Mrs O'Leary left a lantern in the shed and
when a cow kicked it over, she winked her eye and said,
"Its gonna be a hot time in the old town tonight."
I don't know who taught me this, but I learned it when I was a kid.
This was the rumor of how the Great Chicago Fire started on Oct 8,1871. Of course nobody can prove it, but we wouldn't let that stand in the way of a good childhood song.
The fire went on to kill hundreds of people and destroy most of the old town. Of course, with any tragedy of this type, the ghosts remained. There have been hundreds of reports of ghosts in Victorian attire seen throughout the city. Many of these are reported to be the ghosts of the fire victims.
The Excalibur Nightclub was used as a morgue at the time and was used to house many of the victims' bodies. Since that time, the reports of the smell of smoke, being watched, cold and hot spots, and full appartions have been reported.
By the way, in a weird twist of fate, the Robert J. Quinn Fire Academy now stands at the site of the old O'Leary farm.