Chicago’s Pullman National Monument — and its story of a planned industrial community — now a National Park

Chicago Scene

CHICAGO — The Pullman National Monument is the first unit of the National Park Service in Chicago. It was designated by President Barack Obama in 2015 and opened in late 2021 to the public. The park tells the story of one of the first planned industrial communities in the United States.

George Pullman was an American engineer and industrialist. He set up his company town in what is now known as the Pullman neighborhood. He is known for designing and manufacturing the Pullman sleeping car and founded a company town, Pullman, for the works who manufactured it.

Inside the Pullman Neighborhood

This Pullman Company also hired African-American men to staff the Pullman cars, who became known and respected as Pullman porters, providing elite service.

This monument is significant for its influence on urban planning and design, as well as its role in American labor history, including the 1894 Pullman strike and boycott.

Mural in the Pullman neighborhood

Located in the Pullman neighborhood, this historic district includes the site of the former Pullman Palace Car Works shops and administration building, the Hotel Florence, Aracade Park and the Greenstone Church. Another point of interest is the A. Philip Randolph Pullman Porter Museum, named for the prominent leader A. Phillip Randolph, which recognizes and explores African-African labor history.

To learn more about the Pullman National Monument, click here.

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