Called to the Challenge: Exhibit Honors Chicago Mayor Harold Washington

Temporary closure starting November 14.
Due to required maintenance and facilities work, this exhibit will be temporarily unavailable for 2-3 months starting November 14. We apologize for the inconvenience. For questions, please contact

Learn more about Chicago Mayor Harold Washington in a permanent exhibit in the Special Collections Exhibit Hall on the 9th floor of the Harold Washington Library Center. See a timeline of his life and projects he and his administration completed during his tenure.

Washington, the 42nd mayor of Chicago, was the city’s first African American mayor. He was a reformer who changed Chicago politics and a person who never lost sight of where he came from and the influences that inspired him.

This exhibit is drawn largely from the Harold Washington Archives & Collections of the Special Collections and Preservation Division. Throughout the Harold Washington Library Center you'll find additional artwork, photographs and other media that honor Washington.