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William Corcoran Eustis
File:File:Eustice 3121123268 bf067ac64e o.jpg
Born (1862-07-20)July 20, 1862
Paris, France
Died November 24, 1921(1921-11-24) (aged 59)
New York City, U.S.
Alma mater University of Virginia
Harvard Law School
Occupation Soldier
Spouse(s) Edith Livingston Morton
(m. 1900; his death 1921)
Children 5
Parents George Eustis Jr.
Louis Morris Corcoran Eustis
Relatives George Eustis Sr. (grandfather)
William Corcoran (grandfather)
Wendy Pepper (great-granddaughter)

William Corcoran Eustis (July 20, 1862 – November 24, 1921) was a captain in the United States Army and the personal assistant to General John J. Pershing during World War I.[1] He was chairman of the inauguration committee for the first inauguration of Woodrow Wilson in 1913 and started the Loudoun Hunt in 1894.[2]

Early life[edit | edit source]

He was born on July 20, 1862, in Paris to former U.S. Representative George Eustis Jr. (1828–1872) and Louise Morris "Lulie" (née Corcoran) Eustis (1838–1867), who married in April 1859. His brother was George Peabody Eustis and his younger sister was Louise Marie Eustis, who married polo player Thomas Hitchcock Sr.[3][4]

He was a grandson of Clarisse (née Allain) Eustis and George Eustis Sr., Chief Justice of the Louisiana Supreme Court. His mother was the only surviving child of banker and philanthropist William Wilson Corcoran, co-founder of the Riggs Bank, and Louis (née Morris) Corcoran, a daughter of naval officer Charles Morris.[5] His paternal uncle was U.S. Senator and Ambassador to France James Biddle Eustis.[6]

Eustis was educated at Shadwell School in Albemarle County, Virginia, the Hanover Academy in Hanover County, Virginia before attending the University of Virginia from 1880 to 1882.[7] He then attended Harvard Law School, graduating in 1887.[7]

Career[edit | edit source]

After graduating from Harvard, "much of his time was taken up with the management of his large estate."[8] While Joseph Hodges Choate was the U.S. Ambassador to the United Kingdom, Eustis served as the Third Secretary of the United States Embassy in London from 1901 to 1902.[7]

During the first World War, William was a personal secretary to General John J. Pershing, achieving the rank of Captain.[8]

Personal life[edit | edit source]

On April 30, 1900, he married Edith Livingston Morton (1874–1964), a descendant of many prominent families, including the Livingston family of New York. Edith, a daughter of Anna Livingston Reade (née Street) Morton and Levi Parsons Morton, the 22nd U.S. Vice President under Benjamin Harrison, served as a member of the memorial commission for the District of Columbia War Memorial.[6] Together Edith and William were the parents of five children, including:[7]

He laid the cornerstone for the Corcoran Gallery of Art on May 10, 1894, which his grandfather funded. He was a member of the Metropolitan Club, the Alibi Club, the Knickerbocker Club, and the Meadowbrook Club on Long Island.[7]

Thoroughbred racing[edit | edit source]

William Eustis owned and raced Thoroughbred horses and in addition to riding polo ponies was a very capable amateur Thoroughbred rider. As part of the undercard for the May 29, 1897 Belmont Stakes won by Scottish Chieftain at Morris Park Racecourse, William Eustis rode Hawarden in the one mile Amateur Cup. A race for "gentlemen riders," he finished third to winner Diversion ridden by Foxhall Keene.[16] Among the stakes races Eustis won with some of his horses were the Advance Stakes and the Pansy Stakes in 1899.[17][18]

Passing[edit | edit source]

Eustis died at the Hotel Belmont in New York City, en route to the former country home of his father-in-law in Rhinecliff, New York, on November 24, 1921 of pneumonia due to complications related to the Spanish Flu,[8] which he contracted during the war.[6]

Descendants and legacy[edit | edit source]

Eustis owned and restored Oatlands Plantation in Leesburg, Virginia until it was donated to the National Trust for Historic Preservation following his widow's death in 1964.[19][20]

Through his youngest daughter Anne,[21] he was a great-grandfather to Wendy Pepper, a contestant on season 1 of Project Runway.[19]

