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Joseph Edward Willard

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Joseph Edward Willard
Willard 3490801013 015393af3a o.jpg
United States Ambassador to Spain
In office
October 31, 1913 – July 7, 1921
PresidentWoodrow Wilson
Preceded byHenry Clay Ide
Succeeded byCyrus E. Woods
Member of the Virginia State
 Corporation Commission
In office
October 1, 1905 – February 18, 1910
Preceded byHenry Fairfax
Succeeded byJ. Richard Wingfield
19th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
In office
January 1, 1902 – February 1, 1906
GovernorAndrew J. Montague
Preceded byEdward Echols
Succeeded byJames Taylor Ellyson
Member of the Virginia House of Delegates from Fairfax County
In office
December 6, 1893 – December 4, 1901
Preceded byR. C. Triplett
Succeeded byR. E. Lee, Jr.
Personal details
Born
Joseph Edward Willard

(1865-05-01)May 1, 1865
Washington, D.C., U.S.
DiedApril 4, 1924(1924-04-04) (aged 58)
Manhattan, New York, U.S.
Spouse(s)Belle Layton Wyatt
RelationsAntonia Ford (mother)
Kermit Roosevelt (son-in-law)
Alma materVirginia Military Institute

Joseph Edward Willard (May 1, 1865 – April 4, 1924) was an American politician, philanthropist, and diplomat.

Early life

The son of prominent Washington hotelier and Union Army commissary major Joseph Clapp Willard (1820–1897) and former Confederate spy Antonia Ford, Joseph Willard had two brothers who died in infancy.

Career

Willard served for eight years in the Virginia House of Delegates, prior to his election as the 19th Lieutenant Governor of Virginia. He held that office from 1902 through 1906, leaving after an unsuccessful run for governor. The Virginia General Assembly then elected him a commissioner of the relatively new Virginia State Corporation Commission, where he served for four years.

In 1913, President Woodrow Wilson appointed Willard as the United States Ambassador to Spain. Upon the outbreak of World War I Willard was vacationing in the United States and returned to Europe aboard the USS Tennessee, although his only child, Belle, was sick with typhoid fever (she would recover).[1] Ambassador Willard held his position under successive presidents of both political parties until shortly before his death.

Personal life

Willard and his wife, Belle Layton Wyatt (1869–1954), had one daughter Belle Wyatt, (1892–1968) who later married Kermit Roosevelt on June 10, 1914.

His daughter and Roosevelt had four children:

  1. Kermit Roosevelt Jr. (1916-2000); married Mary Lowe Gaddis (1917-2013) and had four children.
  2. Joseph Willard Roosevelt (1918-2008); married (1) Nancy Thayer/Cummings, daughter of poet E.E. Cummings and had two children; married (2) Carole Adele Russell and had three children.
  3. Belle Wyatt Roosevelt (1919-1985); married John Gorham Palfrey Jr., grandson of John G. Palfrey, 2nd great-grandson of William Palfrey, and grand-nephew of Francis Winthrop Palfrey; had three children.
  4. Dirck Roosevelt (1925-1953)

Willard had at least 12 grandchildren, including Mark Roosevelt; his great-grandchildren include Kermit Roosevelt III, John Palfrey and Quentin Palfrey.

Death

Willard died in Manhattan, New York, on April 4, 1924. His remains were returned to Washington, D.C., for burial at Oak Hill cemetery.

Sources

  1. ^ "Cruiser Off With $5,750,000 in Gold to Aid Americans," New York World, Aug. 7, 1914.
Political offices
Preceded by
Edward Echols
Lieutenant Governor of Virginia
1902–1906
Succeeded by
James Taylor Ellyson
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Henry Clay Ide
United States Ambassador to Spain
1913–1921
Succeeded by
Cyrus E. Woods
This page was last edited on 5 July 2021, at 00:34
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