Part XV: Resort Life, 1959-1961
Cannes – Greenwich – Locust Valley – Newport
For a look at Ellen Glendinning Ordway‘s life from 1959 until 1961, I perused more than 4,000 photographs housed within nine volumes belonging to Ordway’s granddaughter Gayle Abrams, whose collection comprises 95 photograph albums. For this three-year segment, I have arranged and described images from Cannes, Greenwich, Locust Valley and Newport. Since during this same period Palm Beach social events and family gatherings in various locations produced an additional 250 snapshots, they will be included in the next several chapters. Although the photographs have lost much of their original color and the memory of the people and places they depict may have faded, these pictures celebrate a particular social order, their aura as vibrant as it was fifty years ago.
Step back to the last throes of trans-Atlantic luxury liners when style was classier than speed, when resorts were still the realm of the few rather than the new, and when the election of President John F. Kennedy had everyone asking ” … Is this the start of a New Era?”
Sunday 13 September 1959
New York to Cannes
“We stopped in Lisbon, Naples and Genoa before arriving in Cannes.”
25 September 1959
10 October 1959
Aboard the SS Constitution
During this period Lou and Ellen Ordway spent July and August in Newport at an oceanfront house located on Barclay Square. For the Ordways and their circle, Newport afforded refuge where they could spend leisure moments with their Palm Beach friends as well as enjoy the sporting life. However much President Eisenhower had made daily headlines during the late 1950s, having turned the “Queen of Resorts” into the Summer White House where he could be found putting around the Newport Country Club, a New York Timesstory in July 1959 was headlined “Newport facing a quiet season.”
And then, with First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy‘s mother Janet Auchincloss ensconced overlooking the Newport Country Club and President Kennedytaking afternoon swims at Anita Young‘s heated pool, Newport datelines continued to attract the national and international spotlight. After Mr. Ordway died in 1964, Ellen bought a summer house in Northeast Harbor, “Philadelphia on the Rocks,” as she called it.
180 Narragansett Avenue
Newport Country Club
39 Bellevue Avenue
Bailey’s Beach Club
34 Ocean Avenue Newport
169 Bellevue Avenue
Next: Part XVI: Palm Beach – Boca Grande – Delray Beach – St. Paul – Mexico, 1959-1961
Ellen Glendinning Ordway’s photographs are from the Collection of Gayle Abrams©.