Huntington Hartford Profile

Huntington Hartford
Huntington Hartford
(George Huntington Hartford II)
18 April 11 is born, the son of Edward Huntington and his wife, Henrietta Pollitzer. His grandfather is George Huntington Hartford I, the founder of The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, later known as A&P. His sister is future socialite Josephine F. C. Brice.
13 June 22 when he’s eleven, his father dies
moves with his mother to Newport, Rhode Island
30 is educated at Harvard
his mother considers marrying him to their Newport neighbor, tobacco heiress Doris Duke
18 April 31 elopes with and marries 18-year-old Mary Lee Epling, a dentist’s daughter who is studying to be a kindergarten teacher, at the First Presbyterian Church in Covington, West Virginia. His mother is furious.
June 34 graduates from Harvard
? becomes a regular at El Morocco
38 falls for 23-year-old Mary Chastain Grundhoefer, a chorine with the stage name Mary Barton
18 August 38 his first son, Edward Colt, is born out of wedlock in New York. The mother is Mary Barton.
Early January 39 his wife falls for actor Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and files for divorce
April 39 the divorce becomes final and Mary Lee marries Fairbanks on April 22, 1939
May 40 chases 28-year-old actress Arline Judge to the Kentucky Derby and then back to New York, where she is still seeing his friend, New York hotel executive James McKinley Bryant. Arline marries Bryant on May 5, 1940.
Summer 40 bids on baubles for Arline at an El Morocco benefit auction for Vichy France, while outside there are protests against the fascist regime
August 40 presents Arline with a $65,000 orchid-pink diamond. The New York World-Telegram headlines: "Consumer's Nickels and Dimes Pay for the $65,000 Diamond A&P Heir Gave Hollywood Cutie."
41 his relationship with Arline evaporates
8 September 48 Mary Barton commits suicide with an overdose of sleeping pills
c. 41 enlists with the Coast Guard and becomes captain of the FT-179, a supply ship in the South Seas
c. 47 meets English import Peggy Cummins
40s is out with actresses Betty Hutton, Carole Landis, Carol Marcus, Gene Tierney, Marta Toren, and Lana Tuner
c. 47 commissions legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright to turn his Hollywood Hills estate into the Huntington Hartford Play Resort and Sports Club and Cottage Group Center, a resort for two thousand. The project is never carried out.
tries to purchase Republic Pictures and, later, RKO studios from Howard Hughes
47 launches a modeling agency with offices in Los Angeles and New York “to be with the girls”
May 48 the press notes, that Peggy Cummins’ six-month absence in England, making Escape, seems to have made her and Hartford even fonder of each other
3 June 48 his mother dies from leukemia
September 48 spots 18-year-old Marjorie Steele, a cigarette girl at Ciro’s. He is there with Yvonne DeCarlo and Ava Gardner and Ava’s escort, glamour boy of the year, oil heir Dick Cowell, to see Sophie Tucker perform. After weeks of flowers and messages, Marjorie agrees to date.
whiledining with Marjorie at Romanoff’s, she insists on being introduced to Charlie Chaplin, an occasional tennis partner of his. The next day, Chaplin’s son, Sydney, approaches her at the Actor’s Lab cafeteria and asks her to dinner. They are out for many nights while Hartford is in New York. When Hartford learns about it, he summons her to New York’s Ritz-Carlton to "read for a play" that he considers producing.
proposes to Marjorie, and she accepts. A few days later he presents her with a 22-carat blue-white diamond ring. Charlie Chaplin has to talk his son Sydney into letting her go.
gets Marjorie a part in Tough Assignment by loaning the studio $25,000, with no interest
Marjorie’s ex-boss, Ciro’s Herman Hover, throws a party for the couple at his home on Bedford Drive in Beverly Hills. Clark Gable and Virginia Grey, Shirley Temple, and Carmen Miranda attend. Hartford and Marjorie attend, improperly dressed in tennis whites, and are almost denied access by the bouncer.
