John Coolidge

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For the American diplomat, see John Gardner Coolidge.
John Coolidge
John Coolidge c 1924.jpg
Coolidge in 1924
Born (1906-09-07)September 7, 1906
Northampton, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died May 31, 2000(2000-05-31) (aged 93)
Lebanon, New Hampshire, U.S.
Resting place
Plymouth Notch Cemetery
Plymouth, Vermont
Nationality American
Alma mater Mercersburg Academy
Amherst College
Occupation Railroad Executive, Businessman, Entrepreneur
Political party
Republican
Spouse(s) Florence Trumbull
Children Cynthia Coolidge
Lydia Coolidge

John Coolidge (September 7, 1906 – May 31, 2000)[1] was an executive with the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, the founder of the Plymouth Cheese Corporation[2] and the first son of President Calvin Coolidge and Grace Coolidge.

Biography[edit]

John Coolidge, was born in Northampton, Hampshire County, Massachusetts, on September 7, 1906. He was the elder of the two children of Calvin Coolidge (1872–1933), the 30th President of the United States from 1923 to 1929 and Grace Anna Goodhue (1879–1957), First Lady of the United States from 1923 to 1929.[nb 1] In his autobiography, Calvin Coolidge recorded his impressions of the birth of his first son: "The fragrance of the clematis which covered the bay window filled the room like a benediction where the mother lay with her baby. It was all very wonderful to us."[3]

Coolidge attended Mercersburg Academy in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania and graduated in 1924. He then enrolled at Amherst College, his father's alma mater, graduating in 1928.

On September 23, 1929 at Plainville, Connecticut, he married Florence Trumbull[1][4] She was born on November 30, 1904, at Plainville, Connecticut, the daughter of Connecticut governor John H. Trumbull and Maud Pierce Usher. The Coolidges had two daughters, Cynthia Coolidge Jeter[5] (1933–1989) and Lydia Coolidge Sayles (1939-2001).[5] Florence died on February 15, 1998 at Plymouth Notch, Vermont.[6]

He was an executive with the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad. He served as president of the Connecticut Manifold Forms Company until 1960, when he reopened the Plymouth Cheese Corporation[2] in Plymouth at the historic village. He helped start the Coolidge Foundation and his gifts of buildings, land, and artifacts were instrumental in creating the President Calvin Coolidge State Historic Site.

Well into his 80s, Coolidge was seen shuttling back and forth from his home near the Calvin Coolidge Historical Site to collect his mail at the old post office located on the historic site. He was reportedly a charming and excited talker who would still answer visitors' questions about his father or his family, and who would, on occasion, give a rare personal interview.

He died on May 31, 2000 at Lebanon, Grafton County, New Hampshire. He is buried beside his wife, parents, brother and several generations of the Coolidge family in the Plymouth Notch Cemetery at Plymouth, Windsor County, Vermont. He was survived by a daughter, son-in-law, three grandchildren, and two great grandchildren.[1][7]

Ancestry and family relations[edit]

Coolidge's family had deep roots in New England. His earliest American ancestor, John Coolidge, emigrated from Cottenham, Cambridgeshire, England, around 1630 and settled in Watertown, Massachusetts.[8] Coolidge is also descended as follows from Edmund Rice, who arrived at Watertown in 1638 and settled in Sudbury, Massachusetts:[9]

  • John Coolidge, son of
    • John Calvin Coolidge, Jr. (1872–1933), son of
    • John Calvin Coolidge, Sr. (1845–1926), son of
    • Sarah Almeda Brewer (ca1820–?), daughter of
      • Israel Chase Brewer (1797–?), son of
      • Sarah Rice (1750–?), daughter of
      • Bezaleel Rice (1721–1806), son of
        • Bezaleel Rice (1697–?), son of
        • David Rice (1659–1723), son of
        • Henry Rice (1617–1711),[10] son of

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ In the summer of 1924, he was playing tennis with his brother, Calvin Jr., on the White House grounds when Calvin Jr. suffered a blister on his toe, which became infected, resulting in his death a week later. John described the loss of his brother as producing a depression in President Coolidge that lasted the rest of his life. As John Coolidge told Life magazine in 1992: "Though father was tenderhearted, he rarely showed his feelings. But when they were taking my brother's casket from the White House after the services, my father broke down and wept momentarily. Calvin was my father's favorite. It hurt him terribly. It hurt us all"

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Martin, Douglas (June 4, 2000). "John Coolidge, Guardian of President's Legacy. Dies at 93". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-06-25. 
  2. ^ a b "Plymouth Artisan Cheese". 2010. Retrieved 2010-06-26. 
  3. ^ Coolidge, p. 95
  4. ^ "Wedding in 1929 was event of century". The Congregational Church of Plainville, UCC. June 4, 2000. Retrieved 2010-06-25. 
  5. ^ a b Feldman, p. 100
  6. ^ Florence Coolidge at Find A Grave
  7. ^ John Coolidge at Find A Grave
  8. ^ Fuess, Claude M. (1940). Calvin Coolidge: The Man from Vermont'. Little, Brown. ISBN 978-0-7006-0892-8.
  9. ^ Edmund Rice (1638) Association, 2007. Descendants of Edmund Rice: The First Nine Generations. (CD-ROM)
  10. ^ Ward, Andrew Henshaw (1858). "A Genealogical History of the Rice family: Descendants of Deacon Edmund Rice". Boston, Massachusetts: C. Benjamin Richardson. p. 5. 

Works cited[edit]

External links[edit]