Joseph Medill

Joseph Medill

Joseph Medill was born in Saint John, Canada, on 6th April, 1823. He moved to the United States and began working for newspapers in Ohio (1849-51) and Cleveland (1851-55).

A founder member of the Republican Party, Medill moved to Chicago where he joined with Charles Ray to purchase the Chicago Tribune in 1855. A strong opponent of slavery, Medill supported Abraham Lincoln in the 1860 presidential election.

A member of the group known as the Radical Republicans, Medill strongly criticised Lincoln's decision to appoint conservatives such as Simon Cameron (Secretary of War), Gideon Welles (Secretary of the Navy), Edward Bates (Attorney General), and Montgomery Blair (Postmaster General) to the Cabinet. He urged the formation of black regiments and in one editorial Medill accused Lincoln of following policies idesigned to "placate a few hundred Kentucky slave masters".

Medill failed to persuade Abraham Lincoln to appoint Benjamin Butler as his Secretary of War. However, he refused to support other Radical Republicans who wanted John C. Fremont or Salmon Chase as the Republican Party candidate in the 1864 presidential election. Instead he urged his readers to remain loyal to Lincoln's candidacy.

In November, 1871, Medill was elected mayor of Chicago. While in power he helped establish the Chicago Public Library.

Joseph Medill died in San Antonio, Texas, on 16th March, 1899.

The Journalists: Joseph Medill (1823-1899)

A year later on May 29, 1856, Illinois Republicans held their organizing convention in Bloomington. Joseph Wilson Fifer later told the story of the Bloomington convention as “Mr. Medill has told it more than once to me.”

Medill said that after the business of the convention had been completed the time came for speech making. [John] Palmer made a great, a powerful speech. [Owen]Lovejoy was there and he made a speech. It was supposed that Lovejoy was the most eloquent man in the State. One other speech or two were made and then Medill said there was a call for ‘Lincoln, Lincoln.’ Lincoln got up back in the audience where he sat and said awkwardly and in a slow sort of way ‘If there is no objection I will speak from where I am.’ The crowd would not have it that way and called: ‘The platform, platform, Lincoln, the platform.’ He came forward. Medill was there representing the Chicago Tribune, taking notes. Lincoln was introduced and commenced in rather a slow way, but Medill said he could see an unusual determination in the man’s face he could see a suppressed animation in the man. Lincoln began slowly, but rose as he progressed, and Medill said it was the greatest speech finally to which he ever listened. He said that at times Lincoln seemed to reach up into the clouds and take out the thunderbolts.” 2

Over the next four years, the Chicago Press and Tribune acted as a co-sponsor of Mr. Lincoln’s bids for the U.S. Senate and presidency. “No other large paper in the nation was so close to Lincoln and the heart of the Midwest in this campaign,” wrote Lincoln scholar Jay Monaghan. “The Press and Tribune devoted its entire resources to winning the [Senate] campaign. Reporters set to work writing about Lincoln from every angle. A Republican textbook of ninety-four pages was published. Lincoln’s speeches, along with [Congressman] Owen Lovejoy’s, were printed to familiarize the people with the horrors of slavery.” 3 On June 25, 1858, for example, Mr. Lincoln wrote Medill to explain his votes supporting the Mexican-American War, which had become the subject of an attack from the Chicago Times. He closed: “It is impossible to refer to all the votes I gave but the above I think are sufficient as specimens and you may safely deny that I ever gave any vote for withholding any supplies whatever, from officers or soldiers of the Mexican war.” 4

Medill was present when Mr. Lincoln prepared his questions for the crucial Freeport debate with Senator Stephen Douglas. The questions which Mr. Lincoln ultimately asked his Democratic opponent helped Douglas win reelection but helped doom his campaign for the Presidency. According to historian Don E. Fehrenbacher, Medill was responsible for a later distortion of what happened at that meeting. “Medill’s recollection was that Lincoln showed him the questions on the train to Freeport and that the objected to the second one because it would enable the Little Giant to escape from a ‘tight place.’ Lincoln stubbornly insisted, however, that he would ‘spear it at Douglas’ that afternoon. Before the debate, other prominent Republicans, at Medill’s urging, argued the point with Lincoln, but to no avail.” Medill’s account of what happened, constructed more than three decades after the event, contained “scarcely a word of truth,” according to Fehrenbacher. 5

Mr. Lincoln had written several leaders – including Chicago’s Norman Judd and Ebenezer Peck – to meet him before Freeport debate. In addition to preparing answers to the questions that Douglas had directed to him at the Ottawa debate, they apparently agreed to Medill’s suggestion to “put a few ugly questions” of his own to Douglas. So rather than restraining Mr. Lincoln in his questions, Medill actually promoted a tough approach. 6 “Don’t act on the defensive at all,” Medill counseled. “Don’t refer to your past speeches or positions,…but hold Dug up as a traitor and conspirator a proslavery bamboozling demogogue.” 7 Medill had continued to give Mr. Lincoln his energetic advice the next year, writing him before he set out on a campaign speaking tour in Ohio:

