Chicago, Cook, Illinois, USA Chicago’s first permanent resident was a trader named Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, a free black man apparently from Haiti, who came here in the late 1770s. In 1795, the U.S. government built Fort Dearborn at what is now the corner of Michigan Avenue and Wacker Drive (look for the bronze markers in the pavement). It was burned to the ground by Native Americans in 1812, rebuilt and demolished in 1857.
Incorporated as a city in 1837, Chicago was ideally situated to take advantage of the trading possibilities created by the nation’s westward expansion. The completion of the Illinois & Michigan Canal in 1848 created a water link between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River, but the canal was soon rendered obsolete by railroads...www.cityofchicago.org/ city/ en/ about/ history.html
1848 - Chicago Board of Trade The Chicago Board of Trade, located on West Jackson Street in Chicago, is a connection to agriculture that affects the everyday consumer of farm products. Since its beginning in 1848, the Chicago Board of Trade has grown to be one of the largest agriculture exchanges in the world.
1869 - Alcohol from Soap Grease and Garbage A company has been formed in Chicago, and will soon be in operation, for distilling alcohol and extracting soap grease from ordinary city garbage. It is estimated that each barrel of garbage will yield three pounds of soap grease and four gallons of proof spirits. Harrisburg Telegraph Harrisburg, Pennsylvania July 28, 1869 Added: 2/5/2014 12:31:45 PM - 1 Updated: 6/16/2014 6:35:01 PM - 1
1871 - October 8-10 - Fire Destroys 18,000 Buildings in Chicago
The Chicago Fire - "YOU ARE THERE" ChicagoFD1 (www.youtube.com)
Chicago Fire destroys eighteen thousand downtown buildings, with losses estimated at $200...Read MORE...
1872 - Montgomery Ward Chicago merchant Aaron Montgomery Ward (1844-1913) establishes the first large-scale mail order business. Ward, a young traveling salesman of dry goods, was concerned over the plight of many rural midwest Americans who he thought were overcharged and underserved by many of the smalltown retailers...Read MORE...
1884 - First metal-framed skyscraper - The Home Insurance Building is generally noted as the first tall building to be supported, both inside and outside, by a fireproof metal frame. ...The most expensive and probably the most substantial of the structures that can be included in this year's list in the new office section is the ten-story building being erected at the northeast corner of La Salle and Adams streets, for the Home Fire-Insurance Company of New York, after plans...Read MORE...
May 4, 1886: Haymarket Affair, Chicago, Illinois A general strike begins in the United States, which escalates into the Haymarket Riot and eventually wins the eight-hour day for workers. The Old Farmer's Almanac www.almanac.com May 4, 1886 Added: 4/5/2014 9:35:42 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 4:58:18 PM - 1
1887 - George Hancock, at the time a reporter for Chicago Board of Trade, invented the game of softball in 1887. The first game was played indoors, inside the Farragut Boat Club in Chicago. Someone found a boxing glove and threw it and someone else hit it with a stick. George Hancock shouted, "Let's play ball", and tied the boxing glove into the shape of a ball. The men chalked a diamond shape onto the floor...Read MORE...
1890 - February 24 – Chicago is selected to host the Columbian Exposition
www.wikipedia.org February 24, 1890 Added: 6/27/2014 8:21:08 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 4:58:33 PM - 1
1891 - April 1 - The Wrigley Company is founded in Chicago.
www.wikipedia.org April 1, 1891 Added: 6/27/2014 8:38:56 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 4:58:48 PM - 1
1891 - Man Killed While Lowering Flag Janitor David Leonard Fatally Injured.
David Leonard, janitor of the county building and a member of the G.A.R., was fatally injured last night while lowering the flag from the top of the building. He went to the fourth floor and then climbed a ladder reaching to the flagstaff. In descending the ...Read MORE...
1891 - ROOF COLLAPSED. FIFTY WORKMEN BURIED IN THE DEBRIS. THE ACCIDENT IN CHICAGO. FORTUNATELY NO ONE WAS KILLED, THOUGH A NUMBER WERE SERIOUSLY INJURED, AND IT IS FEARED ONE OF THEM MAY DIE - LIST OF THE VICTIMS.
Chicago, July 13. - While fifty workmen were engaged in tearing down a portion of the old fair building at 77, 79 and 81 Adams Street, Saturday evening, the roof...Read MORE...
1892 - University of Chicago opened on October 1, 1892 with an enrollment of 594 and a faculty of 103.
Curious City WBEZ - Chicago Public Media: www.wbez.org
World's Columbian Exposition is held in Chicago, commemorating the 400th anniversary of European exploratory...Read MORE...
