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Baker University Collection




Original Research


Guest Contribution: The Stained Glass in the Urishay Room at Baker University

Place name:

Michaelchurch Escley, Golden Valley





We are grateful to the Faculty and Management of Baker University , Baldwin City , Kansas for permission to include on our website this research into the Urishay Room carried out for them by W Richard Delahay. It forms part of the Baker University Collection of photographs and documents available elsewhere on the site.


Ewyas Lacy Study Group






The Urishay Room at Baker University , Baldwin City , Kansas is the original oak-panelled Drawing Room from Urishay Castle , which was sold as architectural salvage circa 1913. This paper touches on the background to the Delahay family holdings at Urishay from the 12 th century, but is mainly concerned with the significance and interpretation of the six stained glass window panels that are an important historical feature of the room. They show coats of arms of prominent families and individuals in the Welsh Marches in Medieval times, and the paper explains the heraldic terms and motifs used. Photographs of the panels overall and in detail are to be found at the link above.


One bears the multi-pointed red sun representing the coat of arms of the Delahay Lords of the Manor of Urishay. The other five represent the arms of significant rulers of the 11 th and 12 th century Welsh regions or kingdoms including:

  • The crest of Deheubarth - a significant portion of modern South Wales
  • The arms of the ruler of Morganwg - the modern day county of Glamorgan
  • The arms of Owain Gwynedd, the first ‘Prince of Wales’
  • The arms of the Royal House of Gwynedd and of Owain Glyndwr, the ‘Last Prince of Wales’
  • The arms of Gruffydd ap Cynon, one time ruler in Gwynedd


The paper includes the following sketch map of the Welsh kingdoms of the 11 th century:



The original paper and illustrations are shown below as images, the text of which is not searchable.



Peter Cormack MBE FSA HonFMGP, Vice-President, British Society of Master Glass-Painters wrote to us in February 2012 about the stained glass windows of the Urishay room as follows:

"I have recently found, in the course of my research into the work of American stained glass artist Charles J. Connick (1875-1945), that he was the artist responsible for the windows featuring Welsh heraldry that now adorn the ‘Urishay Room’ at Baker University’s Library.
I read with interest the articles by W. Richard Delahay on your website. in these, Mr Delahay suggests that the glazing was among the historic furnishings removed from Urishay Castle in c.1913. However, it is documented – in the Connick studio archives, now at Boston Public Library – that in 1921/22 Charles J. Connick was commissioned by the Marshall Field Co. to create the armorial glazing to accompany the store’s display of the Urishay panelled room, which was first acquired by the Art Institute of Chicago before it was subsequently later gifted to Baker University.
Charles Jay Connick was the foremost US stained glass artist of his time, with major works at the Cathedral of St John the Divine, New York, at Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, at Princeton University Chapel and at the Heinz Memorial Chapel in Pittsburgh.
It would be interesting to know how Connick went about researching the specific heraldry used in the glazing now at Baker University. He is known to have been meticulous in such historical research, and may well have called upon the expertise of Pierre de Chaignon La Rose, the American antiquarian who was the heraldic expert at Harvard University."

It would indeed be very interesting to discover how Connick got his inspiration and information about relatively obscure medieval Welsh princes and nobles with connections to Urishay Castle, and traced their armorial bearings. This would have been a significant challenge given the relatively thin historical record, especially from such a distance. We can speculate that he might therefore have been called on to restore or perhaps replace some existing older damaged glazing, but we know of no evidence for this one way or the other.
Ewyas Lacy Study Group

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