Raymond Henry – Artist, Sculptor and Family Man
Raymond Henry was an artist, sculptor and family man. He founded ConStruct, an organization which featured the work of sculptors through public exhibits in public spaces and galleries.
Raymond gained editorial experience working on Greeley’s Tribune and the old-fashioned Courier and Enquirer newspapers. Later, Raymond co-founded The New York Times newspaper which focused on objective facts while rejecting sensationalism; additionally he helped prepare most of President Lincoln’s platform before serving as chairman of the Republican National Committee from 1864-1866.
Early Life and Education
Raymond Henry was an internationally acclaimed sculptor, artist, arts patron, and politician who rose through New York politics to serve as speaker of New York State Assembly and Lieutenant Governor – helping rally public support for Union during tumultuous moments during the American Civil War. Additionally, Henry helped found The New York Times while writing editorials advocating reason over passion and impartiality over partisanship.
He was known for being hard working and enjoyed watching the Dallas Cowboys as well as drinking Dunkin Donuts coffee. A dedicated family man, he took delight in spending time with his grandchildren. An active member of his church and dedicated servant of others – he was preceded in death by wife Norene Reed, son Eddie Reed, daughter Alyce Abney and sister Iris.
Henry established and managed ConStruct, an exhibition series featuring large-scale sculpture from Chicago area artists. As its manager and mentor to young sculptors alike, Henry encouraged their bold and ambitious approaches in their art creations.
Ray was a devout family man. He took great pleasure in spending time with his children, supporting the Dallas Cowboys and sipping Dunkin Donuts coffee – among many other passions – as well as being there when his friends needed someone to listen or help.
He began his journalistic career on Horace Greeley’s Tribune before transitioning to James Watson Webb’s Courier and Enquirer. Together with George Jones and Edward B. Wesley he founded The New York Times in 1851; its editorial content focused on ideas rather than personalities during a period of factional hatreds that ultimately contributed to Civil War outbreak.
Achievement and Honors
Henry was known for his huge laugh and large heart, as well as being an adventurous spirit who always seemed ready for adventure. Henry loved both Dallas Cowboys football and Dunkin Donuts coffee; these were among his passions.
At one point in his military career, he rose through the ranks to become a rear admiral in the Navy and was awarded with the Navy Cross for bravery while captaining USS Plunger during war patrols in hostile waters.
His other passion was cycling; he was particularly fascinated by the golden age of French cyclotouring, collecting historic photographs and letters as well as publishing several books on it. Furthermore, he was an experienced grand randonneur, riding brevets over long distances.
He was a beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather as well as brother and friend to many. Additionally, he was a successful business owner starting with his tow truck company which eventually expanded into garage services, full service convenience store operations and recycling operations.
He also pursued political interests, joining the Republican Party at its 1856 convention and helping draft its platform. Subsequently he supported President Abraham Lincoln over Reconstruction theory at its 1860 Republican convention (Darby 352-4; Wilson 373).
Henry leaves behind his wife Pamela; daughters Katherine and Stacey, sons Robert and Stephen; his sisters Virginia Kingsolver and Lenora Bedgio as well as many nieces, nephews and cousins. Henry founded ConStruct – an international sculpture collective which showcased its large-scale works throughout Chicago public spaces – before his passing.
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He was an influential voice on politics, culture and mass media; leading the development of Marxist criticism of culture and art. His writings about cultural phenomena of his day helped shape modern political theory as it emerged; especially cultural materialism.
Raymond Henry prefers to keep his personal life private and out of the spotlight, yet has been linked with multiple women over time. Unfortunately, we do not yet know whether he has children with his current partner.