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Railroaders: Jack Delano’s Homefront Photography Opens at the Chicago History Museum.

The project reveals the humanity, heroism, and diversity of the Chicago railroad community whose work was instrumental to the war effort during World War II. In 1942, photographer Jack Delano was tasked by the federal government to capture images of the rail community to rally support for the war effort. The result was three thousand images, many of which highlight Chicago’s primacy to the North American rail network. The dignity of everyday work and the stories of individual railroaders and their descendants are explored in more than 60 photographs by Delano. The exhibition will be open at the Chicago History Museum through August 10, 2015.

Over 1,200 visitors viewed the exhibition in the first three days it was open.

TLMRC member Bon French is the Chairman of the board for both the Center for Railroad Photography & Art and also the Chairman of the Board of the Chicago History Museum.

Research found that three of the Railroaders featured in the 1942 photos included the Grandfather, Uncle and Father of Gary Sinise the American actor, director, and musician, best known for his roles as Lt. Dan Taylor in Forest Gump and as Detective Mac Taylor on CSI: NYC. Gary's Father and Uncle are the only two people featured in the exhibition who are still alive. They attended the Center’s reception with 350 descendants and family members of the portrait subjects, but Gary chose not to attend for fear his celebrity would take away from the real meaning of the event. Bon, however, was able to give Gary a tour along with the museum's curator later in April.

Here are 2 photos of Daniel Sinise (Gary's Grandfather) taken by Jack Delano in 1942.

Library of Congress, Prints and Photographs Division - Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Black and White Negatives.

For information about the catalog of the show Click here


For information about the Center for Railroad Photography & Art click here

Join us in the “Greatest Hobby” as a member of the TLMRC.