Melville W. Fuller Bust

Melville W. Fuller Bust, 1913
William Ordway Partridge
Fuller Park
North end of courtyard
331 West 45th Street 

            An Illinois transplant from his home state of Maine, Melville W. Fuller established a law practice in Chicago and became active in politics. He managed Stephen Douglas's presidential campaign against Abraham Lincoln in 1860. After serving in the Illinois House of Representatives, he was selected by President Grover Cleveland to serve on the country's high court. As the 8th Chief Justice of the United States (1888 – 1910), Fuller is the only Chicagoan to reach that legal pinnacle. 
          Just three years after his appointment, William Ordway Partridge (1861–1930), a highly regarded American artist whose other Chicago works include the William Shakespeare Monument in Lincoln Park, sculpted a marble portrait bust of Fuller for the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. When a new park was named to honor Fuller after his death in 1910, park commissioners established a fund for a replica of the bust to be placed in the park. Almost overlooked today, the bronze bust stands on a pedestal located in an architectural niche in the courtyard adjacent to the park's gym and locker building.

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