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George A. Fuller.

George Fuller’s construction company perfected the role of general contractor by organizing workforces. Just a few of his projects included the Monadnock, Tribune Tower, Fair, and Marshall Field Buildings.

With Owen Aldis, he forged a profitable alliance. In planning for the Marquette Building, Peter Brooks requested that “you [Aldis] and Mr. Fuller throw in your services for nothing…and that Mr. Fuller furnish materials and labor at cost…the management of the property to be in the hands of you two who are to divide the commissions as agreed…” Certain they could make the building profitable, Aldis replied, “I have talked the matter over fully with Mr. Fuller. He understands that he is to give his time and superintendence and do all possible work, labor and material, without any charge or profit. So do I.”

Aldis often wrote to the Brooks brothers of Fuller’s health. When Fuller faced money and labor troubles with the Monadnock, Aldis wrote, “the strain on him has slightly affected his powerful physique.” During the construction of the Marquette Building, Aldis worried over Fuller’s condition after he suffered a stroke. 

© 2012 John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation