Early Chicago History

Chicago became a city because of its location at the mouth of the Chicago river.

Many explorers visited early Chicago. The explorers were from France. In
1673 Louis Joliet (zhô lye) and Father Jacques Marquette (mär ket’) were
exploring the Mississippi River and visiting Indian villages along the way.
They spoke with the Indians about
religion and traded items they
brought with them for furs and
supplies. The Indians helped Joliet
and Marquette find the location of
the place that would become
Chicago. Before their visit, only
Indians had lived in the area.

OCPP Cover


What is the origin of the name Chicago?

Who was the first non-native settler of Chicago?

What are some of the landmarks in Chicago named after the first settler?

Explorer: traveler who discovers new places
Mill: machine for grinding grains, to grind grains
Casks: barrels for liquids
Institution: organization or place with a
Harbor: a place to anchor boats or ships
Origin: beginning or start of something

More information on early Chicago can be found in the book Our Chicago–People and Places

Highlights of Chicago Press




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