June 15, 2015

Township to a City to Chicago

From a Township to a City?
The story of the City of Lake View 
is mostly the political will of William Boldenweck
a Mayor Boldenweck 1900 Campaign Pin
photoEbay
the first and only mayor of Lake View 1887-1889
and last Supervisor of Lake View Township
The former Mayor of Lake View tried and failed 
to win the mayoral contest of the City of Chicago in 1900 
This post lays out a mostly article driven chronicle of the transfer from one form of government to another
(township -1857-1887)
(city - 1887-1889)
five years after the establishment of the Township of Lake View
image - Maps of Cook County
This image above is a 1862 map of the township with subdivision  The Township of Lake View was established 1857-1887; the City of Lake View in 1887-1889. This map highlights the area of Pine Grove and Wright Grove to the south and the town of Chittenden near Rose Hill Cemetery to the north. The rail line is the former NorthWestern Railroad Company tracks that ran along Ravenswood Avenue. Jefferson Township is to the left and City of Chicago is at the bottom of this edited and zoomed map image. Detailed sheet maps of the old township can be found online via History Works Maps for the year 1887. The population of the Township of Lake View grew to 1,840 in 1870 to 6,663 in 1880, apparently doubling in 1884 to 12,824 residents mostly living south of Graceland Avenue - Irving Park Road. When the township citizens voted for a city status there were seven administrative districts; these same districts would becoming city wards. The territorial size of each district/ward did not change. According to Edgewater Historical Society the seventh ward was from Foster Avenue to Devon. I am assuming that most of the wards were located from Fullerton to Belmont avenues. 
It's a Story of Anti-Annexation to Chicago
This man symbolized the transition from 
Township to the City of Lake View
photo 1909 - Chicago Public Library - Newspaper section
William Boldenweck was the mayor of the City of Lake View and before that he served as a supervisor when 
Lake View was a township in Cook County
An Account of the Man in 1884
pages 708-742
'William Boldenweck of Boldenweck & Heldmaier contractors and manufacturers of 'cut stone' in Chicago was born in Wurtemberg Germany August 9 1851. When two years of age his parents came to America and settled in Chicago where they both died during the cholera epidemic of 1854. At the age of twenty he went into the employ[ment] of his brother Louis H. Boldenweck [who was a] contractor and manufacturer of 'cut stone'. He was book-keeper and remained with him up to 1875. He then engaged in the 'cut stone' business with P. Henne under the firm name of Boldenweck & Henne. In January 1883 with Ernst Heldmaier formed the firm of Boldenweck & Heldmaier. Mr. Boldenweck resided in Lake View Township since July 1876. He was a member of the Lake Shore Club, Knights of Honor, and Lake View Singing Society. He married Miss Adelheid G. Samme March 25 1873, daughter of Frederick Samme who settled in Chicago in 1847- fourteenth years before he was elected mayor.' - their only mayor.
image below - Chicago and its Resources 1871-1891
An Account of the Mayor in 1892
by The Chicago Times Company
'From 1883 until 1887 [continued his partnership] with Ernst Haldeman and carried on the business. In 1887 Mr. Boldenweck was elected to the office of Supervisor of Lake View then under a [township] organization. He was elected the first Mayor of Lake View on the Republican ticket. In 1889 he was re-elected Mayor of Lake View until that 'suburb' was annexed to Chicago.The affairs of Lake View was turned over to the officials in charge of the City of
Chicago. Mr Boldenweck made many improvements in Lake View while mayor. The work of planning and contracting for the building of the Lake View tunnel was all done while that was still a [township] and while he was city mayor but had his detractors.
Post Mayoral Boldenweck
'In June 1891 [two years after the annexation] Mr Boldenweck was appointed a member of the Board of Education by [Chicago] Mayor Washburne for a term of four years. In October of the same year he was nominated as Sanitary District President and elected for a four year term. When Sanitary District trustees and laborers broke open the last dam holding back the Chicago River, Sanitary District President William Boldenweck, who lost both of his parents to a cholera epidemic decades before, cried “Let ‘er go,” according to the Chicago Daily News, calling his remark “the nearest approach to formality of the entire occasion.”'
