On today’s date in 1871, a fire began in the barn of Patrick and Catherine O’Leary of Chicago. Two days later, 7,450 buildings had been destroyed and 100,000 people were homeless. A big chunk of the business district was in ruins.
Never mind that the weather conditions were dry. We forget that all those buildings, as well as the streets and sidewalks were made of wood. Forget that there had been numerous fires in Chicago before this one, so fires were nothing new.
Who got the blame for the fire?
Mrs. O’Leary’s cow.
I guess I should note that over one hundred years later, the Chicago City Council exonerated Mrs. O’Leary and her cow.
But it is a sad reflection on our history that a massive fire was not blamed on poor planning, but on a woman and a cow, neither of whom had any power or influence in 1870’s Chicago.
Today as we remember that great fire, how about leaving them out of it.
33 thoughts on “Fires, Cows, and Faulty History”
Good on you for setting the record straight 🙂
Take care x.
Hello! How’s things? I’m sorry, I promise i’ll be by for a visit soon!
Just like humans to blame a poor innocent woman and her COW fur that disaster. The poor woman must have been afraid to ever leave her house! And how generous of them to exonerate her 100 years later (after she’s dead and gone)…I’ll bet she was so relieved! (HISS!!)
Actually she DID become reclusive afterward.
Those dumb humans….jeez.
Reblogged this on rr25599.
It’s sad that is took so long for them to realize the blame wasn’t with an animal but with them.
Thanks for sharing!
Nacho, Noah, Buddy & Basil
Only long enough for those who profited financially to die off!
So unfair…and too little too late for the falsely accused 😦 I must say that is beautiful cow and was wondering how old it was 🙂
I dunno. A co-worker of Jen’s took that photo.
I am sure it’s most definitely not the same poor accused moo cow Rumpy 🙂
(Um, Rumpy…..not meaning to be the snobby proofreader, but you may wanna check the date in your opening sentence….)
And I agree: so glad the cow was pronounced not guilty…after all those years.
Thanks! I fixed that!
At least they didn’t blame it on jews, Chinese people, Indians, black people, muslims or any minority ( f.e. the red-haired) they’d like to harass.
I don’t see a difference myself. Blaming the powerless is the same.
Leave cows and red-haired people alone! I like them both!
That’s a relief. ^^
good to know
I wish things had changed. I suppose that while people will accept being given a scapegoat, it will continue.
that means since 1871 it has not changed much :o) …the weakest goes to the wall.
Poor Mrs. O’Leary and her cow!
One of the latest theories on the Chicago Fire is that it was caused by a meteorite that broke up over that part of the continent. Wisconsin had devastating forest fires that same night, and if you draw a line from where all of the Wisconsin fires were it points directly to Chicago. Interesting to say the least!
Very interesting history, Rumpy…..poor mrs O’leary and her cow though….I wished the exoneration had been much much earlier….at least mrs O’leary and her cow had been still alive….
Poor Mrs. O’Leary and her cow. 😦
As a hooman born and raised in Chicago I totally agree with You:)!!
Musta been the methane gas, ha ha
But.. but.. that’s so silly! Hoomins can be so silly! :s
The poor cow and Mrs. O’Leary. They had no one else to blame, so why not.
they had plenty to blame, but chose to target a poor, powerless woman who had to live the rest of her life in seclusion.
good job Rumpy! 🙂
Rumpy, you’re a wonderful advocate for intelligent fact finding say it honestly folks and we applaud. Well done!
History certainly was unfair to Mrs. O’Leary and her cow. Thanks for speaking up for animals (and Mrs. O’Leary).