14.04.2024

Gloria Vanderbilt, one of the most famous American women of the twentieth century

When the first ancestor of the Vanderbilts came to America in 1650, it was not a rich man. Poor Dutch immigrant Jan Artson had to spend a few years to save up for a trip to New Amsterdam. For generations his family lived a modest life on Staten island.

“Mother once told me about a woman who contacted her many years later. She wrote her a letter, sent a bunch of newspaper clippings and admitted that in his childhood obsessively watching the process,” said the son of Gloria Vanderbilt Anderson Cooper, host of CNN.

The woman told me that while her family was in need, and it seemed amazing that the rich people had the same problems as the rest.

Rich and famous baby

But by 1850 all changed. Cornelius Vanderbilt created a whole transportation Empire, and actively promoted it. According to family historian Alfred Vanderbilt III, his ancestor was a “more ships than the U.S. Navy, and more money than the US Treasury”. A logistics genius, Cornelius Vanderbilt was also involved in rail transport. His legacy of $100 million and the Central railroad of new York.

By the time his great-grandson of Reginald claypoole Vanderbilt received his share of inheritance, the family fortune was estimated at a much higher amount. But instead of doing business, Reginald Vanderbilt lived lavishly and spent he inherited millions of dollars on booze and horses. He was married twice. The second time heir to a famous dynasty married 43 years: his choice was a 17-year-old Gloria Mercedes Morgan. Less than a year, the couple had a daughter called Gloria Laura Vanderbilt. Young parents immediately handed the child to Emma of Kaslik and went to a 10-month journey.

“I was a kid. So they thought that it makes no sense to spend time with me,” wrote Gloria Vanderbilt in 2016 in the book “the rainbow comes and goes” (The Rainbow Comes and Goes). Shortly after returning home, Reginald Vanderbilt at the age of just 45 years died from cirrhosis of the liver. Gloria Vanderbilt later wrote: “My father died when I was 15 months old. I don’t remember it. I never missed him until I learned that not having a father is strange.”

All his short life Reginald Vanderbilt did, which lowered the family fortune. In the end, he died in debt, and his Bank account was only $423 761. His young wife almost got nothing. But his daughter Gloria and her older sister Kathleen had inherited shares in the trust $5 million, which was created by their grandfather. So Gloria inherited a fortune of $2.5 million, equivalent today is about $36 million And her young mother was left with almost nothing.

Anderson Cooper said that his mother often quoted the American writer Mary Gordon. In one of his books, Gordon noted that “a girl who grew up without a father, thinks everything is possible but nothing is safe.” According to him, this quote was the theme of the life of Gloria Vanderbilt. Once her father died, her world began to fall apart.

“The mysterious stranger”

After the death of her husband, Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt went to Paris with his mother Nani Morgan and one year old daughter. The company was the nanny of Emma Kieslich that in the house of the Vanderbilts called the Dodo. As Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt she was a minor, she could not dispose of the inheritance of the daughter. So James Foley, judge of the new York court of probate and managing the trust Fund the Vanderbilts, decided to pay her monthly $4,000 in spending on child care.

Beautiful Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt soon became known in society circles of Paris. She often attended balls, cocktail parties and gala events. All this, of course, cost money. “Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt has spent most of the money that was allocated to child care, for social life. The bills pile up, but she continued to waste status, which belonged to my mother,” says Anderson Cooper.

At the same time, little Gloria thought that her family is her nanny and grandmother. She called them “Mama Dodo and Papa Nani”. His own mother she has seen only in passing. “My mother saw only a mysterious figure disappearing down the corridor. She was then only eight years old, and her mother every night, went to parties and used to bring home different people. Is education really can’t call it good,” says Cooper.

Many years later in the letters to the son of Gloria Vanderbilt described his mother as “the mystery lady”. She wrote: “I wanted to communicate with his mother, to feel that we were family, but I could not attract her attention.” In the end, a fragile family has begun to disintegrate. Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt is engaged to a German Prince Friedel Hohenlohe.

