Chicago transformed itself from an old Rust Belt town into a global metropolis in the 1990s. After becoming a popular destination for those new employees, Chicago gained a lot of population in the 1990s, the only time a Midwestern metropolis did so in the 1950s.
A Chicago native who would become more famous than Michael Jordan and Oprah Winfrey, Barack Obama won his first election, to the Illinois State Senate in 1996. He began a career that would erase the city’s reputation for provincialism and corruption.
Steven Martin took these amazing photos of the city of Chicago in 1996.