On January 20, 1909, the temporary crib that was used in the construction of the Southwest Land and Lake Tunnel System caught fire around eight 0’clock in the morning. Unfortunately the structure was constructed out of wood, so once the fire started it spread rapidly. The cause of the fire is still unknown.

The men that where stuck on the structure tried to save themselves by jumping off the crib and floating on the ice while they waited for the rescue boats to fight their way through to the survivors. The exact number of victims couldn’t be calculated, because some of the workers where temporary laborers that the company never documented. It is believed that at least 70 men lost their lives in this terrible disaster.

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To read more about this accident click on the link below.

http://worldhistoryproject.org/1909/1/20/chicago-crib-disaster

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