When Gloria Vanderbilt wrote about her grandmother, she noted that Nani Morgan hoped that her daughters would marry, “to provide a dignified old age herself”. “When my mother married Reginald Vanderbilt in 1923, Nani was delighted. Now she intermarried with one of the most prominent of American families,” wrote Gloria Vanderbilt. But Nani Morgan hated the Germans and called Hohenlohe “Prince with empty pockets”. According to Gloria Vanderbilt, her grandmother believed that he was not rich enough. She believed that her granddaughter, the heiress of the Vanderbilts, will be sent to some castle in Bavaria, “where it will suck money.”

Nani Morgan was a fan of Napoleon and have always kept a copy of his biography on the bedside table. According to Gloria Vanderbilt, she was one of those people who “could organize a terrorist attack in the subway for their own purposes”. She decided to break the engagement of his daughter and enlisted the help nanny Emma Kasli. “Nani and Dodo was very much afraid that I will take to Germany. It seems to me that then I began to be afraid,” wrote Gloria Vanderbilt.

“She is now chudovishe”

In 1931, the 7-year-old Gloria Vanderbilt Christmas in Melton Mowbray, 160 km North-West of London. While her mother was celebrating Christmas at a posh party, the company Gloria, as always, was only her grandmother and a nanny.

One morning, Kaslik forced Gloria to write a letter to grandma, who was in the next room. Dictation nanny Gloria Vanderbilt wrote this letter: “Dear Nani, my mom told me that I should not write you, but I won’t pay her any attention. She currently chudovishe. Soon I will be in good old new York. Love and kisses, dear Nani. Gloria”.

This letter was part of the plan Nani Morgan and Emma of Kaslik for deprivation of Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt custody of her daughter. They have thought through all the details and even got the girl wrong to write the word “monster”.

Shortly thereafter, in the spring of 1932, Gloria Vanderbilt together with the grandmother and the nurse went to America. She had to have surgery to remove the tonsils. After the operation the girl was brought to the mansion of her aunt, artist Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney in old Westbury, state of new York. Vanderbilt, Whitney was a very rich woman – unlike his brother, his inheritance it is not wasted. In addition, she was happily married.

After surgery, Gloria Vanderbilt a few months living with his aunt in old Westbury. When her mother finally came to America, their meeting was not at all like the long-awaited reunion. In the end, Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt returned to the United States because he was worried about her daughter’s health. She came back for more money.

Nani Morgan explained Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney that her daughter spends money on themselves and almost never seen with a girl. Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, in turn, sent this information to the court for probate, which led to the reduction of monthly payments that are received Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt. That was enough so she went back to her daughter.

“My mother must have realized that it will not have access to the money if she doesn’t live with me,” wrote Gloria Vanderbilt. The young widow also realized that she had no parental rights because she was a minor when her husband died Reginald Vanderbilt, and are unable to formalize them. Without parental rights, she was in danger of losing a daughter and therefore all the money. So she went to court with a request to become the official guardian of the girl. But Nani Morgan appealed her petition and filed a counter complaint in the court in which he stated that Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt was a bad mother.

Oil poured into the fire, and 9-year-old Gloria Vanderbilt. One day she overheard her mother discussing the custody issue with my sister. “The first thing you should do: get rid of the nannies,” said Thelma Morgan. Gloria Vanderbilt hysterically ran upstairs to Emma of Kaslik. “Fear of my mother, who for many years was just a vague feeling turned into panic and penetrated deeply into my heart,” she wrote many years later.

Emma Kieslich said Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt, that girl is going to feed the pigeons in Central Park. However, the babysitter and her ward went to Greenwich village that housed the art Studio of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney. There Gloria Vanderbilt had a nervous breakdown. She told her aunt that “her mother wants to kill her, and she wants to die”, recounting the incident to Anderson Cooper.

After this incident Gertrude Vanderbilt-Whitney decided to go to court with a petition to become the guardian of the girl. “Then came the moment he dreamed of Nani and Dodo. The moment that changed my life,” recalled Gloria.

