This past week saw the birthday of Adlai E. Stevenson II (1900-1965), a political colleague of Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley. Stevenson hailed from from a distinguished family (his grandfather had been Vice President of the United States), served as Illinois Governor from 1949 to 1953, received the Democratic Party’s nomination for president in 1952 and 1956, and served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations under Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson from 1961 to 1965.
Daley served as Illinois’s Director of Revenue under Governor Stevenson, and the two forged a friendship marked by mutual admiration and respect.
In 1955, Stevenson endorsed Daley in the latter’s first campaign to be Mayor of Chicago. For an excerpt of television ads from that campaign, see the following video. (Stevenson’s television endorsement can be seen at the 5 minute, 50 second mark.)
Video: 1955 Democratic Party Campaign Ads for Television. RJD_04_02_0000_0000_201
Daley won the election. Here is Stevenson looking on as Judge Abraham Lincoln Marovitz swears the new mayor in.
Stevenson’s son, Adlai E. Stevenson III, was also a close associate of Daley, serving as a state legislator, state treasurer and from 1970 to 1981, representing Illinois in the United States Senate. Stevenson III contributed to the Richard J. Daley Oral History Collection, offering an interview in which he reflects on his father’s and his own relationship with the mayor. Read a transcript of his interview [PDF document] and transcripts of interviews conducted with the other contributors to the project.