Robert Lenox was an immigrant Scottish merchant, (1759-1839) who owned a large farm on the Upper East Side. When he bequeathed it to his son, James Lenox, his son divided the land into lots and sold them during the 1860s and ’70s. One of the lots on Fifth Avenue was allotted for the The Lenox Library, now known as the Frick Museum, which houses some of the world’s finest art works on the Upper East Side on 70th Street and 5th Avenue, while another lot was donated for the Union Theological Seminary.
Lenox Hill is the area that now ranges from East 72nd Street to East 59th Street. The neighborhood assumed the name after the German Hospital was renamed Lenox Hill Hospital as a way to acknowledge the legacy of the Lenox family and distinguish the area from Murray Hill.
Walter Scott Lenox, on the other hand, was from Trenton, New Jersey. In 1889 he founded Lenox China, a company that would come to elevate ceramic art and porcelain in the U. S. Thanks to Walter, porcelain tableware came to adorn state functions hosted by presidents and diplomats. By 1897, examples of Lenox’s work were included in the Smithsonian Institution and by the early 1900’s, Lenox china became the first American china to be commissioned by President Wilson and the First Lady. Lenox china still exudes quiet elegance and like Lenox Hill, a Zen timelessness that can be appreciated by the trendy and the traditional types that now reside at Lenox Hill.
Image via Edgar Zuniga Jr.