I send you Douglas’ late speech in Columbus Ohio. You will see the new grounds he takes and the new coloring he gives to his old dogmas I observe that you are invited to make speeches in Columbus & Cincinnati. You will draw big crowds and be well received. I know the Buckeyes well – being raised in that state.
Do not consider me presumptuous for offering a suggestion or two, viz: As you are not a candidate you can talk out as boldly as you please. There is no Egypt in Ohio Any doctrine you can teach in Bloomington will take in Columbus. Cincinnati is nearly as radical as Chicago. They are willing to obey the Fugitive law but want it repealed or modified and have so declared in their platform.
Dont act on the defensive, but pitch hot shot into the back of doughface and pro slavery democracy. Rake down the swindling pretension of Douglas that his Kansas Nebraska bill guarantees or permits popular sovignty. We have made a leading article on that subject in our today’s paper. If you will lay bare the fraud, delusion and sham of squatter sovrignty, you will do our cause in Ohio much service, as it will break the back of the Democratic pretense. You made some strong points in your Chicago speech a year ago on the drift and tendency of the principles of the Democracy, and the duty of patriots to resist the aggressions of the oligarchy Your peroration to the spirit of Liberty was capital. Look over that speech again. Do not fail to get off some of your “anecdotes & hits” – no people relish such things more than the Buckeyes. I have only one word more of advice to offer viz: Go in boldly, strike straight from the shoulder, – hit below the belt as well as above, and kick like thunder. 8

Medill first preferred fellow Ohioan Salmon Chase for the Republican presidential nomination in 1860. In October 30, he wrote that “Personally I prefer Gov. Chase to any man – believing that he possesses the best executive ability but if he is not considered available is not Old man the man to win with.” Medill added that “the friends of the gallant old Abe will never consent to put the tallest end of the ticket behind.” 9 Eventually, Medill helped pushed Chase supporters to Lincoln and guarantee his nomination. Indeed, the Tribune editors operated in their own self interest to promote Chicago as the site of the Republican National Convention. Medill himself personally went to New York in December 1859 for a meeting of the Republican National Committee to lobby for Chicago. Since Mr. Lincoln had not yet emerged as a prominent candidate, the selection of Chicago did not seem to favor one candidate over another.

Meanwhile, the Tribune started boosting Lincoln’s candidacy and Mr. Lincoln started for Chicago before going to New York to give him Cooper Institute speech. Shortly after Medill wrote an editorial endorsement, “The Presidency – Abraham Lincoln,” the future candidate showed them his draft Cooper Institute speech and asked for their suggestions. They diligently provided them before Mr. Lincoln left the next day. When the speech was subsequently published, they looked for signs of their contributions and found none. Dr. Charles Ray said to his partner: “Medill, old Abe must have lost out the car window all our precious notes, for I don’t find a trace of one of them in his published talk here.” Responded Medill: “[T]his must have been meant for one of his waggish jokes.” 10 By the time of the Republican National Convention in Chicago in mid-May, the support from the Chicago Press and Tribune was at a fever pitch. On the eve of the convention, its headline read: “The Winning Man, Abraham Lincoln.” 11

Medill later claimed to have had a critical role at the convention at a point when Mr. Lincoln was within a few votes of victory. He deliberately sat with the Ohio delegation in order to influence their votes, most of which were pledged to Salmon P. Chase: “After the second ballot, I whispered to [Chairman David] Cartter of Ohio, ‘If you can throw the Ohio delegation for Lincoln, Chase can have anything he wants.’ ‘H-how-d-d’ye know?’ stuttered Cartter. ‘I know, and you know I wouldn’t promise if I didn’t know,”Medill declared.” 12 Cartter switched the votes and Mr. Lincoln was nominated.

On May 27, 1860 Mr. Lincoln wrote Congressman Washburne that “this morning my partner, Mr. Herndon, receives a letter from Mr. Medill of the Tribune, showing the writer to be in great alarm at the prospect North of Republicans going over to Douglas, on the idea that Douglas is going to assume steep free-soil ground and furiously assail the administration on the stump when he comes home.” In early September Mr. Lincoln responded to a letter from Medill on political developments around the country. He concluded: “What you say about the Northern 30 counties of Illinois pleases me. Keep good your promise that they will give as much majority as they did for Fremont, and we will let you off. We can not be beaten, nor even hard run, in the state, if that holds true.” 13

By the end of the year, Medill was in great alarm – this time about Mr. Lincoln’s prospective appointments to his Cabinet – especially the rumors that Pennsylvania’s Simon Cameron would be named Secretary of the Treasury: “We feared that Lincoln was too much indebted to certain factions and now it is proved. Lincoln is a failure. Perhaps it is best to let disunionists take Washington and let Lincoln stay in Springfield.” 14 Medill was furious that Mr. Lincoln was once again ignoring the Tribune owners. He wrote partner Charles Ray: “If the reports from Springfield are true, there will not be one original Lincoln in the cabinet. It will be made up from many of his competitors, and enemies. The Cameron, Seward, Weed, George Low, Caleb B. Smith, Dr. [Charles] Leib, [Chicago Journal’s Charles] Wilson, John Wentworth tribe of thieves, jobbers and peculators will control ‘honest Abe’ body, soul and boots….We made Abe and by G- we can unmake him.” 15 Not even the prized appointment of a Tribune staffer – John L. Scripps – as Chicago’s postmaster appeased the Tribune management.

After Mr. Lincoln’s inauguration the editors turned truculent. Medill and Ray quarrelled over the paper’s treatment of John C. Frémont’s military leadership in Missouri Medill saw his incompetence before Ray. Medill became frequently critical of President Lincoln and moderates within his administration. He repeatedly tried to stiffen the government’s policy, writing President Lincoln after the attack on Fort Sumter in April 1861: “The North West will back you with their last man dollar and bushel of corn. The authority of the Govt. must be made good. Do your duty the people are with you.” 16 There was often a note of asperity in his letters. “Our nation is on the brink of ruin. Any steamer may bring the news of European intervention – the people know that when that happens the Union is gone, and the curse of posterity will rest on the memory of those who fooled away the day of grace. The verdict will be, ‘the harvest is past, the Summer is ended, but the nation is not saved. To placate a few hundred Kentucky slave-masters this great Republic was allowed to be shivered by rebellion and foreign intervention,'” he wrote in February 1862.

