A police boat on the Chicago river dyed green for St Patrick’s Day. Photograph: iStock/Steve Geer

The annual greening of the Chicago river, which I had the strange privilege of witnessing up close recently, is said to be an environmentally friendly(...)

Catherine O’Leary: Above is a lithograph of Mrs O’Leary and her cow knocking over a lantern, the mythic start of the Great Chicago Fire. Photograph: Chicago History Museum/Getty Images

The Robert J Quinn Fire Academy is one of Chicago’s largest firefighter training centres, as well as one of its quirkier tourist attractions. (Would i(...)