Kathleen Harriman Mortimer

Today the New York Times ran the obituary of a woman named Kathleen Harriman Mortimer, the daughter of W. Averell Harriman.

Kathleen Harriman Mortimer, 1946. Source: NY Times February 21, 2011. Click for original source.

Kathleen Mortimer died at age 93 at her home in Arden, NY.  Throughout the course of her life she was journalist, a United States ambassador to Moscow, traveled with her father abroad to important political events such as the Yalta conference, among many other accomplishments.

The obituary caught my attention because of my association with Mrs. Mortimer from my days of Overhills Oral History research. The Harriman family had a cottage on Overhills property; Averell Harriman, along with Percy Rockefeller, were important figures in the 1910s and 1920s of Overhills history.  Kathleen and her sister visited Overhills when they were babies and toddlers. You can see a picture of Averell Harriman and his daughters on the Harriman Cottage porch on page 109 of the Overhills book (Arcadia Publishing, 2008).

I spoke with Kathleen Mortimer on the phone a few times throughout 2006-2009 about her brief time at Overhills. She sounded like a classy, interesting woman. At the time, I had no idea of her impressive life adventures. It was honor to speak with her. I extend my sympathies to the Harriman and Mortimer families on their loss of Kathleen.

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