Re: Who's Your Greatest Chicagoan Of Alltime ?
Date: September 12, 2014 02:01PM
I would be compelled to nominate John Peter Altgeld. Even though I am politically and socially pretty conservative, I really respect the way he stood up for the right even at an extreme personal cost. After pardoning the Haymarket Trial convicts, the monied interests here hounded him until he lost his personal fortune. Other candidates might be Dwight Lyman Moody, the evangelist, and the man who originally supported him, John Villers Farwell. Farwell, almost unknown today, was really a devoted civic leader. He was a wholesale merchant that gave Marshall Field, Potter Palmer, Levi Leiter, and Aaron Montgomery Ward their starts, was instrumental in the founding of the YMCA in Chicago, was instrumental in relief for Civil War prisoners here (Moody's second ministry here), and somewhat phenomenally, together with his brother Charles built the Texas state capital of Austin, receiving something like eight counties of land in exchange. Henry Parson Crowell of Quaker Oats fame might be another consideration, as he gave up to 90% of his income to charity each year and supported many great institutions here.