Pillar of Fire

Join JK as he takes a closer look at Egon Weiner‘s “Pillar of Fire”, a tall bronze sculpture that stands in front of the Chicago Fire Academy. This is also the site of O’Leary’s barn. If you know your Chicago history, you’ll also know that this is ground zero for The Great Chicago Fire of 1871… and of course the question on everyone’s mind, did the cow do it?

The Chicago Fire Academy

Getty Mausoleum

This highly significant work of Louis Sullivan stands in Graceland Cemetery in the Uptown neighborhood. It is said to be an the early example of the Chicago School of architecture. Frank Lloyd Wright described it as “a piece of sculpture, a statue, a great poem.” Perfectly illustrates the architectural concept of “cubic massing”.

The Chess Pavilion


Join JK as he takes a closer look at Chicago architect Maurice Webster’s chess pavilion. The stone sculpture work of Boris Gilbertson is also on display in this short video about Laurens Hammond’s gift to Chicago.
Maurice Webster's Chess Pavilion

Buried in a Scrapyard

Andreas Von Zirngibl was a German fisherman, and veteran of the Battle of Waterloo. He purchased a 44-acre plot of land, beside the mouth of the Calumet River for $160. It was here that he lived the final years of his life
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Fishing for sturgeon, herring, perch and Northern pike, he was reported to have caught some fish weighing in at over 100-pounds. Although it was a great pleasure for this fisherman, it was no easy task, for the Battle of Waterloo had left him with only one arm.
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In 1855 he caught a fever, and died shortly thereafter. One of his final requests to his four sons, was to be buried upon this land. Years later, it is now a functioning scrapyard. In the past there was a legal battle between Von Zirngibl’s family and the scrapyard, over the grave site’s need to remain. After a protracted 41-year legal battle, the family finally won, and the grave remains to this day. It was restored in recent years, and it now looks quite nice. But I think it would be nicer if there were some flowers.

Still a scrapyard, and still the final resting place of Von Zirngibl:
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Veteran of the Battle of Waterloo:
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now behind a high steel fence, in middle a metal scrapyard:
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where CTA buses and Jay’s Potato Chip trucks go to die:
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Images 2, 3 and 4:
Courtesy of Southeast Chicago Historical Society
do not use without permission
Images 1,5 and 6:
by Jay Hagstrom

Special thanks to Rod Sellers!