Updated December 5, 2005
Mackay Stories, p.10
Courtesy of the National Museum of Fine Arts, Stockholm, Sweden
    The email below was received in response to my asking the National Museum in Stockholm if they were in possession of the David and Bathsheba tapestry that used to be prominantly displayed in the Great Hall of the Mackay mansion at Harbor Hill.   Click here for the Harbor Hill display.
August 29, 2005

     The tapestry with the story of David and Bathsheba is also the biggest tapestry in our collection as it was in
Mr. Mackay's.  And there is no doubt that it is the one that I can see on your website.  It was given to the National Museum in 1964, with attribution from a Mr. and Mrs. Henrik Nordmark. The tapestry had been bought from French & Company on Madison Avenue, New York.  And in our inventory it says that it used to belong to the collection of Clarence H. Mackay. The inventory number is NMK 87/1964.
                                                                                                                                                 Micael Ernstell
                                                                                                                                                 Curator, Applied Art and Design
                                                                                                                                                 The National Museum of Fine Arts
                                                                                                                                                 Stockholm, Sweden
November 12, 2005

     My folks took me up onto the estate when the mansion was still standing (c. 1947).  As I remember, there were holes drilled all around the exterior at about waist level.  It was on a weekend, so there was nobody around.  My parents said the holes were drilled for the wreckers to put dynamite in them - they were going to blow the place up.  Since the house was scheduled to be demolished, my mother went in and saved some huge drapes.  The room I remember was gargantuan and the ceilings were very high.  The drapes were a lustrous beige and looked like - or I was told - they were silk.  Anyway, we carted them home and she got out the sewing machine and made curtains of them.
                                                                                                                                                  Jerry Tweddell, California
    I have heard several references to the main estate buildings being demolished by "blowing them up", but this is the first evidence from someone who actually saw the mansion prepared for demolition. The pool and court tennis building apparently survived for a couple of more years and then was demolished using the same method.
December 1, 2005

I am the past president of the United States Court Tennis Association (USCTA).  By the way, the current president is none other than one Bill McLaughlin.

     I have always been fascinated with the history of all of the "real tennis" courts in America and around the world.  As you know, one of the most beautiful courts anywhere in the world was at Harbor Hill.  At the famous weekend in August 1924, The Prince of Wales played with Clarence Mackay (a former hard racquets champion), Jay Gould,
[none other
than the grandson of the notorious 19th Century financier who was the fierce competitor of Clarence's father, John W. Mackay, in the cable/telegraph business] and Mackay's English tennis pro, Punch Fairs.

     I have written an illustrated novel as a pre-curser to a book on the history of the tennis courts of the world.  In the novel one of the main characters comes to the famous party and writes home to his beloved in England.  The novel is scheduled for publication this winter in London.  The follow-up book delineating all the courts will be out in a year or so.  It will cover as many courts as there are significant records remaining.

     Your web-site has been invaluable in terms of leading me to various pictures, etc. 

     Great work and thanks.

     P.S.:  To learn more about "court tennis" or "real tennis" as it is called in the UK,  there are a number of web-sites on the game.
                                                                                                                                                    Edward J. Hughes
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