Medill was a strong supporter of recruiting black troops and ignoring the sentiments of border states on this issue. The attitude of the editors of the Chicago Tribune became a particular annoyance for the President. By 1862, according to historian Phillip Shaw Paludan, Medill “echoed a growing opinion that ‘[General George B.] McClellan in the field and [William H.] Seward in the cabinet have brought our grand cause to the very brink of death. Seward…is Lincoln’s evil genius. He has been President de facto and has kept a sponge saturated with chloroform to Uncle Abe’s nose all the while, except for one or two brief spells.” 17

Historian Mark E. Neely, Jr., wrote: “Medill became increasingly exasperated at Lincoln’s Cabinet selections, at the slow pace of the war once it began, and especially at Lincoln’s slowness to move against slavery. His letters became shrill: ‘for God’s sake and your country’s sake rise to the realization of our awful National peril,’ he told Lincoln early in 1862 Lincoln should not shape policies merely to ‘placate a few hundred Kentucky slave-masters.” 18 Medill was a strong advocate of emancipation – and strong supporter of the Emancipation Proclamation.

In June 1863, the Tribune’s editors sent a letter to John G. Nicolay in which they complained that were told that the President did not see the subscription to the Tribune which they had sent. Nicolay responded that the Tribune was placed on a table in his office along with other newspapers, where both presidential staff and visitors read it. Then Nicolay proceeded to berate the editors – while denying that he was transmitting the views of the President: “I can assure you of what you ought to be able to guess – that the President’s task here is no child’s play. If you imagine that any man could attempt its performance, and escape adverse criticism, you have read history in vain, and studied human nature without profit. But was it not to be expected that those of the President’s friends, who knew him long and intimately – who understood his integrity and his devotion to the country and the cause entrusted to his charge – would at least abstain from judging him in the blindness of haste, and condemning him in the bitterness of ill-temper? It does seem to me that this much was due to generosity and charity for the fiery trial which he is called upon to pass through here, if not to political or personal friendship.” Nicolay concluded: “Let me add that I desire to continue reading the Tribune – reserving only the privilege of find as much fault with it as it finds with the Administration, which I know is unselfishly endeavoring to do its whole duty in the crisis.” 19

It wasn’t the last time the Tribune editors bedeviled the President they helped elect. In 1864, a delegation from Chicago came to Washington protest the state’s draft allocation. Mr. Lincoln rebuked them generally for not supporting the draft and then rebuked Joseph Medill specifically: “And you, Medill, are acting like a coward. You and your Tribune have had more influence any paper in the Northwest in making this war. You can influence great masses, and yet you cry to be spared at a moment when the cause is suffering. Go home and send us those men.” 20

Nevertheless, Medill continued to visit to White House. He never made a complete break – even though he sought postponement of the 1864 Republican National Convention in order to find an alternative to President Lincoln or to put some spine in his policies. Medill’s impatience with the President show through a letter he wrote him in February 1864: “It is not very likely that anything I may write will induce you to act on the suggestions offered. Nevertheless I deem it my duty as one of your friends to speak of some things from my stand point. I take it for granted that you desire a re-nomination and re-election, and the most influential and powerful friend you have got is yourself. Without your own assistance the efforts of your friends won’t avail much. You have it in your power by a few simple moves on the chess board to defeat the game of your rivals, and finally check mate them.” 21 Sometime in 1864, Medill wrote presidential Nicolay a somewhat friendlier letter:

I am gratified at the president’s treatment of you and what he said in relation to my self. I was a little chagrined last May when I was in Washn. and could not get to see him I called four times and sent in my card each time, but was not received I thought it was unhandsome on his part but perhaps he was too busy. I have done as you know, first and last, a great deal for L. but never asked a personal favor of him to the value of a cent in return. We have accorded him a hearty support in any act of his, that was entitled to our backing. Of course we could not commend the proslavery features of the first 18 months of his administration. But while he has been true to anti slavery principles we have stood firmly for him and if he has chalked out a straight anti slavery policy for the future we are for his re?election against all others. 22

“Medill often opposed Lincoln, but the pressure from the President’s friends in the Windy City was too great to permit the editor to line up with [Salmon P.] Chase,” wrote historian William Frank Zornow. 23 According to historical writer Joseph Waugh, “By and large, [Medill] still supported his old friend. However, he was a radical in his convictions, tenacious in his policies, active and industrious on behalf of causes dear to him and often maddened by Lincoln’s hesitant, plodding approach to matters Medill thought urgent. Medill was an intense Republican who put the party above Lincoln in his scale of priorities. Occasionally he berated the president editorially, but he was convinced that God meant him to be reelected and there wasn’t anything that could be done to prevent it.” 24

When Medill had been in Washington in May 1863, he had written: “Not having either time or inclination to hang round waiting rooms among a wolfish crowd seeking admission to your presence for office or contracts or personal favors, I prefer stating in writing the substance of what I would say verbally. Your army is melting away rapidly by battle, disease and expiration of term of service, and there is great delay in putting the conscription act into effect.” He then proceeded to give his advice on the Army draft.

