Chicago in flames

When Chicago burned to the ground, the blame was put on Mrs. O'Leary's cow, which was said to have kicked over a lantern that started the fire. One of the main results of the city burning down was that the city was rebuilt with steel skyscrapers, replacing the city mostly made of wooden buildings.

Located on Lake Michigan, Chicago began as a trading post in the 1600s. With the opening of the West, it became a center of the world's grain market and meat-packing industry. In 1871, the city was almost totally destroyed by raging fires in a disaster that has become legendary: some 18,000 buildings went up in smoke, hundreds of people were killed, close to 100,000 were left without homes, and nearly $200 million worth of property was destroyed.

Rebuilding began almost immediately. Architects and planners, seeing an opportunity to try out new ideas and construction techniques, rushed to the site. The invention of a safe high-speed electric elevator by Elisha G. Otis and the availability of steel for building a sturdy framework made the skyscraper possible. Within a very few years, Chicago was transformed into a modern city of stone and steel.


Why did Chicago burn so readily?

What transportation system helped Chicago become a center for commerce?

Which states provided the crops and cattle for Chicago as a trade center?

Who was Otis?

Chicago en Llamas

Cuando la ciudad de Chicago se quemó por entero, le echaron la culpa a la vaca de la Sra. O'Leary, de la que se dijo que habia pateado el farol que dió origen al incendio. Uno de los resultados fue que la ciudad, construida casi totalmente de madera, se transformó cuando se reconstruyó en un centro para los rascacielos de acero.

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