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Helen Zatterberg Collection

Identifier: nnhc-00009

Scope and Contents

This collection contains awards and honors presented to Helen Zatterberg in recognition of her career at Chicago Public Library and work with the Ravenswood-Lake View Historical Association; a small amount of personal and family papers, including her memories of Lake View High School; clippings and obituaries; a few journal articles documenting Zatterberg’s work as a librarian; and a journal chronicling her local history reference and outreach efforts. It also contains photographs, including images of her early life and family and of celebrations held in her honor later in her life.


  • Creation: circa late 1800s-2002

Conditions Governing Access

Materials are open without restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

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

Biographical / Historical

Helen Zatterberg was born on July 1, 1902 to Martin and Pauline Zatterberg. She graduated from Chicago’s Lake View High School in 1920 and began working for Chicago Public Library in 1921. She spent her early years with the library at branches such as Rogers Park and Lake View before joining Hild Regional Library when it opened in 1931. Shortly after Hild opened, after a suggestion from library commissioner Carl Roden, Zatterberg began reaching out to local community members to document local history. In 1935 she helped found the Ravenswood-Lake View Historical Association, and in the following years she continued to play an important role in collecting and preserving local history. She became Branch Librarian at Hild in 1953. In 1955 she was promoted to Regional Librarian for the West Side, but she spent just two years in this position before returning to the North Side as Regional Librarian in 1957. Zatterberg retired from Chicago Public Library in 1967. After her retirement, she continued to live in Chicago and stayed involved with the Ravenswood-Lake View Historical Association. In 1995, the historical room at Sulzer Regional Library was named in her honor. Helen Zatterberg died in Chicago on September 12, 2002.


2 Linear Feet (in 2 boxes and 5 oversize folders, including 123 photographs)

Language of Materials



Helen Zatterberg (1902-2002) worked for Chicago Public Library from 1921 until her retirement in 1967. She founded the Ravenswood-Lake View Historical Association in 1935 and spent many years at Hild Regional Library before becoming Regional Librarian of the North Side in 1957. This collection contains personal papers; professional papers, mostly awards and honors; and photographs.


The collection is arranged in 3 series:

Series 1: Personal and Family Papers, 1893-2002

Series 2: Professional Papers, 1933-2002

Series 3: Photographs, circa late 1800s-2002

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Helen Zatterberg and by Beth Stafford on behalf of Margaret H. Stafford.



Guide to the Helen Zatterberg Collection
Allyson Smally
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding Aid written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Northside Neighborhood History Collection Repository

Sulzer Regional Library
Chicago Public Library
4455 N. Lincoln Avenue
Chicago IL 60625 United States
(312) 742-4455