The end of the war and the death of Mr. Lincoln did not end the Tribune’s role in Lincoln Administration controversies. A year after President Lincoln’s death, Ward Hill Lamon had a feud with Horace White of the Chicago Tribune. “It so happened that the despicable faction which he, as a hireling served, gave Mr. Lincoln’s administration about the only serious trouble it ever had,” wrote Lamon. “He himself was the ‘On to Richmond’ correspondent of the Tribune, and the mischief he did was precisely commensurate with his mean ability. Mr. Lincoln gave one of the Tribune editors the lucrative office of postmaster at Chicago, and another the largest cotton permit ever issued, (by the way, this was given to the only gentleman I ever knew connected with this filthy sheet,) and the Tribune office controlled a large amount of executive patronage in Illinois but this generous effort to appease their cormorant appetites only stimulated them to publish more venomous and mendacious assaults upon him and his policy.” 25

Medill was elected mayor of Chicago in 1871 before returning to running the Tribune for the remainder of his life.

Joseph Medill - History

C hicago used to be a much dirtier place. This was especially true in the poor immigrant areas surrounding the Loop. As families who had “made it” moved out to new areas on the edges of the city, they left behind neighborhoods where many households still lacked indoor plumbing, and thus a place to bathe. This problem remained unsolved until the Progressive Era, when many reformers pushed for the city government to build public baths to improve hygiene.

The Municipal Order League, a women’s reform organization, led the campaign for public baths in Chicago. With the support of other reformers and the press, Mayor Hempstead Washburne and the city government joined the cause. Finally, the first public bath was constructed by the city and opened in 1894 on the Near West Side near Hull House.

Chicago built 19 public baths between 1894 and 1918. Two other baths were also provided inside water pumping stations for men only, bringing the total to 21. Patronage declined over the years, with laws requiring indoor plumbing facilities in apartments making bathhouses less essential. The city started closing the public baths after World War II. The last one open was the Robert A. Waller public bath at 19 S. Peoria, built to serve the Madison Street skid row district. It closed in 1979, after the heart of skid row began to be demolished for the Presidential Towers development.

Chicago’s public baths were simple and utilitarian. Most were named after notable public officials. Separate facilities for men and women were not provided they were simply accommodated for on different days. A waiting room was usually provided in a small outcropping to the side of the main building. The early bathhouses were built with very little ornament with the exception of the name of the bath above the entrance. Later bathhouses appear to have been built with more design in mind, but they were still very simple overall.

Of the nineteen bathhouses built by the city, four still exist: three in West Town and one in Pilsen. All have since been converted into private residences.

The Kosciuszko Bath, located at 1446 N. Greenview, opened in 1904. This is by far the most intact extant bath, notable because it is the only one that still has its original waiting room area off to the side. The details are unmistakably Municipal, as the “Y” Devices are prominent but un-embellished. There is one above the entrance to the waiting room (above right), as well as in the design of the wrought iron gate (left).

Left: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

The Lincoln Street bath is located at 1019 N. Wolcott, which was originally named Lincoln Street in the area. This bath, the second to last to be built, opened in 1918. One can definitely see the progression in bathhouse design here. This bath is only one story high and is a bit more ornate than earlier versions. The waiting room was probably off to the side behind the fence. A sign above the door announces the name of the bath on a familiar Park District sign, a remnant of the later era when they operated the bathhouses.

The Simon Baruch bath opened in 1910 and is located at 1911 W. Cullerton. It appears somewhat similar to the Lincoln Street Bath, as it is from the later era of bathhouse construction. A waiting room is not readily apparent from the exterior perhaps it was incorporated into the general design of the building.

Prussian/Polish immigrant physician Simon Baruch is considered the inventor of the bathhouse. In the late 19th century, he used his own funds to build public bathhouses in tenement districts of New York City. Interestingly enough, this bathhouse does not feature Baruch’s name on the facade instead it reads the generic “Chicago Public Bath.”

Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

Left: The Pilsen public bath was located at 1849 S. Throop. Opened in 1908, it looked similar to other baths of the era, such as the Medill and Kosciuszko baths. In this photo, it appears abandoned and quite neglected. A parking lot is in place where it formerly stood.

Right: Another bathhouse in the style of Medill and Kosciuszko. Named after Chicago’s first mayor, the William B. Ogden bath opened in 1906 in Bridgeport at 3346 S. Emerald. It appears to still be in good shape and in use as a private residence in this 1970s photo. Unfortunately, it has been demolished since then.

Illinois Historic Preservation Agency

Left: If this bathhouse looks much bigger and different than all the others…that’s because it is! One of the last bathhouses to be built, the Kedzie Avenue bath was built in 1918 at (fittingly) 2401 S. Kedzie. Its much bigger size can be attributed to the fact that it was also an infant welfare station, and its waiting room could double as an auditorium. This photo shows that it was still in relatively good shape, though it has since been demolished.

Right: The Robert A. Waller bath opened in 1901 at 19 S. Peoria. It was one of the earliest baths to open, and the oldest shown on this page. Its age may explain why it looks rather different when compared to later bathhouses. The name of the bath is nowhere to be found on the building, unless it was removed by the time this photo was taken in the 1970s. This bath served the Madison Street “Skid Row” district, and was the last public bathhouse in the city to be closed, in 1979.

This article was last updated on Friday, December 12th, 2008 at 10:19 pm.

Which Chicago mayor reformed the police and quit?

Long before critics started demanding Rahm Emanuel's resignation for not reforming the Police Department, another Chicago mayor did just that — then quit.

Joseph Medill occupied the office for scarcely 20 months and, in truth, was an accidental mayor — and a reluctant one at that.

