U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Illinois, is appealing to President Barack Obama for help in granting National Park status to Chicago's Pullman Historic District.
Durbin said in a letter sent Friday to Obama that the area is significant for its place in revolutionizing the railroad industry and its contributions to the labor movement.
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He urged Obama to use his authority under the Antiquities Act to declare part of the park a unit of the National Park System.
Industrialist George Pullman founded what was then a separate town in 1880.
It was known for manufacturing Pullman Palace Sleeper Cars, considered the most luxurious railcar for almost a century.
The neighborhood also was the birthplace of the African-American labor movement. Disgruntled Pullman porters organized the Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters union in the 1920s.