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Chicago history

Discover Chicago

Chicago, known as the 'Windy City' (the city of the wind), is the third city with the largest number of inhabitants in the United States, behind New York and Los Angeles. Chicago is located in the State of Illinois in the picturesque southwest coast of Lake Michigan full of culture, restaurants, entertainment, art and attracting world-class shops more 40 million tourists to this beautiful city every year.

According to the accounts of Spanish explorers of the 17th century, Illinois (Potawatomis) Indians were the first to reclaim the territory that was called "Chicaugou", and which means powerful, strong and large. Through the centuries the Miami, Sauk, Fox, and Potawatomi tribes all lived in the area.

In 1673, France sent to Louis Joliet and Father Jacques Marquette to explore the area later known as Chicago. A year later Father Marquette returned to establish an Indian mission. The area remained in control of the tribes until 1795. After the defeat of the Indians against the United States of America; the native Indians had to yield their land in accordance with the Treaty of Greenville.

The first European settler of Chicago, Jean Baptiste Point DuSable, came to the area in 1780. He married a potawatomi called Kittihawa india and had two sons, Jean and Susanne. Recognizing the potential of the area, DuSable decided to settle in Chicago and built the first permanent House on the banks of the river and established a trading post that became the main supply point for traders and trappers who went westward.

The early years of the settlement were not easy with threat of American Indian tribes nearby. The end of the war "Black Hawk" in 1832 marked the end of the resistance of native Indians of the area. The next year, in 1833, Chicago was incorporated as a village and town in 1837.

With the construction of the railroad and the Illinois/Michigan canal in 1848, connecting the Great Lakes with the Mississippi River, Chicago became leader in industries of livestock, wood and wheat. During the 1850s the population experimented a boom with the arrival of thousands of immigrants to the city annually in search of land and labour. The post-war period made Chicago thrive.

On October 10, 1871, el Great Chicago fire destroyed most of the central area of the city. He went on began in the timber district in the western part of the city and achievement consume approximately 6 square kilometers of the city. He went on to burn 1/3 of the city killing around 250 people and leaving over 100,000 people are heritage more than 17,000 buildings were destroyed and damaged properties were estimated at 200 million dollars. The cause of the lit is unknown.

In 1909 plan of Chicago was created to rebuild the city in a city urban more large and modern than before. The plan focused on six points:

1) The improvement of the shore of the Lake.

2) The development of a system of roads.

3) The improvement of freight and passenger rail systems.

4) Acquisition of a foreign system of parks.

5) Arranging systematic streets.

6) Creation of a civic center of cultural institutions and the Government.

This city consideres as the birthplace of the skyscraper with the construction of the "Home Insurance Building" in 1884. The original building had 10 floors and measured a height of 42 meters, making it the first skyscraper in the world and cutting edge building with its lightweight steel skeleton design. In 1890 two additional floors were added bringing the total height to 55 meters. The building was demolished in 1931 to make room for a higher and modern skyscraper. Today, Chicago boasts 295 skyscrapers, three of these in the top 5 highest skyscrapers in the United States. Chicago is a dynamic and culturally diverse city. It is an International Center for business, travel and partly due to the accessibility of the city through transportation, a thriving community of hundreds of music and entertainment, shopping and sightseeing tours, and more than 40 museums, 200 theaters and 7,300 restaurants.