The accident was the Great Chicago Fire, which began Oct. 8, 1871. Less than a month before that year's municipal elections, four-fifths of the city burned and 350,000 were made homeless. Stunned, Chicago's civic leaders realized that the city's survival depended upon setting aside the political squabbling for which it was famed. So they formed an ad hoc "Citizens Fire-Proof" party and asked Medill to head its nonpartisan ticket.

He was a logical choice. As editor of the Chicago Tribune, he saw its building consumed by the flames. Yet on Oct. 11 he managed to print a paper carrying a front-page editorial, beginning with the stirring words: "In the midst of a calamity without parallel in the world's history, looking upon the ashes of thirty years' accumulations, the people of this once beautiful city have resolved that CHICAGO SHALL RISE AGAIN."

Still, Medill initially declined to run. In a letter to a son-in-law, he explained that "the powers of the mayor were so restricted that he did not amount to much more than a figurehead."

But his suitors kept up the pressure, and Medill relented, while driving a hard bargain. He would run if they would sponsor a bill in the Illinois legislature amending Chicago's charter by putting some teeth in the mayor's prerogatives. Should the bill fail, Medill warned, "I would feel at liberty to resign the office and slip down and out."

Eventually he did "slip down and out," but not before changing the whole game of Chicago politics. Historians credit Medill with creating the mayor's office as we know it. Before him, mayors greeted visiting dignitaries and cut ribbons. The aldermen called the shots. But seizing on the powers handed him by the legislature — a veto over City Council actions, authority to hire and fire city officials — Medill set the stage for the strong-willed, occasionally strong-arming, mayors to come: Anton Cermak and Edward Kelly, co-founders of the Chicago Machine the two Daleys Jane Byrne Harold Washington and Rahm Emanuel.

It wasn't easy. Although Medill got three times the votes of his Democratic opponent in the November election, Democrats won seven of the 20 aldermanic seats, enough to ensure that the City Council wasn't going to roll over and play dead. For his part, Medill took a thinly veiled swipe at the Democrats In his inaugural address:

"When the municipal rulers of a city are sober, upright and honest men, and discharge their duties with integrity and dignity, they set an irresistible example for good before their fellow-citizens which powerfully quickens and promotes common honesty and fair dealing among all classes."

The implication was clear: I and my friends are honest you and yours are crooks. The city's population was then roughly half immigrants, and half patricians like Medill, who told a Senate committee that workers "squander the greater part of their wages in drink and tobacco." Medill denounced the spoils system, by which aldermen considered jobs and contracts as theirs to hand out. With the city's finances nearly exhausted, belt-tightening was in order, the mayor insisted. "The services of hundreds of persons now on the pay-rolls can be dispensed with."

Those different perspectives set up a prequel to the Council Wars of the Washington era in the 1980s. After the Chicago Fire, aldermen and real estate developers wanted to house the homeless in the same kind of frame buildings that had burned. In his inaugural address, Medill prophesied: "If we rebuild the city with this dangerous material, we have a moral certainty, at no distant day, of a recurrence of the catastrophe."

Medill won that battle, vetoing council ordinances allowing some frame construction, a victory consolidated by a new fire code that prohibited any new wooden structures in Chicago. The city limits of Medill's day are still to be seen along streets where brick-and-stone structures give way to wooden buildings.

Extracting the police and fire departments from the spoils system was tougher going. Aldermen were shocked when the corporation counsel, at Medill's bidding, ruled that they no longer could hire the cops. Wasn't that the way things were always done? For their part, council members challenged Medill's assertion that he had the authority to revoke saloon licenses. The neighborhood saloon was many a ward heeler's headquarters, a place to press the flesh and distribute largesse.

The two issues collided when Medill replaced the get-along-go-along police chief with a reform-minded cop who wasn't even a Chicagoan. Worse, the new chief ordered taverns to close at 11 p.m. The police board, an Old Guard stronghold, fired the police chief for "negligence of duty." In reality, it was for doing his duty, and Medill responded by firing two members of the police board. But when he nominated replacements, the remaining board members boycotted a meeting to confirm them, while the fired members showed up.

Under the headline "When Will It End?" the Tribune reported the resulting circus as if it were a fashion show: "It is true that the ex-commissioners were present, Mr. Reno in a striped overcoat and Mr. Klokko in a silk hat, which well became his classic cast of features."

In fact, the end was nigh for Medill's mayoralty. The culture wars were taking a toll on Medill, a teetotaler trying to govern a city of corner taverns. When immigrant groups organized a People's Party to oppose him — a mayor's term then was two years — he decided not to give them the opportunity. In August 1873, he informed the council he "would be absent from the city for an unspecified period of time." He went off on an extended European vacation, and the aldermen appointed an "acting mayor," who served the rest of Medill's term.

His reforms largely survived, though, and Medill returned to his earlier loves, journalism and political kibitzing. As editor of the Tribune, he offered advice to President William McKinley, as he previously had to President Abraham Lincoln. But asked to run for the U.S. Senate, Medill declined, indicating he'd learned a lesson during his brief time in Chicago's City Hall. He expressed it in true patrician style:

"Politics and office seeking are pretty good things to let alone for a man who has intellect and individuality."

History in River NorthVintage Restaurants

Gus and Ida Lazzerini opened this northern Italian restaurant in 1952 in what was then a heavily industrial neighborhood rich with printing companies and paper salesmen at 331 West Superior in the River North neighborhood of Chicago. They passed control to their son-in-law Francesco Nardini in 1980, when the locals were mostly photographers and art dealers.