1893 - ACCIDENT AT THE FAIR. A RAILWAY SLED AT MIDWAY PLAISANCE JUMPS THE TRACK KILLING ONE MAN AND INJURING FIVE OTHER PEOPLE. Special to the Record-Union. Chicago, June 14. - One man was killed and five other people badly injured by an accident that occurred on the ice railway at Midway Plaisance this evening. The dead are: W. D. RICHMOND, Dulnap, Ill. Injured: H. JACOBS. J. JACOBS. D. F. SLATER. MAY OAYERS. CARL ...Read MORE...
1893 - October 30 – The 1893 World's Fair, also known as the World's Columbian Exposition, closes.
1894 - Pullman strike The Pullman Strike was a nationwide railroad strike in the United States in the summer of 1894. It pitted the American Railway Union (ARU) against the Pullman Company, the main railroads, and the federal government of the United States under President Grover Cleveland. The strike and boycott shut...Read MORE...
1894 - BIG BLAZE AT CHICAGO. Five Buildings at the World's Fair Grounds Destroyed. THE FLAMES FANNED BY A FIERCE SOUTHWEST GALE.
Special to the Record-Union. CHICAGO, July 5. - The World's Columbian Exposition is a billowy sea of fire. The administration building, the architectural crown of the White City, with its gilded and decorated dome, its supporting pavilions enriched...Read MORE...
1895 - November 25 - Chicago Times-Herald race: The first American automobile race in history is sponsored by the Chicago Times-Herald. Press coverage first arouses significant American interest in the automobile.
1899 - July 17 - America's first juvenile court is established in Chicago.
www.wikipedia.org July 17, 1899 Added: 6/29/2014 8:09:19 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 5:01:33 PM - 1
1900 - May 17 - L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz is published in Chicago.
www.wikipedia.org May 17, 1900 Added: 6/29/2014 8:19:47 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 5:01:45 PM - 1
1901 - Chicago - Large in Every Way by Lyman J. Gage The plotting of the site of Chicago was characteristic of the practical sentiment that has ever stimulated the city. No less a personage than Washington established the streets and boundaries of the national capital; religious romance presided at the founding of San Francisco; interesting legends...Read MORE...
1903 - December 30 – Iroquois Theater fire in Chicago kills 600 A safety standard for theaters and public buildings rises from the ashes of the Iroquois Theater (in Chicago), where more than 600 people were killed... Henceforth, all theater exits had to be clearly marked and the doors rigged so that, even if they could not be pulled open from the outside, they...Read MORE...
1904 - EXPLOSION OF TOY PISTOL CAPS IS DEADLY. TWO BOYS AND A MAN KILLED AND PERHAPS THREE OTHER VICTIMS. Chicago, March 15. -- Three persons were killed and eight other employes were injured today by the explosion of toy pistol caps in the two-story brick manufacturing plant of the Chicago Toy Novelty company, at Western Avenue and West Eighteenth Street. The building was wrecked and the ruins caught...Read MORE...
1905 - President of the Chicago Cubs filed charges against a fan in the bleachers for catching a fly ball and keeping it.
1907 - FIVE KILLED AS HOUSE FALLS. ELEVEN OTHERS INJURED IN AN EARLY MORNING CRASH IN CHICAGO. Chicago, Ill., Aug. 16. - Five persons were killed and eleven others were injured, three seriously, early today by the collapse of a two-story frame boarding house at 55 Fry Street. Four persons were instantly killed and the fifth died a few minutes after being taken to a hospital. The bodies of...Read MORE...
1916 Chicago, shl-ka'go or shi-kaw'go, a city, port of entry, and capital of Cook CO., Ill., situated near the S. extremity of Lake Michigan, on its W. shore, about 700 miles in a direct line W. by N. of New York. Lat (main business quarter) 41° 53' N. ; Lon. 87° 36' W. Elevation above the sea, 600...Read MORE...
1916 - April 20 – The Chicago Cubs play their first game at Weeghman Park (modern-day Wrigley Field), defeating the Cincinnati Reds 7–6 in 11 innings.
www.wikipedia.org April 20, 1916 Added: 6/30/2014 8:01:29 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 5:02:42 PM - 1
1918 - June 22 – Suspects in the Chicago Restaurant Poisonings are arrested, and more than 100 waiters are taken into custody, for poisoning restaurant customers with a lethal powder called Mickey Finn.
www.wikipedia.org June 22, 1918 Added: 6/30/2014 8:23:32 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 5:02:57 PM - 1
1919 - July 27 - Race Riots July 27 – The Chicago Race Riot of 1919 begins when a white man throws stones at a group of four black teens on a raft.
