At a Century of Progress: 1920-1950
Timeline Timeline 1920-1950
25 Radio Recipies
Radio recipes [19k]
1921 Immigration laws drastically cut the number of foreigners allowed in the U.S. to prevent further overcrowding in cities and to raise wages. Fear and intolerance led to further cuts aimed at southern and eastern European and Asian immigrants.
1922 Anti-Prohibition rallies were held in Chicago. Many German, Irish, Slavic, and Italian people considered Prohibition an attack on their cultural traditions and united to oppose it and the selective way it was enforced.
1922 First radio station in Illinois began broadcasting from Tuscola, two years after the first commercial broadcast in the U.S.
1925 Two Illinois athletes, Johnny Weissmuller (Olympic swimmer & movie Tarzan) and Red Grange (University of Illinois and Chicago Bears halfback), achieved unprecedented attention as sport stars.
26 Depression victims
Depression victims [37k]
1926 Open warfare between Al Capone's gang and the rival Dion O'Banion's gang spread throughout Chicago and its suburbs. Most of Capone's profits came from distributing beer illegally during Prohibition.
1928 Children required to finish elementary grades before they were allowed to work in Illinois. State school year lengthened from six to eight months.
1929 Stock market crashed, initiating a period of great economic depression. During the 1930s payrolls dropped 30%. In January 1933 almost 1.5 million people, 20% of the state's population, were out of work.
1931 The elaborate Paramount Theater in Aurora opened with a cascade of 2,000 roses thrown from an airplane. Movie palaces attracted Depression-weary people escaping the hardships of everyday life through the fantasies of the movies.
1933-34 Chicago hosted the Century of Progress Exposition.
27 Paramount theater
Paramount theater [48k]
1935 Social Security legislation passed, providing old-age and survivor insurance through a tax of 1% on both employees and employers. The same Act also provided for unemployment compensation and aid to dependent children.
1937 Ohio River flooded southern Illinois leaving thousands homeless.
1937 Nylon was invented. The first nylon stockings were marketed in 1940.
1939 Oil discovered in central and southern Illinois created a major boom.
1941 U.S. joined World War II. During the next five years, over 900,000 Illinois residents served in the Armed Forces. The state also supplied about 27 billion dollars of war goods.
28 TV forecast
TV Forecast [22k]
1941 Crawford Eddy set up Chicago's first experimental TV station, W9XBK, which became WBKB, Channel 4, in 1942. Only about 100 Chicagoans owned sets.
1942 Enrico Fermi and a group of American scientists conducted the first controlled nuclear chain reaction at a top-secret laboratory at the University of Chicago.
1944 Congress passed the GI Bill giving veterans added benefits including priority for many jobs, low-interest home mortgages, educational stipends, and small business loans.
1946 Benjamin Spock published the best seller, Common Sense Book of Baby and Child Care, and eased the anxiety of mothers eager to provide the proper upbringing for their children born during the postwar "baby boom."
1948 Chicago's TV Forecast became America's first TV weekly. Chicago had four TV stations, more than any other American city.

Button Bar [8k]

© Illinois State Museum 31-Dec-96