The Pullman Era


The Pullman Era

Aerial view of Pullman, IL, George Pullman's company town, featuring the Arcade building and Greenstone Church. (CHS G1988.0426 Box 2 Pullman Community Collection Folder: Streets)

Aerial view of Pullman, IL, George Pullman's company town, featuring the Arcade building and Greenstone Church. (CHS G1988.0426 Box 2)

In Chicago, the name Pullman has many different meanings: a neighborhood, a railroad car, an industrialist. The story of Pullman starts with one man's idea for a luxury railroad car, which eventually led to his dream of a utopian worker community. That dream resulted in one of Chicago's greatest 19th century labor disputes-and the end of Pullman's utopia.

Portrait of George Pullman. (CHS ICHi-23062)

Portrait of George Pullman. (CHS ICHi-23062)

George Mortimer Pullman was born in western New York in 1831, where he worked as a county store clerk and a cabinetmaker. When he moved to Chicago in 1859, he coordinated teams of laborers who raised and moved buildings, a service desperately needed by a city built largely on swampland. Despite this successful career, Pullman had a strong interest in revolutionizing the railway sleeping car. He had once traveled overnight from Buffalo to Westfield in New York and his accommodations were so uncomfortable that he spent the entire evening devising a new railcar design.




Al Capone
Black Sox
Century of Progress
Chicago Fire
World's Columbian Expo
Parades, Protests and Politics
The Pullman Era
Pullman Photos
Pullman Bibliography
The Stockyards
Fort Dearborn

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Al Capone - Chicago Black Sox - A Century of Progress - Chicago Fire
The World's Columbian Exposition - Parades, Protests and Politics
The Pullman Era - The Stockyards
Fort Dearborn (Coming Soon!)

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