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "Wm. Corcoran Eustis Dies. Former Diplomat was Captain on Gen. Pershing's staff". New York Times. November 25, 1921. https://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9B01EFD9113CE533A25756C2A9679D946095D6CF. 
  2. "Wilson Favors Omitting Ball". Hartford Courant. January 17, 1913. https://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/courant/access/780997272.html?dids=780997272:780997272&FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:AI&type=historic&date=Jan+17%2C+1913&author=&pub=Hartford+Courant&desc=WILSON+FAVORS+OMITTING+BALL&pqatl=google. Retrieved 2009-08-27. "President-elect Wilson favors the abolishment of the inaugural ball. This became known today when he sent a letter to William Corcoran Eustice at Washington, chairman of the inauguration committee, asking him to consider the feasibility of omitting the ball as a ..." 
  3. "LOUISE MARY EUSTIS MARRIED.; THE HAPPY BRIDEGROOM IS THOMAS HITCHCOCK, JR., OF THIS CITY.". The New York Times. 28 August 1891. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1891/08/28/103331823.pdf. Retrieved 15 May 2017. 
  4. Times, Special To The New Tobk (30 September 1941). "T. HITCHCOCK SR, SPORTSMAN, DEAD; Head of a Family Long Noted in Polo, Steeplechase and Hunting Circles". The New York Times. https://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9E02EED8123BEF3ABC4850DFBF66838A659EDE&legacy=true. Retrieved 15 May 2017. 
  5. "The Corcoran Mansion" (in en). The White House Historical Association. https://www.whitehousehistory.org/the-corcoran-mansion. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 "W. C. Eustis Dies On New York Trip. Succumbs to Recurrence of Pneumonia He Contracted During War Service. Funeral Arrangements Incomplete. Was Long Prominent in National Capital Affairs. Family and Friends at Bedside. Funeral Plans Not Completed.". Washington Post. November 25, 1921. https://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/washingtonpost_historical/access/284290652.html?dids=284290652:284290652&FMT=ABS&FMTS=ABS:FT&date=NOV+25%2C+1921&author=&pub=The+Washington+Post&desc=W.+C.+EUSTIS+DIES+ON+NEW+YORK+TRIP&pqatl=google. "Capt. William Corcoran Eustis, of Washington, D. C., personal secretary to Gen. John J. Pershing during the war, died tonight following the recurrence of an attack of pneumonia contracted in France. He was 60 [sic] years old." 
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 7.4 Barringer, M.D., Paul Brandson; Garnett, M.A. LL.D., James Mercer (1904) (in en). University of Virginia; Its History, Influence, Equipment and Characteristics with Biographical Sketches and Portraits of Founders, Benefactors, Officers and Alumni, Vol. II. New York: Lewis Publishing Company. p. 260. https://books.google.com/books?id=BQM0Hid6ey0C&pg=PA260&lpg=PA260. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  8. 8.0 8.1 8.2 "Wm. Corcoran Eustis Dies. Former Diplomat Was a Captain on Gen. Pershing's Staff". The New York Times. 25 November 1921. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1921/11/25/103576847.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  9. "MARGARET EUSTIS WED TO DAVID E. FINLEY; Becomes Bride of Mellon Aide at Home of Mother, Mrs. W. Corcoran Eustis.". The New York Times. 11 June 1931. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1931/06/11/102238168.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  10. Saxon, Wolfgang (2 February 1977). "David E. Finley Dies". The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/1977/02/02/archives/david-e-finley-dies-art-gallery-leader-director-of-museum-in.html?searchResultPosition=1. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  11. "M.C. EUSTIS IS KILLED; Grandson of Levi P. Morton Dies in Action in France". The New York Times. 2 September 1944. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1944/09/02/88608477.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  12. "Edith C. Eustis, 23, Member of Noted Families, Is Dead" (in en). Chicago Tribune. 13 Apr 1936. https://www.newspapers.com/clip/34163366/edith_c_eustis_23_member_of_noted/. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  13. "MISS EDITH EUSTIS ENGAGED TO MARRY; Her Betrothal to Lieut, Hubert Winthrop Chanfer Announced by Her Mother. BOTH OF NOTED ANCESTRY Bride-Elect, Now in Santa Fe, N. M., Is a Granddaughter of ths Late Levi P. Morton.". The New York Times. 8 September 1932. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1932/09/08/100802856.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  14. "Miss Anne Eustis of Washington Engaged To Grenville Temple Emmet Jr., Attorney". The New York Times. 2 September 1937. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1937/09/02/94420171.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  15. "MISS ANNE L. EUSTIS TO BE BRIDE NOV. 20; Her Marriage to Grenville T. Emmet Jr. Will Take Place in Washington Home". The New York Times. 27 October 1937. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1937/10/27/94447642.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  16. "The Turf - At Westchester". The Tribune Almanac and Political Register for 1898, page 240. 1897-05-29. https://books.google.ca/books?id=WpE3AAAAMAAJ&pg=RA2-PA240&lpg=RA2-PA240&dq=%22W.+C.+Eustis%22,+%22Stakes%22&source=bl&ots=H2TN-xzyUW&sig=ACfU3U1To_4yR2_9MgHZSeRnadvzScnEQg&hl=en&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwi6w9S1-fvmAhXNUt8KHRV0DXoQ6AEwAHoECAkQAQ#v=onepage&q=Eustis&f=false. Retrieved 2020-01-11. 
  17. "Coney Island Form Chart". Daily Racing Form at University of Kentucky Archives. 1899-07-02. https://archive.org/details/drf1899070201. Retrieved 2019-12-09. 
  18. "Racing at Sheepshead Bay". New York Times, page 5. 1899-07-04. https://www.nytimes.com/1899/07/04/archives/racing-at-sheepshead-bay-sadducee-disqualified-in-a-race-in-which.html. Retrieved 2019-12-09. 
  19. 19.0 19.1 Feldmeier, Julie (February 13, 2005). "Middleburg Woman Pursues Fashionable Ambitions". www.washingtonpost.com. p. PW14. https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A18447-2005Feb12.html. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  20. Ruhe, Benjamin (25 September 1966). "VIRGINIA MANSION; Oatlands House, Built Around 1800, Is Now a National Trust Property". The New York Times. https://timesmachine.nytimes.com/timesmachine/1966/09/25/89654178.pdf. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 
  21. "Mrs. Anne Pepper to Be Wed Nov. 24". The New York Times. 14 October 1973. https://www.nytimes.com/1973/10/14/archives/mrs-anne-pepper-to-be-wed-nov-24.html?searchResultPosition=1. Retrieved 23 July 2019. 

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