--- A black man from Haiti named Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable,
a fur trader, founded a settlement called Eschikagou on the north
bank of the Chicago River. (He was not officially recognized as
the city's founder until 1968.)
--- The first birth on record in Chicago was of Eulalia Pointe
du Sable, daughter of Jean-Baptiste Pointe du Sable and his Potawatomi
--- Chicago had its beginnings in Fort Dearborn ; built by US Federal
Troops. It was named for President Jefferson's Secretary of War,
--- On August 12, the town of Chicago was incorporated with a population
--- William B. Ogden was elected the city's first mayor.
--- C. D. Peacock jewelers was founded. It is the oldest Chicago
business still in existence today.
--- John Stone, 34, was the city's first legally executed criminal.
He was hanged on Friday, July 10, for the rape and murder of Lucretia
Thompson, a farmer's wife.
--- The first issue of the "Chicago Tribune" came off
the presses on June 10.
--- On April 3, the Chicago Board of Trade was opened at 101 South
Water Street by 82 local businessmen.
--- The first telegraphic communication between New York City and
Chicago was established on June 10.
--- Northwestern University, the first university in the Chicago
area, was founded.
--- A cholera epidemic took the lives of 5.5% of the population
--- The first formal Chicago police department was organized under
Mayor Dr. Levi Boone.
--- Andreas von Zirngibl was born in Russia on March 30, 1797 and
was a soldier in the army that fought Napoleon at Waterloo in 1816.
He made his way to Chicago, where he had a farm and where he died
on Aug. 21, 1855. In his will, he decreed that he be buried on his
own land and that his grave be kept sacred, no matter what happened
to the land. His grave still stands, surrounded by the rust and
rubble of the American Fastener Salvage yard, which sprawls north
and east of East 93rd Street and South Ewing Avenue.
1860 - 1900
--- Deaths from typhoid fever averaged 65 per 100,000 population
--- Chicago's first royal visitor: King Edward VII, then Prince
--- John Wentworth fired the entire Chicago Police Department when
his term as mayor came to a close. This included 60 patrolmen, 3
sergeants, 3 lieutenants, and one captain. The city was entirely
without police protection for twelve hours until the Board of Commissioners
swore in some new officers to take their place.
--- The first hospital in Illinois: Chicago's Mercy Hospital.
--- Lincoln Park was designated as a recreational area. The 120-acre
cemetery at the site had most of its graves removed and would be
expanded to include more than 1,000 acres of woodlands, bridle paths,
playgrounds, golf courses and museums. The cemetery had held the
bodies of nearly 10,000 Confederate Civil War soldiers who had died
in Chicago prisons - these were relocated to other cemeteries in
--- The Union Stock Yards were established in a one-square-mile
area at Halsted Street and Exchange Avenue. (The yards closed on
July 31, 1971, and were demolished. The gate was preserved, and
was named a Chicago landmark on February 24, 1972.)
--- On April 15, the body of Abraham Lincoln lay in state in the
courthouse rotunda in Chicago's City Hall before being taken on
--- Construction began on the Water Tower designed by architect
W. W. Boyington.
--- The Great Chicago Fire raged from October 8 to 9th. It destroyed
3.5 square miles of the city, killing perhaps 250. The fire lasted
27 hours and destroyed 17,450 buildings.
--- Sparks from the fire started forest fires that destroyed more
than a million acres of Michigan and Wisconsin timberland.
--- Queen Victoria and the people of Britain shipped cartons of
books to Chicago. English novelist Thomas Hughes helped organize
the books, which were the basis of the city's first library.
--- Other than the Water Tower, four public buildings still standing
in Chicago predate the Great Fire of Oct. 8, 1871. They are: St.
Ignatius College Prep, 1076 W. Roosevelt Rd.; Holy Family Catholic
Church, 1019 S. May St.; St. Patrick's Catholic Church, 718 W. Adams
St.; and First Baptist Congregational Church, 60 N. Ashland Ave.
On October 7, 1997, the Chicago City Council approved a resolution
which absolved Mrs. O'Leary's cow of all blame for the Great Chicago
--- The first animal purchased for the Lincoln Park Zoo was a bear
cub, bought for $10 on June 1st.
