Public Domain Image: U.S. EPA.
The Cuyahoga River drains about 800 square miles of northeastern Ohio. At the end of its circuitous journey it discharges into Lake Erie at Cleveland, long a major industrial city. On June 22, 1969, the Cuyahoga River caught fire. It was not the first time the river caught fire; a 1952 conflagration caused serious damage. However, the 1969 fire attracted considerably more attention, and spurred numerous pollution control measures, both locally and nationally.