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Mrs. Astor's Annual Ball: Three Hundred Guests Attended 1-29-1900


Mrs. Astor gave last evening at her residence, 842 Fifth Avenue, her annual reception, with dancing. This ball, as it is one of the most largely attended private functions of the year is looked forward to by society. It is considered as the climax of the season, and it has taken place with unfailing regularity, except when deferred by years of mourning, with each recurring season.

For last evening, Mrs. Astor issued about 400 invitations, and there were over 300 people present. The cards read "Mrs. Astor at Home, Small Dance, R.S.V.P." The dance last night was "small" only in name, and if anything was a more generally attended affair than that of last Winter. A reason for this was that Mrs. Astor has entertained but little this Winter, and has not given her accustomed series of state dinners. An Astor ball is always a very handsome entertainment, and the one given last night in no way differed from its predecessors in lavishness of decoration and appointment.

It was quite a late affair, many of the guests having attended the opera, and there were a few dinners also preceding it. Both of the Astor houses were thrown open for the occasion. Mrs. Astor received alone in the great drawing room of the north, or upper house, which was filled with vases of American Beauty roses. Along the sides of the hall were branches of flowering almonds, apple and quince blossoms, while about pillars of the halls were banked palms, pink and white azaleas in pots, and "Jack" roses. Other flowers used were white lilies, yellow jonquils, & c.

The dancing was general before supper. After that event there was a cotillion, danced in the ballroom, which is also the picture gallery. This apartment has been frequently described. It is one of the most beautiful private ballrooms in this country. The decorations there, as in all the apartments, were extremely simple and consisted of Mrs. Astor's favorite flower, the American Beauty rose, Easter Lilies, and carnations, while here and there were potted palms.

The south house, which is owned by Col. John Jacob Astor, who, with his wife, is now abroad, was also thrown open. Supper was served at forty small tables in its great dining room. The decorations of the tables were flat centre pieces, with bowls of orchids and violets at alternate tables. The decorations of the buffet tables were of American Beauty roses. The supper, furnished by Sherry, was as follows:

Consommé Marie Stuart en tasse.
Supreme de volaille.
Filet de Boeuf aux champignons frais Pommes
Canvas-back duck-Hominy croquettes.
Pate de foie gras en crouet.
Salade Orientals.
Glace Merveilleuse.
Fraises fondantes              Mandarins glaces.
Petits fours               Bonbons
Marrons glaces                  Cerises fondantes
Muet & Chandon,    Imperial Brut.     Apollinaris.

Music was furnished by Lander's Orchestra and the Hungarian Band. The cotillion which was danced after supper was a large one. It was led form both ends by Mr. Elisha Dyer, Jr., Dancing with Mrs. Orme Wilson, Mrs. Astor's daughter, and Mr. Harry Lehr, dancing with Mrs. Ogden Mills. The cotillion was, however, entirely under Mr. Dyer's general direction, and was, as usual, gracefully and skillfully conducted.

There were four favor figures. The favors were very beautiful and elaborate and in every way the handsomest given at any ball this season. In the first figure there were handsome satin sashes of various colors and Directoire staves. The favors in the second figure were, for the women Dutch tiles in blue and white, and silver trumpets for the men. Staves trimmed with silver tulle and ribbons of different shades were the favors for the third figure, with flowers, pink, yellow, and white chrysanthemums for the women, and for the men dainty boutonnieres.

In the fourth figure, Japanese fans of scarlet silk were given the women, and card cases to the men. The "stags," of whom there were many, were given, when they wished to take out a partner, silver pencils and French bric-a-brac and trifles. The favors were furnished by Mrs. Kate Collins.

Some of the Guests

The Count and Countess de Castellane, who had come from Lakewood especially for the occasion, were among the first guests to arrive, at 10:30 P.M. The Countess wore a gown of reseda brocade, with all her diamonds, including the Countess coronet.

