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Webb’s Bronx Guests: The Lost Alumni 125 th Anniversary Celebration Webb Institute Southwest Alumni Dinner San Diego, CA - 2/8/14.

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Presentation on theme: "Webb’s Bronx Guests: The Lost Alumni 125 th Anniversary Celebration Webb Institute Southwest Alumni Dinner San Diego, CA - 2/8/14."— Presentation transcript:

1 Webb’s Bronx Guests: The Lost Alumni 125 th Anniversary Celebration Webb Institute Southwest Alumni Dinner San Diego, CA - 2/8/14

2 Welcome “ The great eventful Present hides the Past; but through the din Of its loud life hints and echoes from the life behind steal in.” John Greenleaf Whittier The Garrison of Cape Ann /8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 2 William H. Webb, about 1886

3 1889 Charter “… for the purpose of offering free and gratuitous aid, relief and support to aged, decrepit, invalid, indigent, distressed, or unfortunate men who have been engaged in building hulls of ships or vessels, or marine engines … together with the lawful wives of such persons. Also further to provide and furnish to any young man, a native of the United States, who may, upon examination, prove himself competent and of good character, and worthy, free and gratuitous education in the art and science of the profession of shipbuilding, both theoretical and practical. …” 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 3 Prof. Edwin Dunbaugh, A Centennial History of Webb Institute of Naval Architecture, p. 7

4 Webb’s Academy & Home for Shipbuilders William Webb’s Vision: A retirement home and a trade school Equal capacity for both functions in a purpose-built facility – 60 students – 60 guests Never much interaction between students & guests 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni Architect A. B. Jenning’s Rendering of Webb’s Academy & Home for Shipbuilders, Fordham Heights, Bronx, NY

5 Guests: First In, Last Out First Guests, November 1893 – Peter Haulenbeck, 11/2/1893 – Nathaniel Whelpley, 11/2/1893 – Daniel Milton, 11/3/1893 – Thomas Nash, 11/9/1893 – William D. & Phoebe Craft, 11/15/1893 First Student, New Year’s Day 1894 – George C. Cook ‘1897, 1/1/1894 Last students in Bronx, 1/1/1947 Last Guest, 2/9/1947 – James P. Hughes, transferred 2/9/1947 to National Sailor’s Home, Duxbury, MA 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 5 Harper’s Magazine, 1896

6 Guest count Analysis of Guest Register – Total Entries = 258 – Withdrawls = 21 – Re-admits = 4 – Net Guests =233 At or above 80% Guest Capacity for about 20 years Started to reduce Guest admissions in 1918 – No admissions during WWI Last Guest admitted – James P. Hughes, admitted 1/22/1939 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 6 Regents 1 st Caution Regents 2nd Caution 80% - 100% Guest Capacity WHW Death

7 Guest profiles 2/3 born in US, but a melting pot of nationalities Most by trade were wooden shipbuilders Worked for many tri-state yards – Only 1 Guest listed William H. Webb as employer – Some worked for Trustees – Some worked for lease holder at site of WHW shipyard (James Tregarthen & Son) 17% females (44 spouses) 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 7 Birth Trade

8 Some were major players 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 8 Darius Davison — Designer of largest Hudson River steamer of its time — Proposed a giant iron steamer, (16 screws!) Abraham Polhamus — Modeled America’s Cup Contender GRACIE —Designed luxury steam yachts built at Nyack, NY —Died during a visit to Wm. Webb at his 5 th Ave. home GENERAL WASHINGTON, 1852 SHAMROCK, SEA FOX, GRACIE, KATRINA 10 th America’s Cup

9 Longevity and length of residence Male Guests Age at Admit Age at Death Years at Webb Min Median Max /8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 9 Guests were old when they were admitted As a reference, males in 1900: —Median age at death = 56 —Life expectancy at age 65 = 14 years (death at 79) Some women lived many years after their spouses Longest resident was Harriet Maybe, —Admitted in 1895 —Lived at Webb years —Her husband, Peter Maybe, was the second longest residing male Guest Data attests to good care for Guests Dementia care was probably generous —In 2007, at age 71, incidence is 13.7% —However only 3.5% of Webb Guests dismissed to mental hospitals

10 … and hence to their final rest 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 10 Webb Binnacle 1955 Webb provided funerals & burials for Guests Funerals probably at Webb’s Academy, 2 nd Floor Parlor Guests interred in several places —76 at Mt. Hope (not just 43 as in the 1955 Binnacle) —12 at Cypress Hills —8 at Greenwood —7 at Calvary —Several other cemeteries Wreath laying on this Founder’s Day 2014 at Mt. Hope, Hastings on Hudson, NY

11 2/8/ th Anniversary Celebration, Southwest Alumni 11 Webb Corporate Seal


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