From White City to Green Haven: Jackson Park's Late 19th-Century Transformations | Newberry

From White City to Green Haven: Jackson Park's Late 19th-Century Transformations

Jackson Park’s East Lagoon

A Lecture by Julia Bachrach
Thursday, November 15, 2018

6 to 7 pm

Ruggles Hall

Free and open to the public. Registration required.
Open to the Public

Listen to an audio recording of this event.

In the late 1860s, when acclaimed landscape architect Frederick Law Olmsted Sr. visited the site for Chicago’s Jackson Park he did not consider it very promising.

In fact, he later wrote the “If a search had been made for the least parklike ground within miles of the city, nothing better meeting that requirement would have been found.” Yet, despite his trepidation, Olmsted created three magnificent sets of plans for Jackson Park: the original 1871 layout for 1055-acre South Park, the scheme for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, and plans of the late 1890s transforming the fairgrounds back into parkland. In this lecture historian Julia Bachrach will highlight the early development of Jackson Park, exploring the ways in which natural features, Olmsted’s philosophies about society, recreational needs and expectations, and collaborations with designers such as architect Daniel H. Burnham shaped Jackson Park during the late nineteenth century.

Julia Bachrach is a historian, preservation planner, and urban design professional.

Check out a Quick Guide to related materials in the Newberry collection.

This event, funded by a grant from the Terra Foundation for American Art, is part of our programming in connection with the exhibition Pictures from an Exposition: Visualizing the 1893 World’s Fair. See it from September 28 to December 31, 2018, at the Newberry.

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Cost and Registration Information 

Free and open to the public. Register online using this form by 3 pm Thursday, November 15.

Doors open half an hour before the program begins, with first-come, first-served seating for registered attendees. If seats remain available, non-registered individuals will be permitted to enter about ten minutes before the event’s start.

People with disabilities and other accessibility concerns can request to be seated first. To reserve an access-friendly space in the room, email at least 48 hours before the event. Seats arranged in this way will be held until 10 minutes before the event starts.

Questions? Contact us at or 312-255-3610.