Midway At The White City: #FridayFictioneers



PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson


Mayor Carter Harrison, Sr., strolled the grounds of his Chicago Columbian Exposition. It was his, damn the “World’s Fair” moniker. It took dealings and bravado to make this happen. “I bested New York City,” he chuckled.

He loved this, especially Chicago’s financial boost. Everyone greeted him, hands raised, huge smiles plastered, as he made his way to the noisy Midway.

Patrick Prendergast was waiting. The Mayor always came here. No one would hear the shots from the revolver he was just now aiming at Harrison.

“Broke your promise of a job,” Patrick thought, as three bullets took the Mayor out.

Author’s Note: The architecture of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, also know as the Chicago World’s Fair, was primarily done in the Beaux Arts style of design. White Stucco, white paint, and the extensive use of street lamps were the origin of the nickname, The White City.

The world’s first Ferris Wheel was the midway’s showcase, with up to 40 people in each car, or gondola. My story’s connection to the picture prompt.

I played around a bit with the assassination: the Mayor was murdered by Patrick P, shot three times by a .38 revolver; it just happened at the Mayor’s house. The mayor passed Patrick over for a position that was “promised” for the behind the scenes dealings he helped with and used in the newspaper he worked for. Patrick was caught, convicted, and later hung.

It’s #Friday Fictioneers prompt time, as always created and hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields on her blog, Addicted To Purple.

The rules are simple if you’d like to join in:

    1. Use the photo on Addicted to Purple as your prompt (goes up on Wednesday).
    2. Write a 100 word story, complete with beginning, middle, and end.
    3. Make every word count.
    4. It is proper etiquette to give the contributor of the photo credit.
  1. Add the InLinkz button (below) so your readers can find the dozens of other bloggers who have taken up this challenge.

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter


30 responses »

  1. Meanwhile, down the block, H. H. Holmes was concocting his hotel of horrors. Have you read Devil In The White City by Erik Larson? If you haven’t, I recommend it if you’re interested in the World’s Fair, which you seem to be. It’s an interesting book that juxtaposes the H. H. Holmes murders and the construction of the World’s Fair and all the death and chaos going on there.


    • Yes, I’ve read the book and have done some research on Holmes. Scary thing all the way around. I loved the whole idea of the older World’s Fairs; the one in France was amazing (photos/stories). I went to the one in Queens, NY in the early 60’s, and Montreol’s Expo.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Excellent story, Stuart. I like the way you communicate Carter Harrison’s self-congratulatory mindset, not just by what he thinks but also by the responses of other people to him “Everyone greeted him, hands raised, huge smiles plastered…” Good writing!


  3. My research (after reading your fiction, which I very much enjoyed) revealed that not only was Carter Harrison, Sr. mayor of Chicago for five terms, but so was his son, Carter Harrison, Jr. So the Daly family wasn’t the First Family of Chicago after all.


  4. You took me by surprise killing the Mayor off at the fair. I would give anything to have gone to that fair, what a magical time. At least I have gone to the one building that survived. Nice mood to your historical spin. I missed the prompt last week, but wrote a story today on the great wheel.


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