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History


Upon entering the Union League Club of Chicago, one can sense an aura of tradition, history, accomplishment and dedication. For more than 130 years, the Club has been the place in Chicago where people have gathered to lay the groundwork for various civic projects and to organize social and philanthropic undertakings.

Established in 1879 to uphold the sacred obligations of citizenship, promote honesty and efficiency in government, and support cultural institutions and the beautification of the city, the Club has been a contributing partner in the growth and development of Chicago. Through the efforts of its dynamic membership, the Club has been a catalyst for action in nonpartisan political, economic and social arenas – focusing its leadership and resources on important social issues.

As early as 1893, Chicago gained recognition as a world-class city when it hosted the World’s Columbian Exposition. Club Members were instrumental in having Chicago named as the site of the exposition by the United States Congress. Since that time Club Members have played a role in establishing many of the city’s cultural organizations, including Orchestra Hall and the Field Museum. In the 1990s, the Club celebrated its role in the opening of the Harold Washington Library Center.