Originally Posted by donheff
I am digitizing old video tapes at DW's urging and came across a 25 year old tape of my parents talking family history. One quip from my father is a caricature of south side Irish voting. His aunt Bridget came over from Ireland with his father and lived in Chicago for about 60 years. Although she was never naturalized she joined social security at the outset. When she retired and applied for benefits she had some problems with Social Security or IRS , whatever. The family story goes that she was arguing with some bureaucrat and said, "you would think I was a damn foreigner, I've been voting for 50 years." Tapes like this are priceless. If you have aging relatives with good family history, get them to tell their story.
Great idea Don! My memories of growing up with a picture of "Hissssss Honor, The Honorable Richard J Daley, on the living room wall of our Chicago bungalow are still strong all these decades later. But, I have nothing but memories left except for the occasional sharing of stories with my cousins at holiday gatherings. All our dads worked for the city and we were all involved in keeping them employed by doing little tasks for the precinct captain, ward committeeman, etc.
Our favorite memories involve elections when we'd spend the day passing out packs of cigarettes, with voting instructions inserted inside the cellophane wrapper, outside of the polling place. One year, a cop told us we'd have to move away. As we turned to leave, he whispered that he'd be gone in five minutes and wouldn't be back for hours.......... It was all under control........ !
I'd give a bunch for a pic of my cousin and I, about 12 yrs old, standing outside the polling place with those cardboard boxes of cigarettes. What a great show-and-tell for civics class that would have been! Real American politics in action!