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Chicago Great Lakes Underground Press collection

Identifier: MSS0059

Scope and Contents

Donated zines from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin are added to the collection. No attempt is made to collect all issues of any one title; rather the collection reflects the ephemeral nature of the zines, broadly representing various types of publication in the geographic area of Illinois and of the rest of the Midwest. These parameters are reflected in the arrangement of the collection.


  • 1965-2022
  • Majority of material found within 1985-2000

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Biographical / Historical

This collection began during the first annual Underground Press Conference in Chicago in August 1994. The initial plan was to build a collection of correspondence and other operational documents of the underground press and zine community in the Midwest. However, due to the informal nature of many underground presses, the original objectives were redefined to focus on collecting zines only. Zine creators routinely send donations to the collection and are accepted if the zines fit within the geographical scope of the collection.


11 Linear Feet (10 boxes)

Language of Materials



The Chicago Great Lakes Underground Press Collection is arranged in 9 series: 1: Art; 2: Comic; 3: Literary; 4: Music; 5: Personal; 6: Resource; 7: Special Interest; 8: Social/Political; 9: March 2016 Addition. Series 1-8 are divided into two subseries: Illinois and Midwest. Series 9 is divided into subseries by topic, with the geographic origin of each zine included in its folder title to follow the arrangement of the previous series. The Chicago Great Lakes Underground Press Collection was arranged alphabetically by title until the summer of 2004. The geographic/subject reorganization of the collection was completed by a Special Collections and Archives volunteer. Although the processing project was directed under the guidance of department staff, the arrangement reflects the volunteer's insight and experience as a member of the zine community as well as his personal reaction to the zines. The effort to reorganize the collection was undertaken in order to provide greater access to the zines.

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession 1997.33; 1997.34; 2016.011; 2022.023

Processing Information

B. Harris 2005; J. Mann 2016; D. Potts 2022

Guide to Chicago Great Lakes Underground Press collection
B. Harris 2005; J. Mann 2016; D. Potts 2022
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the DePaul Special Collections and Archives Repository

John T. Richardson Library
2350 N. Kenmore Ave.
Room 314
Chicago Illinois 60614