Among other guests present were Mr. and Mrs. Ogden Mills, Mrs. Maturin Livingston, Mr. and Mrs. Orme Wilson, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Pendleton, Mr. and Mrs. Edmund L. Baylies, Mr. and Mrs. Lanfear Norrie, Miss Barbey, Mrs. Elisha Dyer, Jr., Miss Laura Swan, Mrs. Frederic Kernochan, the Misses Kernochan, Mr. and Mrs. Townsend Burden, Miss Evelyn Burden, Miss Daisy Post, Mr. and Mrs. Stuyvesant Fish, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Clews, Miss Clews, the Misses Cameron, Miss Marie Winthrop, Miss Hall, the Misses Morton, Mr. and Mrs. Bayard Cutting and Miss Cutting, Senator Depew, Baron von Holleben, the German Ambassador.

Mr. and Mrs. Watts Sherman, Mr. and Mrs. Luther Kountze, Miss Parsons, Miss Angelica Schuyler Church, Mr. and Mrs. Elbridge T. Gerry, the Misses Gerry, Mr. Robert Gerry, Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd Bryce, Miss Clare Bryce, the Misses Hewitt, Mr. Thomas F. Cushing, Miss Cushing, Mr. and Mrs. T. Suffern Tailer, Mrs. Burke-Roche, Mrs. Cooper Hewitt, Mr. and Mrs. Storrs Wells, Mr. and Mrs. George T. Rives, Miss Whiting, Mr. and Mrs. B.C. Porter, Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Stickney, Mr. and Mrs. Herman Emmet, Miss Josephine Johnson.

Mr. and Mrs. Whitelaw Reid, Miss Mary Crocker, Mr. and Mrs. Bridgham, Mr. and Mrs. John I. Kane, Mr. and Mrs. Kean, Mrs. John Minturn, Miss Minturn, Miss Field, Miss Sands, Mr. and Mrs. Lee Tailer, Mr. and Mrs. Grenville Kane, Mr. and Mrs. A. Gordon Norrie, Gen. Burnett and Mrs. Burnett, Mr. and Mrs. George B. De Forest, Miss Beatrice Bend, Mr. and Mrs. A. Newbold Morris, Mr. and Mrs. Sydney Smith, and Mr. and Mrs. E.J. Berwind.

Mr. and Mrs. J.J. Wysong, Mr. and Mrs. James L. Breese, Mrs. Alfonso de Navarro, Mr. William Stewart, Mr. Lispenard Stewart, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Witherbee, Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Harriman, Jr., Mr. C. Stacy Clark, Mrs. George Kingsland, Mr. and Mrs. T.J. Oakley Rhinelander, Mr. and Mrs. John R. Drexel, Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton Fish Webster, Mr. James de Wolf Cutting, Mr. Potter Palmer, Jr.

Mrs. Hermann Oelrichs, Mr. William Cutting, Jr., Mr. and Mrs. W.L. Suydam, Mr. A.M. Hadden, Miss Ethel Davies, Mr. Craig Wadsworth, Mr. David Bishop, Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Harry W. McVickar, Miss Eleanor Robinson, Miss Augusta Robinson, Mr. Harry Sands, the Vicomte de Garets, Mr. frederick Bull, Mr. Frank Polk, Mr. Barclay Kountze, and Mr.. Creighton Webb.

Mr. and Mrs. Orme Wilson, R. T. Wilson, Jr., Mr. Heber Bishop, Miss Bishop, Mr. and Mrs. J.F.D. Lanier, Mr. E. de P. Livingston, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Parish, Jr., Mr. and Mrs. Henry A. Coster, Miss Evelyn Sloane, Miss Iselin, Miss Coudert, Mr. and Mrs. Almeric Paget, Mr. and Mrs. Charles M. Oelrichs.

Mrs. Post, Mr. and Mrs. F. Burrall Hoffman, Mrs. C. Albert Stevens, Mr. and Mrs. Cammann, Mr. and Mrs. J. Hooker Hamersley, Mrs. A. Gallatin, Miss Gallatin, Mr. and Mrs. Louis L. Jones, Mrs. W. Pierson, Hamilton, and Miss Morgan.

Some Handsome Gowns

Mrs. Astor wore a gown of black velvet princesse, with front of skirt and the bodice antiqued in black velvet over white satin.

The edges of the appliqué were finished with white jet and tulle shoulder knots. She wore her famous tiara and necklace of diamonds and great diamond brooches.