The restaurant is now in its third generation and is operated by Francesco's sons GianCarlo and Guido, who serve the same family-style Italian fare in a neighborhood now flooded with condominiums and warehouse lofts. The restaurant, with its nautical-themed interior, still looks much the same as it did back in the 1950's, and its tin ceiling dates back to 1893.

Gene & Georgetti, Chicago's oldest steakhouse, has been serving prime cuts from the same historic location since 1941 at 500 North Franklin in River North. Gene Michelotti, an Italian emigre and avuncular host, and his chef friend, Alfredo Federighi (nicknamed "Georgetti" after a famed Italian cyclist), breathed life into their American dream in this wooden building, erected in 1872 shortly after the Great Fire.

Today, this Chicago institution, a longtime haven for celebrity diners, is operated by Tony Durpetti, who grew up a few doors down from the restaurant and married Gene's daughter, Marion. The chef, the bartender, and many of the waitstaff have been mainstays of the restaurant, many having worked there for several decades.

Ike Sewell (an All-Southwestern Conference guard for the University of Texas football team in 1924) and his italian-born business partner Richard Novaretti (otherwise known as Ric Riccardo) created the world's first deep dish pizza at 29 East Ohio Street in 1943, although some sources report that the concept was actually developed by their chef, Rudy Malnati.

The restaurant was originally known as "The Pizzeria" and then became "Pizzeria Riccardo." The deep dish pizza was so popular that in 1955 they opened a second pizzeria a block away at 619 N. Wabash, where it (too) remains today. The second restaurant was named "Pizzeria Due," and, upon its opening, the original restaurant at this location was renamed "Pizzeria Uno." Today, Pizzeria Uno is a national chain, but old school Chicagoans know that it was born at this very location. (Incidentally, the guy who typically gets the credit for starting it all, Ike Sewell, died of leukemia in 1990 at age 87.)

  • Ike Sewell and his business partner Richard Novaretti (better known as Ric Riccardo) opened a pizzeria at 29 East Ohio Street in 1943 and began serving the world's first deep-dish pizza. Their new twist on a millennium-old dish was such an immense hit that they were unable to accommodate the demand, so in 1955 they opened a second restaurant at 619 North Wabash Avenue in the River North neighborhood of Chicago, about a block away. They named the second restaurant "Pizzeria Due" and promptly changed the name of the first restaurant (then known as "Pizzeria Riccardo") to "Pizzeria Uno."

The Billy Goat Tavern has easily achieved more notoriety than any burger joint in Chicago history. Originally opened in the shadow of the old Chicago Stadium by the eccentric William (Billy) Sianis in either 1934 or 1937, it gained its first blast of publicity in 1944, when Billy hung a sign saying "No Republicans Allowed" during the Republican National Convention.

The following year, the Billy Goat Tavern became indelibly and supernaturally entangled in the city's sports history. Before the fourth game of the 1945 World Series, with the Cubs leading the Detroit Tigers two games to one, Sianis attempted to bring his pet billy goat into Wrigley Field, but was turned away, allegedly by William Wrigley himself and allegedly because the goat smelled bad. Sianis, angry and upset, retaliated by purporting to place a curse on the Cubs, vowing that they would never again return to the World Series. The hapless northsiders went on to lose the 1945 affair and, ostensibly because of the "Curse of the Billy Goat," have not returned since, despite being painfully close on a number of occasions. Some observers of paranormal activity insist that the curse reared its ugly head in the form of a black cat tiptoeing past Hall-Of-Famer Ron Santo at Shea Stadium shortly before the Cubs blew a monumental first-place lead during the 1969 season. Other mediums of the supernatural claim that the curse caused a routine ground ball to pass unobstructed through Leon Durham's legs in the 1984 National League Championship Series. Still other psychic observers assert that the curse reappeared in the form of Steve Bartman in 2003. The Billy Goat Tavern relocated to 430 North Michigan Avenue (Lower Level) of Michigan Avenue in 1964 and soon became a favorite lunching spot for journalists at the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Sun-Times, most notably Mike Royko. Bill Murray, a frequent diner, made the Billy Goat Tavern the subject of a famous Saturday Night Live sketch in which the proprietors famously shouted "Cheezborger, cheezborger, cheezborger!" and replied, "No Coke. Pepsi." (Or "No Fries. Chips.") Today, there are several additional BIlly Goat locations around the city, and it's "No Pepsi. Coke."

Just after the Great Fire incinerated most of Chicago in 1871, a local engineer named James McCole built a two-story, balloon-frame wooden structure with a detached garage at the southwest corner of Huron and Orleans. A few months later, the city council passed an ordinance prohibiting the construction of wooden buildings in the downtown district, making McCole's structure one of the few remaining wooden structures built prior to the "new" law.

In 1921, a man named Vito Giacomo opened a restaurant on the first floor, replacing a grocery store that operated there for the preceding 49 years. The restaurant, known as "The Green Door," snuck through the Prohibition era as a speakeasy (which apparently explains its name). The building tilts slightly toward the north because it began to settle into the Earth in the early 1900's.

Harry Caray was a frequent visitor, and one of his Budweiser commercials was even filmed here at 678 North Orleans Street. The tavern, which has changed very little through the years, is peppered with such "bric-a-brac" as antique signs, posters, photographs, and other nostalgia. What's more, the soap box car hanging from the ceiling was once used in a race in which Illinois native and former United States President Ronald Reagan once participated.

