The Fake History of Chicago

How fake is the History you learn in school and on TV? Is it a little fake, because of human error? Or is it partially fake because History is written by the victors of war? Or is it completely fake, because Planet Earth is not at all what it seems? The more I learn, the more I think it’s completely fake. From A to Z. Fabricated reality.

This idea seems scary to a lot of people. The implications! But it’s not scary to me, it’s liberating. Instead of having drawn and settled conclusions about everything, I can re-discover the whole world with new eyes. If you look at History through the lenses of “fake”, it’s staggering what you discover.

Today I randomly chose Chicago to prove this point. The fact that I can randomly choose any place on the map to prove fake History, shows just how lazy the fabricators of History are.


The miraculous appearance of a mega-city

The common narrative around Chicago is that in the 1820s it was nothing but a couple of houses and a farm at best. I have a clear memory of my childhood schooling, where I was shown a picture like this (I grew up not far from Chicago, so our curriculum included some “Chicago History”):


How quaint. Easily impressionable as a child, I had no reason to doubt this. I liked the picture and stared at it for a while. The teacher would give me good grades if I learned this stuff. And so I locked this content into my mind. It become a foregone conclusion. I was happy that I had “learned” something, not realizing that my mind had just closed to other possibilities.

And this image is listed on historical websites for “Chicago in the 1830s”:


That’s roughly the same scenario as 1820.¬† Not much change in the ten years.

According to this Wikipedia-Map, the population of Chicago in 1830 was close to zero:

One could say that Chicago didn’t exist as a place. A couple of houses in the fields aren’t even a proper village.

Then, in 1853, only 20 years later, Chicago was a sprawling city with massive cathedrals, factories, bank buildings, court houses and high rises:

And in 1857, just 5 years more we have a megalopolis that can compete with New York City, London or Rome:

Wow. That’s impressive. Imagine a small group of wooden-carriage riding cowboys and pilgrims building this vast city within a very short time. What a colossal triumph!

This is a photo of a Chicago courthouse in 1855, just to get an idea of the size of some of these buildings.


This photo of another Chicago courthouse, is said to be from 1853:


Here’s another Chicago courthouse from the 1800s:


An early 1850s view on Princess street:


You get a sense of just how great a feat it was to build an entire city like this in just the 10 years of the 1840s.

For a people who could barely build wooden shacks, a truly miraculous undertaking. ūüôā

The newly built One-World-Trade Center in NYC, took 50 000 people 12 years to build! And that’s just one structure. And yet, history books are selling the idea that an entire city of advanced, grand architecture was built in max. 15 years by a scattering of Americans who were known for building nothing more than their little house on the prairie.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not impossible to build a city in 15 years. I’m sure it’s happened many times. But when it happens, we have proposals, designs, construction photos, documentation and reports of such a vast project. We learn from where the materials were quarried. We’ll find stories of hardship and heroism during the gargantuan rise of a city which was to become one of the largest in the world. As far as I can tell, such documentation is absent.

In fact, there is a huge gap in 1840s information on Chicago! There is zero photographic evidence.

Searching the Internet, I only found one panoramic drawing of Chicago, alleged to be from 1845.


A bit sparse for the most important decade in Chicago History.

The Library of Congress runs a newspaper archive where you can find all kinds of U.S. newspapers dating back hundreds of years. You can find the archive here: Chronicling America

I input “Chicago”, to look for newspaper articles from the 1840s. As you see below, I found articles from the 1830s and 1850s.¬† But there are none for the 1840s. This is the time we ought to find the most articles, because it’s the time Chicago was allegedly built.


I use search engines to input “Chicago 1840” “Chicago 1841” and all the way up to 1849 to find something – anything, but find nothing. A decade erased from History. Where is the evidence that Chicago was a hustling and bustling town full of construction work and hundreds of thousands of workers migrating there from afar in the 1840s? Surely it would be shown or mentioned somewhere?

Hmm…maybe it was destroyed in the Great Fire of Chicago in 1871? But we have documentation of the 1860s, 1850s, 1830s and 1820s. It’s the 1840s – the time Chicago was allegedly built – that are missing. Fire is not selective.

