Illinois History Minutes

March 29 Illinois History Minute


It’s March 29th, the day that Oscar Mayer was born in 1859.

Oscar Ferdinand Mayer came to the United States from Germany in his teens, and in his 20s, started a butcher and sausage-making shop in Chicago with his two brothers. You know his name because Oscar Mayer started using it on his meat products in 1904, joining an industry trend of the time.

Kraft Heinz owns the Oscar Mayer brand today. 
Baseball player Denny McLean was born this day in 1944 in the Chicago suburb of Markham. His minor league days were spent with Chicago White Sox farm teams, but in the majors, he played mostly for the Detroit Tigers. McLean was one of just a handful of 20th-century major league pitchers to win thirty or more games during a season.