Julia Berwind

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Julia A. Berwind (1864- May 18, 1961) was a Newport, Rhode Island socialite, and a social welfare activist.


She was born in Philadelphia, the sister of coal magnate Edward Julius Berwind. She was the owner of The Elms in Newport, Rhode Island after the death of her brother.

She was noted for driving herself about town, which was unusual for women in general and for women of her class in particular. She was also known to invite local children to the estate for cookies and milk.

Although members of "high society" generally cut back on their extravagant lifestyles due to the depression and World War II, Julia Berwind maintained a full staff of 40 servants as the Elms estate in Newport.

She died in Newport, Rhode Island in 1961.[1][2]

After her death, the Elms was purchased by the Preservation Society of Newport County so it could be preserved and open to the public.


  1. ^ "Julia A. Berwind, A Society Figure. Leader Here and in Newport Dies. Did Welfare Work". New York Times. May 18, 1961. Retrieved 2009-09-08. 
  2. ^ "Housing Problem". Time magazine. July 6, 1962. Retrieved 2009-09-08. Another knell tolled for those high and far-off times last week as the auctioneer's hammer fell on the contents of The Elms, one of the last of the great houses that were still homes — until the death a year ago of Miss Julia Berwind, at approximately 95.