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Historical Facts

8 Oct 1871

todayOctober 8, 2022

Background

Great Chicago Fire begins
On October 8, 1871, flames spark in the Chicago barn of Patrick and Catherine O’Leary, igniting a two-day blaze that kills between 200 and 300 people, destroys 17,450 buildings, leaves 100,000 homeless and causes an estimated $200 million (in 1871 dollars; roughly $4 billion in 2021 dollars) in damages.

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