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Chicago Then and Now (Compact) [Paperback]

Elizabeth McNulty
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

April 15 2007 Then & Now (Compact)
See how much the Midwest's cultural centre has changed--and how much it's stayed the same--with this new compact edition of Chicago Then & Now. It reveals the history of the City of Big Shoulders through remarkable intriguing archival images paired alongside modern photos that celebrate the city's most beloved landmarks such as the Chicago Art Institute, the Loop and the "El," Lakeshore Drive, downtown's glorious skyscrapers and Frank Lloyd Wright's home in Oak Park.

Included is commentary by Elizabeth McNulty, member of the Chicago Historical Society.

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Product Description

About the Author

Elizabeth McNulty (San Diego) often returns to Chicago to visit friends and colleagues.

Inside This Book (Learn More)
First Sentence
It is hopeless for the occasional visitor to m to keep up with Chicago-she outgrows his prophecies fastet than he can make them," wrote Mark Twain in 1883, when Chicago was past fifty years old. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars flawed but fun Chicago historical pictorial Feb. 12 2003
By audrey
Format:Hardcover
I have several of these "then and now" books, and I would say this is the weakest of the bunch. I dearly love Chicago, and some of the old photographs were very interesting, but the book has a few problems. First, the photographic perspectives are rarely in synch, so it is difficult to compare the two pictures directly; either the angle is off to the side, or it's at a different distance. This seems rather to defeat the purpose of a "then and now" theme, which is to facilitate comparison. Secondly, a great many of the buildings and scenes are virtually identical to what they were, so one wonders why they were included. Finally, a map should have been included.
On the positive side, many of Chicago's key spots are targeted, such as the Water Tower, the stockyards and Hull House, and the paragraphs that accompany each picture do convey a lot of interesting information.
If you are interested in Chicago or urban history you will undoubtedly still enjoy this volume, but lower your expectations a bit before the book arrives so you won't be disappointed.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A look at old Chicago Jan. 21 2002
Format:Hardcover
An interesting look at Chicago as it appeared in the past, compared to now. More than just a picture book, it also gives some historical perspective for each location. If you're a Chicagoan, this is a must have. There are two problems that keep this from getting a top ranking. First, the focus of a "then and now" book should be to compare and contrast, so we can see how much has changed. There's several locations shown here that haven't really changed, and you wonder why they were included. Also, the "then" and "now" pictures should be shot from roughly the same location, showing the same perspective. That's not always the case here, and you may have to spend some time figuring out how to get things lined up. Still, it's a good way to see how the city used to look, and a rare look at some of the now-missing architectural treasures.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Nice Review of Past and Present Sept. 15 2003
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
I enjoyed this book. Some of the pictures do not compare well because they were taken at different angles or from a different side of the street. Nevertheless, this is a great book. I found lots of stuff to compare. Native Chicagoans, who take an interest in the city, will like it. I purchased it for my brother for Christmas...liked it so much I purchased one for myself.
Was this review helpful to you?
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful coffee table book April 3 2001
Format:Hardcover
This books brought back lots of memeories for all my family. The pictures were excellent!! The stories of how they came to be and how they were reconstucted were so interesting. Alot of history here. A must have for all Chicagoans. I bought 5 of these as Christmas gifts for my family and friends. Thanks.
Was this review helpful to you?
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  18 reviews
36 of 37 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars flawed but fun Chicago historical pictorial Feb. 12 2003
By audrey - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I have several of these "then and now" books, and I would say this is the weakest of the bunch. I dearly love Chicago, and some of the old photographs were very interesting, but the book has a few problems. First, the photographic perspectives are rarely in synch, so it is difficult to compare the two pictures directly; either the angle is off to the side, or it's at a different distance. This seems rather to defeat the purpose of a "then and now" theme, which is to facilitate comparison. Secondly, a great many of the buildings and scenes are virtually identical to what they were, so one wonders why they were included. Finally, a map should have been included.
On the positive side, many of Chicago's key spots are targeted, such as the Water Tower, the stockyards and Hull House, and the paragraphs that accompany each picture do convey a lot of interesting information.
If you are interested in Chicago or urban history you will undoubtedly still enjoy this volume, but lower your expectations a bit before the book arrives so you won't be disappointed.
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A look at old Chicago Jan. 21 2002
By Timothy J. Mccarthy - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
An interesting look at Chicago as it appeared in the past, compared to now. More than just a picture book, it also gives some historical perspective for each location. If you're a Chicagoan, this is a must have. There are two problems that keep this from getting a top ranking. First, the focus of a "then and now" book should be to compare and contrast, so we can see how much has changed. There's several locations shown here that haven't really changed, and you wonder why they were included. Also, the "then" and "now" pictures should be shot from roughly the same location, showing the same perspective. That's not always the case here, and you may have to spend some time figuring out how to get things lined up. Still, it's a good way to see how the city used to look, and a rare look at some of the now-missing architectural treasures.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Nice Review of Past and Present Sept. 15 2003
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book. Some of the pictures do not compare well because they were taken at different angles or from a different side of the street. Nevertheless, this is a great book. I found lots of stuff to compare. Native Chicagoans, who take an interest in the city, will like it. I purchased it for my brother for Christmas...liked it so much I purchased one for myself.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Uniquely-Formatted Picture Book on the History of Chicago July 7 2008
By Jan Peczkis - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
This book has a relatively unusual format. A picture (often dating from before 1900) of a building or structure is shown on the left page, and a modern picture of the same building or structure is shown on the right facing page. A number of reviewers have complained about the fact that the comparative pictures were not usually taken from the same spot. I am unsure how easy it is to take a new picture of a structure from the exact location of a previous photo, at least without special technical assistance. In addition, the spot from which an old photo was taken may have been an empty lot which now contains a building--thus ruling out a new photo getting taken from the exact same spot as the old.

Besides the familiar Chicago landmarks, this book contains some pictures of churches. I especially appreciated the photos of St. Ignatius Church and St. Stanislaus Kostka Church.
12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful coffee table book April 3 2001
By Sue Durso - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This books brought back lots of memeories for all my family. The pictures were excellent!! The stories of how they came to be and how they were reconstucted were so interesting. Alot of history here. A must have for all Chicagoans. I bought 5 of these as Christmas gifts for my family and friends. Thanks.
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