|Birth||August 3, 1877|
|Death||July 11, 1958|
Louise Evelina du Pont Crowninshield (August 3, 1877 – July 11, 1958) was an American heiress and preservationist, who was the great granddaughter of Eleuthère Irénée du Pont, the founder of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company.
She was a daughter of Henry A. du Pont (1838–1926) and Pauline Foster du Pont (1849–1902); her brother was Henry Francis du Pont (1880–1969). She was born, raised, and educated at the family estate, Winterthur, north of Wilmington, Delaware. A debutante whose coming-out party was held in New York City in 1896, she socialized with members of the city's most exclusive families.
In 1900, Louise du Pont married Francis Boardman Crowninshield (1869–1950), a renowned yacht-racer and expert marksman of the Boston Brahmin Crowninshield family. There were no children by this marriage. The Crowninshields had homes in Marblehead and Boston, Massachusetts; Boca Grande, Florida; and the original du Pont family estate, Eleutherian Mills, north of Wilmington, Delaware.
Louise du Pont Crowninshield actively participated in charitable organizations, horticulture, historic preservation, and collected antiques and hooked rugs. One of Louise du Pont Crowninshield's earliest historic restoration projects was the original du Pont family estate, Eleutherian Mills, where she resided during the spring and fall months. She was a founding trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 1949 and was vice-chairman of the board in 1953. In recognition of her services to historic preservation, the National Trust instituted an annual award, the Louise Evalina du Pont Crowninshield Award.
In 1955, President Dwight D. Eisenhower appointed her to the Boston National Historic Sites Commission. She was also involved with historic restoration in Virginia, particularly the Kenmore Association, of which she was a regent. Kenmore was the Fredericksburg, Virginia, home of Fielding Lewis and his wife, Betty Washington Lewis, who was George Washington's sister. Crowninshield often provided financial assistance and artifacts when needed at historic sites. In addition, she was a member or trustee of numerous historical societies, museums, art, and symphony organizations.
She died on July 11, 1958 in Wilmington, Delaware.
Archival materials relating to Louise E. du Pont Crowninshield are part of the Archives owned by Hagley Museum and Library and the Henry Francis DuPont Winterthur Museum, near Wilmington, Delaware.
See also: National Trust for Historic Preservation. Forum. 2000. "Louise's Legacy" by Kim Burdick. &
Delaware Humanities Forum. www.dhf.org. Speakers Bureau.