Friday, October 8, 2010

The Chicago Fire of 1871


The great Chicago Fire, friends,
Will never be forgot;
In the history of Chicago
It will remain a darken spot.
It was a dreadful horrid sight
To see that City in flames;
But no human aid could save it,
For all skill was tried in vain.

In the year of 1871,
In October on the 8th,
The people in that City, then
Was full of life, and great.
Less than four days it lay in ruins,
That garden City, so great
Lay smouldering in ashes,
In a sad and pitiful state.

- Julia A. Moore
From The Great Chicago Fire

Today is the anniversary of the start of the Great Chicago Fire. The fire began on the evening of October 8, 1871 and caused at least 200 deaths and much homelessness. It was also responsible for the destruction of thousands of buildings and millions of dollars in property damage. There is a widespread myth about the origin of the fire. According to legend, the blaze was started by a cow kicking over a lantern in the barn owned by Irish immigrant farmers Patrick and Catherine O’Leary.  Michael Ahern, a Chicago Republican reporter, and others admitted to fabricating the story of Mrs. O’Leary’s cow.  The unfortunate O'Learys must have had a terrible guilt complex.


Last night was a busy night for sports fans in Toronto and elsewhere. The NHL season is underway and so is the Major League Baseball’s postseason.


The Toronto Maple Leafs opened their 2010-11 season with a 3-2 victory over the Montreal Canadiens at the Air Canada Centre. Note to Leaf fans: That’s a good start, but it’s a little premature to start planning a parade on Yonge Street.


Roy Halladay is incredible. There is no better pitcher in the game today. Doc pitched a no-hitter in his first playoff game ever. He led the Philadelphia Phillies to victory in the first game of their series against the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday. It was the first no-hitter in postseason play since Don Larsen’s perfect game in the 1956 World Series.

The New York Yankees have taken a 2-0 lead in their American League series with the Minnesota Twins. It looks pretty grim for the Twins now. They have to enter the Bronx Zoo two games behind. I’m not too happy about the Twinkies losing to the Pinstripes. I do not want the Yanks to repeat as World Series champs.

- Joanne

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