"A family tree can wither if nobody tends its roots."


Chicago Time Line

by  Phyllis Zeck

Dearborn and Randolph Streets

Between 1870 and 1900 Chicago grew from a city of 299,000 to nearly 1.7 million, the fastest-growing city ever at the time.  The growth in Chicago’s manufacturing and retail sectors came to dominate the  Midwest and greatly influenced the nation’s economy. The Chicago Union Stock Yards dominated the packing trade.  Chicago became the world’s largest rail hub, and one of its busiest ports.

1673 Discovery
1696-1700 Mission of the Guardian Angel
1803 Construction of Fort Dearborn Begins
1812 Fort Dearborn Massacre
1818 Illinois Admitted to Statehood
1830 Thompson Plat—First Plat of Chicago
1832 Black Hawk War
1833 Incorporated as a Town
1833 Chicago’s First Newspaper – The Chicago Weekly Democrat
1837 Chicago’s First Local Theater Company Established
1837 Incorporated as a City
1837 Chicago’s First Mayor – William Butler Ogden Elected
1847 First Issue of Chicago Tribune
1848 Chicago Builds First Municipal Structure, Market Building
1848 Illinois & Michigan Canal Completed
1848 Galena & Chicago Union Railroad
1848 First City Hall in State Street
1848 Telegraph Reaches Chicago
1855 Lager Beer Riots
1855 Police Department Created
1856 Chicago Historical Society Founded
1865 Chicago’s First Museum – Academy of Sciences – Opens
1865 Chicago Union Stock Yards Completed
1867 First Tunnel Under the Lake
1868 Lincoln Park Zoological Gardens Founded
1869 First Traffic Tunnels Under the River
1869 Chicago Water Tower Built
1871 The Great Fire
1872 Chicago Board of Education Established
1872 Montgomery Ward—First Mail-Order House
1873 Chicago Public Library Opened
1877 Telephones Reach Chicago
1877 Railroad Strike

Christmas on Wabash Ave

1886 Haymarket Riot

1892 First Elevated Rapid Transit Line
1893 Chicago Harbor Lighthouse Built
1893 World’s Columbian Exposition
1893 The First Ferris Wheel Debuts in Chicago
1893 Daniel Hale Williams Performs Open Heart Surgery
1893 Mayor Carter Harrison Shot and Killed
1893 Columbian Museum of Chicago (Field Museum of Natural History) Founded
1894 Pullman Strike
1896 Chicago Federation of Labor Founded
1900 Flow of Chicago River Reversed
1906 White Sox Defeat Cubs in Crosstown World Series
1907 Cubs Win World Series
1908 Garfield Park Conservatory Opens
1908 Cubs Win World Series
1908 Street Numbering Change
1909 Illinois Supreme Court Rules to Keep Lakefront “Forever Open, Clear and Free”

1910 Comiskey Park Opens

1910 Union Stock Yards Fire
1911 Dedication of Present City Hall
1914 Wrigley Field Built
1915 Eastland Disaster
1917 White Sox Win World Series
1919 Dirigible Balloon Crash
1919 Race Riots
1919 Black Sox Scandal Court Case
1921 Westinghouse Station KYW Broadcasts Chicago’s First Radio Program
1924 Grant Park Stadium (Soldier Field) Completed
1925 Union Station Completed

Cubs Field July 29, 1929

1927 Municipal Airport of Chicago (Midway) Opened
1928 Straightening of the Chicago River
1929 St. Valentine’s Day Massacre
1929 Chicago Stadium Opens
1930 Shedd Aquarium Officially Opens
1930 Adler Planetarium Founded, First in Western Hemisphere
1932 Bears Win NFL Championship
1933 Mayor Anton Cermak Shot and Killed
1933 First Baseball All-Star Game
1933 Museum of Science and Industry Opens
1934 Brookfield Zoo Opens
1934 Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup Championship
1937 Memorial Day Incident at Republic Steel
1938 Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup Championship
1940 Bears Win NFL Championship
1943 Bears Win NFL Championship

1943 Chicago’s First Subway Opened
1946 Bears Win NFL Championship
1947 Chicago Transit Authority Created
1948 First Issue of Chicago Sun-Times
1955 Mayor Richard J. Daley Elected
1955 First Section of Congress Expressway (Dwight D. Eisenhower) Opened
1958 Our Lady of the Angels School Fire
1961 Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup Championship

State Street 1907

1963 Bears Win NFL Championship
1963 O’Hare Airport Dedicated
1964 Southwest Expressway (Adlai E. Stevenson) Completed
1966 Martin Luther King Jr. Marches in Chicago
1967 Major Snowstorm
1967 McCormick Place Fire
1968 Democratic National Convention
1971 Union Stock Yard Closes
1972 Crash of United Airlines Flight 553
1973 Sears Tower Completed—Becomes World’s Tallest Building
1977 First Running of Chicago Marathon

1979 State Street Mall Opens

1979 Crash of American Airlines Flight 191
1981 Miro’s Chicago Dedicated
1982 First Major City to Ban Sale of Handguns
1986 Bears Win NFL Championship
1986 Lake Shore Drive S-Curve Straightened
1987 Museum of Broadcast Communications Opens
1987 Mayor Harold Washington Dies

1989 Mayor Richard M. Daley Elected Mayor

1990 Population of the state is 11,430,602.
1991 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1991 New Comiskey Park (U.S. Cellular Field) Opens
1992 Freight Tunnel Flood
1992 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1993 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1994 Chicago Hosts World Cup
1994 United Center Opens
1995 Deadly Heat Wave

1995 Chicago Stadium Demolished

1996 National Vietnam Veterans Art MuseumOpens
1996 State Street Revitalization
1996 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1997 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1998 Chicago Bulls Win NBA Championship
1998 Chicago Fire Wins MLS Cup and U.S. Open Cup
2000 Chicago Fire Wins U.S. Open Cup
2000 Field Museum Unveils “Sue”, the Tyrannosaurus rex
2003 Meigs Field Closes
2005 White Sox Sweep World Series

2008 President-elect Barack Obama gives acceptance speech in Chicago’s Grant Park
2010 Blackhawks Win Stanley Cup Championship


One Response to Chicago Time Line

  1. 13 years ago by Anthony Winike

    I would like to commend you and your family for this beautiful website. However, I would bet your Grandpa would want you to edit the timeline to include the year 1908, when the team he loved, The Chicago Cubs won the world series for the second consecutive year, and of course, the last time. They have lost 7 consecutive World Series appearances since then. I remember how upset Grandpa was when the White Sox signed Dick Allen in 1972 for $250,000 for one year, he was appalled because Babe Ruth did not make that much in his entire career. Dick Allen won the MVP that first year, but Grandpa insisted no man was worth that. Less then 30 years later, Alex Rodriguez signed for 250 million for 10 years. I can just see the look on Grandpa’s face-priceless. Please know all your hard work is appreciated.


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