Tuesday, September 29, 2009

'Peacock Point'

'Peacock Point', the estate of Henry Pomeroy Davison Sr., built by Walker & Gillette between 1914-16 in Lattingtown. Davison was a financier and Senior Partner at J.P. Morgan, and was the chairman of the Red Cross during WWI. The house was demolished in 1962 but click HERE to see what remains of 'Peacock Point'.

Pictures from American Homes of Today.


Henry P. Davison, II said...

Henry P. Davison was a financier at the turn of the century, but he was the Senior Partner of JPMorgan, not a founder of Standard Oil. Davison's career is a Horatio Alger tale of sorts. He was denied a scholarship to Harvard, so he went from his hometown of Troy, Pa., to Bridgeport, Ct., to seek his fame and fortune. There he met P.T.Barnum, the circus impresario and entrepreneur, who took him under his wing. Barnum introduced him to a prominent local family, and Davison ended up marrying one of the daughters (Kate Trubee). Barnum then helped the young man land a job at a bank in NYC that paved his way to success. Davison became the President of the Liberty National Bank on 23rd street, and founded The Bankers trust Company in 1901, and worked for George Banker, who was the head of The First National Bank (now Citi). During the Panic of 1907, he was loaned to Pierpont Morgan to be his personal assistant, and convinced Morgan to put his own support behind the idea of a central banking system that became the Federal Reserve. In 1909, at the age of 42, he was invited to become a partner of JPMorgan. While the old man had a son and heir, Davison would run the firm with a steady hand.
During WWI, he was tapped by President Wilson to be the Chairman of the Red Cross, and after the war came up with the idea of an international federation of Red Cross societies, which was very similar to Wilson's idea of a League of Nations. The International Red Cross today is the largest volunteer organization in the world, and gave us, among other things, the Geneva Conventions.
Davison died in 1922 of a brain tumor at the relatively young age of 55. His wife, however, survived him by 40 years. The fifth generation of the family still lives at Peacock Point, where they have lived for longer than anyone other than the indians. Next year marks the Centennial Anniversary of the acquisition of Peacock Point by the Davison family, and there is a faily reunion scheduled for June to celebrate the event. Readers of this blog who are interested in more information can find out more by reading books such as Ron Chernow's "House of Morgan", and Marc Wortman's "Millionaires' Unit".

Zach L. said...

Thank you for all the useful information and correction, someone now needs to tell the Spinzias.

Romey said...

Does anyone know why the house was demolished?

Anonymous said...

My name is Brook Lynn Trubee, my family is related to Kate Trubee/Davison. Im not 100 percent sure of it. However she and her family are on my family tree? My dad a trubee was born in fairfield, conn. If anyone reading this has any family info reguarding kate trubee please email me at brooklynn82@live.com thank you

Michael said...

I was married in the later version of the house in 1982. Danny Davison showed me the album they had had done of this house.He said it was demolished because it was too expensive to keep and run.

The Van Deventers said...

When we first began our nursing program at Columbia-Presbyterian, Mrs. Davison opened her estate to us for a picnic. Imagine about 140 women descending on that lovely scene.

Mrs. Davison would come down to the water in her electric car where the picnic was staged. To this day, the older alumnae talk with fondness about the day that was spent at Peacock Point. Some even remember its name.

Anonymous said...

Does someone know when and from where this Davison family arrived in America?I am a New Jersey Davison myself, with a confirmed most distant relation going back to 1745 in New Jersey and am interested in knowing how the Davison patriarch is for Henry's line. Any information provided would be appreciated.
B. Davison

JT said...

I read a story about the Davidsons in the paper, and it had a link to this fabulous video. See it at


Lin Vorst Klein said...

when Peacock Lane was being repaved by Mrs Davison (mid to late 50s?) she drove her electric car from Peacock Point to the intersection every day to check on the work being done.we saw her from our property at 1 Meudon Drive which was on the old Guthrie estate.

Ftimbarker said...

I was born in 1959 while my parents worked at Peacock Point. My father, Frederick, was the butler, and my mother, Mary, I worked as a maid. They were married and had their reception at Peacock Point; their wedding pictures were taken on the waterside there.
I don’t have many memories of Peacock Point but those I have are my earliest. I remember an elderly woman dressed in black driving the antique car which I believe was electric.
My parents are still alive and have wonderful memories and stories of their lives there. My mother especially enjoyed the Christmases.
Around 1963 or 64 they moved on to work at the Bruce Estate in Syosset where I there spent my childhood.

Anonymous said...

My grandmother and grandparents worked and lived on the Davison estate above the carriage house he was the shouferand she was the kitchen help. My grandfather actually came over from England as a man servant for Mr Davison
Edgar c. Smith. They were married on the estate my father went to glen cove hs. Love all my old pictures and stories I was told. Anyone related to the Davison whom lived there during 1935 on please contact me

Anonymous said...

Please contact me od love to connect and see if your parents knew mine. Avonstarjs@gmail.com

Unknown said...

Tim I too remember Peacock Point. My parents were friends of yours as they were from Castlegregory as was your mom. We spent some time a few summers at Peacock Point at the invitation of your parents. Enjoyed reading your comments. Feal free to RSVP if you wish