While in Chicago to speak for the American Library Association, Richard and I decided to do something outdoors, public health problems, including some problems with typhoid. Starting in the 1850s much of the flow was diverted across the Chicago Portage into the Illinois and Michigan Canal. In 1900, the Sanitary District of Chicago, then headed by Rudolph Hering, completely reversed the flow of the river using a series of canal locks and caused the river to flow into the newly completed Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal. Before this time the Chicago River was known by many local residents of Chicago as “the stinking river” because of the massive amounts of sewage and pollution which poured into the river from Chicago’s booming industrial economy. Through the 1980s, the river was quite dirty and often filled with garbage; however, during the 1990s, it underwent extensive cleaning as part of an effort at beautification by Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley.”
Richard and I were amazed being able to experience these technological wonders for ourselves. My dear, supportive companion turned to me and said, “I think you should write about this on your blog.” I agreed.