1892 – He was a reclusive American writer and artist born this year in Chicago, Illinois. While he is believed to have been born on the 12th day of April, the exact date is debated.
1896 – When he was four years old, his mother, Rose (née Fullman), died after having given birth to a daughter who was given up for adoption; he never knew his sister.
1900 – Darger’s own report, his father, Henry Sr., was kind to him, and they lived together until this year. In that year the crippled and impoverished Darger Sr. had to be taken to live at St. Augustine’s Catholic Mission home and his son was placed in a Catholic boys’ home. Darger Sr. died in 1905
1913 – He witnessed the complete destruction of the town of Countrybrown, Illinois, by a huge tornado.
1930 – Darger settled into a second-floor room on Chicago’s North Side. It was in this room, more than 40 years later, after his death in 1973, that Darger’s extraordinary secret life was discovered.
1939 – The sequel to In the Realms of the Unreal is titled Crazy House: Further Adventures in Chicago. Begun in this year, it is a Stephen King-like tale of a house that is possessed by demons and haunted by ghosts, or perhaps has an evil consciousness of its own, like the hotel in The Shining.
1968 – He became interested in tracing some of his frustrations back to his childhood. It was in this year that he wrote The History of My Life, a book that spends 206 pages detailing his early life before veering off into 4,672 pages of fiction about a huge twister called Sweetie Pie, probably based on Darger’s traumatic experience at Countrybrown.
1973 – He died on the 13th day of April this year in Chicago, Illinois.