Constructing Chicago: Chicago Building Permits Collection 1872-1954 Online

The Chicago Building Permits collection, held at both the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) and the Chicago History Museum is a key resource for Chicagoresearchers. This collection of permit ledgers from 1872-1954 is immensely valuable to a wide range of researchers. Chicagoans use this collection to research their own or family members’ homes, researchers use it to learn more about specific buildings, neighborhoods and architects, and it is heavily used by environmental research firms. While permits from 2006 to the present are available via the Chicago Data Portal, the historical collection has only been available on microfilm. This year, UIC had the entire microfilm collection digitized as the first step in a long-term plan to provide more optimal access to this important data set. Find out how to use this new online resource and learn about exciting future prospects for the collection.

Tracy Seneca (University of Illinois at Chicago)