Thursday, January 12, 2012

Part X: "A window still waiting to fall …"

Rumson Avenue, Margate City, New Jersey. August 1947. Ellen made several trips in her Desoto convertible to visit close friend Tom Evans at his sleek oceanfront beach house. Of course, she took some wonderful snapshots. Local, county, and state building officials have been unable to identify the architect for this remarkable house that appears to still be perched along the Jersey Shore.
Part X: "A window still waiting to fall …" March 1947-December 1947
France – Copenhagen – Radnor Hunt Club – Long Island – Jersey Shore – Chestnut Hill

By Augustus Mayhew

In this chapter's opening images Ellen Glendinning Frazer returns to Paris for the first time in more than a decade and finds her American friends who survived the war, their spirits as surprisingly unscathed as the City of Light's monuments. Afterwards, she and Polly Howe journey to the Breton countryside on roads once lined with mines and machine guns where the picture was dimmer. They found towns not completely leveled to stone had been reduced to shells, a shadow of their past. From there, they traveled by train to Copenhagen and visited US Ambassador Joe Marvel and his wife Philadelphian Gee Marvel before heading back to France and boarding the SS America for the trip back to the United States. For the rest of the year, Ellen stayed close within her family and Chestnut Hill circle of friends.

March 1947
Travel documents and ephemera. France, 1947.
March 1947
Ritz Hotel, Paris
"Prillie" and "Frankie Arthur."
Tipperary Bar-Restaurant
Ellen and Polly Howe lunch at the Tipperary with Field Marshall Sir William Elliott; JP Morgan & Co. partner Julian Broome Livingston Allen, his wife Alice Harding Pell Allen, and daughter “Sabette” (Mary Elizabeth) Allen; and Jacques Allez with his wife Mary Astor Paul Munn Allez, granddaughter of Anthony J. Drexel and the former Mrs. Charles A. Munn.
Alice Moore Harding Pell Allen (1903-1990). Alice Allen, one of the "Harding sisters," was previously married to Robert T. Pell, US State Department attaché at the Paris embassy. Her father W.P.G. Harding was a governor of the Federal Reserve Bank; her sister Mary Elizabeth was married to Frederick Prince Jr. and Eugene Van Rennselaer Thayer before saying "I do" with Vadim Makaroff who was previously married to Josephine Hartford, granddaughter of George Huntington Hartford. Sabette (Mary Elizabeth) Allen, Julian and Alice Allen's daughter.
Julian Allen and Polly Howe. Julian B. L. Allen (1900-1967), born in Pelham Manor where his father was once mayor, was first married to actress Eileen Kearney Dillingham, the second wife of New York theatre producer Charles Dillingham. The Dillinghams divorced in 1924 when she then married Julian Allen. One year later, the Allens divorced, only to remarry again. Members of the Fontainebleau Golf Club, the couple had become among Paris' "300 notable cosmopolitans" before their 1936 divorce in Palm Beach. One month later, Allen married Alice Harding Pell. During the war, they lived in the US, Bolton Priory in New York and Sugar Hill Farm, Vermont, and Paris where he was affiliated with Morgan et Cie, becoming president of the Paris bureau in 1955. For many years, they also had a house in Brittany, Chateau de Quetteville, before moving to Neuilly in 1951.
L. to r.: Dimitri, Sabette Allen, Jacques Allez, and Field Marshal Sir William Elliott.
Jacques Allez and Field Marshall Sir William Elliott. In 1934, Allez, a renowned French aviator and chairman of the Aero Club of France, married Drexel heir Mary Astor Paul, four years after her divorce from Charles A. Munn.
