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The Southwest Suburbs: Birthplace Of Chicago

Joliet

Call Northside 777
In 1948, Jimmy Stewart starred in Call Northside 777, shot on location at the notoriously rough Stateville Penitentiary. Stewart portrayed a reporter who discovered new clues in a case that could free an innocent man.


The making of Call Northside 777

Beginnings of the I and M Canal
Explorers, Father Jacques Marquette and Louis Jolliet went up the Illinois and DesPlaines rivers and discovered the low divide that would be called the Chicago Portage. The remnants of this portage are located at the Chicago Portage National Historic Site, which is part of the Cook County Forest Preserve District, located on Harlem Avenue in Lyons.

Louis Jolliet saw the value of the portage as the site of a potential waterway connecting the Great Lakes to the Mississippi. He explained that a canal could be made "by cutting through but half a league of prairie to pass from the foot of Lake Michigan" all the way to the Mississippi River.

Jolliet was anxious to develop the area based on such a canal. Marquette was interested in the area too, not because of the commercial possibilities but to convert the large number of Illinois Indians.

Source: I and M Canal (A Corridor in Time) by John M. Lamb

Joliet Limestone
Joliet limestone was seen around the world when Barack Obama announced his candidacy for president at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Illinois on February 10th, 2007. The structures built of Joliet limestone are identifiable precisely because they all weather to a rich, buttery yellow and have a permanence akin to the Egyptian and Aztec pyramids. Some other prominent buildings made of Joliet limestone include Joliet Prison, Chicago's Water Tower and Pumping Station and Joliet Township High School's Central Campus.

Joliet Hero
As a member of the US Army Air Forces during World Was II, Joliet native Sator "Sandy" Sanchez made a career of performing heroic deeds. Among numerous acts of bravery which made him one of the most highly decorated military men of the time, Sanchez jumped onto a runaway plane and stopped it before it hit a hangar filled with other planes and crewmen.

Volunteering to fly more than the required 25 missions garnered Sanchez a unique honor. A B-17 was dubbed the "Smilin' Sandy Sanchez" in honor of his unflagging dedication. This is the only known case of a bomber being named after an enlisted man.

Source: The Great Columns of Joliet, by Friends of Community Public Art

Links

Joliet Area Historical Museum

Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

Friends of Community Public Art

Downtown Joliet

Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce

Joliet Arsenal

Pilcher Park

Rialto Square Theatre

Rialto Square Theatre history

Chicagoland Speedway/Rt. 66 Speedway





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