Cover for DUIS: Challenging Chicago: Coping with Everyday Life, 1837-1920. Click for larger image

Challenging Chicago

Coping with Everyday Life, 1837-1920

Hard lives and how they were lived in old Chicago

During an unprecedented period of rapid growth, the burgeoning metropolis of Chicago quickly became a “concentration of risk”: far more congested, dangerous, unpleasant, immoral, and unhealthy than newcomers had anticipated. Through vignettes and real-life stories, Challenging Chicago reveals lower- and middle-class peoples’ strategies for coping with technology, crowding, anonymity, and other urban ills.

Follow along and encounter some of Chicago’s most infamous citizens--the loathed Traction Baron, high-speed “scorchers,” and peddlers of “swill milk.” Learn about the perils of payday, the lunchtime problems of women, the lure of dime museums, and the fatal attraction of Chicago’s “cruelest place.” Against this bleak backdrop emerged the innovators and institutions that made Chicago the vibrant city it is today. The superbly textured narrative is enhanced by eighty-six historic photographs and illustrations.

"Not only is Challenging Chicago a model of how to turn a collection of articles into a book, it is one of the best books ever written about Chicago. . . . Duis has mastered an incredible amount of information (the illustrations and endnotes are worth the price of the book). . . . After reading Challenging Chicago you will never again look at the urban landscape -- the streets, the river, the warehouses, the neighborhoods, the houses and the architecture -- without seeing the remains of the city that once was, and without thinking of the people who lived there."--James L. Swanson, Chicago Tribune

"A fascinating glimpse at the excitement as well as the dangers and risks of life in one of the world's great industrial cities. . . . Chicago, a tough, wonderful place, finds expression in Duis's fascinating book."--James R. Barrett, The Historian

Perry R. Duis, a professor of history at the University of Illinois at Chicago, is the author of Chicago: Creating New Traditions and other books.

To order online:
http://www.press.uillinois.edu/books/catalog/57zms8wb9780252074158.html

To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)

Related Titles

previous book next book
African Americans in U.S. Foreign Policy

From the Era of Frederick Douglass to the Age of Obama

Edited by Linda Heywood, Allison Blakely, Charles Stith, and Joshua C. Yesnowitz

Chicagoscapes

Larry Kanfer with Alaina Kanfer

Redeeming Time

Protestantism and Chicago’s Eight-Hour Movement, 1866-1912

William A. Mirola

Before the Ivy

The Cubs' Golden Age in Pre-Wrigley Chicago

Laurent Pernot

NFL Football

A History of America's New National Pastime

Richard C. Crepeau

The Neighborhood Outfit

Organized Crime in Chicago Heights

Louis Corsino

An Illinois Sampler

Teaching and Research on the Prairie

Edited by Mary-Ann Winkelmes and Antoinette Burton with Kyle Mays

Lorado Taft

The Chicago Years

Allen Stuart Weller Edited by Robert G. La France and Henry Adams with Stephen P. Thomas

Jane Addams in the Classroom

Edited by David Schaafsma

Winning the War for Democracy

The March on Washington Movement, 1941-1946

David Lucander