Encyclopedia o f Chicago
Entries | Historical Sources | Maps | Special Features
User's Guide: Using the Encyclopedia of Chicago
User's Guide
Computer Workstation Requirements
Mac Help
Windows Help
Using the
Encyclopedia of Chicago
Beginning Your Exploration
Using Index Pages
Browsing Entry Pages
Viewing Historical Sources
Reading Bound Volumes
Exploring Rich Maps
Searching the Encyclopedia
Searching the
Encyclopedia of Chicago

The Encyclopedia of Chicago includes a vast collection of information about the history of the city. In order to aid you in finding information in the Encyclopedia, we have included a search engine.

By default, the search engine will look for all words included in the search box, whether in proximity to one another or not. If you would like your search terms to be found as a group, they should be placed in quotes. For example, if you are looking for information on Lincoln Square, typing "Lincoln Square" in the search field (including the quotes) will eliminate entries referencing President Lincoln giving a speech in a square and focus on entries where the two words appear as a group, such as those referencing the Lincoln Square neighborhood.

In addition, our search engine recognizes wild card characters (represented by *). The wildcard character will find all variations on a word. For example, Chicag* would find all pages on Chicago as well as those on Chicagou.

Search results are ranked according to whether or not the search terms appear in the title or the body of an entry, and are then ordered by type of materials as follows:

1. Authored Entries (A-Z)
2. Rich Maps and Interpretive Digital Essays
3. Business Dictionary listings
4. Biographical Dictionary listings
5. Print Maps created for the Encyclopedia
6. Historical Sources, including photos, documents, and maps
7. Timeline listings and year pages
8. Tables
9. User's Guide and Introductory Materials

The Search Results are formatted as indicated below.

Search Results

Each item listed in Search Results identifies the TITLE and AUTHOR or CREATOR of the item, as well as the TYPE of item (e.g. Authored Entry, Historical Source, Business Dictionary Listing, Rich Map). This information is followed by an excerpt from the item, indicating context in which the search term appears in the item.

Search Pages

Because there are so many resources in the Encyclopedia, most search results will carry over to more than one page of listings. The Search Pages information includes how many items were found, how many pages were required to list them, and allows you to skip ahead to a given page or the next page.

Page Type

When a search is first completed, Full Results are listed, including resources of all types. Should you wish to limit your search to items of a particular type, such as Authored Entries or Historical Sources, you may do so using the Page Type list. To return to viewing all resources, select Full Results.

Browsing the Encyclopedia

In addition to the search feature, we have included several tools, including indices of topics and an alphabetical listing of entries, to help you find what you are seeking. To learn more about these features, please read the "Beginning Your Exploration" or "Using Index Pages" sections of the User's Guide.