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These photos show a street view of the William Kissam Vanderbilt residence, which was located at 660 Fifth Avenue, New York City. Isaac Brokaw mansion, designed by Rose & Stone, with an apartment house in the background. From Click Americana: 7 new collections of beautiful hand-drawn vintage portraits to color! Alva Vanderbilt was noted for her energy, intelligence, strong opinions, and willingness to challenge convention. In 1895 Alva Vanderbilt successfully sued William for divorce, an act that was considered scandalous because of her social standing.
Alva Belmont suffered a stroke in the spring of 1932 that left her partially paralyzed, and she died in Paris of bronchial and heart ailments the following January. The founder of the Vanderbilt fortune, Cornelius "Commodore" Vanderbilt, was from an old Dutch family like Mrs. Alva Vanderbilt began her assault on Society by building a new home on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. Born in Mobile, Alabama, on January 17, 1853, Alva Smith grew up there and, after the Civil War, in France.
After the death of his brother Cornelius Vanderbilt II in 1899 he was generally regarded as head of the Vanderbilt family. The Aeolian organ was installed in the Salon on the Second Floor, centered on the South side. Take a stroll back to the late 1800s and early 1900s to see some of the grand homes that helped their owners call this Manhattan street home. The New York City mansion was located at 5th Avenue and East 79th Street, and was demolished in 1965. As Murray Smith suffered repeated losses in his business dealings, his health, too, began to fail. After her marriage, she achieved fame for her conduct as one of the richest socialites of the Gilded Age.

On 11 January 1896 she married Oliver Hazard Perry Belmont, the son of financier August Belmont, in a civil ceremony in New York City.
Some of the most prominent mansions were built for the members of the wealthy Vanderbilt family including the New York City home of William K. She hired the architect Richard Morris Hunt and together they designed a white limestone mansion that was modeled after a French Chateau. His sons William Kissam Vanderbilt II (1878-1944) and Harold Stirling Vanderbilt (1884-1970) were the last to be active in the railroads, the latter losing a proxy battle for the New York Central Railroad in the 1950s. His homes included Idle Hour (1900) on Long Island, New York and Marble House (1892), designed by Richard Morris Hunt--who also designed his 660 Fifth Avenue mansion in Manhattan (1883)--in Newport. 1933), social leader and suffragist, was born Alva Erskine Smith in Mobile, Alabama, the daughter of Murray Forbes Smith, a cotton merchant, and Phoebe Ann Desha.
He died shortly after Alva's marriage to railroad heir William Kissam Vanderbilt, which took place in Calvary Church in New York on 20 April 1875. Her renowned fancy-dress ball in March 1883 drew wide public attention and garnered social acceptance for the Vanderbilts. The Commodore was an uncouth man with a habit of chewing tobacco and missing the spittoon, and he had a vocabulary of swear words that had to be heard to be believed.
Throughout the year, the family traveled among their mansions at 660 Fifth Avenue, New York City, Newport, Rhode Island, and this estate on the banks of the Connetquot River. The style was in keeping with the neighboring Bayard Cutting estate across the Connetquot River. Born in 1853 to a slave-owning Alabama family, she was the mother of his children and was instrumental in forcing their daughter Consuelo (1877-1964) to marry the 9th Duke of Marlborough in 1895.
As a child, Alva summered with her parents in Newport, Rhode Island, and accompanied them on European vacations. Alva and William had three children; she arranged the marriage of the eldest, Consuelo, to the English ninth Duke of Marlborough. While it is no longer standing, the mansion was located at 660 Fifth Avenue and was constructed in a single style from the past--the elite, royal chateau style.

The Commodore had no interest in Society at all and neither did his wife, who was a quiet, brow-beaten woman.
Although the Vanderbilts were among the very richest people in the world, they were excluded from the "Four Hundred," the cream of New York society, by the arbiters of such matters, Mrs. Her involvement in architecture continued to the end of her life and included renovations to Belcourt Castle in Newport and the fifteenth-century French Chateau d'Augerville-la Riviere. The home was vertically oriented with classical detailing and placed on a major tract of land for an urban dwelling.
Vanderbilt hired the most prominent decorators to furnish the rooms, including Herter Brothers and Jules Allard et Fils who created a Regence salon. His son, William Vanderbilt was a hard working man with good manners, but Society shunned him as well. Murray Smith later went to Liverpool, England, to conduct his business, and Alva, her mother, and her sisters moved to Paris. While the mansion shows great wealth and grandeur from the outside, it is an impressive example of wealth on the inside too. The billiard room, decorated in the Moorish style, is the most exotic interior designed by Marcotte (figs. He took his snubbing in stride - William Vanderbilt did not burn with the urge to be a social creature. While family photographs reflect many cheerful days at Idle Hour, the marriage of William K. The room had a geometric frieze, recesses with Islamic-inspired serrated arches, walls covered with complex floral tiles and a geometric frieze, and a ceiling with three spiderweb blocks and a geometric border on either side. By then, the Vanderbilts were the richest family in the United States and the younger Vanderbilts wanted to be accepted into Society.

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