"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”)

Carthalia

Carthalia

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    

Baseball: Eddie Hahn, 1907 Chicago White Sox; Geo. W. Hull Pc SeriesChicago Cubs-1910-west Side Baseball Park-spalding Advertising 2jh76C. 1915 Vintage Rppc Trio Sits On Crescent Paper Moon, Riverview Expo In ChicagoChicago-wrigley Field-cubs Baseball Stadium-national/federal League 2jh801908 Rppc Rockford Il Ill Steamer Sinks In Rock River DisasterLot 2 Chicago Il Wrigley Field Cubs Baseball Stadium Sports Postcards Qq8334Il-chicago-wrigley Field-baseball-chicago Cubs-h22901Antique Postcard Real Photo Antioch Illinois Grass Lake Rppc C.r. Childs ChicagoChicago, Il - West Side Baseball Grounds April 4, 1927 Cordova, Ill. Crash Postcard (chicago-dallas)Il-chicago-washington Park-derby Day-horse Race-h22899Gorgeous Exotic Gypsy Dancer~long Hair~chicago~rccp~vintage Real Photo PostcardChicago,illinois-south Side Baseball Park-comiskey Park Opening Day-1910 2jh74R856 Rp 1933 Chicago Worlds Fair W&a Railroad Train Engine #3 ' The General 'Il-chicago-baseball In Lincoln Park-h22887South Shore Country Club 1908 Chicago Postmark Crease.Old Postcards Chicago Landmark Buildings Divided Postcards 1907-1915 Lot Of 26Douglas World Cruiser #2 ChicagoRppc Our Lady Of Sorrow Church Jackson Blvd Albany Ave Chicago Il Photo PostcardVintage Postcard Roseland Chicago Illinois - Mich. Av. No. Of 117th St. Roseland1933/34 Chicago World's Fair Studebaker Display PostcardVintage Goodrich Transit Company Postcard - Chicago To MackinacIl-chicago-comiskey Park-baseball Field-aerial View-h22895Chicago, Il - Michigan Boulevard 1915**1- Chicago, Il - Field Museum Of Natural History_tyrannosaurus & TriceratopsChicago, Il - London Guarantee & Accident Company Building 19331954 J D Mc Carthy Baseball Postcard Jack Harshman Chicago White SoxVintage Old Chicago Mall , Indoor Amusement Park Post Card, 1970's Bolingbrook1933 London Midland & Scottish Rr Royal Scot Coachs @ Montreal On Way To ChicagoIl Chicago Alta Vista Terrace Rppc 1908Postcard Presbyterian Church, Chicago Heights, Illinois - Circa 1906Real Photo St. Paul's Church At Longwood (chicago)1915 Rppc Chicago Il Illinois? Real Photo Postcard Building Construction Qq8379R894 Rp 1936 Chicago Springfield & St Louis Railroad Motor #151 Rpo Alton Il Postcard Chicago Looking South On Michigan Avenue From Wrigley Building Il-chicago-soldiers Field-museum-lake Front-mailed 1954-h22893Cook County Hospital Postcard - Chicago, Illinois - Wilmington, OhioTwa Lockheed Constellation Twa Hangar Chicago Midway 4x6 PostcardPostcard Elk Rock On Rock River Along Black Hawk Trail, Oregon, Il 19501940 Largr Letter Postcard " Greetings From Galesburg Ill " ( W/ Sites) UnusedChicago, Il Cook County Hospital Early V. O.. Hammon # 163 Posted 1906 Worn1940 Postcard " New Empire Room " Of The Palmer House Chicago Il Unused 1960s Postcard " Lake Tower Motel " Lake Shore Dr At Ohio St Chicago Il UnusedUniversity Of Chicago Chapel Illinois Posted 1944 Vintage PostcardChicago, Il - Michigan Avenue North From River By Night 19421920 Risque Pennant Postcard " Plenty Of Flirts In Galesburg Ill " ( Girl Winks)1934 Chicago Worlds Fair Postcard #wf37 General Motors Building ( Blimp, Night)1940 Postcard Lander's Restaurant & Cocktail Lounge ( Interior Views) Chicago Il1960s Postcard " Marina City, City Within A City " Billboard Chicago Il Unused1940 Postcard The Tropics Hawaiian Cocktail Lounge, Hotel Chicagoan Chicago Unus1915 Postcard " North Prairie St From Dudley " Homes, Horsecart) Galesburg IllChicago, Il - Public Library At Randolph & Michigan Streets 1942Chicago, Il - Public Library 1906Illinois Il Chicago Wilmette Lake Michigan Baha'i House Postcard Old Vintage Pc8 Vintage Postcards-1907-19-chicago, Il-bldgs/waters/streets/cars/hotel/peopleIllinois Il Chicago Blackstone Lobby Main Restaurant Postcard Old Vintage Card1910s Paper Moon Young Man Riverview Exposition Souvenir Chicago Amusement Park1953 J D Mc Carthy Baseball Postcard Hank Sauer Chicago Cubs Auto Large Size PcGruss Vom Deutschen Eck.chicago, Dachshund Drinking BeerSale Photo Wilson Bathing Beach Chicago, Il, Sights On The Sand, Postcard