Chicago journalist, photographer, blogger, historian, music and film fan. Author of http://www.alchemyofbones.com.
What really happened to Archduke Franz Ferdinand — according to The Onion, anyway…
It’s an intriguing question — and like any “What if?” riddle about history, it may not be easy to answer. But I’m starting off by reading up on the fire, consulting books such as "The Great Chicago Fire" by Ross Miller, "Urban Disorder and the Shape of Belief" by Carl Smith and Elaine Lewinnek’s just-published history "The Workingman’s Reward: Chicago’s Early Suburbs and the Roots of American Sprawl."
Key questions include: How did the fire change Chicago’s architecture? And the way the city used its land? And the patterns of who lived where?
I’m open to suggestions about sources I should look at and people I should interview. Feel free to email me at email@example.com.
Can you think of any spots in Chicago that illustrate the way the city turned out differently as a result of the Great Chicago Fire of 1871?