Sullivan's (?) Mystery Clock

Blair Kamin’s “Cityscapes” weblog has a post on the recently discovered drawings for a clock on the exterior of Sullivan’s Carson, Pirie, Scott & Co. store on State St.

Ward Miller, co-author of the Complete Architecture of Adler & Sullivan, found the drawings, with two different versions of the clock, in boxes of miscellaneous material given to him by Carson’s when they left the site in 2007.

Miller thinks the sketches’ author could have been Sullivan or his chief assistant, George Grant Elmslie. Sullivan expert Tim Samuelson isn’t so sure, emailing that the ornamental details in the sketches “suggest somebody imitating Sullivan’s work, rather than something Sullivan himself would have created.”

What we do know is that the sketches bear the stamp of the Winslow Bros. Co., which typically fabricated Sullivan’s ornamental ironwork. And they are dated June 5, 1906, indicating that the proposed clock might have been a weapon in a turn-of-the-century version of “Store Wars”—Carsons versus Marshall Field’s.


The sketches can be viewed on Kamin’s site.