Eleanor Wilson McAdoo

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Eleanor Wilson McAdoo
Eleanor Wilson circa 1910
Eleanor Randolph Wilson

(1889-10-16)October 16, 1889
DiedApril 5, 1967(1967-04-05) (aged 77)
Resting placeSanta Barbara, California
Other namesNellie Wilson
EducationSaint Mary's School
(m. 1914; div. 1935)
RelativesJessie Woodrow Wilson Sayre (Sister)
Margaret Woodrow Wilson (sister)
Francis Bowes Sayre Jr. (nephew)
Eleanor Sayre (Niece)
Edith Wilson (stepmother)

Eleanor Randolph Wilson McAdoo (October 16, 1889 – April 5, 1967) was an American writer and the youngest daughter of American president Woodrow Wilson and Ellen Louise Axson. Wilson had two sisters, Margaret Woodrow Wilson and Jessie Woodrow Wilson Sayre.


She was born on October 16, 1889, to Woodrow Wilson and Ellen Axson Wilson in Middletown, Connecticut. She was educated at Saint Mary's School, an Episcopal boarding school for girls in Raleigh, North Carolina.[1][2]

She married William Gibbs McAdoo, Wilson's Secretary of the Treasury, at the White House on May 7, 1914.[3] They had two daughters: Ellen Wilson McAdoo (1915–1946)[4] and Mary Faith McAdoo (1920–1988).[5] She divorced McAdoo in July 1935.[6]

Because she had written a biography about her father, she served as an informal counselor on the 1944 biopic Wilson.[7] In 1965, she became largely incapacitated following a cerebral hemorrhage.

McAdoo died at her home in Montecito, California, at 77.[8] She was interred at the Santa Barbara Cemetery, Santa Barbara, California. She was the last surviving child of Woodrow Wilson.



  • The Woodrow Wilsons by Eleanor Wilson McAdoo (McMillan, 1937)
  • Julia and the White House "An American girl finds herself in the exciting yet sobering limelight of the White House" (Dodd, Mead, 1946)


  1. ^ "Notable Saint Mary's Alumnae" (PDF). sms.edu. Retrieved July 29, 2023.
  2. ^ "Archival Collections at the Library". Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum. Archived from the original on June 22, 2018. Retrieved April 15, 2021.
  3. ^ Staff report (May 8, 1914). ELEANOR WILSON WEDS W.G. M'ADOO; President's Youngest Daughter and Secretary of Treasury Married at White House. The New York Times
  4. ^ Staff report (May 22, 1915,). Ellen died from an overdose.[citation needed] DAUGHTER IS BORN TO MRS. W. G. McAdoo; President's Second Grandchild Will be Christened Ellen for the Late Mrs. Wilson.The New York Times
  5. ^ Staff report (July 18, 1934). NEW M'ADOO BABY BORN PRIMARY NIGHT; A Second Daughter for ex-Secretary of the Treasury and the Former Miss Eleanor Wilson. The New York Times
  6. ^ Staff report (July 18, 1934). Eleanor Wilson McAdoo Divorces Senator At Five-Minute Hearing on Incompatibility. The New York Times
  7. ^ Knock, Thomas J. "History with Lightning": The Forgotten Film Wilson. American Quarterly, Vol. 28, No. 5 (Winter, 1976), pp. 523-543
  8. ^ "Mrs. Eleanor Wilson McAdoo, President's Daughter, 77, Dies. Former Wife of Treasury Chief Remained Dedicated to Her Father's Ideals". The New York Times. April 7, 1967. Retrieved October 7, 2012. Mrs. Eleanor Wilson McAdoo, a daughter of President Wilson and the former wife of William Gibbs McAdoo, Mr. Wilson's Treasury Secretary, died last night at her home here. She was 77 years old. ...

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