But then, after a whole hour of search, a breakthrough. Evidence that Chicago was already a big city as early as 1834:


The source of this image: Wood Cut of Chicago 1834. From the website Encyclopedia of Chicago History.

Are you confused by now? So am I. The official narrative says that in the 1830s, Chicago was just a small farm and a few tents. One of these two ideas of Chicago in the 1830s must be made up. The description below the photo says:

the depiction is more predictive than historically accurate, since in 1834 Chicago was neither this bustling nor as fully and densely populated”.

It’s easy to claim that old drawings, photos or maps are false because they do not fit the narrative. But I have an alternative explanation: Chicago would most likely look this way in the 1830s if it was already a big city in the 1850s. I’d say the woodcut shows the reality and that the images I was shown in school, with the farm and a tent beside a lake, are a fabrication.


Ooops…what’s that? The structure on the left is said to be another “court house” built in 1835. The photo is said to have been shot in the early 1840s. It is the only 1840s photo I found in a 40 minute search.

That’s not what Chicago was supposed to look like in 1835! It’s supposed to be mostly empty land and some native Americans peacefully fishing from the river! How did this monolithic tower of pillars appear? And if there was no population there at the time, as claimed on Wikipedia, then who built it?

The photo is anomalous. It’s one of those “we forgot to remove this piece of evidence” items. It’s hard to fathom how such a structure was built by the people who (so we are told) built only wood cabins. Historians need to make up their mind. Either they were capable of building more than wood cabins, or there was another civilization there before them.

From where did they extract and transport the stone? Who was the architect? How did the construction workers deal with attacks from the natives? Why was this style of building chosen, considering that the American pilgrims were protestant Christians who abhorred anything that reminded them of the old Europe and Rome? Was there public outcry when it was constructed? I found exactly zero answers to any of these questions.

The image is from the website Courthouse History (at the time of this writing – but we know how quickly this stuff can disappear. Just to document, here’s a screenshot from the website:)


How unlikely is it, that I didn’t find a single aerial or panoramic photograph of Chicago from the 1820s, 30s or 40s? There are photographs of other American places from this time. All I found was contradictory drawings, as imagined by different people. Here’s one that claims to be Chicago in the 1830s:


That’s the way I’d expect it to look, if it was a big city in 1850.

Hollywood-Movies generally show the time-period like this:


The photograph is claimed to be of Chicago, from 1837. But I don’t believe it, because I’ve never come across a genuine 1830s photo of such high resolution and quality. It looks more like a movie-set. Take a look again at the 1835 court house…that’s what genuine photos of yesteryear look like.

From a Historical Website:

In 1833, Chicago was a wilderness outpost of just 350 residents, clumped around a small military fort on soggy land where the Chicago River trickled into Lake Michigan. The site was known to local natives as¬†Chigagou, or the ‚Äúwild garlic place.‚ÄĚ By the end of the century, this desolate swamp had been transformed into a modern metropolis of 1.7 million

So in 1833 Chicago was supposed to have been a desolate wilderness outpost. And then two years later it had what looks like a Cathedral and a pillared courthouse? Wow, those settlers really stepped up their game! I’ve never seen that in one of¬† the numerous Western-Movies I saw as a child. Everything I thought I “knew” about the 1800s, I knew from Hollywood productions. But none of these western-movies show these gigantic structures and cities, they show outlaws riding through empty lands fighting the natives.

Again: If these were simple settlers and cowboys, would they really build these types of buildings? Or perhaps there is more to the native Americans than we are told?

A final knock-down of the official story is provided by this 1830 map by map-maker James Thompson:



The street and building layout is not much different than it is today:


The map proves that Chicago was already well established in the 1830s, with streets, blocks, neighborhoods. It was not a farm beside a river.

A newspaper clipping from 1832:


How did Chicago have an established Court House with ongoing proceedings when, according to Historians, 1832 saw nothing but tents and wooden shacks? Imagine building a courthouse for a hamlet with a population of 10 people.


Ancient Chicago


Let’s now venture even further back.

