Tuesday, February 11, 2020

February 11, 1936 -- Hollywood Stars Robbed after Terrorizing Loop Chase


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Chicago Tribune photo
February 11, 1936 – Hollywood stars Jackie Coogan and his finacée, Betty Grable, are waylaid and robbed of two diamond rings after dancing at the Congress Hotel.  As they drove toward their rooms at the Hotel Sherman on Randolph Street, two men forced Coogan to the curb at the corner of Monroe Street and Michigan Avenue.  Coogan is able to speed away from the trap and heads across the Michigan Avenue bridge to the turnaround at Tribune Tower where he reverses direction and heads south again with the pursuers close behind.  Back across the bridge the two cars head west on Wacker Drive to Wells Street, turning south on Wells to Adams Street, where the robbers pin Coogan’s car against a support for the Loop elevated line.  There the robbers take Grable’s diamond engagement ring, along with Coogan’s diamond ring and his wallet.  Police suspect the robbers are the same pair that robbed the wife of orchestra leader George Olson, Ethel Shutta, of $12,000 worth of furs and jewelry the week before.  Coogan and Grable are in town performing at the Oriental Theater.  The above Tribune photo shows Grable and Coogan having breakfast at the Hotel Sherman on the morning after the incident.
February 11, 2010 -- A 3.8-magnitude earthquake centered in a farm field near Hampshire shakes a wide area from Wisconsin to Tennessee. At first reported to be a 4.3-magnitude quake, the estimate is revised downward after data is more closely analyzed. Whatever it was, it shakes a lot of people in the area awake when it occurs at 3:59 in the morning.

February 11, 1963 – The first car to enter the garage at Marina City follows the serpentine pathway to a space on the nineteenth floor of the east tower.  Only black steel poles, about two feet high, spaced at six-foot intervals, separate the car from doom.  The garage will officially open in mid-March and will be operated by Marina City Garage and Parking Corporation.  It will accommodate 900 cars.  The rate for monthly parking is expected to be about $30.00.  Attendants will be able to access cars by way of a special elevator installed next to the core of the tower.

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February 11, 1962 – The Chicago Daily Tribune reports on a discovery by researchers for the Chicago Title and Trust Company – details of the last law case that Abraham Lincoln tried in the city, a case heard in March, 1860.  Lincoln, at the time a leading candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, came to the city on March 22, 1860 in order to try a case involving about five acres of land on the lake that was created after the U. S. government built a pier north of the river’s mouth.  The dispute was between William S. Johnston and two men who claimed prior rights to the property, William Jones and Sylvester March.  Lincoln represented Jones, who was one of the city’s first real estate investors and also served as the superintendent of schools, and Marsh, a meat packer.  The case was tried before Judge Thomas Drummond in a building that stood at the northeast corner of Clark and Washington Streets.  It lasted for 11 days before a jury found in favor of Lincoln’s clients after a five-hour deliberation.  The case was another in a series of cases that would continue for decades as the courts grappled with the question of the ownership of submerged lands along the city's lakefront. The lawyer who went on to become the President of the United States is shown above as he would have appeared in 1860.

February 11, 1889 – Apparently, the good citizens of Joliet are angry and determined not to take any more abuse from Chicago.  At a meeting of a joint committee composed of members of the Joliet City Council and members of a city businessmen’s association, a resolution is adopted that reads, “Resolved, That the City Council be requested to use all honorable means to prevent Chicago from sending its sewage down the Desplaines Valley.”  [Chicago Daily Tribune, February 12, 1889] Joliet Mayor J. D. Paige says, “When the works [the Chicago Water-Works] were built Chicago was to send down more water.  Instead it has given more sewage.  If we allow them to build a bigger ditch we will get more sewage.  Chicago has not complied with anything it has agreed to do.  The question is:  Is this sewage and do we want it here … The water is nastier here than it is in Chicago.  They have as much sewage there, but the putrefaction is well under way when it gets down here.  Down on Lake Joliet it is thick; you can’t force a boat through it.”  The conjecture is that the first practical step in pressing Joliet’s case will be supporting a $50,000 suit of Joliet resident Robert Mann Woods against the city of Chicago for damage to one of his buildings from the sewage in the canal.  Businesses and homes such as the one above in Lockport sat right next to the canal and were beneficiaries of whatever Chicago decided to send their way.


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