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George A. Brennan Papers

Identifier: spe-nhrc-gab

Scope and Contents

The papers included in this small collection reflect Brennan’s personal interest in the local history of the Calumet community and the Dutch immigrants who settled in this region of Chicago. Appearing are news clippings, notations, and photographs of Native American artifacts that Brennan collected and exhibited at the Chicago Historical Society. Also included are typescripts, notes, illustrations and handwritten manuscripts of several of Brennan’s historical accounts of the Dutch and their settlement in the Calumet region.


  • Creation: 1915 - 1958


Conditions Governing Access

Materials are open without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Please consult staff to determine ability to reuse materials from collection.

Biographical / Historical

George A. Brennan was born in 1856 outside New York City. His family settled in the Chicago area around 1868. Upon graduation from college, Mr. Brennan became one of the first school teachers in the “South End” of Chicago’s prairie settlements. His first assignment was in 1876 at Fernwood School. When Van Vlissingen School was erected, Mr. Brennan became its first head. He later went on to become principal emeritus of this school. He also taught at Roseland School, and ultimately retired from the teaching profession in 1926.

Mr. Brennan was also active in local civic and historical groups, and held major offices in them. He was an officer and director of the Roseland’s Lion’s Club, Education Committee member of the South End Chamber of Commerce, and active in other groups such as the Chicago Historical Society and the Prairie Club.


0.5 Linear Feet (in 1 box, plus 1 oversize folder)

Language of Materials



The collection reflects George Brennan’s personal interest in the local history of the Calumet region and the early Dutch community in Chicago.


The files are arranged alphabetically by title.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was transferred from Chicago Public Library's Pullman Branch in 1982, funded by a Dr. Scholl Foundation Grant.

Related Materials

  • Calumet Pioneer Historical Society Records
  • Calumet Region Community Collection
  • Fenger High School Records
  • Fernwood Methodist Church Scrapbooks
  • Milk Dealers’ Association Ledger and Minute Book
  • Pullman Collection, Historic
  • South Chicago Newspapers Collection
  • Ton Family Papers

Separated Materials

  • 2 photographs of Brennan were moved to the Calumet Region Community Collection.
  • The Wonders of the Dunes, by George A. Brennan, was cataloged with call number F547.M56B83.

Guide to the George A. Brennan Papers
Original author unknown. Processed, 1982. Updated and ingested into ArchivesSpace by Johanna Russ, 2021.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Unit at Harold Washington Library Center Repository

Harold Washington Library Center, 9th Floor
Chicago Public Library
400 S. State Street
Chicago IL 60605 United States
(312) 747-4875