History of Chicago 1673-2004

The story of the development of Chicago’s lakefront is as vast as the lake on which the city was founded. As history records, in the 1640s the Miami Indians, a branch of the Illiwek Tribe, settled in a village on the southern extremity of Lake Michigan. The village, Che-cau-gou, was named for a small river whose source was close to the Illinois River and ran into Lake Michigan. Legend records the name as deriving from the odor of the abundantly growing wild onion.

This fall the Todd Library is featuring a captivating display on the history of Chicago including articles, archival materials, books, photographs, and memorabilia. Geology buffs may find the prominent Shaping the Chicago Shoreline poster, depicting its geological development, especially interesting. Come visit the library and learn more about “Our Kind of Town”.