Chicago Genealogical Society

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  • CGS Genealogical Bus Tour: The Great Chicago Fire

CGS Genealogical Bus Tour: The Great Chicago Fire

  • 2 Oct 2021
  • 9:30 AM - 4:00 PM
  • Ogilvie Transportation Center, Madison St between Canal & Clinton Streets
  • 0


  • Box lunch included with registration
  • Box lunch with registration

Registration is closed

The Chicago Fire of October 1871 was a disaster for the City of Chicago as well as for genealogists interested in researching Chicago family history. On this 150th Anniversary of the outbreak of the Chicago Fire, it is most appropriate for our Chicago Genealogical Society to offer a genealogically related tour of the fire area. During the tour, discussions about those family history related materials which were either destroyed by or saved from the fire will take place. Additionally, the tour will allow family historians to view (and learn more about) those areas and sites in the city both ravaged by the fire and which survived the fire.

The tour will be led by Craig Pfannkuche of the Chicago Genealogical Society who specializes in Chicago family history research and whose father was a Captain on the Chicago Fire Department.

After a stop at the Chicago Firefighter’s Memorial (just west of the old Chicago Union Stock Yards entrance gate), the tour will visit sites such as DeKoven Street, the Old Federal Courthouse site, the LaSalle Street under the river tunnel, the Chicago City Cemetery, the Chicago Water Tower, Mahlon Ogden’s house site, St. Michael’s Church, as well as two family homes near Fullerton Avenue which “survived” the fire as well a wood brick paved alley from 1869 among a number of other important stops. 

The tour attendees will be moved from site to site in a luxury motor coach and will include a number of very short walks as well as a lunch stop probably at Washington Square Park.

Our bus will depart promptly at 9:30am from (and return to) the northwest corner of the Ogilvie Transportation Center (where food & bathrooms are easily available, located on Madison St between Canal & Clinton Streets). We will return around 4:00pm. Off street pay parking is available in the area nearby around Clinton and Monroe Streets. Note - We ask you to follow the current Chicago Department of Public Health guidelines regarding COVID-19 if you attend this event. Masks will be required on the bus. There will be six stops to be able to stand and walk outside.  

Register and pay online at under Events by selecting tour cost & lunch choice(s).

Tour cost: $45 members and $55 non-member, additional fee $15 if you order lunch. You are also welcome to bring your lunch.

Panera Box Lunch Choices are:

o Bacon Turkey Bravo Sandwich: Smoked turkey breast, smoked bacon, smoked gouda, lettuce, tomatoes & Panera’s signature dressing, on tomato basil bread. Includes sandwich, chips, pickle, and cookie.

o BBQ Chicken Sandwich: Smoked chicken, BBQ sauce, red onions, white cheddar & frizzled onions on classic white bread. Includes sandwich, chips, pickle, and cookie.

o Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich: Zesty sweet Peppadew™ piquant peppers, feta cheese, cucumbers, hummus, lettuce & red onions on tomato basil bread. Includes sandwich, chips, pickle, and cookie.

o Tuna Salad Sandwich: Tuna with leaf lettuce, tomatoes and red onions on black pepper focaccia. Includes sandwich, chips, pickle, and cookie.

o Caesar Salad with Chicken: Chicken, romaine, parmesan, & black pepper focaccia croutons tossed with Caesar dressing. Includes salad, French baguette & cookie.

Bottled water and soda will be provided for all participants for lunch.

Space is limited - first come, first reserved. A waitlist option will be available. Registration will close September 25, 2021. No refunds after September 25, 2021. The online payment service fee of $2.50 will be deducted from refunds.  

Chicago Genealogical Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.  Address: PO Box 1160, Chicago, IL  60690-1160

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