A lot of the fellows know Chicago by name. Few of them have visited it, and fewer are considering visiting it. What many don’t know about Chicago is that it is considered one of the major US cities due to its history, location, culture and arts! Here are some trivia about Chicago that will blow your mind!
1- It’s called “The Windy City”, but it’s not what you think it’s for!
One I first knew that I am going to serve in Chicago; I had no idea where it was on the map. Lying on a giant body of water – Lake Michigan – in the state of Illinois in the American Midwest, I thought that the wind is going to be fierce. While it was many times windy in the city, I felt that it was rather cold than being windy. This term was overused. After doing some research on the nickname it got, I found out that it was called like that due rivalry between different cities over the years (Cincinnati, Ohio and New York City for example). Another origin of the name could be from the “long-winded” (lengthy) political conversations and since a lot of its people are “braggarts”!
Another reason why Chicago is not literary “The Windy City” is because there are other places, at least in the United States that are windier. Mount Washington in New Hampshire is the windiest place in the US!
2- It’s literally a wild Garlic on the prairies!
Chicago comes from the word “Shikaakwa” which is a Miami-Illionis (one of many indigenous American languages) and it means wild garlic. The city was named after this type of plant due to its abundance in the area when people first settled in.
While Chicago is the biggest city in the State of Illinois, it is not considered its capital. The capital of the state is Springfield in central Illinois.
Illinois is called the “Prairie State” due to its huge plains covered with grass, corn mazes, and farmlands.
3- It was as founded by an African Descent!
Although little is known about him, Jean Baptiste Point du Sable is recognized as “The Founder of Chicago” from a French and African descent from Haiti, and was married to a Native American and had two children from her. He moved later to Missouri where he lived the rest of his life there.
4- It housed some of world’s unique constructions
The first ever tall building that was designed by the method of skeleton construction was the “Home Insurance Building”. It was completed in 1885 and demolished in 1931. Today, the Field Building stands on its site.
The Ferris wheel was designed and constructed by George Washington Gale Ferris Jr. for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
The Wrigley Building (photo of it is below) is the first ever air-conditioned building in the world. And the Willis Tower (still known as the Sears Tower) was the tallest building in the US and the Western Hemisphere until it was replaced by the One World Trade Center in 2014 (442.1 meters versus 541 meters).
Also, the city initiated a massive engineering project to reverse the flow of the Chicago River water from Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River instead to decrease the disease and sewage contamination that caused a lot of deaths in the 1800s.
5- It has made major American Role Models:
Barack Obama – the first African American president of the US, Oprah Winfrey – the first black billionaire and the richest African American, and Jane Adams – the first American Woman to win the Noble Peace Prize and the founder of social work, all became known from the city of Chicago where they lived in. Walt Disney was also born in Chicago.
These are some of the facts about Chicago. Which one was your favorite?