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American Experience; Chicago: City Of The Century


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American Experience
Chicago: City Of The Century
Program Number


Series Description

Premiered October 1988 As television's longest-running, most-watched history series, American Experience brings to life the incredible characters and epic stories that helped form this nation. Now in its eighteenth season, the series has produced over 180 programs and garnered every major broadcast award. Series release date: 10/1988

Program Description

From a swampy frontier town of fur traders and Native Americans, Chicago rose to become the quintessential American city of the 19th century. Based on City of the Century by Donald Miller. Narrator: David Ogden Stiers. 1503: "Mudhole to Metropolis" Chicago's location at the end of a canal linking the Mississippi to New York makes it attractive to Yankee speculators as well as Irish laborers. In just a few decades, the remote fur trading post explodes into the metropolis of the West. Not even the great fire of 1871 can slow the city's development. 1504: "The Revolution Has Begun" From the railroads to Marshall Field's department store to Cyrus McCormick's reaper factory to the stockyards, workers struggle for their share of a new industrial capitalism. The Haymarket Affair becomes the most sensational labor incident of the 19th century. 1505: "Battle for Chicago" Chicago develops the world's first skyscraper downtown, with a unique American architectural style. In its shadows are gambling, prostitution, corruption, poverty, and disease. In 1893 Chicago's business elite hosts a World's Fair, proudly showing 27 million visitors a glistening, sanitized city of the future.



Asset Type

Broadcast program

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Chicago: “American Experience; Chicago: City Of The Century,” WGBH Media Library & Archives, accessed March 24, 2019, http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A7C046F8B5D4066B40DDCC7A9A1A533.
MLA: “American Experience; Chicago: City Of The Century.” WGBH Media Library & Archives. Web. March 24, 2019. <http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A7C046F8B5D4066B40DDCC7A9A1A533>.
APA: American Experience; Chicago: City Of The Century. Boston, MA: WGBH Media Library & Archives. Retrieved from http://openvault.wgbh.org/catalog/V_4A7C046F8B5D4066B40DDCC7A9A1A533
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