"Late one night, when we were all in bed,
Old Mother Leary left a lantern in the shed,
And when the cow kicked it over, she winked her eye and said,
'There'll be a HOT time on the old town tonight.'"
-from a popular children’s song

The legend of the much-maligned Mrs. O’Leary and the start of The Great Chicago Fire of Oct. 8, 1871 is so widespread that many people take the unsubstantiated rumor as fact. It’s not surprising that the subject of the devastating blaze and fire-fighting made its way onto many vintage postcards.

Fortunately, Chicago was able to rebuild itself in time to host the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition, beating out New York City, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. The event honored the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ landing in America. Forty years later, the city put on the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair, focusing on scientific achievements, like the development of electric power.

Chicago is also home to major sports teams, including two major-league baseball teams, the White Sox and the Cubs. Their famous ballparks Comiskey Park and Wrigley Field were erected in 1910 and 1914, respectively.

The manufacturing and transportation hub of the U.S. for over a century, Chicago is full of iconic places and storied characters like 21-year Mayor Richard Joseph Daley and Prohibition-era mob boss Al Capone. The 110-story Sears Tower, built in 1974 and now known as the Willis Tower, was once the tallest building in the world—it remains the tallest building in the United States.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)



Andreas Praefcke's postcard collection of theatres and concert halls worldwide. Showcases 3700 images of over 1810 … [read review or visit site]

Tall Tale Postcards

Tall Tale Postcards

Don't let this one get away from you. This 'unbelievable' collection, from the Wisconsin Historical Society, featur… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Leroy Neiman Chicago Options Numbered 401/450-signed Serigraph 1990Rppc Postcard Cm & St C Railroad Depot Dancy Wisconsin Chicago Milwaukee St PaulReal Photo Rppc Chicago Il Ne Corner Hyde Park & Drexel Blvds 1690Original Rppc Photo Chicago Milwaukee Railroad Shops Cle Elum WashingtonDated 1914 Rppc Chicago Surface Lines (racine Ave.) Real Photo Postcard Boxing Exhibit Card, Ray Miller, Chicago, 1920'sBoxing Exhibit Card, Otto Von Porat, Chicago, 1920'sIllinois Il Chicago Humboldt Park Boat House Lagoon Postcard Old Vintage Card PcBoxer Charlie White, Business Card, Athenian Club, ChicagoRare 1932 Chicago Stadium Real Photo PostcardChicago Il Eastland Disaster Diver Searches River PostcardV430 Rppc 1969 Escanaba Mi C&nw Chicago North Western Rr Train StationV427 Rppc 1969 C&nw Chicago & North Western Rr Station West Bend Wi1934 Chicago Worlds Fair Otis Elevator Adv Postcard " The Sky Ride " UnusedGerman Submarine U-505~museum Of Science And Industry~chicago Illinois1934 Chicago Worlds Fair Postcard The Ford Drama Of Transportation- CarriagesIllinois Il Chicago Morrison Hotel Mezzanine Floor Lobby Postcard Old Vintage PcIllinois Il Chicago Brevoort Hotel Crystal Bar Postcard Old Vintage Card View PcIllinois Il Chicago Prow & Pub Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard Souvenir Illinois Il Chicago Gateway Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard Souvenir PcVintage 1914 View National League Cubs Baseball Stadium W Fans Chicago Max RigotC.& N.w. Depot Real Photo Postcard Sheldahl Iowa Train Station Chicago N.w. RppcEastland Disaster, Chicago Over 800 Killed, Body Recovery, Lot Of 4 CardsBoxing Exhibit Card, Bud Gorman, Chicago, 1927Delco-light Summer Sales School - Chicago Il 1926 - Rppc B&w Interior Group - ExChicago, Il Illinois 1913 Rppc Postcard 4812 Lake Park HomeChicago Heights Il Illinois Linen Advertising Postcard Hotel Thomas Zs4895Chicago Illinois O'hare International Airport Airplane Aerial Postcard C2081933 Chicago Worlds Fair Postcard Nash Car Co " Endless Chain Of Cars " ExhibitLake Geneva Wisconsin Chicago Boat Club Wi1934 Chicago Worlds Fair Postcard " Henry Ford Pushes 1st Car Out Of Workshop "1933 Chicago Worlds Fair Art Deco Postcard " Main Entrance " The Ford ExpositionIllinois Il Chicago Ymca Hotel Revolving Sign Postcard Old Vintage Card View PcIllinois Il Chicago Greetings Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard SouvenirIllinois Il Chicago Greetings Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard SouvenirIllinois Il Chicago Michigan Avenue Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard PostIllinois Il Chicago Wrigley Building Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard PcIllinois Il Chicago River Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard Souvenir PostIllinois Il Chicago Art Institute European Rooms Miniature Postcard Old Vintage Chicago Heights Il Illinois C1910 Rp Fashion Theatre Interior - Movie TheatreBoxing Exhibit Card, Eddie Shea, Chicago, 1927Illinois Chicago Grand Army Assembly Room Memorial Hall Postcard1942 Baseball Stadium Postcard Wrigley Field Chicago Cubs Linen # 162Chicago Il Eastland Disaster Bodies In Temporary Morgue PostcardVintage Cars, Nash Tower, Chicago Worlds Fair 1933 PostcardV429 Rppc 1969 Green Bay Wi C&nw Chicago North Western Rr Train StationChicago Rppc Skyline And Lindberg Beacon Atop Palmolive Building At Night Merchandise Mart - Great Central Market - Chicago Il, Illinois - WbChicago Railroad Fair Ashtray 1933 Artist Sign Chicago Worlds Fair Postcard No 105 General Exhibits Building Chicago Bears Soldier Field Stadium Postcard Chicago New United Masonic Temple Oriental Theater 30 W RandolphVintage Comisky Park Last Day Chicago, Il PostcardChicago, Illinois - 18 Vintage 1937 Views, Postcard Folder - CurteichVintage - Postcard - Art Institute - Chicago, IllinoisRppc - Chicago 1933 World's Fair - Adler Planetarium - A Century Of ProgressIllinois Il Chicago Municipal Airport Postcard Old Vintage Card View Standard PcIllinois Il Chicago Hotel Sheraton Hallmark Hospitality Postcard Old Vintage PcVintage 1940s Linen Postcard Of Boat House, Humboldt Park, Chicago1934 Chicago Worlds Fair Art Deco Postcard Ford Exposition Building " Unused