Chicago race riots leave thirty-eight dead and more than five hundred injured; a thousand residents are left homeless.
1921 - August 2 - A Chicago jury brings back a not guilty verdict against eight Chicago White Sox players for throwing the 1919 baseball World Series against the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds win the series 5 games to 3. The trial is dubbed the “Black Sox Scandal.” http://www.independentsentinel.com/ Added: 12/18/2016 10:54:05 AM - 1 Updated: -
1926 - Charles Lindbergh Aviator Charles Lindbergh (1902-1974) begins daily mail delivery flights between Chicago and St. Louis.
1926 - TWO CIRCUS TRAPEZE PERFORMERS HURT. Chicago, July 26. - (United Press) - Two circus trapeze performers, FRANK CROMWELL and his wife, MAUDE, were in a Chicago hospital today suffering from multiple bone fractures and internal injuries, the result of a 50-foot fall during a performance last night. Physicians today said they might...Read MORE...
1926 - September 20 – Twelve blue cars full of gangsters open fire at the Hawthorne Inn, Al Capone's Chicago headquarters. Only one of Capone's men is wounded.
1927 - CHICAGO FIREMEN IN DEATH TRAP, EXPLOSION IN A CHEMICAL PLANT. Chicago, March 11 - (AP) - The ranks of engine companies numbers three and six were depleted late today when an explosion killed one fireman and seriously injured ten other, two probably fatally.
They had controlled a fire in the plant of the Daigger Chemical Company, just outside the downtown...Read MORE...
1927 - CHICAGO POLICE SEEK BOOZE SELLING GROCER AS OPERATOR OF STILL. TWO FAMILIES WIPED OUT WHEN EXPLOSION WRECKS BUILDING; ALL THOSE KILLED DIED IN THEIR BEDS; FOUR STORES RAZED. Chicago, April 16 (UP) - A moonshiner's still is believed by police to be responsible for an explosion Saturday which killed eight persons, all but wiping out the families of two small shop keepers on Chicago's west side.
MAYME SOKOLSKY, 17, thought to have been in the building, spent last night ...Read MORE...
1929 - St Valentine's Day Massacre Gunmen of Alphonse Capone (1899-1947) murder seven rival Chicago mobsters in the "St. Valentine's Day Massacre."
1933 - Assassinated Anton "Tony" Joseph Cermak (May 9, 1873 – March 6, 1933) was an American politician of Czech origin who served as the mayor of Chicago, Illinois from 1931 until his assassination in 1933... While shaking hands with President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt at Bayfront Park in Miami, Florida, on...Read MORE...
1933 - May 27 - The Century of Progress World's Fair opens in Chicago.
www.wikipedia.org May 27, 1933 Added: 7/1/2014 8:34:40 AM - 1 Updated: 6/2/2015 5:05:49 PM - 1
1937 - May 30 - The Chicago Police Department shoot and kill ten unarmed demonstrators in Chicago in what is known as the Memorial Day massacre.
1958 - School Fire Fire at Our Lady of Angels elementary school in Chicago claims the lives of ninety-two children and three nuns. www.e-referencedesk.com/ resources/state-history-timeline/ illinois.html Added: 1/30/2014 12:44:23 PM - 1 Updated: 6/25/2014 10:19:53 AM - 1
1966 - May 11 - The 1.6 inch snow at Chicago, IL, was their latest measurable snow of record. Previously the record was 3.7 inches on the 1st and 2nd of May set in 1940
January 27, 1967 - Residents of Chicago, IL, began to dig out from a storm which produced 23 inches of snow in 29 hours. The snow paralyzed the city and suburbs for days, and business losses were enormous.
1974 - Sears Tower The Sears tower was constructed in 1974. It was the world's tallest building, eclipsing New York's twin-towered World Trade Center by 25 meters (83 ft). It would keep the title of tallest building in the world until the Petronas twin towers in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia were constructed in 1997.
Are you from Chicago, Illinois, USA? Do you have ancestors from there?
If you'd like to be contacted by others who have ancestors from Chicago, Illinois, USA, leave a message here!
The comments you read here belong only to the person who posted them. We reserve the right to remove off-topic and inappropriate comments.
This FREE genealogy website is a collection of contributions from many generous "family" members who want to share their family with others. We are not necessarily related to or researching a person just because their name is on this site. While we do our best to be accurate, we sometimes make mistakes. Please use this information as a guide. Verify the information with your own research. If you find any errors, please email us and report them. Thanks!