Creativity, Migration, Dedication: Parents reflect on Chicago's history

Parent leaders visited Chicago’s History Museum, reflecting on the dynamic history that shapes today’s Chicago.

By Jasmin Pizano Luna | July 10, 2024 |

Last weekend, Kids First Chicago's Parent Advisory Board (PAB) enjoyed a visit to the Chicago History Museum. They participated in a guided tour of the permanent exhibition, "Chicago: Crossroads of America." Parent leaders from across the city as well as their children gathered to delve into the fascinating history that shapes Chicago today.

The exhibit offers a rich tapestry of Chicago's past, starting with the grandeur of the World’s Columbian Exposition of 1893. This world's fair showcased Chicago’s ambition and ingenuity on a global stage as the city was trying to make a name for itself. The tour highlighted the city’s architectural marvels, particularly the pioneering skyscrapers that have defined its skyline. The stories of immigrants were particularly poignant, illustrating how diverse communities from across the country and around the world have contributed to Chicago's vibrant cultural mosaic.

The visit not only provided a deep appreciation of Chicago's historical milestones but also fostered a sense of unity and shared identity among the families. By learning about the city's dynamic past, both parents and children gained a greater understanding of the elements that have built Chicago into a remarkable city. This enriching experience emphasized the importance of history in building community solidarity and pride.

After an academic year filled with big changes to the educational ecosystem, it was nice to enjoy quality time together while gaining a deeper understanding about what makes our city unique.

PAB Members reflected openly and with gratitude about the visit.

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This trip through history was fantastic and I learned that we have to be proud of the place where we live and get to know our city and its multicultural history. Thank you, K1C for this nice family event.

—Luz Maria Flores

Maria Owens commented on ”how organically (and not) our cultural neighborhoods were formed.”

Consuelo Martinez emphasized how Chicago history is a story of migrants: “I learned that immigrants have always been part of the great economic advancement of this nation. Knowing that in the Stockyards neighborhood, people worked up to 12 hours without any rest. And thanks to that, thanks to their hard work, Chicago was able to supply meat to other parts of the country.” She added that it was a privilege to bring her children to a space they had not been to previously, and expressed her gratitude to organizers, especially for making sure to include skilled translation to ensure all could participate.

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