Fame Upon Death: Henry Darger

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by Eubma
Last updated 6 years ago

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Fame Upon Death: Henry Darger

Henry Darger was born in his home on April 12, 1892. Darger had a pretty rough life starting out. His mother died when he was 4 years old, and his new-born sister was given up for adoption near the same time. In 1905 Henry's father died in the St. Augustine Catholic Mission Home. When this happened Darger had now become an orhpan. Darger was placed in the Illinois Asylum for Feeble-Minded Children after the death of his father. When Henry became older he was a janitor at the Catholic Mission Home. After that he was able to move into his own apartment-like home. After Darger settled into his home he started to get inspired to paint and write. His childhood experiences drived his imagination. This drive enabled him to paint almost 300 works and write almost a 15,000 single-spaced, full paged fiction story. Near the end of his life he didn't stop paint and writting just because of his old age, but he did eventually stop. After he had reached a certain age he was evicted from his home and put in St. Augestine Catholic Mission Home where he died on April 13, 1973 - one day after his birthday. His works remain in New York where they are inspiring many artist and writers today.


April 12, 1892 - Darger was born in Chicago, Illinois. 1896 - Darger's mother dies along with his sister being given up for adoption. 1905 - Darger's father, Darger Sir, died. 1930 - Darger moves into a second-floor room and starts to write "The Realms of the Unreal" until 1973. April 13, 1973 - Darger dies in St. Augustine Catholic Mission Home

Henry Darger wrote a 15,000 page single spaced, fiction story based on his hardships during his childhood. He aslo painted 300 works to go along with his writings.

Lasting Impact

Darger's painting and writing still reside today at the American Folk Art Museum, in Lincoln Square, New York, fascinating many people.


Henry Darger as a Middle-Aged Man.

Nathan Lerner Contributor to Darger's Works

Nathan Lerner was Henry Darger's land lord in 1972. When Darger was too weak to walk up his stairs in his house, he had to move to the "Little Sisters of the Poor Homefor the Elderly" old folks home. When Dargersa home was being renovated Lerner then found all of Darger's painting and writings. No one really took the time to read his writings up until he died. He didn't recive credit for his works until he died.

Fame Upon Death

The Realms of the Unreal ~ Henry Darger


Henry Darger

A piece from "The Realms of the Unreal"


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