Friday, July 11, 2014



800 Members of Society Accept Invitations to Garden Dinner and Dance.

July 11, 1932

Special to The New York Times. HUNTINGTON, L. I., July 11.—Society on the North Shore is lending a hand in plans for a garden dinner and dance to be given on Saturday***16th*** evening by Mr. and Mrs. Marshall Field at their estate, "Caumsett", at Lloyds Neck, near Huntington, for the benefit of the Long Island Biological Society.

Subscription dinner parties will be entertained at tables on the terrace overlooking the harbor, and dancing will continue all evening. Mr. Field and William Rhinelander Stewart***Jr.*** will be head waiters.

On another part of the estate will be midway entertainments, including a freak show, of which Mrs. Joseph E. Davis will have charge. The stars in this will be the twin sisters, Mrs. Ralph H. Isham and Mrs. Malcolm L. Meechan. Others in the show will be Mrs. Baldwin Browne and Mrs. Baldwin Preston, the former Misses Priscilla and Phyllis Baldwin, also twins; Mrs. Harold E. Talbott, Captain Head and Mrs. John Gaston.

Vincent Astor will have charge of the china-breaking concession, in which society folk will try their skill at smashing plates, cups and saucers with balls.

Mrs. J. Henry Alexandre will direct the fortunes of the money wheel, and Neysa McMein and George Abbott will conduct a living picture show, with society folk as models.

Mrs. Field is being assisted with the general arrangements by Mrs. J. Henry Alexandre, Miss Eleanor Barry and Miss McMein. About 800 invitations have been accepted for the dinner.

Click HERE to view the invitation for this party.

A few of the participants.....

Vincent Astor around 1930
    Vincent Astor was at Harvard in April 1912 when word came the Titanic had gone down with his father on board. He inherited $87 million.  In 1957, Fortune magazine said he was worth $100 million to $200 million. He lived only six years after his marriage to the former Brooke Russell Kuser Marshall. His death in 1959 left her in total control of the Vincent Astor Foundation; he had never had children. Astor left $60 million at her personal disposal and a like amount for the foundation. Under her supervision it distributed $200 million. She closed it out in 2002. She died in 2007.

Mrs Harold E. Talbott, nee Pauline "Peggy" Thayer, painted by Savely Sorin in the early 1930s
   The daughter of Mr and Mrs John B. Thayer, Peggy was not travelling aboard the Titanic with her parents and brother. Peggy was one of the premier 'It Girls' of the 1920s and went on to marry the wealthy businessman, Harold E. Talbott, who served as US Secretary of the Air Force under Eisenhower. Mrs Talbott regularly appeared on the International Best Dressed List until her death by suicide in 1960. Source

 Mrs. William Rhinelander Stewart Jr. c1940, Jewels from Cartier, Karinska Evening Gown
   Mrs. William Rhinelander Stewart Jr., née Janet Newbold, considered "the most beautiful woman in New York” and was a member of the first Best-Dressed List. Mr. Stewart died in 1945.  In 1948 she married James S. Bush, great uncle to George W. Bush.  Janet's father was Fleming Newbold, President of the Evening Star.

William Rhinelander Stewart Jr. with and Elsa Maxwell and Cole Porter, c. 1934
  William Rhinelander Stewart Jr. was a major fixture on the Manhattan nightclub scene. Vincent Astor considered him his closest friend. He was often photographed clubbing with Cole Porter and Elsa Maxwell. Most likely because of the late nights, he never got up before noon. When people telephoned before that hour, his butler was instructed to tell them that “Mr. Stewart is out running around the reservoir.” His apartment at River House boasted the piano on which Gershwin composed the "Rhapsody in Blue".

   The Rhinelanders were premier landowners in New York City beginning in the late 18th Century. The family fortune provided a life of leisure for generations. 

Neysa McMein
by  Nickolas Muray, Hungarian born American artist
   Neysa McMein was an American artist and illustrator. As popular as her male counterparts in capturing The American Beauty (and a beauty herself), she sold millions of mags with her covers for McCall's, Saturday Evening Post, Collier's, McClure's, Woman's Home Companion, Photoplay, Liberty, Associated Sunday Magazine, Ladies World. Ad work: memorably for Palmolive; also Cadillac, Lucky Strike, Adam's Gum, Coke, Hummingbird Hosiery, Gainsborough Hair Nets, Colgate. She painted the first Betty Crocker and updated her through the years. A "member" of the Algonquin club; there and at her studio, she entertained Mary Pickford, Dorothy Parker, Harpo Marx, Jascha Heifitz, Noel Coward, Irving Berlin, Robert Benchley, all while she painted.

Mrs. J. Henry Alexandre, the former Anne Lomis,  at Belmont c. 1929 
  The Alexandre family fortune came from the fathers(Sr.) ownership of the Alexandre Steamship Line. Junior worked as a broker. The family New York City home was located at 35 East 67th Street. Its stable at 173 east 73rd Street. The Alexandre's Long Island estate "Valley Brook Farm".

Miss Elanor Barry
   Eleanor Barry was the daughter of Herbert Barry Sr. and Ethel M. Dawson of "Barrymead", Llewellyn Parks in the Oranges, N. J. She is called Mrs. Lawrence Lowman in her father's obituary. Herbert went to school at Bethel Military Academy and the West Virginia Law School where he graduated in 1888. He worked in several New York Law firms, becoming a partner in Davies, Auerback, Cornell and Barry. He then became a partner in the Wall St. firm of Barry, Wainwright, Thatcher and Symmers in 1913. Herbert was also involved with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. He was a Colonel in the Calvery Reserve Corp. and was in the S.A.R.

1930 Press Photo Mrs. John Gaston???, Mrs. Dodge Sloane New York Society leaders

1932 Press Photo, Miss Eleanor Barry selling baseballs for the plate breaking games at Payne Whitney estate "Greentree"

   Society girl??? The Fields's circus theme started a trend among society with an annual  fair at the Whitney estate. 

1922 Press Photo Joseph Baldwin, Jr., daughters Phyliss, Priscilla

  The Baldwin twins came from a large family, 8 total siblings, and resided at "Shallow Brook Farm", Mt Kisco, N. Y. Priscilla married Lewis  T. Preston in 1925. She married Thomas Archer Morgan - son of E. D. Morgan, in 1934. Divorced a year later. Twin Phyllis married  Gilbert G. Browne in 1925 and went on to marry J. P. Warburg in 1935.

   Mrs. Ralph Heyward Isham was wife number two. At 24, Mr Isham married the 16 year old daughter of New York City Mayor William Jay Gaynor, Marion Gaynor. They divorced a year later. Gaynor's sister married William Seward Webb, Jr. Webb was the son of William Seward Webb, Sr. and Eliza Vanderbilt. 

  Ralph H. Isham was involved in securities. His father, Henry Heyward Isham was president of the Marietta, Columbus & Cleveland Railroad, and possessor of extensive realty holdings in New Jersey, resulting from a Colonial grant of a large tract between Newark and Elizabeth. His second marriage lasted until 1933. He went on to marry Viscountess Christine Churchill. That lasted only a year. Known for purchasing the "Boswell Papers", which now reside at Yale University.  He died in 1955.

  Joesph E. Davis was a founding member of the Pipping Rock Club. His Upper Brookville Long Island home.

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