Welcome to the Near West Side Digital Archive

The Near West Side Partnership launched in 2014 with five major institutional partners: Aurora Health Care, Harley-Davidson, MillerCoors, the Potawatomi Business Development Corporation, and Marquette University. Covering all or part of several neighborhoods stretching roughly from the Marquette Interchange to 43rd Street, and from the Menomonee Valley to Highland Avenue and Vliet Street, the Partnership was intended to chart the challenges facing the area as well as the resources it offered.  Focusing on crime, housing, and community, the Near West Side Partnership has already improved the lives of residents of the Near West Side. Find out much more about the history and initiatives of the NWSP here.

The Near West Side Digital Archive seeks to tell the story of the neighborhood through the histories of its institutions, schools, and organizations. Documents and images will explore the relationship of those institutions to the neighborhood; special attention will be paid to the ways in which demographic and political changes, along with economic transformation, affected those relationships.  Although the documents and images will be contextualized, they are not intended to provide a comprehensive history of the neighborhood.  Rather, they will suggest some of the tensions and collaborations, as well as accomplishments and challenges, that have characterized the relationship between residents of the Near West Side and its institutions.


About the project: This is a long-term project funded by Marquette University’s Center for Urban Research, Teaching, and Outreach, and organized in collaboration with MU’s Raynor Memorial Library’s University Archives and Digital Scholarship Lab.  The bulk of the research was completed by undergraduate interns.  Special thanks to interns Maria Baima and Alex Warren (Spring 2018) and Cara Caputo (Summer 2018); to Amy Cary and Katie Blank in MU University Archives, and to Elizabeth Gibes in the Digital Scholarship Lab.