Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
 Thank you for your readership and contributions. 


Tuesday, July 16

Gapers Block

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The Whitechapel Club is a strange bit of forgotten Chicago lore. A late 19th Century gathering of Chicago journalists who wet their whistles at a local tavern and named themselves after the London slum terrorized by Jack the Ripper, the group eventually held meetings in a room decorated with skulls, nooses, and other grisly artifacts. Guest speakers were invited to address the club, only to be insulted away from the podium, and the subject of death was routinely lampooned. Alas, it lasted only five years, but the Newberry Library holds the club's remaining papers.

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