Mrs. Ogden Mills wore mauve pink satin. The left shoulder was fastened by a large spray of turquoise-colored blossoms, with turquoises and pearls. The front of the gown was hung with many strings of pearls and turquoises. In her hair Mrs. Mills wore three Prince of Wales feathers of gold, enamel, diamonds, and turquoise.

Mrs. Luther Kountze wore white satin with a ruching of turquoise velvet. Mrs. Burke-Roche, yellow satin, long train, and diamonds.

Mrs. Henry Clews, pink satin and diamonds. Mrs. George B. De Forest, white satin embroidered in silver, diadem of diamonds.

Mrs. Frank Pendleton, black velvet with net lace on corswage, blue aigrette and diamonds. Miss Marie Winthrop, blue crepe de chine, blue algrette.

Miss Atherton Blight, striking gown of pearl-gray chiffon, embroidered in silver. The gown was held on shoulders by strings of pearls, and around the bust was draped white chiffon. In her hair Miss Atherton Blight wore a large pair of silver Mercury wings.

Mrs. J. Townsend Burden, magnificent gown of white satin embroidered in turquoise and pearls. There were cascades of turquoise blue chiffon falling from the waist to the skirt. The corsage was a combination of turquoise blue and white and with it was worn a sash of blue. Mrs. Burden wore around her neck a superb riviere of diamonds. The corsage of her gown was covered with the same precious stones and a large diadem of brilliants crowned her head.

Mrs. Levi P. Morton, gray satin brocaded and embroidered in jewels, diamond necklace and tiara.

Mrs. Frank Witherbee, white satin brocaded in silver, magnificent diamonds.

Miss Barbey, pink satin with aigrette and plumes of same shade.

Mrs. Lanfear Norrie, rose-colored satin.

Mrs. Bayard Cutting, white satin, with panels of pale blue, formed almost entirely of solid embroidery and incrustations of lace, with paillettes of silver and gold, with fringe effects. In her hair she wore a wreath of small p ink roses, and her necklace was of pearls. She also wore diamond ornaments.

Miss Justine Cutting was in a costume of white tulle covered with pink roses appliquéd on the tulle, and the under dress was of white satin.

Mrs. Whitelaw Reid was gowned in pale blue velvet, with palettes, and trimmings of point lace, and wore pearls.

Miss Mary Crocker was in a gown of white chiffon over white silk.

Mrs. John R. Drexel wore a dress of pale blue satin with appliqués of pansies and her famous turquoises; her gown was the same that she wore at her own ball at Sherry's; a white aigrette was in her coiffure.

Mrs. Lloyd Bryce's costume was of brocaded pink satin and her ornaments were diamonds.

Mrs. George Crocker's costume was white satin, with insertions of lace, heavily embroidered with pink roses, and her necklace of pearls was one formerly owned and worn by the Empress Eugenie.

Miss Rutherford was gowned in pink chiffon over pink silk. This gown was profusely ruffled, and each ruffle was almost entirely covered with row upon row of narrow pink satin ribbon.

Miss Emma Rutherford was in white chiffon, embroidered with small pink roses, and wore pink roses in her hair.

Miss Pierpont Morgan, pink satin and pink roses.

Mrs. Stanford White, rose pink with Bridesmaid roses; diamonds. Miss parsons, white satin. Mrs. R.T. Wilson, gray satin brocade and pearls.

Mrs. C. Albert Stevens, white satin and black velvet. Diamond necklace and white plumes fastened with diamond. Miss Iselin, gray chiffon and silver. Miss Evelyn Sloane: Pink crepe de chine and Bridesmaid roses. Miss Bishop: White satin. Miss Angelica Schuyler Church: white lace and chiffon, embroidered over white satin. Miss Evelyn Parsons: Pale blue embroidered chiffon over same shade of blue silk.


Website: The History
Article Name: Mrs. Astor's Annual Ball: Three Hundred Guests Attended 1-29-1900
Researcher/Transcriber: Miriam Medina


New York Times Jan. 30, 1900. p.3 (1 page)
Time & Date Stamp:  


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