A clipping from 1794:



And 1804:


For a city that only started in the 1840s, there sure are a lot of mentions of it before that!

And if it were really just a couple of houses and a farm, would it be shown on maps? Consider this 1773 map:


Who knew that “Chigagou” existed as early as 1773? On the map above, it looks like a star fort.

The official timeline of Chicago:



I’m impressed to find a “visit” to Chicago as far back as 1673, a whopping 147 years before Chicago was…a farm and a few houses. If it was almost nothing in 1820, what might it have been in 1673? Less than nothing? Apparently it was defined as a site that could be visited?

All I learn online about  Jacques Marquette and his visit is this:

In October 1674 he left Green Bay to found a mission among the Illinois, whom he and Jolliet were the first Europeans to have visited. In December, his health obliged him to stop at Chicago, from which he set out again on March 30, 1675. 

It seems mysterious to me. Stop at Chicago? What was Chicago?

Marquette was a Jesuit, we learn. It is said that in 1696, the Jesuits established a mission in Chicago. Then, nothing is known about the mission or Chicago for a hundred years until in 1784 when Jean Baptiste Point du Sable arrives in Chicago. Du Sable it is taught, is the founder of Chicago.

Point du Sable is first recorded as living at the mouth of the Chicago River in a trader’s journal of early 1790. By then he had established an extensive and prosperous trading settlement in what later became the City of Chicago. He sold his Chicago River property in 1800 and moved to the port of¬†St. Charles, where he was licensed to run a ferry across the¬†Missouri River.¬†

The text above says he had established “an extensive and prosperous trading settlement”. Is that to say that the 1820 and 1830 pictures depicting Chicago as nothing but a farm and empty land are fiction?

This is supposed to have been Chicago when Baptiste founded it:


Basically one house and a collection of tents. So I guess when the Jesuits found it in the 1600s, it was empty. When Du Sable found it in the 1700s, it was empty. And in 1830 it was mostly empty. Nothing to see. And yet, throughout hundreds of years people kept referring to this emptiness as “Chicago”, a place to visit, go, stay and trade.

History books tell of a war in Chicago, called the 1812 Fort Dearborn Massacre:


I find it interesting that Fort Dearborn is referred to as a neighborhood, from which civilians were enlisted. Where there is a neighborhood, there must be a city, or at the very least, a village. The text is more in line with the neighborhood map by James Thompson that we saw above.

And here’s a map from 1570, by Abraham Ortelius. It was made long before even the Jesuits arrived:


The map you see above is either somewhat inaccurate or the geography was different in those days. But where Chicago is today, we see a place called Chilaga. The ancient name of Chicago is Chilaga. It was on the map before it’s “History” began!

What is Chilaga? Is it a native American settlement? What do Historians say about it? I searched around and found that they say nothing. This is the only reference to it I found, from the Chicago Tribune (which speaks about another map from Venice, but doesn’t even bother to show the map. Venetians were the dominant world traders of the time). The article dismisses Chilaga as a “mythical place”. Because everything that doesn’t fit fake History is called “mythical”. Does anyone seriously believe that people who were dead-serious about their trade as the Venetians were, would put fantasy-places on their travel maps?


The Old Water Tower

I browsed around Chicago until I found a random old building – the water tower. You see it in the image headlining this article. Across from the water tower we find a structure with another tower-like chimney that belongs to the overall old Chicago water-works:



If the History of Chicago is fabricated, we must find evidence for that not only by looking at the whole, but also the particular.

This is a drawing of the water works, said to be from 1886:


And this is said to be a photograph from “before the fire” (the “Great Chicago Fire” that destroyed much of the city, but not these structures, was in 1871).






Here’s Wikipedia, quoting from the Smithsonian Institute:

The¬†Chicago Water Tower¬†is a¬†contributing property¬†and¬†landmark¬†in the¬†Old Chicago Water Tower District¬†in¬†Chicago,¬†Illinois,¬†United States, that is listed on the¬†National Register of Historic Places. Built to enclose the tall machinery of a powerful water pump in 1869, it became particularly well known when it survived the¬†Great Chicago Fire¬†of 1871 — although the area around it was burnt to the ground.

