(WTTW News)

Meet Ellis Chesbrough, Chicago’s first city engineer and designer of the water delivery system we still use today. WTTW News Explains how water cribs work out on Lake Michigan. 

This Aug. 17, 2021, photo shows Quagga mussels cover the engine of a Bell P-39 Airacobra military plane in Lake Huron, Mich., as maritime archaeologist Carrie Sowden, rear, documents the site.(Wayne Lusardi via AP)

An invasive mussel is destroying shipwrecks deep in the depths of the Great Lakes, forcing archeologists and amateur historians into a race against time to find as many sites as they can before the region loses any physical trace of its centuries-long maritime history.

Paul Fehribach cooks Chicago-style barbecue. (WTTW News)

You can rag on our region for Crock Pot meals loaded with cream of mushroom soup, or salads mostly made of marshmallows and Cool Whip. But one Chicago chef says the culinary depth and national influence the Midwest has had on America’s taste is underestimated.

(Kristan Lieb / WTTW)

The Folded Map action kit aims to help Chicagoans explore the effects of segregation in the city and how it continues to perpetuate racial inequities.

(Eastland Disaster Historical Society)

The Eastland Disaster, often overlooked in history, occurred in 1915 when a passenger ship docked at the Clark Street Bridge tipped over in the Chicago River, leading to the deaths of 844 people.

 An undated portrait of Emmett Louis Till, a Black 14-year-old Chicago boy, whose weighted down body was found in the Tallahatchie River near the Delta community of Money, Mississippi, August 31, 1955. (AP Photo, File)

Biden will sign a proclamation on Tuesday to create the Emmett Till and Mamie Till-Mobley National Monument across three sites in Illinois and Mississippi, according to the official. 

The Rev. Jesse Jackson speaks to attendees at the inaugural Sunday Dinner event, hosted by the South Carolina Democratic Party’s Black Caucus, Sunday, March 27, 2022, in Columbia, S.C. (AP Photo / Meg Kinnard, File)

A spokesperson for U.S. Rep. Jonathan Jackson confirmed the long-time civil rights leader would be retiring from the organization.

 James Lewis is escorted through Boston's Logan Airport, Friday Oct. 13, 1995, after being released from the Federal Correctional Institution in Oklahoma.  (AP Photo / Charles Krupa, File)

No one was ever charged in the deaths of seven people who took drugs laced with cyanide. Lewis served more than 12 years in prison for sending an extortion note to Johnson & Johnson, demanding $1 million to “stop the killing.”

Kayak and canoe outfitter Jessie Fuentes walks along the Rio Grande under a warm sun Thursday, July 6, 2023. (AP Photo / Eric Gay, File)

Heat preparedness has generally improved over the years. Chicago, for example, has expanded its emergency text and email notification system and identified its most vulnerable residents for outreach.

Dick Biondi appears on “Chicago Tonight” in 2003. (WTTW News)

In the pantheon of Chicago disc jockeys, Dick Biondi was a superstar. In a 2003 appearance on “Chicago Tonight,” he recounts his meeting with The Beatles.  

Newton Minow. (WTTW)

Newton Minow may have done more to improve the quality of television in the United States than any other person. “I saw using this medium certainly for entertainment, but also for education in the large sense, for stimulation, for ... I would hope, inspiration,” he said.

This photo provided by Lee County Historical and Genealogical Society shows the Truesdell Bridge in Dixon, Ill., in 1873. On May 4, 1873, a crowd of more than 200 gathered on the bridge to watch a baptism when it toppled over, trapping dozens of victims just inches below the river's surface. (Charles Keyes / Lee County Historical and Genealogical Society via AP)

Post-Civil War Dixon, 103 miles west of Chicago, was a growing city split by the formidable Rock River. On May 4, 1873, the 4-year-old bridge twisted, splintered and rolled over. Forty-six people perished, many immured by the unrelenting gridiron just below the water’s surface. 

Sheila Smith, Martha Scott, Diane Stevens and Judith Arcana were four of seven women arrested for performing illegal abortions in Chicago. (Credit: HBO)

A band of young women — most in their 20s, some in college, some married with children — banded together in Chicago to create an underground abortion network. The group was officially created in 1969 as the “Abortion Counseling Service of Women’s Liberation.”

W.G.N. Flag and Decorating Company employees make a Chicago flag. (WTTW News)

Many of the flags waving from civic buildings aren’t just representing Chicago, they’re made in the city’s South Shore neighborhood, by Chicago residents, who work for a company known as W.G.N.

(WTTW News)

Saturday marks the 186th anniversary of Chicago’s founding as a city. As the candles on its birthday cake have grown with the passing years, so too have Chicago’s borders. Here’s a look at how a once small-but-mighty city gobbled up surrounding land.

The nearly 7-foot-tall “Visions of Eternity” seemed to be an outlier among Salvador Dalí's work from the 1930s. (Salvador Dalí / Fundació Gala-Salvador Dalí / Artists Rights Society)

The curators, both working on the Art Institute of Chicago’s first show dedicated to Salvador Dalí, were researching his painting “Visions of Eternity,” which was dated to 1936 and had been held in the museum since the late 1980s. But red flags were mounting.