Ann Pamela Cunningham
founder and First Regent 1853-1874
Ann Pamela Cunningham made it her mission to preserve Mount Vernon after her mother wrote a letter regarding the poor condition of the Mansion. Her establishment of the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association put into motion America's historic-preservation movement.
Lily Lytle Macalester
Lily Lytle Macalester started as the Vice Regent for Pennsylvania and was later chosen to succeed Ann Pamela Cunningham. She would frequently attend auctions in order to purchase pieces to be featured at Mount Vernon.
During her time as Regent, Justine Townsend funded and oversaw projects such as the dining room's ceiling restoration. When the Mount Vernon Railway was opened, the estate began to receive an increasing number of tourists.
Harriet Clayton Comegys
Harriet Clayton Comegys was responsible for the publishing of George Washington's diaries, removing the relic display cases from the Mansion, and securing the services of the estate's horticulturalist.
During the bicentennial celebration and from the increased visitation by automobile, Alice Haliburton King saw a large increase in visitors to Mount Vernon. She also maintained the infrastructure of the house and opened the lower garden to the public.
Harriet Elizabeth Towner
During the year she became Regent, Harriet Elizabeth Cole, released her book The Mount Vernon Library. She also welcomed many famous visitors to Mount Vernon during World War II.
Mary Esther Hanks
Due to World War II, many of Mount Vernon's male employees left to enlist. This, however, allowed women to fill many roles at the estate they had never held. Despite the hardships of the war, Mary Esther Vilas was able to bring many Washington artifacts back to Mount Vernon.
Hope Knight Hodgman oversaw the reconstruction of the greenhouse and slave-quarters complex, which incorporates bricks from the White House. With a growing number of school groups touring the Mansion, there was also a shift of focus towards educating children.
Before becoming regent, Rosamond Harding Randall was actively involved in creating scholarships and preserving the view of the Potomac River shore. She also authored two books on Maryland history and architecture.
Elizabeth Throckmorton was an artist, poet, playwright, gardener, and political activist- but she is best remembered for being a preservationist. The highlight of her tenure was when she accepted the French government's bicentennial tribute to the United States.
Frances Archer Claiborne was able to oversee many projects during her tenure, including the kickoff of a capital campaign and the investigation of the Mansion's interior paint color. The Association also constructed a new memorial at the slave cemetery.
Helen Louise Anderson
Helen Louise Sharp oversaw the restoration of historic paint colors in the Mansion, the archaeological study of Mount Vernon, and the installation of a new lighting system. After raising over $11 million through the capital campaign, Mount Vernon welcomed many upgrades.
Eugenia Ayer Merrill was given the honor of hand-delivering the historic key to the Bastille to France to briefly be on display before returning it to the Mansion. She also welcomed King Hussein of Jordan to Mount Vernon.
Mabel Alleyne Livingstone was the first woman from the West Coast to serve as Regent. She raised funds in order to restore Mount Vernon's historic wharf, which was dedicated by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip.
Laura Vaughan Inge completed that enhanced two major projects that enhanced the Association’s ability to educate visitors about horticultural activities at the estate.
Jane Carew Lee
Jane Carew Cotton was perhaps best known for her leadership in the early stages of the To Keep Him First campaign, an ambitious initiative originated to raise funds to educate Mount Vernon’s visitors.
Ellen M. Carroll oversaw fund-raising activities for new facilities and the reopening of George Washington’s gristmill.
Jacqueline Gay Gaines
Jacqueline Gay Hart initiated a strategic planning process aimed at providing direction for the Association over the succeeding 15 years.