Thursday, June 27, 2013

Beveridge Colin Dunlop (1879-1961)

From the March 2, 1951 edition of the Orangetown Telegram.

   A one term New York State Assemblyman and businessman in the county of Rockland, Beveridge Colin Dunlop was one of the aforementioned county's most highly regarded citizens. Bestowed a truly unusual first name upon his birth (how many people named Beveridge have you heard of by chance?), Mr. Dunlop didn't let his odd name keep him from having a successful career in both business and politics.
  One of nine children born to Scottish immigrants John and Jeannie Beveridge Dunlop, Beveridge C. Dunlop was born in Paterson, New Jersey on April 28, 1879. Bestowed the name "Beveridge" due to it being his mother's maiden name, Dunlop and his family resided in the Paterson area until 1887, when they removed to Rockland County, settling in the town of Spring Valley. He received his education in schools local to that town and around 1892 relocated back to New Jersey with his family. He graduated from the State Street High School in Hackensack in 1895 and thereafter returned to Spring Valley to join in the family business.
  John Dunlop Sons Inc. was one of the largest silk manufacturing companies in New York and New Jersey, and had had a branch established in Spring Valley by John Dunlop in 1887. He retired from the business in 1890 and the company was taken over by the two eldest Dunlop sons, George and John. Beveridge joined this company when he was still a young man and continued to be connected with the company until it closed its doors in 1937. Beveridge served as a vice president and secretary of this company, and in addition to his involvement there was instrumental in the manufacture of rayon (artificial silk) for many years. In 1927 he was named as a vice president and director of the North American Rayon Corporation and  four years later became a vice president of another rayon manufacturer, the American Bemberg Corporation in New York City. 
   At the dawn of hostilities with Spain in 1898 Dunlop joined in the war effort, enlisting in the New Jersey Volunteer Infantry regiment at Hackensack. This company was later encamped at Florida for a time, but Dunlop's time in the outfit was short-lived. A fellow serviceman of his, Mr. George M. Edsall, recalled that Dunlop became seriously ill at the camp after eating spoiled beef, and that "his condition became so serious that his family chartered a special train equipped with two nurses to bring him home from the camp." Despite his illness, Dunlop later entered the military once again, serving with the Y.M.C.A's "Rainbow Division" during the First World War. Following his service in the Spanish American War, Dunlop married in Albany on September 6, 1904 to Anna Norton Marvin (1880-1980), with whom he would have four children, John (born 1906), Janet (born 1909), Dudley Marvin (1913-1962) and Mary Dunlop Dedel (1916-2004). 
   With his name firmly established in the Rockland community, Dunlop entered state politics in 1913 when he announced his candidacy for the New York State Assembly. Although formerly a Republican, Dunlop jumped aboard the then popular Progressive Party bandwagon, running on that party's platform. On election day 1913 he eked out a narrow victory over Democratic candidate Frederick Grimme with a vote of 4,347 to 4,287. Taking his seat in January of the new year, Beveridge Dunlop was named to the house committees on Ways and Means, Public Printing, and during his service is listed by a state assembly report as introducing legislation advocating the establishment of a "Minimum Wage Commission to protect minors under eighteen years of age and women from employment at wages insufficient to supply a necessary cost of living and maintain the health, morals and efficiency of the workers, defining the powers and the duties of the commission and appropriating $25,000."
   Dunlop ran for a second term in the assembly in 1914 and again was the Progressive Party nominee. He was defeated for reelection in November of that year, garnering 1,463 votes to winning Democratic candidate Frederick Grimme's total of 3,481.  

Dunlop's portrait from the 1914 New York Red Book.

  While he may have lost his assembly seat, Dunlop continued to be active in the public affairs of Rockland County, being named as a Republican Presidential elector in 1916. He continued an active schedule throughout the remainder of his life, holding an impressive number of positions in businesses located throughout New York and New Jersey, including: the directorship of the U.S. Testing Company in Hoboken, director of the First National Bank of Spring Valley, director of the Allied Products Corporation of Suffern, New York and was a trustee of the Manhattan Savings Bank. Dunlop was also the chairman of the Spring Valley Board of Education for a number of years.


This portrait of Beveridge Dunlop appeared in a 1960 edition of the Orangetown Telegram.

  In addition to his business activities, Dunlop maintained a membership in the Athelstan Lodge #839 of the Free and Accepted Masons, and was honored as a Past Master of that lodge. Active in the American scouting movement, Dunlop served as an Honorary President of the Rockland County Council of the Boy Scouts of America during the 1940s. The Pearl River Orangetown Telegram also notes that he was "an ardent sportsman and has hunted game in all parts of the country." Beveridge Dunlop died on July 2, 1961 at age 82. He was survived by his wife Anne, who, following her death at age 99 in 1980, was interred at the Brick Church Cemetery in New Hempsted, New York.

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