--- The new Palmer House opened to replace the one burned in the
1871 fire. The new building was the first fireproof hotel ever to
be constructed. The lavish dining room's menu included broiled buffalo,
antelope, bear, mountain sheep, and blackbirds.
--- The Chicago Art Institute was founded.
--- The 10-story Home Insurance Company Building, designed by William
LeBaron Jenney, was the first tall building ever built supported
by an internal frame of iron and steel rather than thick masonry
walls. (It was demolished in 1931.)
--- Chicago Police fired into a crowd of striking workers on May
1, killing 4 and wounding many others. On May 4, the Knights of
Labor held a peaceful rally in Haymarket Square to protest the shooting,
someone threw a bomb that knocked down 60 policemen, killing one
and mortally wounding 6 others. The police fired into the crowd,
many more were killed. The Haymarket Massacre marked the beginning
of a worldwide May Day as a revolutionary memorial day.
--- The Chicago Auditorium opened December 9 with Adeline Patti
singing "Home, Sweet Home" to an audience that included
--- Hull House opened in the South Halsted Street slums under the
direction of Jane Addams and Ellen Gates Starr. The settlement house
helped the poor of the city.
--- The Metropolitan Sanitary District of Greater Chicago was created,
it covered 185 square miles of Chicago and some western suburbs.
The district now covers 858 square miles including nearly all of
Cook County. The district presently serves Chicago, 114 other cities
and villages, and 20 smaller local sanitary districts. At the time
the sanitary district was formed the science of sewage treatment
was practically unknown. However, research had begun and in 1930
the court ordered construction of sewage treatment plants in order
to cut down on water diversion from Lake Michigan. The sanitary
district has since built three sewage treatment plants. In 1955,
the American Society of Civil Engineers selected the Metropolitan
Sanitary District of Greater Chicago as one of the seven engineering
wonders of the United States.
--- Chicago's first elevated railway "The El," went into
operation to begin the "Loop" that would circle the city's
--- The 16-story Monadnock Building at 53 W. Jackson Boulevard
was the city's first skyscraper.
--- The typhoid death rate was 174 per 100,000 persons. Diseases
resulting from water polluted by human waste brought about a state
--- Chicago's Provident Hospital was the first interracial US hospital.
Established by black surgeon Daniel Hale Williams, the facility
operated the first US training school for black women. In 1893 Dr.
Williams performed the world's first open-heart surgery, saving
the life of a street fighter with a knife wound in an artery near
--- The University of Chicago opened on October 1 with an enrollment
of 594 and a faculty of 103.
1893 - World's Columbian Exposition
Chicago, Illinois - May, 1893 through October, 1893
--- Total cost for the exposition was $27,245,566.90, excluding
the $3-4 million spent by state, federal, and foreign governments
on their exhibit buildings.
--- More than $5 million in funds was used to construct the Jackson
Park lakefront site. The amount of space the fair actually covered
was 633 acres.
--- The main buildings were estimated to have a combined cost of
--- The World's Columbian Exposition attracted 27 million visitors,
almost 1/2 of US total population at that time.
--- The highest attendance day was October 9, 1893 (Chicago Day),
with over 700,000 in attendance.
Famous Firsts from the fair...
# Aunt Jemima Syrup
# Cracker Jacks
# Cream of Wheat
# Diet carbonated soda
# Juicy Fruit gum
# Pabst Beer
# Shredded Wheat
# The carnival concept was born.
# The hamburger was introduced to the United States.
# The United States produced its first commemorative stamp set.
# The US Postal Service produced its first picture postcards.
# US Mint offered its first commemorative coins: a quarter, half
dollar, and dollar.
--- George Ferris created a giant wheel for the World's Columbian
Exposition. It stood 250 feet above the ground, contained 36 cars,
each of which was capable of carrying 60 people, or a total of two-thousand,
one-hundred and sixty people at a time. The axle for the 1,2000-ton
Ferris Wheel was the largest steel forging in the world.
--- Visitors started with the Great White City at the center of
the fair, but invariably migrated to the Midway Plaisance, a street
one mile long and six hundred feet wide. A series of model villages
teemed with food and dance, including the notorious Little Egypt
(the scandalous "coochie-coochie girl of the Nile") in
"The Streets of Cairo." Everything from German beer gardens
to Samoan wrestlers were present in this prototypical amusement
--- On the last day of the World's Columbian Exposition, October
28, Chicago mayor Carter Harrison was assassinated at his home.
