Exhibit: High Water and Hell (Past)

Rising Lake Puts Chicago on Edge

The recent dramatic rise in the level of Lake Michigan is posing a serious – though not unprecedented – threat to property on Chicago’s lakefront. A new exhibit opening January 11, 2020 at the Edgewater History Museum – “High Water and Hell: Rising Lake Puts Chicago on Edge” – examines how the previous record high lake levels in the late 1980s severely battered the City and caused extensive damage to Chicago’s lakefront communities.

“High Water and Hell” explores how the city responded to the crisis of the 1980s, and how a variety of citizen task forces proposed lasting solutions to prevent future catastrophic flooding, though very few of those recommendations were ever executed. The exhibit also examines the science of what makes the levels of the Great Lakes fluctuate so dramatically, as well as how Chicago extensively rebuilt more than eight miles of City shoreline over the past 30 years. Click here for a flyer.