Arms and Armor—Harding's Castle and Collection

December 11, 2010

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Half Armor for Foot Tourney at the Barriers, 1575/80. Northern Italian, Milan. George F. Harding Collection

In the first few decades of the twentieth century, George F. Harding Jr., a colorful figure in Chicago business and politics, assembled an enviable collection of arms and armor at a time when others, including William Randolph Hearst and institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Cleveland Museum of Art, provided stiff competition. To showcase his ever-expanding collection, Harding even added a two-story annex—known as the "Castle on the Illinois Central Railroad"— to his home on the city’s South Side. Stuart Pyhrr, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, will discuss arms, armor, and Chicagoan George F. Harding, Jr.'s passion for collecting it.

Recorded Friday, December 10, 2010 at Fullerton Hall, The Art Institute of Chicago.