--- "The Windy City" --- New York Sun editor Charles
Dana, tired of hearing Chicagoans boast of the world's Columbian
Exposition, dubbed Chicago the "Windy City."
1893 - Other Facts
--- Chicago hired its first police woman. Her name was Marie Owens.
(Chicago police women did not wear uniforms until 1956.)
--- The Field Museum was founded with $1 million contributed by
Marshall Field. He later added a second $1 million, and when he
died in 1906, he left $8 million in his will to the museum.
--- Edward L. Kenrys, a dentist turned sculptor, designed the giant
lions guarding the entrance to Chicago's Art Institute.
--- Paul Boyton opened Paul Boyton's Water Chute, America's first
modern amusement park, at 63rd and Drexel, on July 4, 1894. Captain
Boyton's was the first amusement park to rely solely on mechanical
attractions—specifically, America's first major Shoot-the-Chutes
--- The first automobile race ever seen in the United States was
held in Chicago. The track ran from Chicago to Evanston, Illinois.
The winner was J. Frank Duryea, whose average speed was 71/2 miles
--- The city of Chicago opened its first public beach, in Lincoln
--- Dr. Herman Mudgett, alias Henry H. Homes, after graduating
from the University of Michigan Medical School, embarked upon a
life of swindling, torture and murder. The second floor of the large
building he built at 63rd and Wallace was designed expressly for
the purpose of murder, being equipped with gas chambers, incinerators
and other horrific devices. Chutes led to the basement, which was
equipped with a variety of devices to dispose of bodies. He had
about thirty known victims and was suspected of murdering hundreds
of others using poison and gas. He was finally hanged May 7, 1896
for a Philadelphia murder.
Read more about this: Deadly
Thrills : True Story of Chicago's Herman Mudgett
--- The first of Marshall Field's Clocks was installed at the corner
of Washington and State Streets on November 26, 1897. The cast bronze
clock rests some 17.5 feet above the sidewalk and weighs a hefty
--- The flow of the Chicago River was reversed. In 1887 it had
been decided to attempt a bold engineering feat and reverse the
Chicago River in order to improve Chicago's sewerage system and
to reduce the epidemics of diseases caused by poor sewers. To reverse
the flow of the Chicago River, a 28-mile canal was built from the
south branch of the river through the low summit and down to Lockport.
It was completed in 1900. The flow in this canal, commonly known
as the Sanitary and Ship Canal or main channel, is controlled by
locks at the mouth of the Chicago River and at Lockport. Rudolph
Hering was the chief engineer of the drainage and water supply commission
during this period.
--- Local entrepreneur, Minna Everleigh, 23, and her sister Ada,
21, bought and refurbished a bordello at 2131 S. Dearborn St., in
the Levee, the city's notorious red-light district. The Everleigh
Club was a high-class, high-priced bordello where visitors were
required to have letters of introduction to be admitted. The Everleigh
Club was closed by reform-minded Mayor Carter Harrison Jr. in 1911.
--- The Disney family house is at 2156 N. Tripp Ave., is a frame
cottage that was erected between 1892 and 1893 and where Walt Disney
was born in December, 1901. The modest cottage was built by his
father, a carpenter who had worked at the World's Columbian Exposition
of 1893. Disney lived here with his family until he was 4, when
his parents sold the house and moved to a farm in Missouri. The
Disneys returned to Chicago in 1917 and settled on the Near West
Side. Disney spent his senior year at McKinley High School and took
night classes at the Academy of Fine Arts.
--- The Iroquois Theater caught fire during a performance by Eddie
Foy. 600 lives were lost.
--- The first Rotary Club in America was founded in Chicago.
--- Chicago's cable car system ended this year.
--- The Chicago Police Department bought its first motor vehicle.
--- Riverview (1904 to 1967), at Belmont and Western in North Center,
was home to the world's first suspended roller coaster.
--- Chicago became the first city in the United States to pass
an ordinance requiring compulsory milk pasteurization.
