Become a playgoer at Chicago’s early theaters. Examine more than 2,000 playbills and programs dating from 1848 to 1922. Of special interest are playbills from shows starring Edwin Booth, Joseph Jefferson and Sarah Bernhardt at the well-known McVicker’s Theatre as well as playbills from vaudeville houses and neighborhood theaters.
Artifacts from the Chicago Theater collections are housed in the Special Collections and Preservation Division at Harold Washington Library Center.
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Digital CollectionsThis collection is made up of the following archival collections:
More CPL Resources
- Chicago Theater Collection-Historic Programs Finding Aid
- The complete and ever-increasing inventory of theater programs past and present, some of which are presented here.
- Chicago Theater Collection
- A list of collections at Chicago Public Library representing theaters, designers, actors and other members of the theater community.