Patrick McMullan; Bunny Mellon; Armene Milliken; Connie Milstein; Jim Mitchell; Sonja and John Morgan; Chappy Morris; Sarah Murdoch.

Patrick McMullan. The photographic chronicler of the age of New York that extends from the Andy Warhol days of Interview Magazine (where his party pictures first ran) to today where he is ubiquitous, media, magazine and book-wise and peripatetic on the party scene, uptown, downtown, South Beach, LA, and the Hamptons.

He is now also a small industry with several Patrick McMullan photographers covering the enormously active New York At Night party scene.

It was Warhol who first befriended him and set him on the road which today must surely be paved with gold. When he has his famous St. Patrick’s Day party (this year it was at Avalon), hundreds, if not thousands, are invited and also show up. Nobody wants to miss Patrick’s parties because everybody, all kinds of people from all kinds of places (uptown, downtown, Malibu, Mars) will be there. And, like Patrick, they will all be in a celebratory but GOOD mood. For Patrick exudes the upbeat. He loves introducing people to each other (and then he takes a picture – I’m not exaggerating).

A boy from Long Island, he’s been married and there’s a son – Liam – who’s now in his teens, who often can be seen taking everything in with his father. You can always spot him at an event, suited up, long hair brushed back down to his collar, always camera ready. He's met and known everybody on the passing cavalcade of the metropolis for the past almost thirty years (really!). His manner and bearing are so warm and friendly, some often mistake him for the host rather than the photog. And, in a way, it’s true.

However, the key to Patrick is that he’s a workhorse. He sees more of the city, after noontime, on any given day that most of us see in a lifetime. When he’s not working a party, or traveling from one to another, or on a plane traveling from one to another, or on his way to the dentist, he’s taking pictures. Of everything and everybody. You may even be in one of them. After the black-tie events in the big hotel ballrooms or museums or private parties, Patrick heads downtown to check out the scene until the wee hours. Always with his camera.

The result is a fantastic body of work, a historical record, as it were, of New York nightlife in the last quarter of the 20th Century and now into the new century, of New York nightlife, that is without peer.

What else does he do with his life? When would he have any time? His work is now finding its way into books, collections, archives of his nightly labors. Someone told me he bought himself a house out on the island to get away to. But the question is when would have time to get away to anything? He’s got a schedule that would wear you out just looking at it.
Relevant Link: Party Pictures 10.23.03.

Bunny Mellon. Rarely seen and never photographed, the Listerine heiress, widow of billionaire art collector Paul Mellon, Mrs. Mellon, who is now in her 90s, is famously reclusive and famous for her love of the decorative arts, maintaining homes in Virginia, New York, and Osterville that are fully staffed at all times so that she may arrive (via her private yet) on a moment’s notice with everything prepared for her. A stickler for getting things the way she wants, she once built a large swimming pool on her Osterville estate only to decide when it was finished that the deep end was on the wrong side. The pool was dug up and completely reconstructed to her specifications. A great and loyal friend to Jackie Onassis she was (privately) famous for her extravagant gifts to the former First Lady. When Jackie took up watercolor painting, Mrs. Mellon gifted her with a metal paintbox which held, in place of the brush, two gold earring loops and in the place of each color there were two precious stones with hooks for the earring loops — sapphires (for blue), rubies (for red), emeralds (for green), diamonds (for yellow), etc. A number of years ago Mrs. Mellon built a beautiful mansion with courtyard in the East 70s and is actively involved in maintaining its perfect interior design with a full-time personal interior decorator to assist her.

Armene Milliken. New York socialite, married to three prominent individuals; widow of textile heir Minot Milliken, one of the most popular ladies in New York.

Connie Milstein. Attorney, developer, high profile member of the prominent New York real estate family, major supporter of several philanthropic organizations and major Democratic fundraiser (contributed more than $400,000 to the 2004 campaign).

Jim Mitchell. Bigtime New York public relations man with international clientele and major social connections in Beverly Hills, Palm Beach, New York, London and Monte Carlo.

Sonja and John Morgan. John Morgan is one of five sons of Henry Sturgis Morgan, a great-grandson of J. Pierpont Morgan, the greatest American financier of the Gilded Age, and Catherine Adams, a great-great-granddaughter of John Adams, the second President of the United States. JP Morgan personally saved the American banking system during the Panic of 1907, and created the first billion-dollar corporation, U.S. Steel. His greatest legacy to the world was his vast collection of paintings, sculpture, objets and manuscripts, many of which are in his own Morgan Library.

I first met Sonya Morgan about twelve years ago when, as the still single Sonya Tremont, she was the hostess at (the Italian restaurant across from Bice) on Madison Avenue and 54th Street. Sonya was very well known among the New York money men and power brokers for being good looking, savvy and with a go-get-em charm. She was so good at her job (bringing in big name businessmen clientele that I wrote a profile on her for Quest). It was a story about a girl who came to the big town from Albany and made her way into the international set who made the circuit from Europe to New York, the Bahamas, Aspen and Malibu, and used her connections to make her way in business.

Chappy Morris and Melissa Stanley
Several years ago, she ran into John Morgan whom she knew through the restaurant at a cocktail party. Today they are married, parents of a daughter and divide their time between their house in New York, their house on an island off Connecticut and their yacht which at this time of the year is usually in the Bahamas.

Chappy Morris. Very popular New York man about town, frequent contributor to charitable causes, ubiquitous member of the charity ball circuit from a very old New York and Philadelphia families; writer and poet; perennial bachelor who has been dating the same young, attractive woman, Melissa Stanley, for several years now.

Sarah Murdoch. Australian born young mother and pretty young wife of former New York Post publisher Lachlan Murdoch, son of media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. When young Murdoch resigned from his position on his father’s New York newspaper, having made the decision to move with his family back to Australia, he was said to have been greatly influenced by his wife’s desire to return to their homeland. 

Albemarle, Rufus

Aston, Muffie Potter

Basso, Dennis

Benedict, Daniel

Capehart, Jonathan

Cominotto, Michael

Curry, Boykin

Dahl, Tessa

DeWoody, Beth Rudin

Duchin, Peter and Brooke

Duff, Patricia

Eaton, Phoebe

Fales-HIll, Susan

Fekkai, Frederic


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© 2006 David Patrick Columbia & Jeffrey Hirsch/