June Bingham Birge

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June Bingham Birge
Born June Rossbach
June 20, 1919
White Plains, New York
Died August 21, 2007(2007-08-21) (aged 88)
Nationality United States
Education B.A. Barnard College
Spouse(s) Jonathan Brewster Bingham (until his death)
Robert Bowen Birge
Children wirh Bingham:
--Sherrell Bingham Downes
--Timothy Woodbridge Bingham
--Claudia Bingham Meyers
--June Mitchell Esselstyn (predeceased)
Parent(s) Mabel Limburg Rossbach
Max J.H. Rossbach
Family Mayer Lehman (great-grandfather)

June Bingham Birge (June 20, 1919 – August 21, 2007) was an author, playwright, and member of the Lehman family.[1]


Born as June Rossbach in White Plains, New York. She was the daughter of Mabel Limburg and Max J.H. Rossbach. She was the grand niece of New York Governor Herbert H. Lehman, for whom the Lehman College is named. Her maternal grandmother was Clara Lehman Limburg, and her great-grandfather was Mayer Lehman, one of the founders of the Lehman Brothers firm.[2][3] She earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Barnard College in 1940. Birge wrote several non-fiction books, including Courage to Change: An Introduction to the Life and Thought of Reinhold Niebuhr (Scribner, 1961); U Thant: The Search for Peace (Knopf, 1966); and, with Norman Tamarkin, The Pursuit of Health (Walker, 1985). Her plays included a musical, Asylum: The Strange Case of Mary Lincoln, and a play about the women around Franklin D. Roosevelt, Triangles.

Personal life and death[edit]

In 1939, she married Jonathan Brewster Bingham, who served in Congress from 1965 to 1983 as a Democrat representing The Bronx; he died in 1986. They had four children: Sherrell Bingham Downes; Timothy Woodbridge Bingham; Claudia Bingham Meyers; and June Mitchell (Micki) Esselstyn (d. 1999).[4] In 1967, she married Robert Bowen Birge.[5]

June Bingham Birge died at her home in Riverdale, The Bronx, aged 88, from cancer.[5] She was survived by her second husband; three children from her first marriage; a stepson; 10 grandchildren; 2 step-grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. A daughter from her first marriage, the Rev. June Mitchell Esselstyn, died in 1999.[5] She is buried in Woodbridge Cemetery, Salem, New London, Connecticut.[6]


  1. ^ New York Sun: "Lehmans To Celebrate Rich Family History" By GARY SHAPIRO February 6, 2007
  2. ^ Lehman College: "June Bingham Birge, 1919 - 2007" August 27, 2007
  3. ^ New York Times: "June Bingham Marries Robert B. Birge" March 29, 1987
  4. ^ Gainesville Sun: "Local reverend dies of cancer" By GARY KIRKLAND October 28, 1999
  5. ^ a b c "June Bingham Birge, Who Wrote Books and Plays, Dies at 88", The New York Times, August 29, 2007. Accessed May 4, 2008. "June Bingham Birge, the author of books and plays, died August 21 at her home in the Riverdale section of the Bronx. She was 88."
  6. ^ Find-A-Grave

External links[edit]