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Illinois Genealogy Resources

Chicago and Cook County

Business, Commerce, Labor,
Industry & Transportation

  • Barton, Elmer. A Business Tour of Chicago, Depicting Fifty Years of Progress. Chicago, 1887.

  • Bishop, Glenn A. and Paul T. Gilbert. Chicago's Accomplishments and Leaders. Chicago: Bishop Publishing Co., 1932.

  • Building Histories of Cook County.   Philadelphia Architects and Buildings Project.

  • Building Permits Listed in American Contractor, 1898-1912.

  • Canal and Regional History Special Collection. Lewis University.
  • Chicago and Northwestern Railway Company. Yesterday and Today: A History. Chicago, 1905.

  • Chicago Architects Oral History Project. Contributions of architects to Chicago during the 20th century.

  • Chicago Association of Commerce, editors. Chicago: The Great Central Market. Chicago: The Association, 1923.

  • Chicago Harbor Lights. A long history of lights at the mouth of the Chicago River.

  • Chicago North Shore and Milwaukee Railroad.

  • Chicago Rock Island and Pacific Railway. Chicago, 1897. subscription product.

  • Chicago Television History.

  • Chicago Tunnel Company Railroad. Tells the story about a 60-mile, two-foot gauge electric railroad that operated 149 locomotives and over 3000 freight cars in small tunnels forty feet below the streets of downtown Chicago.

  • Chicagoland Radio History.

  • Chicago's Public Transportation Policy  1900-1940s. Paul Barrett.  Illinois History Teacher.

  • Coal Mine Homepage. Museum of Science and Industry.

  • Conrad Seipp Brewing  Chicago. American Breweriana.

  • Coyne, F. E. In Reminiscence: Highlights of Men and Elements in the Life of Chicago. Chicago, 1941.

  • Cummings, Kathleen Roy. Architectural Records in Chicago. Chicago: The Art Institute of Chicago, 1981.

  • Currey, Josiah S. Chicago: Its History and Its Builders: A Century of Marvelous Growth. Chicago, 1912.

  • Currey, Josiah Seymour. Manufacturing and Wholesale Industries of Chicago. 3 volumes. Chicago, 1918.

  • Elgin, Joliet and Eastern. Railroad. Barrington Area Library.

  • Extant Illinois Railroad/Railway Structures  Part 1  and   Extant Illinois Railroad/Railway Structures  Part 2.   Railroad Station Historical Soci

  • "G" is for Green Bay Trail. By Laurie Starrett. Winnetka Historical Society.

  • Gates, Paul. The Illinois-Central Railroad and Its Colonization Work. Cambridge, 1934. (Railroads in development of Chicago)

  • German Press Club of Chicago. Prominent Citizens & Industries of Chicago. Chicago, 1901.

  • Gilbert, Frank. Centennial History of the City of Chicago: Its Men and Institutions. Chicago, 1905.

  • Gilbert, Paul T. and Charles L. Bryson. Chicago and Its Makers. Chicago, 1929.

  • Grosse Point Light  Evanston.  Grosse Point is one of the finest lighthouse structures on the Great Lakes. Built in 1873, the 113 ft. tower is one of the tallest on the lakes, and its Second Order lens is the strongest on the American side of the lakes.

  • Guyer, Isaac D. History of Chicago: Its Commercial and Manufacturing Interests: With Sketches of Manufacturers and Men Who Have Most Contributed to Its Prosperity. Chicago, 1862.

  • Hansen, Harry. The Chicago. New York, 1942. (Influence of Chicago River)

  • Hayes, Dorsha. Chicago: Crossroads of American Enterprise. New York: J. Messner, 1944.

  • The Illinois and Michigan Canal, A Northeastern Illinois Landmark. From its beginnings in 1836 to the end of its use as a waterway in 1927.

  • Illinois and Michigan Canal National Heritage Corridor 

  • Index to the American Contractor's Chicago Building Permit Column, 1898-1912. Chicago Historical Society.

  • Keating, Ann Durkin. Chicagoland: City and Suburbs in the Railroad Age. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2005.

  • Kogan, Herman and Rick Kogan. Yesterday's Chicago. Miami: E.A. Seeman, 1976.

  • "L" System History.  Chicago "L".org

  • Leidenberger, Georg. Chicago's Progressive Alliance: Labor and the Bid for Public Streetcars. DeKalb, Illinois, Northern Illinois University Press, 2005.

  • McClure, Diane K. "Woodcarvers and Furniture Designers: The Anderson Family of Chicago, Illinois." Illinois State Genealogical Society Quarterly, 41, 3: 133-138.

  • North Shore Shipwrecks. by Mark S. Braun.

  • Old Plank Road Trail.  Before 1850 it was a major communication, trading and transportation corridor for Native Americans and the occasional missionary, fur trader, trapper, or explorer. Since 1850 it's been an emigration route for European settlers looking for land to settle on. It's also a communication and transportation hub for our modern society.

  • Peter Schoenhofen Brewery. American Memory from the Library of Congress.

  • Public Transportation and the Failure of Municipal Socialism in Chicago, 1905-1907.  Richard Allen Morton.   Illinois History Teacher.

  • Putnam, James Williams. The Illinois and Michigan Canal: A Study in Economic History. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1918.

  • Quaife, Milo M. Chicago's Highways Old and New: From Indian Trails to Motor Road. Chicago: D.F. Keller & Co., 1923.

  • Randall, Frank A. History of the Development of Building Construction in Chicago. Urbana, Illinois: University of Illinois Press, 1949.

  • Riley, Elmer. The Development of Chicago and Vicinity As A Manufacturing Center Prior to 1880. Chicago: McElroy Publishing Co., 1911.

  • Siegel, Arthur, editor. Chicago's Famous Buildings. Chicago, 1965.

  • Sinclair, Upton. The Jungle. New York, 1906. (Meat-packing industry)

  • Solomon, Ezra and Zarko G. Bilbija. Metropolitan Chicago: An Economic Analysis. Glencoe, Illinois, 1959.

  • South Lake Shore Drive History.  The idea for South Lake Shore Drive and its picturesque parks goes back to the late 1800s. It was part of the Chicago Plan of 1909, created by Daniel Burnham, a Chicago architect and city planner. The plan, often referred to as the "Burnham Plan," plotted streets, boulevards, parks, and other green spaces in a grid-like layout throughout the city.

  • Stop That Train.

  • Streetcars of Beverly Hills/Morgan Park. Ridge Historical Society.

  • The Syndicates of Chicago  Breweries. By Bob Skilnik.
  • Thorn, W. & Co. Chicago in 1860: A Glance at Its Business Houses. Chicago, 1860.

  • University of Chicago Center of Urban Studies. Mid-Chicago Economic Development Study. 3 volumes. Chicago: Mayor's Committee for Economic and Cultural Development, 1966.

  • The Vincennes Trail. Used by the first white settlers, crossed through what is now Beverly Hills and Morgan Park in Chicago. Ridge Historical Society.

  • Young, David M. The Iron Horse and the Windy City: How Railroads Shaped Chicago. DeKalb, Illinois: Northern Illinois University Press, 2005.