For this workshop, our class was asked to search for information regarding two or more topics that relate to Chicago’s history. I chose Jane Addams and the diversity surrounding the Hull House as well as the Chicago river’s peculiar flow patterns.

First, Jane Addams and her Hull House were a source of entertainment, community, and belonging within a very diverse area of Chicago. This area contained many of the immigrants who worked in the city. My search regarding this topic began with simply looking up “ethnicities map Hull House” and I was immediately greeted with some reliable sources. The source following the Hull House museum’s website was the Digital Public Library of America. The DPLA had a color-coded map showing the different ethnicities found in the surrounding blocks of the Hull House from 1895. A similar map from the same year popped up in my search results from the Encyclopedia of Chicago website.

Next, I wanted to find information of why the Chicago River flows backwards. To find what I was looking for, I just searched “why does Chicago river flow backwards?” (surprising, I know). The first results I found were from Wikipedia, Brittanica, and numerous local Chicago news sites. Through these results, I was able to find out that a large storm causing a rush of sewage water into Lake Michigan motivated officials in Chicago to build a canal that in turn flipped the direction of the river to avoid future issues like the storm in 1885.


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