'Mr Boldenweck was a strong candidate for the nomination of mayor of Chicago. In the convention the delegates chose someoneelse Judge Elbridge Hanecy for that office June 29 1906. After that defeat President Teddy Roosevelt appointed him assistant treasurer of the United States for the Chicago region.' 
The former & only mayor of Lake View died in the country of birth Germany in 1922.
The Transition Years: 
from Township to City
the Old Town Hall
The 1887 election results were very close; mostly pitting special interests like saloon-keepers against folks who demanded clean drinking water particularly for school students.  
A continuous petition campaign for annexation to Chicago would feverishly continue for the next two years. The initial talk about annexation began as early as 1873 per this article below
from the publication called Lake View Saga below ...
and below the communites within the township ...
According of the articles that this blogger read the township government operated fairly well; the city government not so much. In fact, the city was established by a lobbies of private interests that did not want any part of Lake View to be annex to the City of Chicago in 1887 nor 1889. In 1887 there was support in the annexation of the southern part of the township to Chicago - south of Belmont Avenue only. 
For a decade before the 1889 annexation their were two political camps, the pro-annexationalists (real word used at the time) and the anti-annexationalist. Residents who wanted more than basic services than a township form of government could provide would support Township Supervisor Boldenweck to become a city. 
The anti-annexationists were mostly special interest groups that wanted to avoid Chicago regulation and Chicago taxation. 
The Developments/Issues of the Day:
(articles may need to be click-on/enlarged to read)
The city like many of the township issues of the day were ...
1) clean water supply - in the early days of the township the tunnel from the Lake View crib to Lake View Pumping Station leaked periodically; the source of little known disease at the time called cholera and typhoid that caused a periodic epidemic prior since the mid 19th century, 
2) increase taxation along with free postage service, 
3) cost of infrastructure such as construction, maintenance, expansion of streets and roads which included wider street space for new trolley and railroad services, 
4) over-crowding in the public schools and construction of more, 
5) revenue for the maintaince of Lincoln Park, the new park along the lakefront required higher taxation from the township and city residents. Townships were required to tax property owners for the park. Muncipal bonds were also sought by the assessors of both Lake View and North Chicago townships during these early years.
The Lincoln Park Board of Commissioners was established by State of Illinois so to govern the maintenance and expansion of the park along the lakefront that included the Township and then the City of Lake View. The membership of the Board included two members from Lake View - the township supervisor and assessor and three others from the Township of North Chicago - where the original park was formed within the City of Chicago. Many voters of Lake View did not like the idea of a special commission taxing them without direct citizen representation. 
(I have a separate post on this connection to Lake View)
5) and finally corruption/ non-compliance in city departments that involved misuse of funds from the city's treasurer office.
and sixth issue ...
The Tavern Owners
The saloon-keepers, a strong interest group and mostly located south of Belmont Avenue, were against annexation due to stricter zoning laws/taxation of liquor in the City of Chicago. Property owners who owned large parcels of land initially partnered with the owners of the saloons in the election of 1887. Two years later according to my readings the property land owners switched sides due to alleged corruption charges of Mayor Boldenweck's administration. The citizens of the northern areas were never great fans of the idea of a city form of government. During the 1st attempt for annexation in 1887 the citizens of the township north of Belmont Avenue voted against annexation. The majority the residents of the City of Lake View were located south of Belmont Avenue and were more inclined to vote for annexation to Chicago. While the 1887 electoral measure failed for a couple of reasons, the 1889 measure succeded by almost the same amount of votes cast - the numbers just switched.
zoomed image - Library of Congress
The conversation about the City of Lake View can not be told without listing some articles about the old township. The township's geography was the same as the city - Lake Michigan to the east, Western Avenue to the west, Fullerton Avenue to the south, and Devon Avenue to the north. Most of the issues of the township in the later years bled into the politics of the new city. 
