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Documentary offers look into Pilsen’s past

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Local PBS station WTTW will be featuring a new documentary about Pilsen later this month


Pilsen is a neighborhood known for its many colorful murals and older housing stock, but the neighborhood has also long been an important residential and cultural hub for Chicago’s Mexican community. And while the neighborhood has been witnessing a dramatic uptick in new investment and gentrification in recent years, the neighborhood faced major challenges with unemployment, blight, and gang violence during the 1980s.

In support of the upcoming premier for its new documentary which focuses on Pilsen, titled My Neighborhood, WTTW has made an older documentary available online for streaming. Originally aired in 1981, the documentary, titled Port of Entry, explores the journey of one immigrant family and the challenges that Pilsen community members faced during the time. It’s a portrait of the Pilsen community which provides meaningful context for the upcoming feature which highlights Pilsen 35 years later.

WTTW’s My Neighborhood program will air on Thursday, April 27 starting at 7:00 p.m. A special town-hall segment will follow the documentary’s premier.