So it was built in 1869, yes? In the preferred style of the farmers settling in the area, yes?

Too bad then, that there is no mention of it in the Library of Congress Newspaper Archives of 1869. I spent some time browsing Chicago Newspapers, particularly Chicago Tribune for 1869. Many things are mentioned in 1869, but not the completion of such a prominent building. You can try it for yourself. Click on the link above. Type the search term water tower chicago. And then click on “search by date”.

No word of building the water tower.

How did I know this would be fake History, before looking at it? Because the architectural style is unlike Americans of the 1800s. The architecture appears to belong to some other, forgotten civilization. One that may have been active worldwide.

One other example, from the other side of the world:


You can tell, just from looking at the photo, that something is amiss. One style of architecture in stark contrast to all others around it. The image is from the 1860s in Dunedin, New Zealand. The structure that looks like it was taken from the top of a Cathedral (and there are grand cathedrals in the same city), was claimed to have been built by those same farmers that made the wooden shacks you see in the background.

Back to Chicago. If the tower were built in 1869, the newspapers would have mentioned it. Instead, I found mention of it in a newspaper clipping from August 6, 1866, Chicago Tribune:



The article says that they want to fit piping into the Chicago water tower. This is in 1866. Why do the Historians of Chicago and the Smithsonian tell us the tower was built in 1869, three years later? The article says into the “new tower of the water works”, as if the water works already existed and a new tower was added. Or perhaps the building was already standing and then repurposed as “water works”?

I may have found the tower in the 1853 drawing. But before we look at the drawing, let’s determine it’s exact location on a modern map:


Again the 1853 drawing. Go to where the river curves and draw a straight line all the way to the right and you find this so called water tower.

As you can see, it’s at the same location as the water tower, but the second chimney is missing. Is that the tower that was added in 1866? In the drawing, it looks more like a Cathedral.

To determine whether this is the water tower, standing as early as 1853, I looked for Cathedrals of Chicago. I did find a Cathedral nearby. It’s in similar architecture as the water towers:

But on the map, this cathedral is too far to the West to be the same structure as in the old painting. It could be, but it’s inconclusive. Even though the tower in the drawing looks more like a Cathedral than a water tower, the Cathedral above (called Holy Name Cathedral) as well as other Cathedrals in the area, are not at the right spot. Or maybe the drawing is simply inaccurate?

In any case, newspapers from 1869, make no mention of building of this grand structure. Successfully faking History isn’t easy, you need to pay attention to detail.

I’ll complete this section with a photo I dug up on reddit, marked “Water Tower in 1868” (one year before it was supposedly built), as seen from Pine Street.



Ancient Rome in America?

As I kept researching, I found more and more giveaways:


In 1857, fully developed buildings were being lifted out of the swamp, the article informs us. Had the old Chicago been flooded? Were these the structures of a lost civilization? Was Chicago really dug out rather than built?

This historical period is called The Raising of Chicago. Wikipedia informs us:

During the 1850s and 1860s, engineers carried out a piecemeal raising of the level of central Chicago. Streets, sidewalks, and buildings were physically raised on jackscrews. The work was funded by private property owners and public funds.

Hmmm…wow. I thought in 1850, Chicago was just newly built. And they already have to raise it out of the mud?


Continued (bolding mine):

Many of central Chicago‚Äôs hurriedly-erected wooden¬†frame buildings¬†were now considered inappropriate to the burgeoning and increasingly wealthy city. Rather than raise them several feet, proprietors often preferred to¬†relocate¬†these old frame buildings, replacing them with new masonry blocks built to the latest grade. Consequently, the practice of putting the old multi-story, intact and furnished wooden buildings‚ÄĒsometimes entire rows of them¬†en bloc‚ÄĒon rollers and moving them to the outskirts of town or to the suburbs was so common as to be considered nothing more than routine traffic. Traveller David Macrae wrote, ‚ÄúNever a day passed during my stay in the city that I did not meet one or more houses shifting their quarters. One day I met nine. Going out¬†Great Madison Street¬†in the horse cars we had to stop twice to let houses get across.‚ÄĚ The function for which such a building had been constructed would often be maintained during the move. A family could begin dining at one address and end their meal at another, and a shop owner could keep their shop open, even as customers had to climb in through a moving front door. Brick buildings also were moved from one location to another, and in 1866, the first of these‚ÄĒa brick building of two and a half stories‚ÄĒmade the short move from Madison Street out to Monroe Street.¬†Later, many other much larger brick buildings were rolled much greater distances across Chicago.

