Past Meetup

12th Annual Chicago Maritime Festival

Location image of event venue


History of the Chicago Maritime Festival

In 2003, the first Chicago Maritime Festival produced the most diverse maritime program ever staged in Chicago. The festival drew over 1,000 people to its seminars, concerts, school programs, and shanty sing. Since then, the festival and festival outreach programs have been attended by over 41,000 people. Because our 10th Anniversary coincided with the 200th Anniversary of the War of 1812, we received support from the Canadian Consul General to bring maritime music performers from Canada and also to engage a number of presentations about the War. Each year, festival goers enjoy over 40 seminars and workshops plus ship models, displays, and demonstrations presented by the individuals and organizations that make up the maritime community in Chicago as well as some presenters from across the country and across the sea. The Chicago Maritime Festival is organizated by Common Times in cooperation with the Chicago Maritime Museum and the Chicago History Museum. It is held anually the last Saturday in February at the Chicago History Museum, 1601 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL 60614.


The Chicago Maritime Museum's mission is to preserve, increase and disseminate knowledge of the maritime history of the city of Chicago and its nautical surroundings; to collect, restore, interpret and display artifacts and documents of Chicago's maritime history; to further awareness of the appreciation of our waterways as they have do contribute to our experience and progress.


The Chicago History Museum collects, exhibits, and interprets documents, images, and artifacts related to the history of the United States and metropolitan Chicago. Its mission is to expand audiences for history, to be a leader in history education, and to be a premier research institution. The newly renovated Chicago History Museum opened in September of 2006.
In addition to metered parking all around the Chicago History Museum, there is a lot at 1730 Stockton (a block north of the museum) that will offer all day parking (with validation) for $9.00. Tickets must be validated at the front desk of the Chicago History Museum. Parking info at 773-549-3145.

The Underwater Archaeological Society of Chicago (UASC)

The "Underwater Archaeological Society of Chicago" is a volunteer, not-for-profit organization dedicated to the study and preservation of Lake Michigan shipwrecks and to research topical underwater subjects of historical interest surrounding this great lake.

Disasters on the Lakes were all too common. There are probably no equal areas of commercial waterways that, if drained, would reveal as many lost vessels as would the Great Lakes. So, return with us to a day when ships moved by white canvas, hemp rope and brute force, evolving to steam fueled by wood and coal, to the ships of today.