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The Devil Comes to Evanston

In spite of the heavy snowfall, the crowds turned out to hear Barbara Geiger speak about "The Devil Comes to Evanston" at the inaugural Levy Lecture at the Levy Senior Center on March 14.

The audience of 80+ was spellbound as Barbara told the story of how the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition was awarded to Chicago, the larger-than-life personalities who shaped the Expo, and the sinister and evil murderer, Henry Holmes, who preyed on unsuspecting victims.

A slide show of historical photographs and diagrams enlivened the fascinating virtual tour of an era long since past.

After the lecture, Barbara answered some questions from the audience and mingled with anyone who wanted to chat. The reviews and feedback from the audience was rapturous across the board.

"Wonderful speaker!" and "Well done!" were common refrains. Another attendee remarked, "She had a presentation which appeals on many levels."

The next lecture is scheduled for April 11 when Dr. Jeffrey Albaugh, Director of Sexual Health at NorthShore University Health Systems will talk about "Sexual Health and Natural Changes as We Age."

The lecture series, sponsored by the Levy Senior Center Foundation, is free and open to the public but reservations are recommended due to limited seat availability.

Don't miss out! Reserve you seat online, by phone (847) 448-8250, or in person at the Levy Senior Center front desk.


Lecture Description

“The Devil Comes to Evanston” with Barbara Geiger, landscape historian specializing in late 19th and early 20th century places.

It’s the 124th anniversary of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, an event that changed history. What events led to the passionate endeavors of Evanstonian Daniel H. Burnham and his colleague Frederick Law Olmsted to create a mini-new world to honor Columbus? How does the riveting counter-point story of the nefarious Wilmette resident Henry Holmes reveal the darker side of the ‘Gay ‘90s’?

Barbara Geiger shows us the places where Holmes and Burnham lived, how the fair site evolved from a marshy mess to the site of the event of the century, and how the legacy of the Fair still lives on.



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