--- Around the turn of the century, architect Frank Lloyd Wright
designed and built a studio for himself and home for his wife and
five children at 951 Chicago Ave., Oak Park. In 1909, Wright scandalized
Oak Park society by embarking on what he described as a "spiritual
hegira" to Europe with the wife of one of his clients Edwin
H. Cheney. Her name was Mamah Borthwick Cheney. Wright returned
to Oak Park in 1911 and converted his old studio to an apartment
so his wife could rent it out for extra income. When that project
was finished, he left Oak Park for good. In the 1970s, the Frank
Lloyd Wright Home and Studio Foundation acquired, renovated and
opened the Wright residence to the public.
--- The Eastland Disaster happened when 2,572 Western Electric
employees, their friends and families were going to an annual company
picnic in Michigan City, Indiana on the excursion steamer Eastland.
The ship tilted to one side, and slowly rolled over at 7:28 a.m.
Saturday, July 24, 1915. She was still moored to her dock between
LaSalle and Clark Streets on the south bank of the Chicago River.
Of the persons on board, 844 perished - making this Chicago's worst
--- Resting on a foundation of over 20,000 wood pilings, Navy Pier
opened in the summer of 1916 at a cost of $4.5 million.
--- Real estate broker Archibald Teller opened the first Fannie
May candy store.
--- The Michigan Avenue Bridge was opened.
--- Ernest Hemingway was a Chicago resident at 100 E. Chicago Avenue.
--- Louis Armstrong, as a member of "King Oliver's Creole
Jazz Band", became a mainstay in Chicago and helped to usher
in the Jazz Age.
--- The National Football League franchise transferred from Decatur,
Illinois, to Chicago. The team took the name, Chicago Bears or,
as we say in the Windy City, "Da Bears."
--- Chicago students Nathan Leopold and Richard Loeb, both 19,
confessed May 31 that they murdered their cousin Bobby Franks, 14,
"in the interests of science." Lawyer Clarence Darrow
saved them from the gallows; they were sentenced to life imprisonment.
(Loeb was later killed in a prison fight. He was stabbed in the
shower by an inmate he had made sexual advances to.)
--- The Wrigley Building was completed with a 32-story tower on
Michigan Avenue. With 442,000 square feet, it was the first large
building north of the Chicago River. In 1925 a 36-story Gothic skyscraper
--- The Tribune Tower was completed on Michigan Avenue. The building's
large gothic entrance contains pieces of stone from other famous
buildings: Westminster Abbey, Cologne Cathedral, the Alamo, the
Taj Mahal, the Great Pyramid, and the Arc de Triomphe.
--- Originally called the Chicago Municipal Airport, Midway Airport
opened. It was renamed in 1949 to honor the Battle of Midway in
WW II. Midway was the world's busiest airport until 1959.
--- Kate Sturges Buckingham donated $750,000 to the city for construction
of Buckingham Fountain as a memorial to her brother Clarence. The
largest fountain in the world, it shoots a water jet 135 feet high.
--- Gang warfare reached a peak of brutality on St. Valentine's
Day when 7 members of the George "Bugs" Moran gang were
killed in a North Clark Street garage. Rival mobsters, competing
for the lucrative illicit bootleg liquor trade, dressed in police
uniforms and ambushed them. Police suspected that members of the
Al Capone gang were responsible for the killing. The St. Valentine's
Day Massacre lasted 8 minutes. ("Bugs" Moran was not killed
- he died of lung cancer in 1957.)
--- John Graves Shedd presented the Shedd Aquarium as "a gift
to the people of Chicago." It is the world's largest indoor
--- Radio station WGN began broadcasting police calls which cut
into regular radio programs. One year later, the police department
bought its own transmitter.
--- Adler Planetarium opened, through a gift from local merchant
Max Adler. It was the first planetarium in the Western Hemisphere.
--- The Chicago Board of Trade Building at 141 West Jackson Boulevard
towered 45 stories above the city, and was the city's tallest structure
for 40 years.
--- The Merchandise Mart was built for Marshall Field & Co.
The $32 million, 4.2 million square foot building was the world's
largest commercial building. It was sold it to Joseph P. Kennedy
--- Al Capone was found guilty of evading $231,000 in income taxes.
He was sentenced on October 24, by a Chicago federal court to 11
years in prison, and fined $50,000.
--- The Century of Progress Exposition.
--- Chicago mayor Anton Cermak was mortally wounded while riding
in a car with President-elect Roosevelt. The assassin was thought
to have been aiming for Roosevelt, but was possibly a hired gangland
--- Julius Rosenwald founded the Museum of Science and Industry.
