HYDE PARK — The Chicago Park District Board voted on Wednesday to name a bridge in Jackson Park after Nancy Hays.
Hays, a Hyde Parker who died in 2007, was a founding member of the Jackson Park Advisory Council and the parks advocacy group Friends of the Parks.
The bridge the north end of Wooded Island leading to the Osaka Garden will be named in her honor.
Hays was a prolific photographer and first became interested in the health of Jackson Park while documenting the dismantling of the Army’s missile bases along the park’s lagoons, said Gary Ossewaarde, who wrote a short biography of Hays for the Hyde Park Historical Society.
“Her most stressful and defining work during the middle 1960s was fighting city plans to put a freeway and feeder route, Cornell Drive, through Jackson and Burnham parks,” Ossewaarde said of protests that escalated to civil disobedience.
“She missed the height of citizen arrests because a thoughtful friend gave her a ticket to London — which she says probably saved her sanity," Ossewaarde said.
In the measure naming the bridge for Hays, the Park District Board praised her devotion to preserving and protecting the park.