The Vintage Chicago Channel
Vintage Chicagoland Photos, Postcards, and More

Friday, January 17, 2014

Governor Dan Walker Works the Crowd in 1973

Illinois Governor Dan Walker Greets Chicago Constituents During The Bud Billiken Day Parade in 1973

Governor Dan Walker works the crowd during the 1973 Bud Billiken Day Parade. Posted on Flickr by the U.S. National Archives.

Walker, who clashed with Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley, served one term and was defeated in the 1976 Democratic primary by Michael Howlett, who lost the general election to James R. Thompson. In 1987, Walker was convicted on bank fraud charges and sentenced to seven years in prison. He served 18 months before being released. Though unlike three other Illinois governors convicted on federal charges (Otto Kerner, Jr., George Ryan, and Rod Blagojevich) his crimes were unrelated to his public service.

As a young child, I had a very brief encounter with Governor Walker at the Illinois State Fair in Springfield. A very inebriated man stumbled out of a beer tent and came over to us and tried to shake my father's hand before he was hustled away by his aides. I was confused and asked my father who the man was, and he told me "that's the Governor of Illinois."

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