Museum Campus

John G. Shedd Aquarium

It was December of 1923 when Chicago learned that it would be getting an aquarium. A rumor leaked that John G. Shedd was going to donate two million dollars for that purpose, and John was known as a pretty generous guy. He’d contributed six figures to the Young Men’s Christian Association, gave $50,000 to the …

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Adler Planetarium

Alder Planetarium 1933

Most cultural institutions begin because of lofty ideals. Someone wants to make the world a better place by enriching the experiences of others, usually through art, in all its forms; beauty; and understanding. By the mid-1920s, Chicago was already the beneficiary of several philanthropically-minded souls, and it had an art museum, an opera company, an …

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Glessner House

Glessner House, Library of Congress

The building on the corner of 18th and Prairie is like a lava cake rolled in a thick layer of coarsely chopped nuts. On the outside, it’s crunchy and looks like it could hurt you. But inside, it’s all warm and gooey and makes you feel loved. In 1880s Chicago, Prairie Avenue was all the …

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