Shalom Chicago

City of Chicago

Chicago skyline

Sometimes called "The Windy City" or "The City of Big Shoulders," Chicago is the third-largest city in the U.S., with 2.8 million residents and 8.5 million people in the metropolitan area.  Located on the shores of Lake Michigan in the heart of the Midwest, Chicago is home to championship sports teams, an internationally acclaimed symphony orchestra, world-famous museums, miles of lakefront parks, the world's busiest airport, and renowned architecture.

The first resident of Chicago was Jean Baptiste Point du Sable, a fur trader from Santo Domingo of French-African descent, who built the first settlement in 1779 at the mouth of the Chicago River.  Chicago was incorporated as a town in 1833 and as a city in 1837; it served as a U.S. transportation hub throughout the 19th century. On October 8, 1871, Chicago was largely destroyed by The Great Chicago Fire; it claimed 300 lives, left 90,000 Chicagoans without homes and destroyed $200 million worth of property. This disaster turned into an opportunity to plan and rebuild the entire city.

From historic landmarks to contemporary technological masterpieces, Chicago is home to unique and innovative designs that have shaped American building design. Thanks to the genius of architects such as Daniel Burnham, Louis Sullivan, Frank Lloyd Wright, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Helmut Jahn, Chicago is a living museum of architecture. It is also a multicultural community of ethnic neighborhoods, and is renowned for its diverse ethnic cuisine as well as its music scene. The city where the Blues began, Chicago is also known for its Jazz clubs, classical music and opera.