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The Cantigny Experience at a glance:

Married Man

Robert McCormick was married twice. His first wife was Amy Irwin Adams, his second was Maryland Mathison Hooper. Here are their stories. ​

​Amy Irwin Adams McCormick                         


Amy came from an army family. Her father, Bernard John Dowling Irwin was an army surgeon who received the Medal of Honor. Her brother, George LeRoy Irwin was a West Point graduate, who served in Cuba, the Philippines and Mexico. She and Robert were married on March 10, 1915 in London. They traveled through Europe to Russia before returning to Chicago and making their home in Wheaton. 

Amy served as a Red Cross nurse during World War I. After the war, she focused on activities at Cantigny. Her farm interests included raising dairy cattle and her prize winning Guernsey cows provided milk, butter and cream. She enjoyed horseback riding and co-founded the DuPage (Fox) Hunt Club. Her appreciation of dogs extended beyond her personal pets; in 1928 supported Orphans of the Storm, a no-kill shelter. 

An accomplished artist, Amy collected Impressionist paintings and kept a studio on the farm’s south side. Many of her paintings are on exhibit throughout the Robert R. McCormick Museum. Amy died at Cantigny and is buried with Robert on the grounds. 

Maryland Mathison Hooper McCormick         


​Maryland and Robert were married December 21, 1944, 5 years after Amy’s death. She moved into Cantigny with her daughters, Ann and Alice. Like Amy, Maryland enjoyed horseback riding but her interests centered on entertaining, antiques and travel rather than farming. The McCormicks threw lavish dinner parties and, on Friday nights, screened first-run Hollywood movies in their private Gold Theatre. 

Maryland furnished Cantigny with antiques collected during their extensive travels. Between 1947 and 1953, they traveled in a lavishly converted B-17 bomber airplane purchased as surplus from the U. S. Air Force. They visited Japan, China, Argentina, Cuba, and much of Europe.

Upon Robert’s death, Maryland chose to live in Washington D.C., leaving the Cantigny estate to become a public park. Maryland is buried in the Medill-McCormick plot at Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.​​​