10 September 49 marries Marjorie Steele in Gardnerville, Nevada. She has a bad cold and can’t travel the additional miles to Reno.
the Hartfords divide their time between New York, Palm Beach, Los Angeles, and Cap d’Antibes, where she likes to go skin-diving
a special press agent is hired to push her and him from the society columns and into feature stories
50 his daughter Catherine is born
51 he casts Marjorie for his upcoming Face to Face
Early 50s without his help, Marjorie stars in plays in London and New York
53 his son John is born
his wife announces she will sever all ties to his ventures so not to jeopardize her career. She spends her time with her children between Palm Beach and Manhattan; he is in Hollywood.
Late 50s there are kinky parties at his residence at One Beekman Place, Manhattan. Actor John Ireland refuses to swap his wife with another guest.
at their London townhouse, Marjorie sits drunk on their guest’s lap, while Hartford is with his teenage girlfriend
59 buys a house and two acres of land on Hog Island, the Bahamas
gets to know legendary, 78-year-old, Swedish-born Dr. Axel Lennart Wenner-Gren, one of the world’s most successful industrialists and founder of Electrolux, and a close friend of Nazi Hermann Goering and Errol Flynn. He settled on Hog Island in 1939 and there built his lavish Shangri-La estate.
6 February 60 buys Shangri-La from Wenner-Gren for $13 million. Wenner-Gren will die in 1961.
20 October 60 Marjorie files for divorce in New York City and asks for an unprecedented $25 million plus $1,000 a day for expenses
February 61 finally pays $385,000 outright and $60,000 in annual alimony. Marjorie will marry British actor Dudley Sutton in November 1961.
c. 61 discovers 19-year-old Pennsylvania-born Diane Brown while she’s modeling for Bride. Soon she accompanies him from London to New York to the Bahamas.
turns Shangri-La into The Ocean Club, a lavish 52-room hotel and restaurant, with an 18-hole golf course
62 has Hog Island renamed Paradise Island
17 February 62 has Diane at his side when he opens Paradise Island with a party for two thousand. Zsa Zsa Gabor and the Tony Randalls attend, among many others.
6 October 62 marries Diane at his Melody Farm, New Jersey, estate
November 62 the Hartfords host Richard Nixon at Paradise Island after his California defeat. He comes with his close friend, Charles “Bebe” Rebozo.
64 the Hartfords host the Beatles, who are filming Help on the beaches of Paradise Island
21 March 64 opens his new gallery of modern art on Columbus Circle, New York City
64 his wife dances with Sean Connery at the Café Martinique for a scene in Thunderball, filmed on Paradise Island. In the meantime, Hartford negotiates to sell the island to an investment group.
Fall 65 his wife moves out of their New York City residence, One Beekman Place
5 November 65 his split with Diane hits the headlines with a dispute at a discotheque owned by Richard Burton’s ex-wife, Sybil
December 65 the Hartfords reconcile, and Diane is back at Beekman Place
67 Diane meets singer-actor Bobby Darin, the ex of actress Sandra Dee, while on a solo trip to Los Angeles
reporters trail Diane and Darin from Paris to Monte Carlo to New York. In the meantime, Hartford plays Darin’s records at his London home.
September 67 Diane files for divorce
October 67 the Hartfords are seen at the April in Paris Ball in New York and hand in hand at the revival of Gone with the Wind
November 67 his wife announces she’s pregnant
4 July 68 his daughter, Cynara Juliet, is born. She will become a model.
Spring 69 the Hartfords are in court when infamous Bernard Spindel is charged with installing a bug in the apartment of Diane's onetime boyfriend Ken Klein. She has to confirm sexual relations with Bobby Darin in the summer of 1965.
10 June 69 Diane files for divorce again
7 July 70 Diane receives her divorce in Juarez, Mexico. She will get $2,500 a month in alimony and $6,500 more in child support payments.
June 88 his daughter Catherine dies at age 37 from an overdose
03 lives in his Manhattan townhouse on East Thirtieth Street
19 May 08 dies at age 97 at his home in Lyford Cay, Nassau, in the Bahamas
Squandered Fortune by Lisa Rebecca Gubernick, Paradise Island Story by Paul Albury, Lana by Joe Morella and Edward Z. Epstein
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