Here is a look at the life of Gloria Vanderbilt, heiress, fashion designer, artist, author and actress.
Birth date: February 20, 1924
Death date: June 17, 2019
Birth place: New York, New York
Birth name: Gloria Laura Morgan Vanderbilt
Father: Reginald Claypoole Vanderbilt, financier
Mother: Gloria Mercedes (Morgan) Vanderbilt
Marriages: Wyatt Cooper (December 24, 1963-January 5, 1978, his death); Sidney Lumet (August 27, 1956-August 27, 1963, divorced); Leopold Stokowski (April 21, 1945-October 29, 1955, divorced); Pasquale (Pat) di Cicco (December 28, 1941-April 20, 1945, divorced)
Children: with Wyatt Cooper: Anderson, June 3, 1967; Carter, January 27, 1965-July 22, 1988; with Leopold Stokowski: Christopher, January 31, 1952; Leopold, August 22, 1950
The Gloria Vanderbilt collections have included clothing, jewelry, perfumes, shoes, leather goods, sheets, paper goods and home furnishings.
The company trademark was taken from her first professional stage play, “The Swan.”
Called the “poor little rich girl” after a battle for her custody made tabloid headlines in the 1930s.
Great-great-granddaughter of 19th century railroad magnate Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt.
Mother of CNN news anchor Anderson Cooper.
1925 - After the death of her father, Reginald, Vanderbilt and her mother move to Europe, primarily living in Paris. Reginald Vanderbilt’s will leaves her a multimillion dollar trust fund and his widow $500,000.
1932 - She joins her maternal grandmother, Laura Kilpatrick Morgan, in Newport, Rhode Island.
July 1934-March 1936 - A custody battle ensues between her mother, Gloria Mercedes (Morgan) Vanderbilt and paternal aunt, Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney for custody of Vanderbilt. The court awards custody to Whitney and visitation to Vanderbilt’s mother, stating that Gloria Morgan Vanderbilt is an unfit mother.
February 20, 1945 - On her 21st birthday, Vanderbilt assumes control of her inheritance, worth $4,295,628.
1946 - Cuts off financial support to her mother.
1948 - Begins to exhibit her artwork.
August 16, 1954 - Stage debut, as the lead in the romantic drama “The Swan,” at the Pocono Playhouse in Mountainhome, Pennsylvania.
August 1955 - Publishes a book of poetry, “Love Poems.”
1969 - Uses her artwork as the basis for fashion and textile designs and wins the Neiman Marcus Fashion Award.
1976 - Starts a ready-to-wear company, GV Ltd., which goes on to sell millions of pairs of designer jeans.
July 22, 1988 - Her son, Carter, commits suicide by jumping from the 14th floor terrace of her Manhattan apartment. Carter suffered with depression.
September 29, 1993 - Wins a $1.5 million judgment against her lawyer’s estate. Her lawyer, Thomas Andrews, and her psychiatrist, Dr. Christ Zois, had bilked her out of several million dollars.
June 1995 - Sells her seven-bedroom mansion in Southampton and her five-story Manhattan townhouse to pay back taxes and other debts. Begins work on a new book.
1996 - Publishes “A Mother’s Story,” about coping with life after son Carter’s suicide in 1988.
March 2002 - Jones Apparel Group acquires Gloria Vanderbilt Apparel Corp. for $138 million.
October 2004 - Publishes the history of her love life, “It Seemed Important at the Time: A Romance Memoir.”
Summer 2007 - A one-woman show of 25 of Vanderbilt’s oil paintings is held in Manchester, Vermont.
Summer 2009 - At 85, Vanderbilt’s erotic novel, “Obsession: An Erotic Tale,” is published.
September 12, 2012 - Vanderbilt’s exhibit, “The World of Gloria Vanderbilt: Collages, Dream Boxes and Recent Paintings,” opens at the New York Design Center.
January 2016 - The HBO documentary, “Nothing Left Unsaid: Gloria Vanderbilt & Anderson Cooper,” premieres at the Sundance Film Festival.
April 2016 - Along with her son Anderson, Vanderbilt publishes the memoir, “The Rainbow Comes and Goes: A Mother and Son on Life, Love, and Loss.”
June 17, 2019 - Dies in her Manhattan home with friends and family at her side.