Northward Ho! | Year In Review | Chicago Reader

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Northward Ho!

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The Hyneses. The Joyces. The Madigans. They're rock-solid Chicagoans loyal to their God, their city, and their mayor. All they've ever asked from this life was a chance to give their sons and daughters the bounty that's been, the blessing of every southwest-side pol--a political ranch of their own. But it's harder and harder for an Irishman to run things on the southwest side, where, folks wiht names like Lopez and Jefferson are buying up all the bungalows. So in the last few years the kids have been hitching up their Conestogas and making the journey up Ogden Avenue and across the Chicago River to a new country--the north side. Here are the stories of these refugee clans.

THE MADIGANS: The Madigan family homestead, the neighborhood around 64th and Keeler, won't be Irish forever. So house speaker Mike Madigan dipped into the gold he'd accumulated from years of bountiful political harvests, and financed his daughter Lisa's emigration to Lakeview: The girl used her grubstake to earnm a law degree from Loyola and win a seat in the state senate.

THE HYNESES: Life in Beverly was good for Tommy Hynes: he was elected assessor of Cook County and committeeman of the 19th Ward. But after graduating from Notre Dame, son Danny left home and made the long trek to Lincoln Park. The young settler prospered in the new territory. First he became president of the 43rd Ward Regular Democratic Organization; then he was elected state comptroller. The Hynes family is also prospecting for political gold in the 46th Ward. They provisioned committeeman Sandra Reed in her bid to grab Alderman Helen Shiller's claim. On election day a wagonload of hefty young vote rustlers in Notre Dame caps and White Sox jackets proffered Reed's literature outside the polling places.

THE JOYCES: The Wild North belongs to those brave enough to conquer it themselves, to scratch a living from its soil with their bare hands. Former state senator Jeremiah Joyce of Beverly wanted his boys to have their own spread the far side of the river; but instead of homesteading, the Joyces tried to set up a native as boss of the Uptown Ranch. Businesswoman Katharine Nathan had helped the Joyces in their campaign to elect Dick Devine state's attorney, but she lost in the primary for alderman. If the Joyces want to reap the fruits of the lakefront frontier, they might have to make the hard northward journey themselves.

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): illustration/Mike Werner.

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