Joseph Armour 1
- Marriage (1): Carrie Louise Gurnee
- Marriage (2): Amelia Gurnee on 2 Sep 1869
- Died: 1881
Partner of Armour & Co., the world's largest meatpacking and food processing concern, whose mantra was 'We feed the world.'
According to published reports, He reportedly died from an accidental fall in 1880, leaving his widow, Carrie Louise, as sole heir and co-executor of his more than $3 million estate as well as his share in the Armour & Co partnership. Childless from both marriages, Armour set aside $100,000 for the construction of a mission and school, named in honor of his first wife, Amelia.
There's not much left of the Armour Mission today. Just a marker peeking a couple of inches high out of the soil of the IIT campus. But the mission is an important part of Chicago's history.
The Armour Mission was built by Philip D. Armour at the request of his late brother, Joseph F. Armour. When Joseph died in 1881 he gave his brother $100,000 to establish a Sunday school. Phillip added $100,000 of his own and the building was erected. Initially its patrons were members of the Plymouth Church. But since the mission was non-sectarian people flocked to it from all over. It offered educational and vocational classes to hundreds of children, and eventually developed into the powerhouse educational institution known as the Illinois Institute of Technology.
Such a transformation doesn't come without growing pains, and one of those happened in 1962 when the original Armour Mission building was demolished. In many ways the original building resembled what is now IIT's Main Building; red brick, fiercely sloping roof, and a cone-capped turret. But in the long run, IIT (then known as Armour Institute of Technology) can be forgiven for this transgression because it developed one of the best architecture schools in the region, and is home to some of the most pioneering examples of modern architecture in Illinois.
> 1962 - The building is demolished.
Joseph married Carrie Louise Gurnee, daughter of Denton Gurnee and Louisa Ayres. (Carrie Louise Gurnee was born in 1862, died in 1922 and was buried in Graceland Cemetery, Chicago, IL.)
Joseph next married Amelia Gurnee, daughter of Denton Gurnee and Louisa Ayres, on 2 Sep 1869. (Amelia Gurnee was born on 19 Aug 1842 in Ramapo, Rockland, NY and died on 14 Oct 1873.)