City News Begins in July 1887
(1887- Nov. 1889)
A special election was held in June 1887 that change the status of Lake View from a township form of government to city.
An Old Township Ordinance 
vs City Law 
Before the formation of the Lake View Township there was this railroad the cut through the what was then 
called Ridgeway Township (Evanston + Lake View)
1888 February
 
Lake View Cops Arrested a RR Employee 
1888 February 27
 Paulina  Berteau Avenue  in 1888 - City of Lake View
A Scheme to Re-charter to a City Form of Governance to Avoid Annexation in 1886
1887 June
Voters Elect Officials for the New City
1887 August
Annex only a Section of It
 1887 September
While this article speaks to the annexation period of Lake View the article gives a good account of the area in 1887
1887 October
Lying to the Public
1887 November
Pro Annexation Editorials
Another view ...
1887 December 7
Tardy on the City Finances 
1887 December 20
The Press and the Mayor
1888 January 
City Corruption or Just Incompetence? 
1888  February
Business as Usual for the City Government 
 1889 February
Lake View Annexation 
Before its too Late 

1889 June
The Need to Annex 
1889 July
The Mayor Called Voters Fools
A Special Year Election 
was Held June 29, 1889
According the publication Hidden History of Ravenswood & Lake View by Patrick Butler the first and last mayor of Lake View "William Boldenweck seized his suburb's records and funds and barricaded himself in his town hall office until he was forced to back down by the Illinois Supreme Court". On June 29th his administration lost; totals were 2,503 for annexation and 1,999 against that almost mirrored the 1887 totals but this time in reverse. The City of Lake View would became the District of Lake View within the City of Chicago after that election the end of the 1920's when Communities were established making Lake View one of the 75 established the Chicago City Council.
The City of Lake View Election
1889 July 29
 1889 July
City of Lake View becomes
 one of the four new Districts of Chicago
Election Claimed to be Illegal
1889 September
and later December 1889
Illinois Supreme Court Ruling
view an interactive site of all the annexations
DeWitt Clinton Cregier 1889-1891
a Democrat
born June 1, 1829
died November 9, 1918
the old boy had 10 children; buried in Rosehill Cemetery 
In 1853, at age 24, DeWitt Clinton Cregier was already recognized for his expertise and recruited from New York to design the water‐pumping system for the fast‐growing city of Chicago. After manning the pumps throughout the night during the Great Fire of 1871 he  went on to serve as Chicago city engineer, then commissioner of Public Works, and then elected mayor in 1889. He was mayor for 1893 Columbian Exposition for Chicago, in competition with other cities, and annexed more land than any other mayor according to a book called 'The New York Orphan Who Built Chicago; The Story of DeWitt Clinton Cregier, a 19th Century American Engineering Genius'. One of his major tasks was to start integrating into the city such annexed suburbs as Lake View, Hyde Park, Lake, Jefferson and part of Cicero, which in total added 128.24 square miles to the city's 44 sq. miles. His grandfather (x 4) saw similar public service in 1653 as burgomaster of the newly chartered city of New Amsterdam, currently called New York City.
The Former Lake View Mayor 
had Plans for Mayor of Chicago in 1900
The commanding influence of the officials of the former city and former township would last for decades due to the fact that the integration of all the townships that the City of Chicago acquired in 1889 would take some time. Old habits die hard and the newly formed District of Lake View did not give up power & influence easily.
and the end of an era for Lake View
Graceland Cemetery - the Knoll Section is their resting place
Him as a Child
photo - Christa Selig
An Artifact of Interest
The owner is Orville Miller, Jr. who lives in California
This is a Winchester shotgun when Lake View was a city. 
It was given to Sheriff George Mialia (former township cop) 
from the mayor of Lake View
zoomed views below
and hoping for its return to Lake View
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