Document Type



Boosting Chicago explores the nature of bird's-eye views, the public face of Chicago views depicted between 1857 and 1916, and offers ideas on using these unique documents in the classroom. Bird's-eye views were popular lithographs of urban communities in the nineteenth and early twentieth century. Subjective and incomplete documents, they were artifacts of civic pride. Though little studied by scholars or used by teachers, they offer unique windows into the perceptions of residents regarding their community. Boosting Chicago suggests that views of this city consistently pictured it as a bustling, growing metropolis that acted as a hub and tied its destiny to the developing West. The article also notes that views are valuable classroom resources that bring students to the street level of learning. They can see an entire community at a specific time or walk the streets to look at specific features.