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Portal:Chicago

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The Chicago Portal

Chicago's population of approximately 3 million people and its metropolitan area of over 9 million people make it the third-most populous city and metropolitan area in the United States. Adjacent to Lake Michigan, it is the largest Great Lakes city and among the world's 25 largest urban areas by population. Incorporated as a city in 1837 after being founded in 1833 at the site of a portage, it became a transportation hub in North America and the financial capital of the Midwest, since the World's Fair of 1893, it has been regarded as one of the ten most influential cities in the world. For example, diverse events such as Chicago Pile-1, the first man made nuclear reactor, and Chicago school architecture have changed human history, and the way urban spaces are organized. Chicago boasts some of the world's tallest buildings (Willis Tower, and Trump International Hotel and Tower). The University of Chicago is a leader in many fields and has contributed to academic thought, such as the Chicago school of economics or Chicago school of sociology.

Today, Chicago has diverse cultural offerings: teams from each of the major league sports (Bears, Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs, and White Sox), a financial district anchored by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on LaSalle Street in the Chicago Board of Trade Building, and an arts culture anchored by the Art Institute of Chicago and Millennium Park as well as Chicago Landmarks such as Wrigley Field. The Magnificent Mile is a fitting tribute for a city that has revolutionized retail merchandising with mail order catalogs, the money-back guarantee, bridal registry and using posted prices on goods.

Chicago hosts O'Hare (the world's second busiest) and Midway International Airports as well as the renowned 'L' rapid transit system. Chicago was once the capital of the railroad industry and the nation's meatpacking had its hub at the Union Stock Yards. Chicago has seen the influence of Al Capone. Recent members of the Cook County Democratic Party from Chicago include Chicago Mayors Richard J. Daley and his son Richard M. Daley, Chicago's first African-American Mayor, Harold Washington, the first African-American female United States Senator, Carol Moseley Braun, and the first African-American United States President, former Senator Barack Obama.

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American Airlines Flight 191 was a regularly scheduled passenger flight in the United States from O'Hare International Airport in Chicago, Illinois, to Los Angeles International Airport. On May 25, 1979, the McDonnell Douglas DC-10-10 operating the route crashed moments after takeoff from Chicago. All 258 passengers and 13 crew on board were killed, along with two persons on the ground, the accident remains the deadliest airliner accident to occur on United States soil. Investigators found that as the jet was beginning its takeoff rotation, engine number one on the left (port) wing separated and flipped over the top of the wing, as the engine separated from the aircraft, it severed hydraulic fluid lines and damaged the left wing, resulting in a retraction of the slats. As the jet attempted to climb, the left wing aerodynamically stalled while the right wing, with its slats still deployed, continued to produce lift, the jetliner subsequently rolled to the left and reached a bank angle of 112 degrees (partially inverted), before impacting in an open field near a trailer park located near the end of the runway. The engine separation was attributed to damage to the pylon rigging structure holding the engine to the wing caused by inadequate maintenance procedures at American Airlines. While maintenance issues and not the actual design of the aircraft would ultimately be found responsible for the crash, the accident and subsequent grounding of all DC-10s by the Federal Aviation Administration added to an already negative perception of the jet in the eyes of the public caused by other unrelated accidents.

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Union Stockyards
Credit: John Vachon, Farm Security Administration

The Union Stock Yard & Transit Co., or The Yards, operated in the New City community area of Chicago, Illinois for 106 years, helping the city become known as "hog butcher for the world" and the center of the American meat packing industry for decades. From the Civil War until the 1920s and peaking in 1924, more meat was processed in Chicago than in any other place in the world.

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List of Chicago Bears head coaches

This is a complete list of Chicago Bears head coaches. There have been 16 head coaches for the Chicago Bears, including coaches for the Decatur Staleys (1919–1920) and Chicago Staleys (1921), of the National Football League (NFL), the Bears franchise was founded as the Decatur Staleys, a charter member of the American Professional Football Association. The team moved to Chicago in 1921, and changed their name to the Bears in 1922, the same year the American Professional Football Association (APFA) changed its name to the National Football League.

The Chicago Bears have played over one thousand games; in those games, five different coaches have won NFL championships with the team: George Halas in 1921, 1933, 1940, 1941, 1946, and 1963, Ralph Jones in 1932, Hunk Anderson and Luke Johnsos in 1943, and Mike Ditka in 1985. George Halas is the only coach to have more than one tenure and is the all-time leader in games coached and wins, while Ralph Jones leads all coaches in winning percentage with .706. Of the 16 Bears coaches, three have been elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame: George Halas, Paddy Driscoll, and Mike Ditka, the current coach is Lovie Smith, who was hired on January 14, 2004. Statistics correct as of December 30, 2007, after the end of the 2007 NFL season. (Read more...)

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Gustavus Swift in 1900
Gustavus Franklin Swift founded a meat-packing empire in the Midwest during the late 19th century, over which he presided until his death. He is credited with the development of the first practical ice-cooled railroad car which allowed his company to ship dressed meats to all parts of the country and even abroad, which ushered in the "era of cheap beef." Swift pioneered the use of animal by-products for the manufacture of soap, glue, fertilizer, various types of sundries, even medical products. Swift generously donated large sums of money to such institutions as the University of Chicago, the Methodist Episcopal Church, and the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA). He established Northwestern University's "School of Oratory" in memory of his daughter, Annie May Swift, who died while attending the school. When he died in 1903, his company was valued at between $25 million and $35 million, and had a workforce that was more than 21,000 strong. "The House of Swift" slaughtered as many as two million cattle, four million hogs, and two million sheep a year. Three years after his death, the value of the company's capital stock topped $50 million.

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Nelson Algren
"Once you've come to be a part of this particular patch, you'll never love another. Like loving a woman with a broken nose, you may well find lovelier lovelies, but never a lovely so real." — Nelson Algren

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Washington Park Court District
Washington Park Court District is a Grand Boulevard community area neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago, Illinois. It was designated a Chicago Landmark on October 2, 1991, despite its name, it is not located within either the Washington Park community area or the Washington Park park, but is one block north of both. The district was named for the Park, the district includes row houses built between 1895 and 1905, with addresses of 4900–4959 South Washington Park Court and 417–439 East 50th Street. Many of the houses share architectural features, the neighborhood was part of the early twentieth century segregationist racial covenant wave that swept Chicago following the Great Migration. The community area has continued to be almost exclusively African American since the 1930s.

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Did you know?

...that Man Enters the Cosmos (pictured) is one of four Henry Moore sculptures in Chicago, two of which are at National Historic Landmarks?


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