Many people frequent the Field Museum and the Museum of Science and Industry, but what about a museum that's purpose is to highlight to the advancements in the history of surgery? Or maybe even a museum that hosts the nations only Broadcast Radio Hall of Fame? There are some truly great museums and exhibits that fly under the radar in this wonderful city, but let's put them back on your radar.
In the heart of downtown, right on Michigan Avenue across from the Art Institute, is one of Chicago's greatest secrets: The Pritzker Military Library. Located in the historic Monroe building, the Pritzker Military Museum's main purpose is to highlight the citizen soldier and his/her importance in preserving our republic. The library houses numerous accounts and reports on military history, as well as interviews and writings from soldiers. Admission to the library and museum is only $5 and free with an active military ID.
This beautiful museum, attached to The University of Chicago, showcases the history, art, and archaeology of the ancient Near East. This first hidden gem in Chicago's South Side houses thousands of recovered artifacts in permanent exhibits that highlight the history, art and archaeology of ancient Egypt, Nubia, Persia, Mesopotamia, Syria, Anatolia, and the ancient site of Megiddo. While in some of the more popular museums, artifacts are actually purchased to be displayed, the majority of the Oriental Institute Museum's artifacts were found during an archaeological excavation which was sponsored by the Oriental Institute. This connection to its own artifacts adds to the intimate and personal aesthetic of each exhibit. So make the trip to Chicago's South Side and witness cultural advancements three millennia in the making at The Oriental Institute Museum.
One of the most beautiful and undiscovered museums is hidden in one of Chicago's grandest mansions right on Lake Shore Drive. The International Museum of Surgical Science opened its grand doors in 1954 to highlight the history and advancements in surgical science, and have carried that mission all the way through to 2014. Swing by the beautiful lakeside mansion that was built in 1917 to model a 1700's chateau from Versailles to check out some unique exhibits only available in this one of a kind museum. Some great exhibits include "Beyond Broken Bones" which highlights orthopedics, "Japan Hall of Fame" which brings to light many of the contributions Japanese scientists have made to modern medicine, and "Nursing: Care for a Changing World," showcasing the importance of nursing in the modern times. No matter your knowledge or profession in the medical field, you'll find an interesting exhibit for everyone! So take a little detour on Lake Shore Drive and check out The International Museum of Surgical Science today!
Smack dab in the center of the city, right off the river, is Chicago's Museum of Broadcast Communications. The MCB in one of only three museums dedicated to broadcast journalism in the U.S. Inside, you'll even find America's only National Radio Hall of Fame! The goal of the MCB is to preserve this unique history of broadcast journalism and entertainment and to inform citizens on the past present and future of broadcast communications. One exhibit to see now is "The Life and Times of Gary Coleman" and be sure to catch Bob Saget speak live in a Q&A April 16th. Buy your tickets before they sell out!