Are you traveling somewhere for the holidays? Take a moment to relax and imagine yourself in some of the more ideal accommodations from Pullman State Historic Site as found in their vintage advertisements from The Saturday Evening Post and National Geographic. The Pullman State Historic Site collection includes nearly 5,000 digitized items from the Pullman Historic Site, the former planned industrial community that specialized in luxury sleeper cars, providing a unique lens into a very intentional joining of civic and everyday life and manufacturing. Far before the Midwest bloc was referred to as “fly-over country”, Pullman cars contributed to a modernized image of the prairie, consistently promoting a “comfortable, convenient, and safe” alternative to cramped travel. In her recent book The Heartland: An American History Kristin Hoganson argues that “The heartland myth insists that there is a stone-solid core at the center of the nation,” which is isolationist, resistant to change, and geographically static. These advertisements directly support that argument representing a historic change of persisting economic growth in the Midwest’s legacy of movement, migration, and seizure. The Pullman advertisements’ specific brand of modernism and modernizing travel depicts spacious, comfortable cars that are conducive for individual and family travel, and suitable even for silent-film star Gloria Swanson. Compare her experience to your probable one on the road, or in the air this Thanksgiving.
I personally really love the grid system that gets repeated in these advertisements, that build out the entire Pullman itinerary, including the “Short Lesson in Anatomy”.
Additional Sources: Hoganson, Kristin L. The Heartland: An American History. Penguin Books, 2019.
We need your input! The Illinois Digital Heritage Hub website is now live but that’s not the end of the story. Changes are on the way, guided by the input and insight from site users like you. Please take a 4-question survey to tell us what you think about the website and portal. We welcome suggestions to improve existing content and ideas for new features. And if there’s something you really like, let us know. Thank you for helping us make the website better.
Happy October! The Illinois Digital Heritage Hub will be at the Chicago Research Summit and the Illinois Library Association Conference later this month.
Join Keri Cascio, chair of the IDHH Marketing Working Group and Chicago Public Library’s Assistant Chief of Technology, Content and Innovation at the Chicago Research Summit on October 18th. Keri will introduce the new IDHH website and search portal and its potential as a resource for educators and students of Chicago History.
Joshua Lynch, IDHH metadata specialist and webmaster, will present on the IDHH Website and Portal at the Illinois Library Association Annual Conference during both exhibits sessions on Wednesday, October 23rd and Thursday, October 24th. Learn about the IDHH and the DPLA and the website as a tool for new and current contributing institutions, educators and learners, and other user groups.
We look forward to seeing you there and want to hear your thoughts on the site!
The Illinois Digital Heritage Hub is proud to announce the launch of a brand new website! The site provides a portal to all of the IDHH’s contributors’ rich and unique cultural heritage objects, numbering more than 300,000 and growing.
Special thanks to our providers whose contributions make the IDHH possible. The website was made possible by the DPLA’s Local platform and we thank the Digital Public Library of America’s developers, who provided the out-of-the-box technology infrastructure and necessary modifications for additional pages and features. The IDHH is glad to be a part of this feature development and trusts that it will build on the solid foundation of DPLA Local and empower other DPLA partners. Finally, graduate student assistants, Tath Haver and Kaylen Dwyer made essential contributions toward developing key site features and their work is greatly appreciated.
The website will be undergoing several rounds of updates in the coming months and new features are soon to come. These include more features for educators and students, more browsing options, and, longer term, digital exhibits.