Today it is Chicago's leading tourist attraction.
--- The first All Star Game in baseball, played at Comiskey Park,
brought out a capacity crowd of 47,595 fans to see such players
as Lou Gehrig, Gabby Hartnett, Al Simmons, and Jimmy Foxx. The first
home run in All Star Game history was hit by Babe Ruth off pitcher
Wild Bill Hallahan.
--- John Dillinger was shot by the FBI in the alley next to the
Biograph Theater, 2433 N. Lincoln Ave.
--- Chicago became known as the home of baton twirling when the
first baton-twirling contest was held as part of the Chicagoland
--- July 18 - The first Oscar Mayer "Wienermobile" rolled
out of General Body Company's factory. It was the invention of Carl
Mayer, nephew of Oscar Meyer. The Wienermobile is still touring
around the US today.
--- Chicago became the home of the 1st US blood bank.
--- In the 1st night game at Comiskey Park, the White Sox beat
the Browns 5-2.
--- Dr. Enrico Fermi and his team of scientists released the first
controlled atomic nuclear chain reaction on December 2. The team's
nickname was the "suicide squad."
--- The national tradition of organ music at baseball games began
in Chicago when the Chicago Cubs installed an organ at Wrigley Field.
--- The Wrigley Building is the first air-conditioned office building.
--- Chicago Transit Authority formed, by buying the Chicago Surface
Lines (streetcars, trolley buses, and motor buses) and the Chicago
Rapid Transit Company (trains). It is established as an independent
governmental agency of the City of Chicago.
--- Merrill C. Meigs Field Airport was a single strip airport built
on Northerly Island, the man-made island originally created to house
the 1933-1934 Century of Progress. The airport opened on December
10, 1948, and became the country's busiest single-strip airport
--- Originally called Orchard Place, O'Hare Airport was named in
honor of Lieut. Commander Edward H. "Butch" O'Hare who
earned a Congressional Medal of Honor in 1942 for having shot down
5 Japanese bombers and crippled a sixth, but died in 1943 at the
age of 29. By 1961, O'Hare Field surpassed Chicago's Midway to become
the world's busiest air travel facility.
--- TV soap operas began in Chicago. The first TV daytime soap
opera, "These Are My Children," was broadcast from Chicago's
--- Dearborn (Blue line) subway opens connecting the west-northwest
(Douglas Park, Congress Street, Milwaukee Avenue) route through
downtown subways instead of by elevated trains.
--- At 6052 S. Harper Street, Hugh Hefner started the publication
--- The Chicago Cubs signed their first black player, Ernie Banks.
--- The first McDonald's franchise restaurant, owned by Ray Kroc,
opened in the suburb of DesPlaines.
--- On the morning of June 21, 1958, the last streetcar ran in
Chicago. At one time, Chicago had the largest streetcar system in
--- On December 1, 1958 sometime after 2:00 p.m., a fire started
in a trash drum in the basement stairwell of Our Lady of Angels
school, 909 N. Avers. Children and nuns were trapped inside the
building. Windows offered the only egress and before any equipment
was available for evacuation, children began leaping from them.
The fire was brought under control at 3:45 p.m. and the work of
recovering bodies began. Ninety students and three nuns died. One
hundred sixty children were saved. The fire at Our Lady of Angels
school was suspected to have been intentionally set. Over the years
at least two individuals were closely investigated, confessed and
recanted. No one has been charged with the crime.
--- Comedy showcase "Second City" was founded on North
Wells Street in a former Chinese laundry.
--- Chicago's last meat packing house closed.
--- The 1st of the Playboy Clubs, featuring bunnies, opened in
--- The Dan Ryan Expressway opened, named for the president of
the Cook County Board of Commissioners.
--- Marina City apartments and offices were completed on the Chicago
River. The 60-story round twin towers were designed by Bertrand
Goldberg. The unusual construction consists of weight loads carried
chiefly by cylindrical cores, pie-shaped rooms extend into rings
of semicircular balconies. The first 18 floors are parking.
--- Eight student nurses were murdered on July 13 by Richard Speck,
24. He was found guilty and sentenced to death. The Supreme Court
overruled the death sentence in 1971.
