The premise is, the city's been on the make since the first fur-trader hornswaggled the first Pottawattomi Indian and the acceleration of such innate corruption is what shaped the great city. The work is a mile-a-minute dishing out of historical references, allegations and celebrations.
This report prepared by Ernesto Guitarra
Nelson Algren, one of the most important Chicago-based 20th century writers, offers a highly personal, poignant and poetic interpretation of Midwestern history in "City on the Make." Using his childhood reaction to the 1919 "Black Sox" scandal as a springboard, he indicts the powers that controlled Chicago's political, social and economic life for the first half of the 20th century, and the effects their policies and practices had on the "little people" of the city. Although written in 1951,this book's meditations on the relationships between powerful and powerless, races and religions, materialism and humanism, are still relevant today. A 50th anniversary edition, footnoted to explain various incidents in the original book for today's readers, was published in 2001. Anyone interested in the "how and why" of Chicago's hidden history would do well to use this book as a starting point.
This report prepared by Nina D. Gaspich/Nelson Algren Committee