Plainfield Garden Club








Member: Sands, Mrs. G. Winthrop (Anne Aldridge Gibson)

Mentioned in the Meeting Minutes 1936-1937
Mentioned in the Meeting Minutes dated May 17, 1939

George Winthrop Sands 1908 - 1986

George Winthrop Sands (Babu) was born in Poissy, France to Tayo Newton Sands and George Winthrop Sands on June 13, 1908.

George Winthrop Sands

His childhood, although economically privileged, was rendered sad by the deaths of his father in the year of his birth and his mother just sixe years later.

GWS at age 4

George Winthrop Sands in 1946

His guardians were his grandmother, his father's mother Anne Harriman Vanderbilt and his uncle by marriage, Ogden Mills. They made the decision, perhaps oddly, to send him to live with his uncle on Long Island amidst great luxury rather than stay with his grandmother where he would be where his parents and he had lived since his birth.

Indeed, just several years after arriving back in the U.S., in 1921, Uncle Ogden sent him away to school at Pine Lodge in Lakewood, New Jersey and he would be away at school from then on. His records show that he was an unhappy student, frequently ill, and often shuttled between Uncle Ogden's at Woodbury, Long Island, Granny's house at 660 Fifth in Manhattan or her houses at Poissy or Deauville in France.

In 1926 he graduated from the Middlesex School in Concord, Massachusetts and he enrolled at Harvard College from which he received an A.B. degree in 1930. He enrolled immediately afterwards at Harvard's Graduate School of Business Administration but stayed only through 1931.

Uncle Ogden wrote to his Aunt Lulu, (Louise Newton, Tayo's sister) in 1932 that he was still hopeful that "Wintie" would graduate from Business School and that:

"I rather think he would be much better off if we could find some business which would permit him to live in the country. I am sure this is what he would like to do."

He had married in 1930 to Anne Aldridge Gibson at Leesburg, Virginia and they had one son Winthrop Mills Sands who is deceased.

From 1933 to 1939, Babu and Anne lived on Rahway Road in Plainfield, New Jersey. It was from Plainfield that he started importing wine. During this time, he worked at the First National Bank of Plainfield as Bank Manager until 1936 when he joined Opticolor until it went out of business. He then formed Sands Reynolds & Co., located at 111 Broadway, which promptly went out of business the following year.

From 1939 until 1943, he lived at 45 Grammercy Park in New York City.

In September 1939, with the war brewing in Europe, he left the field of finance in which he had demonstrated so little promise and was admitted to New York University and an Internship in Internal Medicine at Bellevue Hospital.

His education was finished in January 1944 and he immediately joined the United States Army on active duty on the 23rd as a 2nd Lieutenant.

On June 16th, 1944, he shipped to the European Theatre of Operations with the 359th Engineer Regiment, arriving there on the 26th of June as the Allies were invading France. The Engineers provided logistical support to General Patton's advances through Northern France, the Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe and Babu was the Medical Officer for the Regiment. He was promoted to Captain, served as Battalion and Regimental Surgeon, and received no wounds or individual decorations or medals other than the American Campaign Medal; World War II Victory Medal; Meritorious Unit Service Plaque; European, African, Middle-Eastern Campaign Medal, with 4 battle stars. He served overseas for 1 year and 7 months, returning home in late January 1946. In leaving the 359th, he was assigned as Troop Transport Surgeon aboard the SS Nicholas Gilman for his voyage home.

In May 1946, he was honorably discharged from the Army. He joined Goldwater Memorial for his residency from then until June of 1949.

George Winthrop Sands

For a brief period from June 1949 until April of 1951, he was in practice for himself, with Edward Sheckman, but proved to be as unlucky at this as his previous entrepreneurial efforts. In April 1951, he took part-time work as a physician for the New York Life Insurance Company doing physicals. At this time he started casting about for possible work in the government in intelligence work. In 1948, he served in the reserves in the 310th Military Police Battalion as Medical Officer.

From January 1946 through May 1952, he lived variously at 60 West 9th Street, 224 Sullivan Street, 38 Barrow Street and again at 60 W. 9th Street, all in Greenwich Village. In May 1952, he moved to Wilmot, New Hampshire.

On August 19th, 1950, divorced from Anne Gibson Sands, he married Carolyn Ladd Hall, daughter of Professor Norris Folger Hall and Alice Garrett Hall at their house, Four Knots, Chappaquiddick Island, Massachusetts.

An Outdoor Wedding

Miss Hall Is Bride of Dr. Sands, at Chappaquidick on Saturday

At an outdoor wedding Saturday noon in the garden of Five Knots, the Chappaquiccick summer home of Prof. and Mrs. Norris F. Hall of Madison, Wis., their daughter, Miss Carolyn Ladd Hall became the bride of Dr. George Winthrop Sands of New York city. The ceremony was performed by Philip J. Norton, justice of the peace, and a prayer by Rev. John Thorn Golding, rector of the Church of the Redeemer, Chestnut Hill, followed. It ws followed by a luncheon in the Hall house, featuring a handsome two-tier wedding cake baked by Mrs. Sarah Jeffers and iced by Mrs. Foster B. Silva.

