Office of the City Clerk, City of Chicago

Since 1837 the Office of the City Clerk has been responsible for collecting, docketing, and securely storing the City’s official records, namely City Council legislation. In addition to a multitude of other services—including the issuance of City Vehicle Stickers and certain licenses—the Office of the City Clerk provides public access to legislation, laws, records, and reports.

Type of records to be found in the City Clerk’s collections include:

  • City Clerk Administrative Files (1893–current)
  • The Chicago Municipal Code (1856–current)
  • The Journal of the Proceedings (1866–1867; 1872–current)
  • Annual Index to the Journal of the Proceedings (1904–2004)
  • Legislative Documents of the Chicago City Council (1944–current)
  • Index to Legislative Documents of the Chicago City Council (1838–1998)
  • Guides to Legislation of the Chicago City Council (1981–2008)
  • Mayoral Executive Orders (1976–current)
  • Chicago City Council Committee Records (ca.1907–current)
  • Chicago City Council Committee Pamphlets (1941–current)
  • The Rules of Order and Procedure for the Chicago City Council (1910, 1923–current)
  • Audio and Video Recordings of the Chicago City Council (1970–current)
  • Lists of Municipal Elected Officials (1837–current)
  • Traffic Code (1911–current)
  • Various Related Series

Note that some resources are available digitally for certain years on the Chicago City Clerk’s web site and elsewhere, and more are being prepared for digitization and eventual upload to the City Clerk’s web site and the Chicago Collections Consortium web site. Some of the publications are available for research via the Chicago Public Library’s Municipal Reference Collection at Harold Washington Library Center. The Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD) at Northeastern Illinois University has some related Chicago City Clerk’s Office records available for research online and in person at the Ronald Williams Library on the NEIU campus. Librarians at NEIU have put together an excellent guide to researching Chicago's government records. 

Please contact the Chicago City Clerk’s Office for more information.