 1987, and his legacy endures.
Civil War

Civil War: Wayne Whalen Digital Archive of the Grand Army of the Republic and Civil War Collections

Camp equipment, weaponry and uniforms used on the homefront and the battlefield.

Chicago Examiner

Chicago Public Library’s 10-year run of the Chicago Examiner extends from 1908 to 1918 and represents the longest run of the Hearst newspaper still available.
Margaret Walker's face, smiling
African Americans

Chicago Renaissance

African American community leaders, performers, artists, writers and activists on Chicago’s South Side, 1930-1950.
The front of a two-story duplex viewed from the street.  Two people sit at the entrance to one of the homes.

Robert W. Krueger Photograph Collection

Local photographer Robert Krueger documented Chicago’s North Side with photographs of community events, buildings and people.
Five men from the fire department pose with a fire engine. Three are standing, and two are riding in the vehicle. One of the men has a white shirt and tie. Part of the fire house and two neighboring houses are pictured in the background

Henry D. Green Photograph Collection

Photographs by Henry Green of businesses, community groups, neighborhood celebrations and school events on Chicago’s North Side, 1943-1951.
Esther Barlow as a young woman.
Libraries & Education

Esther A. Barlow Collection

Family photographs of CPL Librarian Esther Barlow and images of her work at the former Hild Regional Library and Lake View Branch Library from 1927 to 1976.
View of Michigan Avenue and Washington Street sides of the original Chicago Public Library Central Library.
Libraries & Education

Chicago Public Library Archives

Photographs trace CPL’s history from a small water tank that survived the Great Chicago Fire to the extensive network of neighborhood libraries that span the city today.
Three men working on an unfinished sewer.

Chicago Sewers Collection

Photographs of sewer systems and passageways from 1925 to 1949 offer a rare look at the underbelly of Chicago.