Austin Community Collection
Scope and Contents
The Austin Community Collection contains historical sources related to the demographic, economic, cultural, social, political, and religious development of Chicago’s Austin community. The collection contains biographical information on some of Austin’s residents, as well as information on business establishments, religious institutions, clubs and organizations, hospitals, municipal agencies, parks, residences, schools, streets, transportation, and wartime activities.
- Creation: 1839 - 1981
- West Side Historical Society (Chicago, Ill.) (Organization)
Conditions Governing Access
Materials are open without restrictions.
Conditions Governing Use
Please consult staff to determine ability to reuse materials from collection.
Biographical / Historical
The Austin neighborhood is seven miles west of Chicago’s Loop. Community number 25 of Chicago's 77 official communities, it is on the western edge of the city bordering Cicero, Oak Park and Elmwood Park. Austin was annexed into Chicago in 1889.
14 Linear Feet (in 19 boxes includes 300 photographs and 19 oversize folders)
Language of Materials
The collection contains manuscript, print and photographic documentation on demographic, economic, cultural, social, political, and religious development of the Austin neighborhood. The collection contains biographical information on Austin residents, as well as information on businesses, religious institutions clubs and organizations, hospitals, municipal agencies, parks, residences, schools, streets, transportation, and wartime activities.
The Austin Community Collection is organized into 13 Series:
Series 1: Biographical Data, circa 1844-1965
Series 2: Business Establishments, 1875-1973
Series 3: Religious Institutions, circa 1890s-1974
Series 4: Clubs and Organizations, 1874-1972, undated
Series 5: Historical Sketches, 1839-1976, undated
Series 6: Hospitals, circa 1905-1981
Series 7: Municipal Agencies, Photographs, circa 1880s-circa 1930, undated
Series 8: Parks, circa 1890s-1940, undated
Series 9: Residences, circa 1860s-1964, undated
Series 10: Schools, 1873-1979, undated
Series 11: Street Scenes, 1888-1967, undated
Series 12: Transportation, circa 1880s-1962, undated
Series 13: Wartime Activities, circa 1917-1919
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The original accession (Boxes 1-9, 14-16) was amassed by the Austin Historical Society and was deposited in the Austin Branch of Chicago Public Library. Photographs associated with this accession use the prefix “1.” The collection was transferred in the 1980s as part of a Dr. Scholl Foundation grant.
Supplement 1 (Boxes 10-12, 17-19) was assembled by the West Side Historical Society and housed at Chicago Public Library Legler Branch. Photographs associated with this accession use the prefix “2.”
Supplement 3 (Box 13) contains an incomplete copy of Picturesque Austin, by W.H. Baker published in 1888, that was originally part of the West Side Historical Society collection. There are two copies of the narrative and of “Central Avenue from Depot Looking South.” These copies are marked as having been the gift of Nellie Bond.
Supplement 4 is housed in Box 13, Folders 3-5.
- Associations, institutions, etc. -- Illinois -- Chicago -- History -- Sources.
- Business enterprises -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Cities and towns -- Pictorial works
- Local transit -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Parks -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Portraits -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Religious institutions -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Schools -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Societies and clubs -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Transportation -- Illinois -- Chicago
- Guide to the Austin Community Collection
- Original author unknown, 1985. Updated and ingested into ArchivesSpace by Michelle McCoy, 2021
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Language of description note
- Finding aid written in English.
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