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Changing Times and Attitudes in Chicago

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Today is the 20th anniversary of the death of Harold Washington, the mayor of Chicago from 1983 until his death in 1987. Hegewisch is at Chicago’s Southeastern tip between the Indiana border and the landfill at a hundred and 30th near the Bishop Ford Freeway. When he was mayor of Chicago, Harold Washington’s most vocal opponent was Ed Vrodolyak, the alderman for the white ethnic enclave. It’s not too hard to find racism and prejudice in the area, but many people say they’ve mellowed out. Gail, who didn’t want to share her last name, says she didn’t vote for Washington but would vote for a black candidate these days. She says that’s because she’s changed as the city’s changed.

Listen to more stories from Harold: Then and Now.

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