Harold Washington signature on gold paper with Mayoral Campaign 1983 at the bottom edge. Union bug on curl.
Harold Washington was the first African-American mayor of Chicago from 1983-1987. It was a very close race: Washington had 37% of the vote, Jane Byrne had 33%, and future mayor Richard M. Daley had 30%. When Harold Washington won the election in 1983 he had gained 83% of the Hispanic vote. He died while working in his office and left quite a legacy around Chicago, including the main Chicago Public Library, Harold Washington University, Harold Washington Park and the Harold Washington Cultural Center. Prior to becoming mayor, he served in the Illinois Legislature as a state senator and state representative. He was also a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1981-1983.