A little family history
and a few contacts


John Fred Pierson had two daughters: Adeline and Daisy. Adeline married Edward Walker Scott, Jr., twin brother of Thomas Branch Scott, and son of Major Frederic Robert Scott of Petersburg and Richmond, Virginia. (There were four other brothers and three sisters as well).

"Uncle Eddie" and "Aunt Adeline" lived at Donegal (which had been his father's summer house on the James River at Warren, Va.) with their three children: Pierson, Edward (Dutch), and Augusta. Both parents were "characters". Aunt Adeline had a Turkish corner complete with bubble pipe, and filled the house with peacock feathers in vases. My husband once counted the layers between him and the out of doors and it was something like seven-made the dining room very dark. Aunt Adeline never settled into Virginia domesticity but always retained her ties to New York.

Uncle Eddie ran the little bank at Esmont. The story is he showed up in Richmond looking very untidy in a ratty old suit and when rebuked he answered "It's all right -- everybody knows me here". Repeat the scene on Fifth Avenue in New York City and his answer was "Quite all right -- nobody knows me here".

In fairness we should note that every single one of the children of Frederic Robert Scott had strong personalities and some eccentricities. Stories abound about each one of them and of course it's the quirky ones that live on. I remember telling some tale about their mother that I had heard and being rebuked by Mrs. Forsyth (Aunt Lena) who had known and admired her and had counterbalancing "good" stories to tell. I am sure that would be true of all of them if we only knew.

Daisy married George Hull and had no children. They lived at Short Hills, New Jersey and Newport, Rhode Island in a rambling Victorian frame house on Bellevue Avenue where it makes a right angle turn toward the beaches. When Shelah Kane married Jim Scott at Wickford in 1952 a group of us stayed there for the wedding festivities. We were Tom and Carrie, Pierson, Dutch, Freddy and I and maybe more. I remember Aunt Daisy's gratitude toward me because I had told her when we would leave. She told me more than once how much she liked knowing it and how seldom her southern guests ever told her their departure plans!

She was slim and attractive and a very positive person. George was an eccentric who bicycled to tea around Newport carrying his own tea in a sack on the handlebars. He didn't trust any hostess to make it right for him. The legend about him is that he disappeared for a year or so-no word came back about him, and one day Aunt Daisy woke up to find him in the bed beside her. The story is she said "Good morning, George" and that was all about it.

Pierson Scott, son of Eddie and Adeline, had a long close association with the General, his grandfather. He lived in New York and was for some time in the house on 52nd Street right across from the 21 Club. Pierson said the music went on all night long. He loved and admired the General and enjoyed the introductions to the Union League Club and other old New York connections.

Toward the last the General had trouble with the stairs so they installed a tiny standup lift for him, which he hated, but had to use. He would get in it, stand ramrod straight and pretend he wasn't there while someone pushed a button and sent him aloft.

Pierson also kept close connection with the Pierson family. I remember Henry and Cornelia Pierson, last address Cranberry Weir, Sloatsburg NY. 10974. Pierson used to go up to meetings about the Ramapo holdings. I've no idea what has happened with all of that. Maybe Scotty Morrill knows.

I do remember the story about my father-in-law Frederic William Scott taking General Pierson around a Civil war battlefield near Richmond and showing him "Your troops were over there -- ours were here? etc. and Do you recognise any of it?" The General replied "Mr. Scott, when the bullets are flying the way they were that day you pay damned little attention to the scenery".

Elizabeth Scott
August, 2001



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