Sunday, September 29, 2013

Fairfax Stuart Landstreet (1861-1931)

From the Redemption of New York, published 1902.

   A native son of Virginia who made his political and business fortunes in both West Virginia and New York state, Fairfax Stuart Landstreet accumulated a fortune through his being a past director and General Manager of the Davis Coal and Coke Company. While well-known in business circles during the early part of the 20th century, Landstreet also had minor involvement in political affairs of the time, being a delegate-at-large to the Republican National Convention of 1904 from West Virginia.
  Fairfax S. Landstreet was born in Fauquier County Virginia on June 17, 1861, a son of the Rev, John Landstreet, a former Confederate Army chaplain who had been in the service of Gen. Jacob Ewell Brown Stuart. Fairfax attended schools local to his place of birth and as an adolescent was sent by his parents to finishing school in Baltimore, Maryland. After the completion of his schooling, Landstreet took on a position as clerk with the Davis Coal and Coke Company of West Virginia, owned by former U.S. Senator and 1904 Democratic Vice-Presidential candidate Henry Gassaway Davis (1823-1916). Landstreet married in December 1886 in Piedmont, West Virginia to Mary Davis (Senator Davis's niece), and the couple later had two children, Fairfax Stuart Jr. (1895-1929) and Mary Davis (birthdate unknown).
   Throughout the 1880s and early 1890s, Landstreet climbed the ranks of the Davis Coal and Coke Co., and in 1893 assumed the position of General Manager, with the company headquarters being located on Broadway in New York City. While holding high rank with the aforementioned business, Landstreet also served as General Manager of the West Virginia, Chesapeake and Potomac Railway's Company coal department. Prominent in banking in addition to his railroad and coal interests, Landstreet held the presidencies of the National Bank of Davis, West Virginia and the Tucker County Bank, also located in West Virginia.
  Landstreet's long-term connection with the Davis Coal and Coke Co. (amongst other endeavors) gained him a wide circle of acquaintances in both West Virginia and New York, and the 1904 Redemption of New York notes that his "eminently successful management of this, as well as other properties, has served to bring him into prominence, and to achieve for him a place in the foremost rank of New York's business men."

                                The 1904 West Virginia delegation to the Republican National Convention.

  In June 1904 Landstreet served as part of the West Virginia delegation to the Republican National Convention in Chicago that nominated Theodore Roosevelt for the Presidency. Following his service as an RNC delegate, Landstreet continued his successful career in business, becoming chairman of the board of the New York Dock Company, as well as the Pennsylvania Coal and Coke Company. He held both of these positions until his death on February 5, 1931, at the Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore. He was 69 years of age and his cause of death was due to heart disease, as per the 1931 edition of the Mining Congress Journal. He was later entombed at the Landstreet family mausoleum at the Southampton Cemetery in Southampton, Long Island.

From the New York Sun, February 6, 1931.

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