Negligence and “erotic books”

Before the court for the custody of Gloria Vanderbilt, both sides understood that it would be a scandalous trial. They also realized that it might be detrimental to the psyche of girls. The judge even called Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt as not to expose his daughter to such torment. Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney, in turn, suggested the end of life every year to pay her $50,000 if the widow of her brother will allow her to continue to educate the girl. However, Morgan-Vanderbilt it wasn’t enough – she didn’t want to lose his position in society. “Becoming the wife of Reginald Vanderbilt, my mother reached the top of the social ladder. If she agreed to take the money, in society she would be outcast,” wrote Gloria Vanderbilt.

The custody battle over little Gloria was from the very beginning dirty. The Central charge was: Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt, the money was more than love. After the start of the trial, things have only gotten worse.

“We lived in Paris for four and a half years. All this time, my daughter did not pay attention to little Gloria,” said Nani Morgan during his testimony under oath. She also added that her daughter “slept in until hours or up to two hours of the day, and from that time until the morning of the next day she went to cocktail parties, dinner parties and night clubs.” “Little Gloria was like a poor orphan. Didn’t love her,” said the girl’s grandmother.

Emma Kasli confirmed that Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt “has been given little time to the child.” According to her, the only exception being the case when she saw Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt taught 10-year-old girl to mix alcoholic cocktails. Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney claimed that Gloria Vanderbilt has always been a sickly child. However, under her care “health and girl’s physical condition became much better.”

The servants told about the luxurious life of Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt in Europe and how little attention she paid to his daughter. Servants also accused her of excessive drinking and that her bookshelf was “the seven erotic books.” The lawyers of Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt responded by saying that Nude statue of Hercules and other exhibits from the collection of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney may cause comparable harm to the psyche of girls.

One of the former maid of Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt gave a particularly controversial statement. Parisienne Maria Cayo, which reporters of the Associated Press described as “a beautiful petite woman” like the other servants, talking about drinking, Morgan, Vanderbilt and constant parties. But she didn’t stop. Maid accused Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt in lesbianism. She told me that she caught Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt in bed with the lady Yield for Milford haven. According to her, the pair made love.

The public of the time found this fact shocking. Many believe that this will turn people against Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt.

From the Morgan-Vanderbilt’s testimony was given her sister and friends. Thelma Morgan accused Vanderbilt-Whitney in libel and encouraged her to adopt a child from an orphanage that really needs to be family. Ex-fiancé, Morgan, Vanderbilt, Prince Hohenlohe and his wife Princess Margarita of Greece and Danish came from Europe to protect her from the “lies of the evil servants.” Actress Constance Bennett stated that the stories about “crazy night parties with alcohol and dancing” is a lie. She even called Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt “the perfect mother”. And lady Nada Milford haven has categorically rejected allegations that she was having an affair with the mother of a young Gloria.

The very same Gloria Vanderbilt left on the sidelines. Lawyer aunt helped her learn a few phrases and told her to stick to the script when it comes to answering questions about her mother. “We always moved around a lot, and now I have a real home,” said the girl in court. She had long rehearsed this speech. “Now I went to school, I have a lot of friends with whom you can play,” she said in court. Attorneys Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney said the script is a fictional story about how Prince Hohenlohe extinguished a cigarette on the hand of the girl. But Gloria Vanderbilt had her tell.

The trial lasted almost a year. Ultimately, the court came to the conclusion that the life of Gloria Vanderbilt’s mother was “absolutely unacceptable and led to the deterioration of her health”. According to the court, the girl’s mother “was neglecting her moral, spiritual and General education.” At the same time, the court recognized that “since 1932 Gloria under the care aunt lived in acceptable conditions, which contributed to her happiness and well-being.”

Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney became the main guardian of the girl. Gloria Vanderbilt was permitted to see her mother only on weekends and on certain holidays, usually accompanied by a detective and a nurse.

