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How Pierre Du Pont Turned a “Bad Investment” Into a Landmark

#Delaware trip Longwood Gardens #3

Do you love history? Most humans want to know what life was like for those who lived in the past. We are also curious about the rich and famous.

In this post, you get both, the rich and famous of the past.

Brief History of the Pierce Home in Longwood Gardens

William Penn sold George Pierce the land in 1700. Pierce built his home there in 1730. To save Pierce’s Park or Pierce’s Woods, scheduled for eradication at the local lumber mill, Du Pont purchased the Pierce home and surrounding acreage. Longwood Gardens became the weekend home of Pierre Samuel du Pont in 1906.

The Du Pont Family

Pierre Samuel Du Pont, one of 11 children, helped raise his siblings when his father died, and he married late in life.

Pierre du Pont stood tall after his father passed away, leaving him as head of household. How many people do you know would take that responsibility seriously, and finish their education? He graduated from MIT at the age of twenty.

He devoted his life to running the family business, but also managed General Motors in the mid 20th century.

Under his management, GM enjoyed some of its most prosperous years. However, he did not consider real estate a good investment. He was not married when he purchased the nearly 200-year-old home in 1906. It became his pet project after he decided that he could do a better job of designing gardens than his designer.

A Simple Home

When he married, he and his wife enjoyed expanding the many features of the home where they could entertain many people. John Phillip Sousa was one of the many that came to the du Pont home in Kennett Square, PA.

Hal did not think this simple home seemed like the home of a multi-millionaire. It was a weekend home that reflected the simplicity of life in 1730. Du Pont felt at the time that he probably made an investment mistake. His motives were philanthropic and environmental. The video you can watch on the du Pont side of the reflecting home connects the pieces of the story.

I hope you enjoyed this short tour of the George Pierce and  Pierre du Pont home. You won’t want to miss a trip to Longwood Gardens when you visit Pensylvania or Delaware.

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Marsha

Marsha

Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, a retired educator and wife of a retired realtor. My all-consuming hobby is blogging and it has changed my life. My friends live all over the world. In November 2020, we sold everything and retired to the mile-high desert of Prescott, AZ. We live less than five miles from the Granite Dells, four lakes, and hundreds of trails with our dog, Kalev, and two cats, Moji and Nutter Butter. Vince's sister came with us and lives close by. Every day is a new adventure.

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