Mme. Mary Astor Paul Allez (1889-1950) and Alice Moore Harding Allen. Named for aunt, Mary Paul Astor, Mme. Allez's first marriage in 1909 to Charles Alexander Munn was considered the social event of several continents. Amado, the Munns' Palm Beach house, became the epicenter for Philadelphia-Washington-New York-Boston-London-Paris society. During WW II, as Mme. Allez she served as a key figure in the French Resistance, known by the code name Pauline, the name of her daughter who died in 1939 at the American Hospital in Paris. According to various reports, Mme. Allez was interred at Vittel for a short time by the Germans in October 1942. Upon her release, she played an active role in the Underground for which she was awarded the French Legion of Honor and the American Medal of Freedom. As president of the American Aid Society in Paris, Mme. Allez raised funds that helped Americans from "all walks of life."
Paris, 1947. Mme. Allez and Alice Allen. Three years later, Mme. Allez died in Paris.
" Tea time at Senlis with the Bunny Carters …" Ellen, Polly, and the Allens go for tea at Senlis, northeast of Paris.
"Tea at the Carters …"
"Then we went with Julian and Alice Allen to Chantilly ..."
Sabette Allen "... in a forest of daffodils." In later life, Sabette would marry Count Alain de Lyrot.
Chateau de Quetteville
Julian and Alice Allen's chateau in Normandy
Chateau de Quetteville. Located 158 km. from Paris, Julian and Alice Allen lived here until 1951.
Chateau de Quetteville. The house was near Honfleur and Pont-Audemer.
Another view of Chateau de Quetteville.
L. to r.: Sabette Allen, Alice Allen, and Frederick Allen. The Allens celebrate a family birthday.
Chateau de Quetteville. Interior.
Chateau de Quetteville.
Chateau de Quetteville, the pigeon house.
A Normandy landmark " ... where the Germans surrendered."
Honfleur, a pre-war postcard view. Honfleur was 10 km. from Chateau de Quetteville.
Honfleur. Another pre-war postcard view.
Honfleur, as Ellen photographed it in 1947.
Honfleur, 1947. "A window still waiting to fall ..."
A pre-war view of a charming inn.
The same inn, as Ellen Frazer photographed it in 1947.
10 April 1947
Ellen and Polly Howe arrived in Copenhagen to visit their friends Joe and Gee Marvel.
In 1946 President Truman appointed Delaware attorney Josiah "Joe" Marvel Jr. the US Ambassador to Denmark. Marvel's sister Jane Marvel Scott was one of Ellen's best friends as was Marvel's wife "Gee," Gwladys Hopkins Whitney. Mr. Marvel's father, Josiah Marvel Sr., was a prominent Delaware attorney, a president of the American Bar Association and a founder of the United States Corporation Co. that made the state the nation's most popular location to incorporate.
Frederiksberg, the king's summer palace.
Another view of the king's summer palace.
"We went to the market with Gee every morning to watch her communicate in her best Danish."
"Gee's Danish depended a lot on her hands."
18 April 1947
Aboard the SS America to New York
On the return trip, Commander Harry Manning was again at the helm.
On board Ann Astaire, Fred and Adele Astaire's mother.
Ann Astaire with Ellen Glendinning Frazer aboard the SS America.
"A storm delayed our return by three days," Ellen wrote, managing to snap a photo of the mountainous waves.
10 May 1947
Luncheon with the Theodore C. Schaeffers at the Radnor Hunt Club
L. to r.: Gates Lloyd, Bobbie du Barry, Joe du Barry, and Andrew Harris. Mrs. Theodore Schaeffer was the former Eloise Geist, daughter of prominent Boca Raton Hotel developer and utilities tycoon Clarence Geist, who in 1926 arranged for Paul Phillipe Cret to design a house for the Schaeffers.
Huberta Potter Earle. In 1945 Huberta sued her husband former Pennsylvania governor George Earle for divorce.
Lallie Lloyd and Huberta Potter Earle.
May 1947
In May 1947 President Truman appointed George Garrett the US Ambassador to Ireland.
June 1947
Long Island
28 June 1947. Ellen went to the International Gold Cup at Belmont with Gertrude Sanford Legendre and Mary Sanford.
Mary Duncan Sanford. Oil portrait. 1947. While on Long Island, Ellen went to the races with Gertrude Legendre and Gert's sister-in-law Mary Sanford.
"Cocktails at Polly Howe's house and Lunch with Helen and Harvey Gibson …"
Winthrop Aldrich. In 1947 as chairman of Chase National Bank and president of the International Chamber of Commerce, Winthrop Aldrich called for the creation of a United States Corporation for Europe Reconstruction as the agency to administer the nation's proposed $16 billion contribution towards Europe's recovery.