Say what? People rolled and carried large brick buildings across Chicago? I learn something new every day. If true, that’s amazing. Unfortunately I could find no photography of any of this taking place.¬† It’s even more amazing that something that great wouldn’t just once be documented in a photo.

I found no photographic evidence of the building of this massive city in the 1840s or the gargantuan task of moving of it in the 1850s. Photography was around since 1820. Surely Chicago was photographed before 1853? We have many photos of the U.S. prior to 1850.


One of the trademark Chicago places is the Wrigley Building, said to have been built in 1920. It still stands today. This photo is from 1929:


It is said to have been built by the architect team Graham, Anderson, Probst & White. This team created almost every significant building in Chicago. They also created the Pentagon in Washington D.C., the Capitol Building in Washington D.C., the State Bank of Chicago, the Strauss Building of Chicago, the Municipal Court Building in Chicago, local Federal Reserve bank buildings, a Government explosives plant in West Virginia, the Washington D.C. Post Office, the Suburban Station in Philadelphia, Shedd Aquarium, Chicago, Field Museum Chicago, Terminal Tower Cleveland, Motorola World HQ, Civic Opera House Chicago, several structures of the University of Notre Dame and many others. The predecessors of this amazing architectural team was Graham, Burnham & Co and before that, Burnham and Root, who built just as many grand buildings. They were also the primary contributors to the massive Columbian Exposition that made Chicago look like ancient Rome (photos below).



The “World Expositions” of the 19th Century were mysteriously erected in a very fast pace and just as quickly disassembled or burned to the ground.

There is a whole book that was written just to examine the fact that not all is as it seems with the Expositions of the 1800s:


Most books on fake History are poorly written, but this book is excellent. When I read it, in 2020, I finished it in only two sittings.

Long story short – combining the book above, with what I uncovered while writing this article, I no longer believe that this architectural team around Ernest Robert Graham built almost every structure of significance across the United States.

There is the possibility that these grand structures were not built but rather undug out of the muddy swamp. These could have been the remains of that ancient and legendary Chilaga that the Venetians knew (or perhaps even built). History-fabricators simply ascribed all these buildings to the same couple of architects. The problem is that I find almost no designs, construction plans or construction photos of any of these buildings. How is that even possible?

I type “graham anderson probst white construction photo” into a Search Engine and get back almost nothing with a few exceptions.

And I find almost nothing on what should be the most famous architects of all time.

My search term “howard white” architect, brings up exactly nothing. Imagine building the grandest buildings the world has ever seen, but there is no mention of you on Google.


Graham, who has even more buildings to his name through his previous work with Burnham, is only worth three portrait images overall. If he had really built all those fantastical structures, don’t you think there might be thousands of pictures of this man? Would he not be one of the most celebrated individuals in the History of the country?


Superstar-Designer Pierce Anderson is only worth two pictures.


Edward Probst, builder of hundreds of grand buildings only has two photos, one of them an obituary.


Many famous buildings they were supposed to have built, aren’t even mentioned on their Wikipedia page. For example the iconic Flatiron Buidling in New York:


The old newspaper article says it was designed by Graham, but Wikipedia says it was built by Burnham. These  names are used interchangeably.

It appears that the most famous architects in recent History, chose as their offices, a wooden shack:


…while building the field museum you see in this image on the left:


This is Merchandise Mart Chicago, also made by Graham and friends. I’d be hard pressed to find buildings built this large today.


