05/18/2012 02:26 pm ET

NATO Summit: Chicago Looks To Avoid Repeat Of 1968 Democratic Convention Chaos (PHOTOS)

In the months preceding the long-anticipated NATO summit's arrival in Chicago, some feared a repeat of the chaos and violence of the 1968 Democratic National Convention, which the Second City hosted over 40 years ago.

To date in Chicago, the pre-NATO demonstrations have been overwhelmingly peaceful and very few arrests have been reported. But such was not the case in August 1968.

Jill Austin, Chicago History Museum curator, described the scene:

A year of violence, war and heartbreak in the nation came to a head in the city heat, where delegates gathered and tens of thousands of people took to the streets, occupying public land and parks in demonstration, demanding to be seen and heard in a city, they cried, of injustice, and in a nation, they declared, too bloodthirsty.

The below gallery -- a selection of objects and images from the collection of the Chicago History Museum -- explores the energy and tumult of August 26-29, 1968, in Chicago, when the entire city was watching from every corner and sofa, along with the world, as tensions unfolded.

All images appear courtesy of the Chicago History Museum. Click here if you are interested in obtaining a copy of any of the museum's images included in the slideshow. Their call numbers have been included for your reference.

1968 Democratic National Convention In Chicago
1968 Democratic National Convention In Chicago