The Chicago Collections is a testament to the power of working together, especially when you're a consortium of 21 libraries, museums, and other grand cultural institutions with archives that can tell the history and culture of Chicago powerfully in a way that no single organization can. Their site of
In the holiday season, it's a time of togetherness, reflection, community, and celebration. And that's just what the photos within the site do. For the moment, we'll look at that through the lens of the Chicago Auditorium.
The building, a design by Louis Sullivan and Dankmar Adler that was completed in 1889, has been a home to the city's cultural memory as the first home of the Chicago Civic Opera and Chicago Symphony Orchestra. While they just celebrated their 125th anniversary, they are as relevant as ever. The theater continued to hold precious moments for a broad swath of Chicagoans--this time for sports fans--as the National Football League held its 2015 NFL Draft for the first time in over 50 years.
Before you go to this year's rendition of The Nutcracker, which starts on December 4, see if you can recreate the moments captured in these historic photographs. More photos in their archives are found here. Or go and digitally explore the neighborhoods of Chicago yourself.
One final note: a city's collective memory is expected to grow. While organizations are encouraged to become members of the consortium, they're also eagerly open to individuals who have extensive collections that are relative to Chicago. You'll pay dues of $5,000, but you'll get so much gratitude and good karma in return.