Gerald R. Larson

I have been studying the history of architecture and art since I began my studies at the University of Michigan in 1968 (M.Arch 1974), where I had the honor and joy of studying under Richard Guy Wilson, who was the History teaching assistant at the time for Prof. Leonard Eaton. During my graduate studies, I was very fortunate to work part-time in the office of my structures professor, Robert Darvas, who gave me an intimate understanding of how structural systems work, to whom I (and all those I later taught) owe a great deal of gratitude for what he taught me.  I taught architectural history, design, and structures at the University of Cincinnati from 1974-2016, where I am a Professor Emeritus of Architecture.  Having been born and raised in Waukegan, IL, some 40 miles north of Chicago, I gravitated to researching the history of Chicago’s architecture, especially that of the Chicago School (1874-1892).  I have completed a manuscript for publication on this period, from which I will be posting excerpts on this blog, while I endeavor to find a publisher interested in making a book worthy of the buildings designed by these architects.  

If you have a question about this period that I may be able to assist in finding the answer, please contact me at:


This work is dedicated to the following individuals who helped to make this a reality:

-to Charles “Chick” Evans and the Evans Scholars Program of the Western Golf Association, who paid for my education

-to the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts for its generous support at my start of this project

-to John Wellborn Root, whose professional reputation has suffered for too long from the benign neglect of Architectural historians

-to B. Botsford Young, Jr., who coached me through the Evans interview process

-to Stanley M. Freehling, who taught me about Chicago architecture, life, and grace

-to Bob Breitenbach, who was my early editor and greatly improved my grammar and vocabulary

-to my parents, Bob and Eleanore Larson, who each in their own way molded me into the person I became

-to my family: my wife and best friend Kay, and my two daughters/technical advisors Kerstin and Signe, who trooped about the U.S. and Europe with me in search of the next building, with nary a complaint (except in Iowa…)