For most historians if you mention Chicago and the year 1893, they will immediately think of the World’s Colombian Exposition. However, there was much more going on in Chicago during that year that still resonates today. Beyond the excitement surrounding the Fair, 1893 was pivotal for the many new contributions, innovations, and changes that impacted the city and beyond. Many Chicago institutions we know today are tied to or originated during that year. A short list would include the first Chicago Cubs stadium, the tamale, the hot dog, Wrigley chewing gum, and much more.
This monumental year holds many interesting stories well beyond the White City as a backdrop that was in direct contrast with Chicago’s work-a-day world, some would call “Gray City.” Join us in this episode for the extraordinary changes and important events of 1893, as we speak with historian and author Joe Gustaitis to set the scene for an upcoming episode focused on the Colombian Exposition and the White City.
Links to Research and Historic Sources:
- 1893, Chicago’s Greatest Year, by Joseph Gustaitis
- Chicago Literary Renaissance, Encyclopedia of Chicago
- A History of Midland Authors, Part 1, by Robert Loerzel on the Society of Midland Authors
- Parliament of the World’s Religions in 1893, from the Harvard University’s Pluralism Project
- Bio of Swami Vivekananda who brought Yoga to the United States
- Bio of Julius Rosenwald
- Marshall Field & Company State Street Stores, Chicaogology
- Bio of Hamlin Garland who helped create The Attic Club, which two years later was renamed The Cliff Dwellers Club
- History of the Vienna Beef Co.
- The history of Chicago National League Ball Parks including the West Side Grounds on Chicagology
- General Santa Anna and chicle
- Chicle the natural chewing gum
- History of the Wrigley Company, from the Made In Chicago website
- Francis Willard House Museum & Archives in Evanston, IL
- Women’s (Bike) History Month: Francis Willard, by Liz Murphy
- Cycling in Chicago, by Chris McAuliffe as reviewed by Zachary Schuster in Cyclocross Magazine