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Chicago’s meteoric rise during the nineteenth century from a sleepy frontier outpost to the second largest metropolis in the country by the end of the century attracted international attention. The city’s renown reached new heights in the last three decades of the nineteenth century, partly thanks to several events: the 1871 conflagration that destroyed much of the city’s built environment; Chicago’s speedy recovery from the Great Fire; the development of the skyscraper; and the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. The waxing of Chicago’s fame was aided by the proliferation of illustrated, mass-market publications during this same period, including magazines, newspapers, guidebooks, maps, prints, maps, and photographs. These illustrated publications fostered the close identification of Chicago’s reputation as a city with its built forms. These publications, cheaply produced and widely distributed, spread Chicago’s image around the globe.
See also: The World's Columbian Exposition
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