Beginning in 1995, Shorefront has, and continues to amass an archival collection of artifacts, documents, photographs and family archives that represent and depict the lives of Blacks on the Chicago suburban North Shore. There is currently over 120 linear feet of documents ready for use in scholarly activities with an additional 70 linear feet (and growing) acquisition of new documents where interns process for university class credit.
Because of the work of Shorefront, our center has been widely used as a resource to the benefit of historical and educational institutions, students the community and historians. The work of Shorefront has attracted the partnership with the Black Metropolis Research Consortium (BMRC) housed at the University of Chicago. In addition, original source materials have been used to create media for use within educational systems and the greater community.
Shorefront has expanded its educational outreach by bringing articles and information to a wider audience through its online Shorefront Journal inviting contributing writers and engaging community feedback on both historical and contemporary events. Launched in August 2012, the online site has attracted an average of 750 views per month.
The work of Shorefront remains true to its core mission values: Collect, Preserve, Educate, validated by visitors, educators and community members who have all stated “I did not know…”.