Unit 8 Chicago’s Worlds Fairs Disasters Depression Scandals in the Statehouse Modern Political Leaders
The Columbian Exposition • Commemorated the 400th anniversary of Columbus' discovery of America.
During the fair, Chicagoans and visitors to the city were treated to concerts, lectures, symphonies, and plays.
The latest products were exhibited. • Electric lighting • The Ferris Wheel • Juicy Fruit gum • Quaker Oats • Cracker Jacks • Cream of Wheat • Hamburger was introduced to US
After the fair many exhibits were transformed into such lasting cultural advantages as the Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of Science and Industry.
Seventeen major buildings housed exhibits from almost every state, and forty-six foreign countries.
Popular culture was enriched by the thrills of the Ferris wheel, animal acts, and the dancing of "Little Egypt”.
Over 27 million people visited the fair between May 1 and October 30 of 1893
World's Fair of 1933-34 Held in the midst of the depression Century of Progress
Was not nearly as extensive as the Columbian Exposition • The major attraction was Sally Rand, with her "Fan Dance."
The fair was ended in 1934 • Turned a profit, despite the Great Depression • Over 30 million visitors
Disasters Iroquois Theater Fire
Dec. 30, 1903 – New Iroquois theatre opens in Chicago • Advertised as being completely fireproof • Asbestos curtain could be lowered to protect audience from any fires that occurred on stage • The theatre was supposed to have a capacity of 1724 • 1900 tickets were sold • Sparks from a spotlight ignited canvas scenery flats • Asbestos curtain failed to lower • 602 people died, more than in the Great Chicago Fire
The Eastland Disaster July 24, 1915
The S.S. Eastland, was assigned to take Western Electric employees, families and friends across Lake Michigan to Michigan City, Indiana, for the company’s annual employee picnic • 2,572 passengers boarded • Immediately the ship listed away from the dock, righted herself, listed again • Then slowly rolled over on her side and settled in the mud of the river bottom
844 lost their lives, mostly women and children trapped under deck • largest death toll of any single event occurring in the continental United States in the twentieth century
Cherry Mine - November 13, 1909 • Bureau County, near LaSalle, • was described as the most modern mine in America • Hay dropped down the shaft to feed mules came in contact with torches • Evacuation of the mine was ordered • A total of 259 men and boys died • worst mine disaster in state history
Centralia #5 Mine – Marion County • March 25, 1947 • Errant shot fired ignited coal dust caused an explosion • 142 miners underground at the time • 111 men died, 24 men escaped, 7 rescued • US Congress held committee hearings on mine safety
New Orient Mine No. 2 - West Frankfurt • Dec 21, 1951, last shift before Xmas vacation • Electrical equipment touched off methane gas explosion • 120 miners trapped underground • 1 was found alive • Recovered bodies were kept at the local junior high school • As a result of this disaster, President Truman signed the Federal Coal Mine Safety Act • Allowed inspectors to shut down unsafe mines
The Depression Payless Paydays and Breadlines
Stock Market Crash - Oct. 1929 • Marked the start of the Great Depression • By 1933, a third of the workforce in Illinois was out of work • Almost 700,000 on government relief (government help) • Burden carried by federal government at first • State forced to carry the burden after 1933
Increased taxes • Illinois issued bonds to be paid from future gas tax revenue • Passed sales tax – 3% • Suspended property tax because it put unfair burden on farmers • Passed utility tax and a tax on alcohol
Christian County Mine War – 1932 • Peabody Coal Co. wanted to mechanize operations and reduce its workforce • Miners went out on strike • United Mine Workers President signed agreement with Peabody, angering local miners • Most miners defied union and started a breakaway union, the Progressive Mine Workers Union
Peabody continued to operate with UMWA workers and strikebreakers • Scabs and strikebreakers risked injury from beatings, bombings, and shootings • The National Guard was deployed • The Breeze Courier, unsympathetic to the Progressives, was bombed
When miners targeted railroads for bombings, the FBI was brought in • 41 Progressives were indicted, 38 convicted • Strike was broken
End of Depression • The Depression was ended when the US became involved in WWII • Relief rolls in Illinois went from over a million when the war started to about 200,000 at the war’s end
1859 – Governor Joel Matteson accused of profiting from refinancing of Illinois Canal • Investigation canceled when Matteson made up state’s loss
1920’s Gov. Len Small accused of depositing state money in banks and taking some of the interest • Found not guilty, but repaid the state lost interest ($650,000)
1940’s & 50’s - Gov. Dwight Green and Adlai Stevenson were blamed for allowing poor safety standards in coal mines Adlai Stevenson Dwight Green
Governor Otto Kerner • 1961-68 • charged with receiving racetrack stock in return for using state influence • convicted and sent to prison- 1973
Sec. of State Paul Powell • Died in 1970 - $800,000 in cash found in shoeboxes in his hotel room • Powell’s wealth estimated at $2.8 million, including racetrack stock • State sued his estate, settled for $1.6 million
Governor George Ryan • 1999-2003 • indicted for taking payoffs, gifts and vacations in return for government contracts and leases while he was Illinois secretary of state • Convicted in 2006
Governor Rod Blagojevic • Blagojevich was arrested on federal corruption charges • conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud • solicitation of bribery • conspired to commit several "pay to play" schemes • attempted "to obtain personal gain ... through the corrupt use" of his authority to fill Barack Obama's vacated United States Senate seat.
the jury convicted Blagojevich on just one of the 24 felony counts he faced • a charge that he had lied to FBI agents about his intense involvement in campaign fundraising.