Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium Tour - Atlas Obscura
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Chicago, Illinois

Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium Tour

WBEZ’s Curious City takes you inside Chicago's Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium.

Join WBEZ’s Curious City for a presentation and tour of the old sanitarium grounds.

Today, the fieldhouse in Chicago’s Peterson Park has a game room and offers all kinds of classes for kids and adults, but 100 years ago, it served as the lab and morgue of the Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium. Once the nation’s largest facility to treat and quarantine victims of this highly contagious disease, the vast campus housed nearly 250,000 Chicagoans during its nearly 60 years in operation.

Led by Curious City reporter Monica Eng and noted Chicago historian and Municipal Tuberculosis Sanitarium researcher Frances O'Cherony Archer, you'll learn about the history of the sanitarium, hear personal stories of people who were treated there, and get a chance to tour the area and view the remaining buildings and tunnel entrances.

The inspiration behind this tour came from Curious City questioner Laurie Nayder, who asked the question that prompted this recent Curious City story about what life was like inside the sanitarium.​ To learn more about Curious City, you can subscribe to the Curious City podcast, and check out Curious City web stories at You can also follow Curious City on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram


  • The event will run rain or shine.
  • We'll be meeting at the North Park Nature Center inside of the North Park Village Campus. When entering the area from Pulaski, drive straight and take the first or second left. Follow this road to the end, where you will find a small building on the left-hand side in the woods. This is the Nature Center, and there will be signs in front to direct you.
  • A short presentation will be given at the Nature Center, but the majority of the event will consist of a walking tour on the sidewalk and in the forest of the grounds.
  • The tour is approximately 2 miles.
  • Children under the age of 16 are not recommended.
  • The walking tour portion of this event is largely ADA complaint, noting that there are some rougher sidewalks. Depending on the building's schedule, day of, there may be an additional stop inside which is only accessible by stairs.
  • Wear your walking shoes and bring your cameras!


Email Leyla Royale at

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Advance ticket sales only. All ticket sales are final. No refunds or exchange.