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Harold Washington
Washington h.jpg
51st Mayor of Chicago
In office
April 29, 1983 – November 25, 1987
Preceded by Jane Byrne
Succeeded by David Orr (acting)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 1st district
In office
January 3, 1981 – April 30, 1983
Preceded by Bennett Stewart
Succeeded by Charles A. Hayes
Member of the Illinois Senate
from the 26th district
In office
May 7, 1977 – November 20, 1980
Member of the Illinois House of Representatives
from the 26th district
In office
March 22, 1965 – August 8, 1976
Personal details
Born
Harold Lee Washington

(1922-04-15)April 15, 1922
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Died November 25, 1987(1987-11-25) (aged 65)
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
Resting place Oak Woods Cemetery
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s)
Dorothy Finch
(m. 1942; div. 1950)
Domestic partner Mary Ella Smith (1967–1987)
Education Roosevelt University (BA)
Northwestern University (JD)
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Branch/service  United States Army
Years of service 1942–1945
Rank First Sergeant
Unit United States Army Air Corps
United States Army Air Forces
Battles/wars World War II
 • South Pacific
 • Central Pacific

Harold Lee Washington (April 15, 1922 – November 25, 1987) was an American lawyer and politician. He became the first African-American Mayor of Chicago, serving from 1983 until his death in 1987. The Harold Washington Library is named after him.

Washington was born on April 15, 1922 in Chicago, Illinois. He studied at Roosevelt College and at Northwestern University School of Law.

He was married to Nancy Dorothy Finch from 1942 until they divorced in 1950. Then he was engaged to Mary Ella Smith until his death in 1987.

Washington died suddenly on November 25, 1987 in Chicago City Hall from a heart attack, aged 65.



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