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Influence and Chicago History

I was reading an excerpt from a magazine called the Mens Book sharing the spicy details of the life of Palmer Potter and his wife, Bertha Honore. The history lesson shares these insights:

English: Photo of Potter Palmer I (1826-1902)

English: Photo of Potter Palmer I (1826-1902) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

  • Bertha Honoré Palmer

    Bertha Honoré Palmer (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Palmer built the beautiful Palmer House as a wedding present to his wife but it burned down just 13 days after during the Chicago fire of 1871.

  • Palmer wanted to move away after that but Bertha admonished him stating that it was his duty as a resident of Chicago to help rebuild it.
  • Palmer later built a mansion for  in what became the Gold Coast but was originally a swampland that his contemporaries referred to as “Frog Pond.”
  • Bertha was passionate about impressionistic art and bought a number of pieces from Renoir, Degas and Monet. After she passed these pieces were given to the Art Institute.
  • Bertha was a staunch advocate of women’s equality and lead the initiative to build The Women’s Building honoring women at the 1893 Word’s Fair.
  • Both Bertha and Palmer’s influence created an interest in their new home’s location, what we now know as Lake Shore Drive.
  • Prairie Avenue was abandoned eventually by Chicago’s elite for the new Millionaire’s Row–Lake Shore Drive.
Influence is a powerful thing. It pays to lead the pack rather than follow it. Besides, it’s much more fun!




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Melissa G Wilson

Melissa has been a leader in the book writing, publishing and marketing arena for the past two decades. To date, she has helped more than 100 thought leaders write, publish and market their books. Her clients include executives such as Dan Weinfurter a seven-time Inc 500 winner and Orlando Ashford, President of Holland Cruise Lines.

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