Encyclopedia o f Chicago
Interpretive Digital Essay : Water in Chicago
Essay: People and the Port
Photo Essays:
Solitary Lives
City of Bridges
Chicago Harbors
Essay: Using the Chicago River
Photo Essays:
Goose Island
Indiana Dunes
Essay: Sanitation in Chicago
Photo Essays:
The Sanitary and Ship Canal
Water-Related Epidemics
Essay: Water and Urban Life
Photo Essays:
Houses and Water
Shoreline Development
Growing Up Along Water
Solitary Lives along Chicago’s Lakes and Waterways

The waterways of the region have been vital to economic development and urban growth. Especially during the industrial era, waterways were crowded with people, vehicles, and goods. The intersections of rivers and streets were noisy and full of tension as people and products jockeyed for through passage. At the same time, rivers and lakes are large enough that Chicagoans have also found lonely respite in them–either by choice or because it was an occupational requirement.

Photo Essay Sections:

french missionaries and
Ferry keepers
lighthouse keepers
bridge tenders
crib tenders
houseboat residents
environmental activists