Chicago residents can now legally own and carry handguns, but it wasn't always the case!

In 1968, following the assassinations of Robert Kennedy and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, some politicians in Illinois were trying to push for a total ban on handguns in Illinois.  In response was offered the idea of the Firearm Owner's ID card, which we still have in Illinois.

Chicago had gun registration scheme in place, where residents reported their firearms to the Chicago Police, this also started in 1968.  But in 1982 under Mayor Jane Byrne, the firearm registration was turned into a way to keep law-abiding people in Chicago from having a handgun when new handgun registrations were closed, and any late annual registration was not accepted.  This has been referred to as a de-facto ban, ie,.  this became Chicago's handgun ban. 

In addition to Chicago's closed registration, the suburb Morton Grove instituted an actual ban on possession of handguns in 1981.  Other suburbs followed with their own bans, such as Oak Park in 1984.

Washington DC had a similar ban on the ownership of handguns, which was challenged by Dick Heller.  After a court battle spanning several years, the Supreme Court of the US ruled that Heller had a 2nd Amendment right to own a handgun that not dependent on militia service or membership.

Here is a table of important cases that impact Chicagoans and their ability to defend themselves:

2008 DC v Heller US Supreme Court ruled that The People have an individual, personal right to own handguns and other firearms at home  
2010 McDonald v Chicago US Supreme Court ruled that the same right determined in DC v Heller cannot be regulated away by state or local governments. Chicago cannot ban handgun ownership.
2011 Ezell v Chicago Pivotal Second Amendment case.  The US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Chicago cannot ban gun ranges within city limits.
2011 Lawson v Chicago Chicago Municipal Court ruled against unfair interpretation of city ordinances by police in gun registration.  Helped lead to the end of firearms registration and the end of post-McDonald firearms licenses in Chicago.
2012 Moore v Madigan
Shepard v Madigan
US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on this combined case overturning Illinois' ban on carrying firearm for protection. Illinois had a ban on any kind of carry, open or concealed.
2013 Illinois Public Act 98-063 Concealed carry law passed, licensing established.
State preemption over handgun regulation established.
2017 Ezell v Chicago
Ezell II

This was the second round of litigation for this case.
The US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that Chicago cannot have a de-facto ban on ranges through prohibitive zoning.