Christmas Week, 1895
Emily Trevor, daughter of financier and philanthropist John Bond Trevor, was born on Ravine Avenue in Yonkers; her family moved to Glenview, a mansion on 23 acres off Warburton Avenue (now part of the Hudson River Museum), when she was 3 years old. Just 21 during Christmastime 1895, Trevor wrote daily in a diary that reveals the luxuries someone of her stature enjoyed in the period: elegant Victoria carriage rides and meals with a senator and members of famous families, including the Winthrops. (Her sister had married a Winthrop, descended from Massachusetts Bay Colony Governor John. The Trevor girls were themselves descended from a signer of the Declaration of Independence.) But it also shows less lavish moments: a quiet Christmas, outings to church, and struggles to stand while ice skating. Here, edited excerpts from her diary: for the week.
Monday Dec. 23
Italian Lesson. In p.m. Bessy Drove with me in the Victoria.
Went to the opera with Marie “Tristan & Isolde.” [Lillian] Nordica sang. Mr. Palmer, Mr. Bronson Winthrop went also – Mrs. W[inthrop] chaperoned us from another box.
Tuesday Dec. 24
Massie Strong came to see me & then we went for Marie [Winthrop] to go skating. It was great fun, only I could hardly skate.
Wednesday Dec. 25 Christmas
Church in a.m. The Bends sent me an opera box for to-night, but couldn’t get any one to go so gave it up. Mama gave me side combs – Mary gave me a dresden cup.
Friday Dec. 27
In a.m. Evelyn came for me & we went skating to the “Ice Palace” 107 st. & Lexington Avenue. I went to the opera, Melba, Jean & Edouard de Reszke sang “Romeo & Juliette,” It was superb. Wads of flowers as it was Melba’s first night this year.
Saturday Dec. 28
Went skating. Evelyn was going but I got a note saying she could not come. Burglars got in their house last night & took all their jewels, about $60,000 worth. In evening Senator Allison, Mr. & Mrs. L. T. Hoyt, Mr. & Mrs. Sturgis & Grenville came to dine.
Sunday Dec. 29
Grace Church. Mrs. W[inthrop] came home with us & I went in & lunched with them.
Monday Dec. 30
In p.m. Mama went with me to Steinway & I bought a piano. Went to the opera with the Costers, Faust, with Melba, de Reszke’s, Maurel – It was superb.