Enjoying the Chicago River

While in Chicago to speak for the American Library Association, discount viagra and Richard and I decided to do something outdoors, discount cialis ampoule a welcomed break from the multitude of seminars. We decided to take an Architectural Tour of Chicago by excursion boat.

On the Wendella tour boat I was impressed with the fact that our tour guide took the time to explain safety measures: using life preservers, advice exits, not leaning over the banister, etc. Then we were treated to amazing facts about the Chicago River, including the locks that would take us on to Lake Michigan. It was explained that the Chicago River is 2 feet lower than Lake Michigan and that the locks built nearly 100 years ago, would raise us to the same level.

As our boat lifted upward, we also learned that engineers actually reversed the flow of the river. For an accurate account of this technological marvel, I quote Wikipedia:

“Originally, the river flowed into Lake Michigan. As Chicago grew this allowed sewage and other pollution into the clean-water source for the city. This contributed to several public health problems, including some problems with typhoid.[7] Starting in the 1850s much of the flow was diverted across the Chicago Portage into the Illinois and Michigan Canal.[8] 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.


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