William Rutherford P. Ireland papers

Inclusive Dates: 
circa 1925–1944

This record forms part of the Chicago’s Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource project funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art. For this project, the Archives surveyed archival repositories throughout the Chicago region to identify art-related materials contained in their holdings. While the Archives of American Art does not own any of the materials described herein, information about those materials and links to the original repositories have been included when available.

Descriptive Summary

2 linear feet (4 boxes) of material consisting of notes and interviews gathered by William Ireland for his never-completed PhD dissertation on Chicago’s “bohemian” population--artists, immigrants, workers, and those living transient or unconventional lifestyles in the city’s rooming houses and settlement houses. Included is material relating to Neo-Arlimusc and to the Dill Pickle Club, containing members’ accounts of a community devoted to self-education and artistic production.

Biographical Historical Note

William Rutherford P. Ireland was a graduate student in Sociology at the University of Chicago beginning in 1925 [sic]. He gathered extensive material for a never-completed PhD dissertation on Chicago’s “bohemian” population of artists, immigrants, workers, and those living transient or unconventional lifestyles in the city’s rooming houses and settlement houses.

The Dill Pickle Club was located in Tooker Alley off Dearborn Street on Chicago’s Near North Side. The houses there functioned as an artists’ residence, theatre, speakeasy, and unofficial university.

Neo-Arlimusc was founded in 1926 by Chicago artist Rudolph Weisenborn with the goal of uniting Chicagoans interested in art, literature, music, and science into a single organization. It effectively ceased activity in 1928.

Additional Notes

Related collection: Dill Pickle Club Records, Newberry Library.