The bride wore a pale yellow organdie dress, off-the-shoulder style, and carried deep maroon and green orchids. There were no attendants.

The bride was educated in England and then was graduated from the University of Wisconsin, where her father is a professor. She has since been occupied with research in medicate economics. Her great-grandfather, Isaac Dennis Hall, was a founder of the wholesale grocery firm of Driscoll, Church and Hall of New Bedford. Dr. Sands, a graduate of Harvard and of the New York University Medical School, served as captain in the medical corps during World War 2

George Winthrop Sands

In January 1954 he moved to 5, avenue du Bellay in Le Vésinet, France with his wife and two sons, Michael and Jonathan. They lasted six months, the cold and exhausted finances sending them back to New Hampshire where he took at job with the Hitchcock Clinic and Dartmouth College.

From 1930 until 1950, he was a member of the Knickerbocker and the Tennis and Raquet Clubs. He was also from 1948 through the 50's a member of the Paris Academy of Medecine and the New York Academy of Sciences.

New York Evening Post, Thursday, December 26, 1929

Betrothal is Announced of Anne Aldridge Gibson to George Winthrop Sands

Miss Gibson to Wed George Winthrop Sands

Of interest in this city is the announcement made by Dr. and Mrs. John Aldridge Gibson of Leesburg, Va., of the engagement of their daughter, Miss Anne Aldridge Gibson, to Mr. George Winthrop Sands, son of the late Mr. and Mrs. George Winthrop Sands of New York.

Mr. George Winthrop Sands is a grandson of Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt and a great grandson of the late Mr. and Mrs. Oliver Harriman. His grandfather, the late Samuel Stevens Sands, who was killed while on a hunting trip in Meadowbrook, was the first husband of Mrs. Vanderbilt, the former Anne Harriman.

Mr. Sands's father, George Winthrop Sands Sr., was killed in 1908 while on a motor tour through France. His mother, who was the former Miss Tayo Newton, was the daughter of the late Dr. D. E. Newton of New York.

Through his grandmother, Mrs. Vanderbilt, Mr. Sands is a relative of Mrs. Stephen H. Olin and Mr. Oliver Harriman.

Dr. John Aldridge Gibson

Legends of Loudoun by Harrison Williams

His men were volunteers, many having served in other Confederate commands and thence attracted to Mosby by his romantic reputation and his greater freedom of operation. Numerous Loudoun men were in the organization[173] but they made up a much smaller proportion than in White's Battalion or in the 8th Virginia Regiment. Many of his men were very young. One of these youths who survived the constant perils which surrounded the band was John H. Alexander, born in Clarke County. After peace was declared, he completed his interrupted education, was admitted to the Bar and, eventually taking up his permanent residence in Loudoun, very successfully practiced his profession there until his death in February, 1909. He wrote an interesting book, _Mosby's Men_, covering his experience with that leader, which was published in 1907. His only son, the Hon. John H. R. Alexander, one of the most esteemed and efficient judges Loudoun has contributed to the Virginia Bench, now presides over the Circuit Court for Loudoun and adjacent counties. Two more of Mosby's youths, these both of Loudoun, were Henry C. Gibson and J. West Aldridge. After the war Mr. Gibson married Mr. Aldridge's sister. Dr. John Aldridge Gibson and Dr. Harry P. Gibson, prominent Leesburg physicians, are the sons of this marriage. Did space permit many others Loudoun members of the command could be mentioned. The instances given go to show how the sons of Mosby's Rangers still carry on in Loudoun.

George Winthrop Sands Sr. July 29, 1908

Your great-grandfather, Babu's father, was also called George Winthrop Sands. He prepared at Malvern College, Malvern, England. and then went to Harvard College in 1905.

He also married Tayo Newton in 1905, your great-grandmother.

They had two children: Anne Barbara, born in March, 1906; and Babu, George Winthrop, Jr., born in June, l908.

Harvard College remembered your first great-grandfather as follows:

SANDS was always smiling, always glad to see you, always ready for any sort of fun. He left college after his freshman year, but many of his classmates will remember his genial personality.

For a while after he left college he was a stock broker but, to him, work was an evil and, in his case, not a necessary one. He was essentially a bon vivant. He liked the comforts of life and good things to eat and drink. Therefore, after marrying Tayo Newton in 1905, he lived abroad.

Here is a newspaper clipping from the time describing your great-grandparents wedding which was quite a scandal as you can see.

He was killed in an automobile accident in France in 1908. One of his children, George Winthrop Sands, graduated from Harvard in the Class of 1930, and married Anne Gibson in 1930. His other child, Anne Barbara Sands, married Lieutenant George R. Burgess, U. S. A., in 1926.

Barbara and Babu Sands

1936 - 1937 Meeting Minutes

1938-1939 Meeting Minutes

Monday Afternoon Club Membership