Cornelia Stuyvesant Vanderbilt
Cornelia Stuyvesant Vanderbilt (1900–1976) was the only child of George Washington Vanderbilt II
George Washington Vanderbilt II
George Washington Vanderbilt II was a member of the prominent United States Vanderbilt family, which had amassed a huge fortune through steamboats, railroads, and various business enterprises. He built and owned Biltmore, the largest home in the United States.-Biography:The eighth son and youngest...

 and his wife Edith Stuyvesant Dresser.

Marriage and family

Cornelia Vanderbilt was born into a wealthy family and educated in private schools including The Madeira School
The Madeira School
The Madeira School is a private, non-denominational preparatory boarding school for girls located in McLean, Virginia, United States. Originally located on 19th Street near Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C., it was founded by Lucy Madeira Wing in 1906 and moved to the Northern Virginia suburb of...

. In 1924 she married the British aristocrat, John F. A. Cecil, a descendant of William Cecil
William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley
William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley , KG was an English statesman, the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign, twice Secretary of State and Lord High Treasurer from 1572...

. Their sons, George
George Henry Vanderbilt Cecil
George Henry Vanderbilt Cecil is the owner and operator of Biltmore Farms. He is the first of two sons born to John Francis Amherst Cecil and Cornelia Stuyvesant Vanderbilt and is the grandson of George Washington Vanderbilt II, the founder of the Biltmore Estate. He was educated in Europe and...

 (b. 1925) and William
William Amherst Vanderbilt Cecil
William Amherst Vanderbilt Cecil is the younger son of John Francis Amherst Cecil and Cornelia Stuyvesant Vanderbilt . He is an operator of the Biltmore Estate through his company, The Biltmore Company. Cecil is a graduate of Harvard University...

 (b. 1928), eventually inherited Biltmore Estate
Biltmore Estate
Biltmore House is a Châteauesque-styled mansion near Asheville, North Carolina, built by George Washington Vanderbilt II between 1889 and 1895. It is the largest privately-owned home in the United States, at and featuring 250 rooms...


George Cecil, the older of the two sons, chose to inherit the majority of the estate's land and the Biltmore Farms Company, which was more profitable than the house at the time. The younger son, William Cecil, inherited Biltmore House. He is credited with preserving the chauteau, which has been designated a National Historic Landmark
National Historic Landmark
A National Historic Landmark is a building, site, structure, object, or district, that is officially recognized by the United States government for its historical significance...

. Although still privately owned, the mansion has been opened to the public for heritage tourism.
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