Contributed by Patten Free Library
George Patten Davenport (1844-1926) lived all of his life in Bath, most of it at the corner of Washington and Bowery Streets in the north end of the city. The second of three sons of Charles and Catherine Duncan Davenport, George was the only one to follow his father into the insurance and banking businesses after his graduation from Bath High School in 1863 and Bowdoin College in 1867.
Unmarried, he continued to live in his childhood home, caring for his parents until his father's death in 1901 and his mother's death in 1907.
Like his parents, Davenport believed in a frugal lifestyle and in civic involvement. Beyond his varied business interests, Davenport participated as a trustee or member in the Bath City Hospital, the Old Ladies' Home, the Old Folks' Home, Homeopathic Hospital of Portland, Bowdoin College, Boston University, Patten Free Library, Bath City Council, and Bath School Board.
He served as the organist in the Beacon Street Methodist Church for many years, a building of which his father had been the chief contributor when it was constructed in 1853.
His mother's philanthropic efforts had also supported this church, and local efforts to assist the poor. In 1906, for example, Catherine Davenport presented the city with a trust fund of $1,000 for public assistance. Their philanthropy and George Davenport's ability to preserve and increase the family fortune led to remarkable gifts to the City of Bath.
After his death in 1926, his will demonstrated careful attention to charitable efforts, recognizing all those non-profit groups mentioned above and still others. But of particular note, were George's bequests to the city. He left both the Davenport property and $10,000 toward the construction of a new city hall, with the condition that it be called the Davenport Memorial City Hall after his father, Charles Davenport.
He also left nearly $2 million to establish the Davenport Trust Fund, a fund to benefit "young and needy children, especially those of Bath, Maine." Other concerns to be addressed were various religious, educational, benevolent, and charitable institutions, especially those in Bath, that try to "better the condition of the human race."
About This Item
- Title: George Patten Davenport, Bath, ca. 1915
- Creation Date: circa 1915
- Subject Date: circa 1915
- Town: Bath
- County: Sagadahoc
- State: ME
- Media: Photographic print
- Dimensions: 23.7 cm x 18.5 cm
- Local Code: MMM T-19.1
- Collection: Maine Maritime Museum
- Object Type: Image
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For more information about this item, contact:Patten Free Library
33 Summer Street, Bath, ME 04530
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