The massive masonic temple of Chicago, built by Burnham (or Graham, depending on which source you consult):


I mustn’t conceal that I did find construction photos of the more recent Merchanise Mart in Chicago. In fact I found construction photos of every phase of its building. One example:




So yes, this building really was constructed when they say it was, it appears. Perhaps there is more pictorial evidence of it, because it’s more recent. Maybe photos of the 1800s are simply lost. I ran this and other photos through online photomanipulation checks Image Edited? and Foto Forensics. The photos seem to be genuine. That’s wonderful. It means not all things are fake and we are capable of building the big stuff. I also found construction photos of the Flatiron building.

But where are the photos of the also fairly recent Wrigleys Building construction? Where are the designs? The building was started in 1920 and completed in 1924.

I found one photo of its construction in 1923, half-finished:


The problem? There are plenty of photos of the building being whole and complete in 1922 and 1921! Just a few examples. These photos are all marked as “1921” on Historical Websites:


(completed Wrigley Building background right)


This one is marked as a 1921 airplane view. There is no sign of construction. The building is complete.


This is a 1921 article speaking of the newly completed Wrigley Building in 1921.


The image above is ascribed to 1922.

I learned that Wrigley Building was completed in 1924 and still under construction in 1923, based on a single, vague construction photo. Then I learned it was already up and complete in 1921. I am not going to go through all buildings by the people around Graham, but with the exception of those already mentioned, I did not find a single structure where the process of design, construction and completion is clear.

This photo of Wrigley Building is marked as “1922”. In all honesty: Does the building look like its under construction? Does it look brand sparkling new?


If you look closely, there are already shop signs, curtains and signs of tear and wear on this “newly constructed” or “yet to be constructed” building.

I’m not surprised that I found no full-panorama or aerial view of Chicago River from any time before 1921. Not one! The reason for this, could be that the Wrigley building is much too prominent. If it was already standing before 1921, it could be seen on almost any full view of Chicago river, as well as other buildings that were supposedly built in the 1920s. If there are fabricators of History, they simply went and removed any and all aerial images of Chicago River pre 1921.

And this must be one of the strangest photos of the Chicago Field Museum around:


It’s¬† presented across History websites as nothing unusual. But if ancient structures were dug out of the ground as I say, this photo could serve as evidence. We see a grand structure surrounded by dirt, rocks and mud. There are no streets, no pavement, no other houses. This isn’t normally how things work. If you build like that, you normally first have corresponding infrastructure. I guess it’s conceivable that they built it in the middle of a wasteland, but it is weird. The photo is claimed to be from 1921, according to the website of the Field Museum.

Here’s an image of the Field Museums “Construction”:


Notice anything? I do. It doesn’t look under construction, it looks complete. The site as a whole looks more like digging work has been done than actual construction.

Very weird: The Wikipedia entry says nothing about its construction or design. One of the finest designs in the History of America, and there is no mention on how it all happened.

I found only two construction photos from 1918:



As in many other cases, these look more like renovation of a Roman temple than a construction of an American museum.

I did find one single photograph that shows genuine construction work, said to be of the Field Museum in 1915:


But it’s fake. I ran it through Forensics and it appears that the writing at the bottom is a modern photoshop addition. Someone took a photo of some other construction and claimed that it’s the Field Museum. But I wouldn’t even have needed Forensics. You can see with the naked eye that these columns and windows are too small to be of the Field Museum. They bear no resemblance:


This is the directly adjacent “soldier field” sports stadium:


I’m not going to go on about that now. Nor about many other things. The original version of this article was three times as long. It could have easily become a book, just on Chicago. That’s because there is no end to this rabbit hole.

What you were taught in school is not reliable. Everything is up for discussion.

I don’t expect History to be entirely accurate. It will always be written with bias and omissions.¬† But what we see here goes beyond bias or error into outright fabrication. In school, I never learned that there was a Chilaga in the 1500s that turned into Chigagou in the 1600s. I clearly remember learning that Chicago didn’t exist before 1840. These are not the results of innocent mistakes, but deliberate deception.

I don’t wish to spoon feed everything to you, so I’ll leave this beautiful building to your own research:



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