Gino's East was founded in 1966 at 160 E. Superior by two taxi drivers and their friend. It soon became renowned for both its food and its heavily-scribbled upon interior. In 2000, the pizzeria moved to this location (site of the defunct Planet Hollywood), along with the graffiti-covered walls and the pizza ovens. In 2006, a second Gino’s East opened at essentially the original location of the first one.

(Note: Gino’s East should not be confused with the original Gino’s, which opened at 932 North Rush Street in 1954, decayed rapidly, failed to enjoy the same sterling reputation of Gino’s East, and ultimately closed in 2007.)

Here are some interesting facts and body measurements you should know about Joseph Albright.

Joseph Albright Bio and Wiki

  • Full Names: Joseph Medill Patterson Reeve
  • Popular As: Businessman and news publisher
  • Gender: Male
  • Occupation / Profession: Businessman and news publisher
  • Nationality: American
  • Race / Ethnicity: To be updated
  • Religion: To be updated
  • Sexual Orientation: Straight

Joseph Albright Birthday

  • Age / How Old?: 83 years old as of 2020
  • Zodiac Sign: To be updated
  • Date of Birth: 1937
  • Place of Birth: To be updated
  • Birthday: To be updated

Joseph Albright Body Measurements

  • Height / How Tall?: To be updated
  • Weight: To be updated
  • Eye Color: To be updated
  • Hair Color: To be updated
  • Shoe Size: To be updated

Joseph Albright Family and Relationship

  • Father (Dad): Jay Frederick Reeve (1893–1956).
  • Mother: Josephine Medill Patterson (1913–1996).
  • Siblings (Sisters): Alice Arlen
  • Marital Status: Married
  • Wife/Spouse: Married to Marcia Kunstel and Madeleine Albright (m. 1959–1982).
  • Dating / Girlfriend: Not Applicable
  • Children: Sons (None) Daughter(s) (Anne, Alice, and Katie).

Joseph Albright Networth and Salary

  • Net Worth: $1 million – $5 million as of 2020.
  • Salary: Under Review
  • Source of Income: Businessman and news publisher

A House Once More Divided

Georgiann Baldino has been publishing fiction and nonfiction since 2004, primarily concerning the American Civil War era. Her most recent book, A Family and Nation Under Fire, from Kent State University Press is a collection of previously unpublished journals and correspondence between Maj. William Medill, 8th Illinois Cavalry, and older brother Joseph, one of the influential owners of the Chicago Tribune.

Beginning with the Three-Fifths Compromise in the U.S. Constitution, United States history is filled with &ldquocompromises&rdquo intended to preserve a rough balance of power between slave-holding and free states. The Three-Fifths Compromise was followed by the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and the Compromise of 1850. These negotiations helped America delay war, but after the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854, further concessions meant not only preserving but expanding slavery.

The election of Abraham Lincoln outraged many in the South. South Carolina Governor Francis Pickens declaredprior to the Civil Warhe &ldquowould be willing to cover the state with ruin, conflagration and blood rather than submit&rdquo to abolition.(1) After decades of compromise on the issue of slavery, South Carolina became the first state to secede. Ultimately Governor Pickens reached his goal, but before peace was restored, conflagration and blood truly covered South Carolina.

Lincoln&rsquos campaign and election prompted a different response from activists like Joseph Medill, co-owner and editor of the Chicago Tribune. Medill was motivated by a desire to preserve the Union and emancipate slaves, and he felt a good newspaper must report stories in ways that advanced society. To him that meant abolishing slavery. Joseph became a key player in a new generation of abolitionist leadership.

Public advocacy in the Tribune made Joseph a target. In 1860 while in Washington, D.C., he criticized concessionists, the position of Illinois Congressman William Kellogg. At the National Hotel, Congressman Kellogg attacked Joseph, landing blows to Joseph&rsquos head and face. Kellogg had been appointed to the Committee of Thirty-Three of the U. S. House of Representatives, tasked with averting a civil war. Joseph described the assault in a letter to his wife, Katherine: &ldquoWm. Kellogg started home in a hurry to Springfield to help beat Judd (2) for a place in the Cabinet. He is talking compromise. He [Kellogg] is a cowardly Republican and wants to back down. I quarreled with him." (3)

Joseph Medill and his partner, Dr. Charles Ray, used the pages of the Tribune to support the Lincoln administration and rally the public to the cause of emancipation. Joseph urged the swift organization of black regiments and broadcast the goals for the Union League of America (U.L.A.,) a group established to promote loyalty to the Union. Joseph played a prominent role in Union League programs.(4) The U.L.A. supported organizations such as the United States Sanitary Commission and provided funding and organizational support to the Republican Party.

Joseph&rsquos early public calls for war turned to personal anxiety and grief when two of his younger brothers became casualties of war. Yet, he continued to support a war of liberation and pursue principles of freedom and self-government. Joseph provides a poignant example of moral imperative informing political activism.

Abraham Lincoln and supporters like Joseph Medill taught that politics must not violate human rights. Immoral behavior must never be subject to a majority vote. Robert Todd Lincoln explained his father&rsquos views on democracy eloquently in 1896. &ldquoIn our country there are no ruling classes. The right to direct public affairs according to his might and influence and conscience belongs to the humblest as well as to the greatest&hellipBut it is time of danger, critical moments, which bring into action the high moral quality of the citizenship of America.&rdquo(5)

People didn&rsquot grasp the danger of a house divided then, and many fail to grasp it now, but history repeats itself in elusive, yet profound, ways. Today, the ugly specter of divided parties returns. No matter which party we align with, President Trump&rsquos ability to divide us and willingness to condone violence should alarm us all.

