Annie Wainright Scott Strong
Annie Wainright Scott Strong (1859-1928)
Annie Wainright Scott Strong was born on 15 Jan 1859, to prosperous businessman and politician, William Lawrence Scott and Mary Matilda Tracy Scott from Erie, Pennsylvania.
On 8 September 1881, Annie became the wife of Charles Hamot Strong (1853-1936), a businessman in coal, electricity and the local newspaper. Annie's father built a beautiful 46 room mansion for the couple, which was completed in 1893. The home is now the Old Main administration building at Gannon University in Erie, Pennsylvania.
Charles was the grandson of Pierre Simon Vincent Hamot, founder of the Hamot Hospital in Erie. Charles and Annie continued to financially support the hospital and Annie became the founder of Erie's first nursing school, The Hamot Hospitals Training School for Nurses.
Annie was described by Fortune Magazine as “Erie's Social Dictator" (Fortune Nov. 1934), she adored the socialite scene and enjoyed hosting lavish parties in the mansion. In the 1910 Census, only Annie and Charles lived in the mansion, along with seventeen domestics: a private secretary, two butlers, a house-keeper, three chambermaids, three “servants”, a cook, a kitchen-man, two laundresses, a chauffeur, and two coachmen.
Charles and Annie welcomed three U.S. Presidents (Roosevelt, Cleveland, Taft) into their extravagant home. Legend has it that President Taft got stuck in a bathtub on the third floor.
It has been widely suggested that Annie and Charles' marriage was not a happy one, but they did have one child together, Thora Wainwright Strong.
Annie died on 19 May 1928 in Erie, Pennsylvania.
UPEI's Provenance copy of Once Aboard the Lugger is simply signed “Annie W. Scott Strong". Below her name is the stamp of St. Dunstan's College Library.
“Erie's Social Dictator" Fortune Magazine, November 1934.