The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s commercial recording legacy began 99 years ago on Monday, May 1, 1916, shortly after the close of the 25th season. Those first recording sessions were led by our second music director Frederick Stock for the Columbia Graphophone Company at an undocumented location in Chicago. Four works were recorded that first day: Mendelssohn’s Wedding March from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Wagner’s “Ride of the Valkyries” from Die Walküre, and Grieg’s Two Elegiac Melodies (Heart Wounds and The Last Spring).

Read more: “OK, Mr. Stock. We’re ready to record . . .”