The American Writers Museum is located in an Art Deco skyscraper on Michigan Avenue in downtown Chicago. Opened in 2017, it has been met with mixed reviews.
Apparently by ‘Writers’, it means any writer, including songwriters as the featured display when we were there was on Bob Dylan.
Among the collection were the handwritten lyrics to ‘Tom Thumb’.
Much was made about Dylan’s famed ‘electric’ set at the Newport Folk Festival in the 1960s. When Bob plugged in the crowd tuned out (literally booing him off the stage).
Among the collection was a copy of Catcher in the Rye with Dylan’s doodling.
The Nation of Writers hall is a long display chronicling writers throughout American history. Each had some small tidbits of information about them in displays that flipped around.
It includes only dead writers.
Another section featured vintage typewriters, along with notes encouraging you to start typing a story and leave it for others to add to it.
The other special display was on Fredrick Douglass.
The display touched on Douglass’s activism in equal rights.
It also included a couple of his personal items.
Finally there was a section of Chicago area writers. Amazingly while it included advice columnist Ann Landers it did not include Oak Park, Illinois born Ernest Hemingway!
If you are into literature, and catchy displays, the American Writers Museum is for you. Overall it could’ve been so much more.