--- The "Chicago Picasso," a 50-foot steel sculpture,
was installed outside of the Civic Center Plaza at Washington Street
--- During the Democratic Party Convention bloody confrontations
between police and demonstrators who were protesting US military
involvement in Southeast Asia and many domestic policies. Some 10,000
attended a "Festival of Life" in Grant and Lincoln parks
with rock concerts, marijuana smoking, beach nude-ins, and draft-card
burning. 16,000 Chicago police, 4,000 state police, and 4,000 National
Guardsmen brutally subdue the crowds.
--- The 100-floor John Hancock Center was built.
--- Rail service begins in the Dan Ryan Expressway median, or "up
the middle" as they put it. This marks another transit innovation
made in Chicago - the first expressway/freeway median rail service
ever - now commonly used in cities all over the world.
--- The Woodfield Mall regional shopping center, one of the world's
largest, with 2 million square feet of selling space, opened for
business on Sept. 9, 1971, at the Northwest Tollway and Ill. Hwy.
53 in northwest-suburban Schaumburg. The name "Woodfield"
was an amalgam that combined the names of Gen. Robert E. Wood, chairman
of Sears Roebuck & Co. at the time the mall was built; and Marshall
Field & Co. Sears and Fields were two of the mall's original
--- Sears Tower opened with 3.6 million square feet of rentable
space. The $200 million 110-story structure rises 1,455 feet into
--- The Chicago Union Stock Yards were closed and demolished.
--- John Wayne Gacy, a contractor in Chicago's northwest suburbs
and part-time clown, was arrested. A search of his home and property
led to the discovery of the bodies of 29 murder victims. Four others
were found in the Chicago River. Gacy had been on a spree from 1972
through 1978, kidnapping, torturing and killing young men. He was
found guilty in 1980 of thirty-three counts of murder, and was executed
at the Stateville Correctional Center, in Joliet, in 1994.
--- Chicago's 1st (and only) woman mayor, Jane M. Byrne, took office.
--- July 12 - This was "Disco Demolition Night" at Comiskey
Park. Two Chicago disk jockeys came up with the idea of having people
bring unwanted disco records to the stadium to be burned between
the double header between the White Sox and the Detroit Tigers.
Instead, records were sailed through the stands during the game
- nearly inciting a riot. There was so much commotion that the ballplayers
couldn't finish the last game of the doubleheader, causing the White
Sox to forfeit the game.
--- The first Taste of Chicago was held in the summer of 1980 and
was ultimately the idea of then-mayor Jane Byrne. At its inception,
it was a one-day event held on the Fourth of July, along downtown
Chicago's North Michigan Avenue.
--- "Spider" Dan Goodwin climbed both the Sears Tower
and the John Hancock Building.
--- The Chicago Tribune purchased the Chicago Cubs baseball team
from the P. K. Wrigley Chewing Gum Company for $20.5 million. The
sale ended the longest continuous ownership of a team that stayed
in its original city (60 years.)
--- The Taste of Chicago was moved to Grant Park and was greatly
expanded in size and scope, growing to a 10-day event with more
food vendors, as well as musical performances.
--- August 18 - The longest baseball game played at Wrigley Field
in Chicago, went 22 innings before the Los Angeles Dodgers defeated
the Cubs 2-1. The game had started the previous day and had been
postponed after 17 innings because of darkness.
--- Chicago's 1st black mayor, Harold Washington, took office.
--- Upon the death of Mayor Washington, after a meeting which lasted
all night, the Chicago City Council elected Eugene Sawyer acting
--- The new main branch of the Chicago Public Library, the Harold
Washington Library Center, was opened.
--- On April 13, the "Great Chicago Flood" occurred when
124 million gallons of Chicago River water poured through a crack
in the forty-seven-mile network of freight tunnels under the central
business district. After filling the tunnels, the river water rose
into the basements of many downtown buildings, knocking out electric
power and natural-gas service. The flood occurred because in September
of 1991 new wooden pilings had been driven into the riverbed next
to the Kinzie Street drawbridge to protect the bridge from passing
barges and other traffic on the north branch of the Chicago River.
The pilings had been placed in the wrong spot and punctured the
ceiling of the freight tunnel below. On August 11, 1995, the city
agreed to pay up to $36 million in damages to settle lawsuits brought
by the owners of buildings damaged by the flood.