It would seem that this court decision and wanted Gloria Vanderbilt. However, her biggest fear came to life. The court held that kakih of Emma, her pet Dodo, set up the girl against his mother. The judges referred to the letter that Gloria Vanderbilt told my grandma dictation nurse. In the end, Emma of Kaslik fired.

A fleeting reunion and new life

For the next seven years of his life Gloria Vanderbilt is rarely seen with her mother. One summer, 17-year-old, Gloria Vanderbilt went to his mother to California, and eventually left her. The mother “let her do whatever she wanted,” says Anderson Cooper.

Gloria Vanderbilt liked to spin in secular circles. She was Dating entrepreneur Howard Hughes and actor Errol Flynn. In the end, she married, married to mobster Pasquale of Dicicco, who was much older than her. Their marriage ended in divorce after just four years. Says Anderson Cooper, on the marriage insisted Morgan-Vanderbilt – so she wanted to separate Gloria from her guardians and get access to money from the trust Fund.

In 1945, when Gloria turned 21, she divorced Dicicco. Gloria later wrote that he was very cruel. In 1946 it ceased to translate into the mother’s account monthly payments.

After the girl ceased to contain the mother, international news service released an article with the following headline: “Poor Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt has received two good job offers”. Journalists suggested that Gloria Morgan-Vanderbilt will be able to work as a actress or dance teacher. Together with her sister Thelma, she launched a company to produce clothing, appeared in ads for Pond’s cream and even sold dolls. “With this income tax as it is now, all should work”, – said one of the sisters is in the puppet company.

Two Gloria Vanderbilt reconnected only 15 years later. However, according to Anderson Cooper, their relationship was never like relations between mothers and daughters. “They met and drank tea. But between them there was some deep connection,” says the journalist. Anderson Cooper added: “My mother often talked about the fact that she would like that her mother lived next door. But this dream was not going to happen.”

Immediately after a divorce with Decicco Gloria Vanderbilt was married to the composer Leopold Stokowski, who was 42 years older than her. They had two children, Stan and Chris. Ten years later the couple divorced, and less than a year later, she remarried, this time for Director Sidney Lumet. They were married for eight years. In the fourth and last time Gloria Vanderbilt married writer, screenwriter and actor Wyatt Cooper. Their marriage lasted 15 years: until the death of her husband. Gloria Vanderbilt once admitted that this marriage helped her to feel what it’s like to have a family. In this marriage she gave birth to two more sons, Anderson and Carter. Not without tragedy. In 1988, Carter committed suicide, wikinewsies from the penthouse of his mother.

Like the father she never knew, Gloria Vanderbilt loved to spend money. To date, the great state of the family of Vanderbilt, by and large, disappeared. In 2014, Anderson Cooper said in an interview with radio host Howard stern: “My mother gave me to understand that there is no more trust Fund. It’s empty”. When Gloria Vanderbilt died in June of this year, her son from her second marriage Stan had inherited her apartment in Manhattan.

Anderson Cooper inherited the property, valued less than $1.5 million.

“She desperately wanted to live in a house with a white picket fence, have a family and children – just to have some stability. But the truth is: when she got all of that, that again was not enough,” said Cooper.

Gloria Vanderbilt tried many professions and in some areas it even reached some success. When she was 30, she decided to devote herself to acting. She received minor roles in television shows and performances, including the famous Broadway production “the Best time of your life” (The Time of Your Life).

Then she took up fashion. About it is often referred to as the Creator of the world’s first designer jeans. Gloria Vanderbilt received a license to its brand and eventually sold the rights to his Indian conglomerate Murjani Corporation. In 1976, her signature blue jeans made her a fashion icon. They have become so popular that Anderson Cooper and his brother invented a game: count the number of inscriptions on Gloria jeans of passers-by. Gloria Vanderbilt was and other fashion line and perfume line in partnership with L’oreal. Later it became known as the artist held several exhibitions.

According to Cooper, they were all trying to forget about the scandal, through which she became known throughout the world. “She wanted to achieve something and didn’t want this trial became a defining event in her life,” says the son of Gloria Vanderbilt.

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