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Chicago fun facts.

* Chicago's first permanent settler and businessman was Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, an African-American from what is now Haiti, in 1779. In Du Sable's home, which he shared with his Indian wife, the first marriage in Chicago was performed, the first election was held, and the first court handed down justice.

* The "Historic Route 66" begins in Chicago at Grant Park on Adams Street, in front of the Art Institute of Chicago.

* Chicago's nicknames include: The Windy City, the City of Big Shoulders, the Second City, and The City That Works.

* In 1900, Chicago successfully completed a massive engineering project--reversing the flow of the Chicago River so that it emptied into the Mississippi River instead of Lake Michigan.

* Each year, the Chicago River is dyed green to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.

* The first all-color TV station debuted in Chicago (Channel 5).

* Four states are visible from the Willis Tower (aka Sears Tower) Skydeck (Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, & Wisconsin).

* The world's first skyscraper, the Home Insurance Company, was built in Chicago in 1885.

* Chicago poet Gwendolyn Brooks became the first African-American woman to win a Pulitzer Prize in 1949. She was named Poet Laureate of Illinois in 1968.

* The first televised U.S. presidential candidates' debate was broadcast from Chicago's CBS Studios on September 26, 1960, between John Fitzgerald Kennedy and Richard Milhous Nixon.

* The atom was first split (leading to the A bomb and nuclear power) under the football stands of Stagg Field at the University of Chicago.

* Jane Addams, founder of the Hull House, was the first American woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931. The Hull House opened in 1889 to aid Chicago immigrants.

* After Warsaw, Poland, Chicago has the largest Polish population in the world.

* The 1893 Columbian Exposition grounds were so strikingly attractive and popular that they launched the so-called 'City Beautiful' movement, an emphasis on parks, boulevards and other green space, in American city planning.

* Walt Disney was born in Chicago in 1901. He studied drawing at Chicago's McKinley High School and the Institute of Fine Arts.

* Frank Baum wrote The Wonderful Wizard of Oz in 1900, while living in Chicago's Humboldt Park neighborhood.

* The Twinkie was invented during the Depression by Jimmy Dewar, at the time manager of Chicago's Continental Baking Company. The dessert was dubbed "Twinkie" after Dewar spotted an ad for Twinkle Toe Shoes.

* Shedd Aquarium is the largest indoor aquarium in the world, home to beluga whales, eels, penguins & dolphins. Next door is the Adler Planetarium & Astronomy Museum, which is the first planetarium built in the Western Hemisphere.

* Couch potatoes can thank Chicago because the remote control was invented here in 1950.

* The Art Institute of Chicago holds the largest collection of Impressionist paintings outside the Louvre in Paris.

* The Harold Washington Library Center is the world's largest public library, with a collection of more than 2 million books.

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* The 150 foot-high Navy Pier Ferris Wheel is modeled after the first Ferris wheel, which debuted in Chicago at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition. It has 40 gondolas, each seating up to 6 passengers, and is open year-round.
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Publication:Journal of Continuing Education Topics & Issues
Geographic Code:1U3IL
Date:Apr 1, 2014
Words:519
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