Strikes and labor problems tormented the George A.
Fuller company (note that the correct name is George
A Fuller, not George H. Fuller as is sometimes
misstated online and in various books).
George A. Fuller (1851-1900) was an architect who
became known as the inventor of skyscrapers and
modern construction. He founded his construction
company in Chicago in 1882 and was a primary
contractor of the "White City" for the 1893
Columbian Exposition in Chicago.
The “general contractor” concept in use today was
pioneered by Fuller. His company assumed
responsibility for everything except the design. The
company was very successful in Chicago and soon
expanded to NYC and other cities.
In 1894 his daughter, Allon, married Harry S. Black who joined Fuller construction as an executive. In 1900 when George Fuller died of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS - Lou Gehrig's disease), Black assumed control of the corporation. Under Black's leadership the company built what today is called the Flat Iron Building in New York City but when constructed in 1902 was called the Fuller Building, a tribute to George A. Fuller.
Other Fuller projects during the Black years included Pennsylvania Station, Macy's on 34th St. in NYC, the Plaza Hotel and the Iroquois Theater in Chicago.
The Fuller company was the only entity to compensate families of Iroquois Theatre victims, approximately $750 to 40 claimants. The Chicago offices were overseen by William A. Merriman.
- More later -