--- The first game and the opening ceremonies of the first World
Cup Soccer championship in the United States were held in Chicago.
--- a 148-foot Ferris Wheel—recalling the 1893 original—was
erected at the renovated Navy Pier.
--- The Field Museum purchased Sue, the largest, most complete
and best preserved Tyrannosaurus Rex ever discovered.
--- In 1995, the mayor's office recommended closing Meigs Field
and turning Northerly Island into 75 acres of lakefront park.
O n March 30, 2003, Mayor Daley ordered private crews to destroy
the runway in the middle of the night, bulldozing large X-shaped
gouges into the runway surface. The required notice was not given
to the Federal Aviation Administration or the owners of airplanes
tied down at the field, and as a result sixteen planes were left
stranded at an airport with no operating runway.
--- the 7,500-seat Charter One Pavilion opened on Northerly Island.
--- Marshall Field's former flagship store on State Street in The
Loop of downtown Chicago was officially renamed "Macy's on
State Street" on September 9, 2006, and is now the flagship
store of Federated Department Stores' Macy's North division and
one of three national flagship locations for Macy's.
Some other facts . . .
The 4 stars on the Chicago flag represent Fort Dearborn, the Chicago
Fire, the World's Columbian Exposition, and the Century of Progress
The Art Institute of Chicago holds the largest collection of Impressionist
paintings outside the Louvre in Paris.
Among the Field Museum's most prized jewels is the 5,890-carat
Chalmerz topaz, which weighed 10,200 carats in the rough.
Chicago has 29 miles of lake frontage and 15 miles of public beach.
Chicago is home to the world's largest population of Poles outside
Chicago is home to the Lincoln Park Zoo, which is one of the last
Chicago's McCormick Place has the largest amount of exhibit space
of any convention center in the country at 2.2 million square feet.
Chicago's Western Avenue is the world's longest street.
The Chicago Public Library, the Harold Washington Library, is the
world's largest public library with a collection of more than 2
Chicago's central water filtration plant, located on the lakefront
north of Navy Pier, is the largest in the world.
Chicago's Oceanarium is the world's largest indoor marine mammal
pavilion and doubles the size of the John G. Shedd Aquarium, which
is the largest indoor aquarium in the world.
update: The Georgia Aquarium
holds more than 8 million gallons of water to house well over
100,000 fish. It's a leap in size and capacity over the next largest
aquarium -- Chicago's Shedd, which holds 5 million gallons of
water to support 20,000 aquatic animals.
Georgia's $200 million building, designed to look like a ship
breaking through a wave, was a gift from Home Depot founder Bernie
The Chicago River is always dyed green on St. Patrick's Day.
The Chicago Post Office at 433 West Van Buren is the only postal
facility in the world you can drive a car through.
The official flower of the city of Chicago is the chrysanthemum.
more than 10,300 years old
307 miles long, 118 across at its widest point
average depth is 279 feet, maximum depth is 923 feet
contains roughly 1,350 trillion gallons of water
covers an area of 22,300 square miles
Hugh Hefner started the publication of "Playboy" at 6052
S. Harper St. in Chicago in 1953.
Jesse Owens, Frazier Thomas, "Wheaties," and Muddy Waters
all have a Chicago street named in their honor.
Nabisco, the world's largest cookie and cracker factory, is located
in Chicago (7300 S. Kedzie Avenue).
Stephen Douglas, who beat Abe Lincoln in debates by defending the
rights of slave owners, lies buried beneath a monument to him off
35th Street at South Shore Drive in the heart of Chicago's South
Side black community.
The Taste of Chicago is the world's largest free outdoor food festival.
In 2006, the Taste of Chicago ran from June 30 to July 9 in Grant
Park. It was the best 10-day event ever for attendance and sales.
A record total of 3.6 million people had visited the festivities.
Attendance for the previous record 10-day event, in 2004, was 3.59
million, with $12.33 million in revenue.
Tribune Tower, home of the Chicago Tribune newspaper, has exterior
walls that are embedded with authentic pieces of famous buildings
including Westminster Abbey, the Alamo, Hamlet's castle, the Great
Pyramid, the Taj Mahal, Fort Sumter and the Arc de Triomphe.
The world's largest ice cream cone factory, Keebler, is also located
in Chicago (10839 S. Langley Avenue).