George D Widener Jr. and Isabel Dodge Sloane.
Polly Howe.
George D. Widener.
Isabel Cleves Dodge Sloane. The daughter of John F. Dodge, in 1921 Isabel married New York stockbroker George Sloane, divorced him eight years later and never remarried.
Summer 1947
"My new convertible …" 1947 Desoto Custom Convertible.
August 1947
113 South Rumson Avenue, Margate City, New Jersey
113 South Rumson Avenue, Margate City, New Jersey. During the summer of 1947 Ellen spent several weekends at Thomas Evans' nautical-themed Midcentury Modern beach house.
Tom Evans entertained several house parties at his extraordinary ocean-liner styled house with window walls and open terraces.
Tom Evans standing on one of the balcony decks.
Henry Bain III and Betty Pope Bain.
James Gowen and Thomas Evans. Mr. Gowen was president and chairman of the Girard Trust Bank.
Yale Dolan. When Mr. Dolan's father Thomas Dolan, of the Widener-Elkins-Dolan syndicate, died in 1914 he left a $35 million fortune to his three sons. Thomas Dolan was a utilities magnate, president of the United Gas Company of Philadelphia.
Henry Bain III.
Tom Evans and Eleanor Lineaweaver. "The appetite satisfied at last."
Charlotte Reid.
Betty Pope Bain.
Sally Gowen. Tanning was a popular pastime.
Tom Evans, left, entertains guests on the balcony at his South Rumson Avenue oceanfront house.
August 1947
Lunch at George Widener's Erdenheim Farm
Erdenheim Farm, Chestnut Hill. In 1912 George D. Widener Jr. purchased Erdenheim Farm's several hundred acres of agricultural and pasture land in the suburbs of Philadelphia next to Chestnut Hill. Five years later, he married Jessie Sloane Dodge, following her divorce from Phelps-Dodge mining heir William Earl Dodge. Jessie Widener was the daughter of department store scion Henry T. Sloane. The Wideners' thoroughbreds were said to have won more than 1,200 races, most notably the Belmont Stakes in 1962. Married for more than 50 years yet childless, Erdenheim Farm, described as "an English countryside farm," and its 60-room mansion was inherited in 1971 by Widener's nephew F. Eugene "Fitz" Dixon who owned the property for the next 30 years. In 2001, he began selling off various parcels for development, a property that had been in continuous agricultural use since William Penn.
Polly Howe.
George D. Widener Jr. at Erdenheim Farm. "George will be very annoyed with me when he sees this picture."
Ellen Glendinning Frazer and George D. Widener Jr.
November 1947
Chestnut Hill
Ellen's friend Richardson Dilworth ran an unsuccessful campaign as a Democrat for Mayor of Philadelphia. He would eventually succeed, serving as Mayor of Philadelphia from 1956 to 1962. Later in his life, Mr. Dilworth became the financial advisor and leading manager of Room 5600, now known as Rockefeller Family & Associates, the family office of the Rockefeller family.
Richardson Dilworth and his family were featured in a Life magazine that detailed an incident where Ann Dilworth "walloped a Republican heckler with her handbag."
November 1947
"I woke up this morning and found this at my front door…" Ellen's nephew Frazer Dougherty manufactured the Airphibian, designed by Robert Fulton Jr. Above, the Airphibian parked in front of Ellen's house in Chestnut Hill.
First conceived by Robert Fulton Jr., the Airphibian is on exhibit at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. For more on this fascinating invention, go to Airphibian, a website created by Frazer Dougherty's son.
Next Part XI, 1948: Palm Beach at Villa Tranquilla, Gulf Stream Golf Club, Jamaica with Polly Howe and Helen Huntington Astor Hull, a Wilmington wedding, the death of Sidney Legendre, the passing of Alexis Felix du Pont Sr., and a stay at The Greenbrier, White Sulphur Springs.
The photographs of Ellen Glendinning Frazer Ordway are from the Collection of Lucius Ordway Frazer©.
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