South Shore Historical Society Records

Dates: 1935-1979
Size: .5 linear feet in 1 box
Repository: Chicago Public Library, Harold Washington Library Center, Special Collections, 400 S. State St., Chicago, IL 60605
Collection Number: spe-nhrc-sshs
Immediate Source of Acquisition: The collection was housed in Chicago Public Library’s South Shore Branch Library. In the 1980s Special Collections, working with a Dr. Scholl Foundation grant, transferred and processed the collection to make it fully available to the public. Items continue to be added to the collection through transfer and donation. Box 1, Folder 24 was added in 2018.
Conditions Governing Access: Materials are open without restrictions.
Conditions Governing Use: Please consult staff to determine ability to reuse materials from collection.
Citation: When quoting material from this collection the preferred citation is: South Shore Historical Society Records [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections, Chicago Public Library.
Finding Aid Author: Original author unknown. Updated and ingested into ArchivesSpace by Michelle McCoy, 2021


The collection contains documents related to the foundation and organization of the society itself, including society’s constitution, membership lists, reports, minutes and programs. A short history of the Society produced by one of its members describes the Society’s formation and sets forth its aims. Of particular interest are two notes from author and humorist Opie Read which can be found in the correspondence file.


The South Shore Historical Society was formed in October of 1935 as part of the “local history in Branches” idea expressed by Carl B. Roden, Librarian of Chicago Public Library. Working closely with the Library, the Society collected material about the development of the South Shore neighborhood as well as contemporary material that would be of later interest. During World War II, for example, they collected photographs of area men inducted into the Armed Services.

Scope and Contents

The collection contains the Society’s constitution, membership lists, treasurer’s reports, meeting minutes and programs as well as a short history of the Society. The bulk of the collection dates from the 1930s and 1940s. Of particular interest are two notes from author and humorist Opie Read in the correspondence file.


The collection is arranged alphabetically by type of document.

Subject Headings

  • South Shore Historical Society (Chicago, Ill.) -- Archives
  • South Shore (Chicago, Ill.) – History -- Sources

Related Materials

  • Coalition to Save the South Shore Country Club Archives
  • South Shore Community Collection
  • South Shore Newspapers

Collection Inventory

Box 1 Folder 21 Condolence resolutions, society members, undated
Box 1 Folder 2 Constitution, handwritten and typed drafts and copies, 1935
Box 1 Folder 6 Correspondence, incoming letters (subjects include business, meeting attendance, membership questions and responses to speaking invitations along with 2 typed and signed notes from Opie Read, 1936 September 3 and 1938 October 22), 1935-1960
Box 1 Folder 1 “History and Organization of the South Shore Historical Society,” describes the foundation and purposes of the Historical Society as written by a member, undated
Box 1 Folder 7 Meeting notices with agendas, 1935-1939
Box 1 Folder 8 Meeting notices, 1940-1945
Box 1 Folder 9 Meeting notices, 1946-1959
Box 1 Folder 10 Meeting minutes, reports of regular meetings, 1935-1936
Box 1 Folder 11 Meeting minutes, Executive Board meeting reports, 1937-1944
Box 1 Folder 12 Meeting programs, guests and events, 1935-1939
Box 1 Folder 13 Meeting programs, guests and events, 1940-1946
Box 1 Folder 22 Membership cards (2), undated
Box 1 Folder 3 Membership lists, includes members, honorary and charter members and prospective members, 1935-1937, undated
Box 1 Folder 4 Membership lists, includes members, charter members, members with committee service and prospective members, 1936-1937, undated
Box 1 Folder 5 Membership lists, includes signatures of original members, charter members, prospective members and paid members, 1936-1937
Box 1 Folder 14 Memos, society business, committee memberships, 1948, 1956
Box 1 Folder 24 Newsletter, 1979
Box 1 Folder 19 Publicity, news clippings and publicity releases, 1935-1937
Box 1 Folder 20 Publicity, news clippings and publicity releases, 1938-1948
Box 1 Folder 23 South Shore history, reference questions and answers, undated
Box 1 Folder 15 Treasurer’s reports, 1936-1939
Box 1 Folder 16 Treasurer’s reports, 1940-1942
Box 1 Folder 17 Treasurer’s reports, 1943-1947
Box 1 Folder 18 Treasurer’s reports, 1948-1958
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