On April 6, 1894, as researched and reported by Dr. Frank Orland in 1979, there was an election in the Village of Harlem (the predecessor to Village of Forest Park). This very aged copy of the specimen ballot shows at that time there were several party labels. In his research he found parties such as the Citizens’ Party, the Harlem Regulars,the Independents and the Municipal People’s Party. On these ballots a voter could cast a single party vote, thereby passing consideration to individuals.
Some of the names on this balot will also appear in both community and political life in Forest Park for generations like Jacob Gold (founding family of Goldyburgers and Golden Drug, and 1927 Mayor George Gold), John Glos (pioneer resident and grocer at Elgin and Dixon Forest Park) and Henry Stunk (School Board member in 1925 seen breaking ground on the new school south of Roosevelt, Betsy Ross). In recent history, there have been more candidate slates then in Forest Park’s long view of history, and at for decades was dominated by independents. But never has a candidate declared a national party label (such as Republican or Democrat) in our local elections.