From the beginning of his campaign, Donald Trump used rhetoric to incite supporters, using baseless slurs to disparage immigrants (6) and political opponents. During the presidential campaign in March 2016, it seemed unlikely that Trump had enough votes at the Republican National convention to secure his nomination. If that happened, Trump warned during an interview with CNN, &ldquoI think you would have riots.&rdquo (7) When President Trump wages verbal war with the intelligence community and independent sources of investigation, he provokes division that threaten to become an &ldquoirrepressible conflict,&rdquo echoing the pre-Civil-War rancor. If Americans don&rsquot reject politicians who divide us, condone violence, label a group of people as criminal, and another group enemies of the people, we do so at our own peril.

Once again we face dilemmas that require as much of us as any time in the nation&rsquos past. Modern Americans tend to take our stable democracy for granted, but Mr. Lincoln realized the freedoms gained in the Revolution could be lost. He enlisted newsmen like Joseph Medill to champion justice and liberty. Lincoln understood that involved citizens preserve the union, and he taught a vital lesson that only when human rights are respected is democracy worth preserving.

(1) Orville Vernon Burton, Age of Lincoln, (New York : Hill and Wang, 2007)118.

(2) Longtime Lincoln friend and supporter Norman Judd did not receive a Cabinet post but was named Minister to Prussia.

(3) Georgiann Baldino, Editor, A Family and Nation Under Fire, (Kent: Kent State University Press, 2018) 25.

(4) Robert McCormick&rsquos papers in the McCormick Research Center at the First Division Museum, Medill Family Correspondence.

(5) Speech of the Hon. Robert T. Lincoln made at the Celebration of the Thirty-eighth Anniversary of the Lincoln-Douglas Debate, Galesburg, Ill., October 7, 1858(Hancock NY: Herald Print, 1921) 2.

For Journalists

EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications will mark its Centennial this year with speakers, research and celebratory events through spring of 2022. The theme for the year is “Unparalleled Past, Unlimited Future.”

The school was founded on Feb. 8, 1921 with nine undergraduate students. Today, Medill provides instruction on five campuses around the world and has more than 18,000 alumni who are leaders in journalism, media, marketing, communications and more.

Leading up to Medill’s incorporation, Chicago Tribune reporter Edward J. Doherty urged Northwestern President Walter Dill Scott and Tribune publisher Robert R. McCormick to start a journalism program at Northwestern. With funding from the Tribune and backing from McCormick, the school was established. It was named for Joseph Medill, McCormick’s grandfather. Joseph Medill was a leading abolitionist who used the newspaper he owned, the Chicago Tribune, to promote anti-slavery views and helped catapult Abraham Lincoln to the U.S. presidency. He also served as mayor of Chicago following the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.

“For 100 years, Medill has trained the world’s best storytellers,” said Medill Dean Charles Whitaker, a longtime faculty member and Medill alumnus. “Whether they are journalists who record the first draft of history or marketers blending data with creativity, Medill students and alumni craft the narratives of the events, people and brands that populate and animate our world. I am proud of what we’ve collectively accomplished in our first 100 years, and am excited by the work we’re doing to prepare for our next 100 years.”

Medill is marking its Centennial in myriad ways including a dedicated Centennial website that includes a timeline of its history, alumni memories, ways for people to get involved with the Centennial celebration and thoughts from faculty about where Medill will go in the next 100 years.

To commemorate the milestone in its history, Medill will also host virtual events beginning in February 2021 with in-person events to follow when possible through the spring of 2022. Events are open to the public. The first event will be a Medill Trivia night on Monday, Feb. 8, 2021 at 6 p.m. Central. A commemorative issue of the Medill alumni magazine will be published this spring with a special retrospective on the school’s history. Banners on Sheridan Road in Evanston will highlight the work of students in the past and today. An online exhibit with University Libraries is also planned.

For more information and a full list of events, visit the Medill Centennial website .


There are other important subjects to which I would call your attention were this communication not already too long. But I found it impossible to discuss the extraordinary condition of things in which the fire has placed the City Government in the brief space usually occupied by a Mayor’s inaugural. In concluding I point with pride and admiration to the gigantic efforts our whole people are putting forth to rise from the ruins, and rebuild Chicago. The money value of their losses can hardly be calculated. But who can compute the aggregate of anguish, distress, and suffering they have endured and must yet endure? These wounds are still sore and agonizing, though they have been greatly alleviated by the prompt, generous, and world-wide charities that have been poured out for their succor and relief and I claim in their behalf that they are showing themselves worthy the benefactions received. They have faced their calamity with noble fortitude and unflinching courage. Repining or lamentation is unheard in our midst, but hope and cheerfulness are everywhere exhibited and expressed. All are inspired with an ambition to prove to the world that they are worthy of its sympathy, confidence and assistance, and to show how bravely they can encounter disaster, how quickly repair losses, and restore Chicago to her high rank among the great cities of the earth.

Happily there is that left which fire cannot consume—habits of industry and self-reliance, personal integrity, business aptitude, mechanical skill, and unconquerable will. These created what the flames devoured, and these can speedily recreate more than was swept away. Under free institutions, good government, and the blessings of Providence, all losses will soon be repaired, all misery caused by the fire assuaged, and a prosperity greater than ever dreamt of will be achieved in a period so brief, that the rise will astonish mankind even more than the fall of Chicago.

Watch the video: Fire boat NO 37 Joseph Medill