An Interesting Historical Footnote about Winthrop Rutherfurd

Winthrop Rutherfurd's name would pop up again in history books, not for dogs, but for his love life. He was secretly engaged to Consuelo Vanderbilt, but her mother forced them to end the relationship. She had a duke in mind for Consuelo. In 1902, Winthrop married Alice Morton, the daughter of the former Vice President and Governor of New York. Alice died in 1917 and, while visiting his horse farm in South Carolina, Winthrop met an attractive woman many years his junior. Her name was Lucy Mercer.
Lucy Mercer was from a prominent family, but they had fallen on hard times. In 1913, Eleanor Roosevelt, whose husband, Franklin, had just been appointed Assistant Secretary of the Navy, hired Lucy to serve as her social secretary. In 1918, Eleanor discovered a stash of love letters written by Franklin and Lucy and she banished the woman from their lives.

In 1920, Winthrop Rutherfurd and Lucy were married. No one knows if the Lucy-FDR affair continued after she was married, but FDR did arrange for a special railroad car to take Lucy to his 1933 Presidential Inaguration. And it is known that when Eleanor was away, Lucy made secret visits to the White House. Winthrop died in 1944. The next year, Lucy Mercer Rutherfurd, would be at Roosevelt's side in Warm Springs, Georgia, when he died.