The Fay Family: Harold Van Vechten Fay

Fay Lines in Aurelius and Auburn
Three Fay Lines: Overview
Brigham Fay
James W. Fay
Edwin Reed Fay
Fred Hollister Fay
Harold Van Vechten Fay
Fay Burials in Fort Hill Cemetery
Auburn Cousins: Ward, Reed, Van Vechten
Fred Hollister Fay (2/1857 - 1/26/1926)
son of Edwin Reed and Jane Maria Van Vechten Fay
Flora Ward (8/1859 - 12/6/1926)
daughter of David and Elizabeth Perkins Ward

HAROLD VAN VECHTEN FAY was born June 20, 1890 into a very affluent family, one with an interest in and knowledge of their past. His father was a banker; his mother most probably active in the town, and well aware of her position as a member of the DAR.
The first trip that Harold made to Europe (to the best of our knowledge) occurred in 1909. The passenger manifest shows him returning through Ellis Island in July, 1909. There are no other members of the family on the boat; it seems as if Harold may be travelling with Kenneth Snyder; both are students and of the same age. This could be part of the 'grand tour of Europe' that was part of the lives of so many young men of the time.
These images, and the ones of the other trips, are taken from Ellis Island, a wonderful source not only for
immigrant ancestors but also for trips made by anyone through New York in the period covered by them.
Harold's parents, Fred and Flora, and his brother Dudley, returned from a European trip in November of that same year. It is not known whether the family travelled together to Europe and Harold returned early; or whether there were two separate trips.
In 1910, Harold made another trip to Europe, this time travelling with Flora, Willis and Helen. This 'ship manifest' is extremely important, for it was where I first saw the full middle names of Willis and Helen--and got the clue as to Flora's maiden name.
Harold was busy with education, attending Williams College (B.A. 1913); Mass. Institute of Technology (S. B. 1914); and Harvard University.
In December of 1916, Harold made another trip from Europe home through New York. It is of special interest because of the time this was: it occurred during the time of the First World War, when Germany had begun "restricted submarine warfare" and was considering "unrestricted submarine warfare," an operation it actually announced in February of 1917. This announcement and the German attacks caused the U.S. to break off relations in February and then declare war on April 6, 1917. Was this trip of Harold's designed to bring citizens home safely while they still could? What was Harold doing in Europe in the first place? We know from later evidence that he wanted to be a foreign correspondent; was he covering the war in Europe? Or was he just travelling?
    Note that the ship manifest gives Harold's exact date of birth and his home address and passport number.

(It has been cropped and divided in order to fit here)
The War Years 1817 - 1820
"We know that Harold joined the army, and that he was an army captain and intelligence officer in Major General William S. Graves' American Expeditionary Force-Siberia (AEFS).
He remained in the Russian Far East after the AEFS returned to the U.S. on April 1, 1920, and witnessed the Japanese Army's brutal offensive later that month. He wanted to be a foreign correspondent and wrote a long account of the Battle of Nikolsk-Ussuri that I found in the military intelligence files in the Archives (April 1920)."
James F. Bisher
For more information on the campaign, see the three part article by Gibson Bell Smith in NARA's "Prologue", starting Winter 2002, Vol. 34, No. 4.
"The departure of the AEFS from the Siberian scene in March 1920 spelled the end of the struggle between Graves, Semenoff, and the Japanese for control of the Trans-Siberian Railway. Semenoff soon fled to Manchuria. The Japanese took over complete control of eastern Siberia and created a puppet state, the Far Eastern Republic, which lasted until 1922. The Communists ultimately triumphed in this area as well. Japanese forces left Siberia to wait for another day."
One interesting account is written from the stand point of the medical services provided and needed in Russia for that campaign: AMERICAN EXPEDITIONARY FORCES IN SIBERIA
By December 1920, Harold was headed home from England. Ellis Island records are available online only for the period 1892 through 1924, and this is the last trip I have found for Harold. We do know, however, that he went to Europe at least one more time.

awarded to the American Expeditionary Forces in Siberia between 23 November 1918 and 1 April 1920

from The World War I Victory Medal
Post 1920
Fay returned to New York where he got married June 30, 1923 to Kathryn Beadle. She was born in Lima, N.Y., June 14, 1897, the daughter of Clifford J. and Elizabeth O. Beadle. She attended Genesee Wesleyan Seminary, Lima, N.Y. (Class of 1915) and Smith College. Trained as a kindergarten teacher at Miss Wheelock's School in Boston and at Froebel League in New York and subsequently taught kindergarten.

Harold and Katharyn travelled to Europe together at least once, for their daughter Daphne was born in Geneva, Switzerland, on April 2, 1925.
The biographical information for Kathryn and her line comes from page 417 of Beadle, Walter J., Jonathan Beadle family : history and genealogy of descendants of Jonathan Beadle who came to Ovid, Seneca County, New York about 1805 from New Jersey, probably Somerset County, Wilmington, Del.?: Priv. print., 1973
He later became associated with the World Peace Foundation in Boston. He seems to have attended the "great world conference" at Geneva in May 1927 where Cordell Hull and other visionaries tried in vain to steer post-war commercial policy towards a reduction in trade restrictions. That same year Fay co-authored a book about the conference with Allyn Abbot Young, one of America's most renowned monetary economists. The book was titled The International Economic Conference, Commercial policy in post-war Europe, and was published with the World Peace Foundation (Boston, Mass)
Afterwards, Young took a job at London School of Economics in 1929, and died there that year during a flu epidemic, but Fay returned home. Young was cremated in London and his ashes buried in Mount Auburn Cemetery (Cambridge, Mass.) two years later in 1931.

James F. Bisher
Harold is living in Maryland with Kathryn and Daphne.
Harold died October 8, 1944, and Katharyn died October 1981.
Daphne Fay attended Wheaton College (A.B. 1948). She married John Edward Landry May 15, 1949. He was born in Washington, D.C. September 23, 1918, the son of John L. Landry and Mary Catherine Ryan. They were divorced in 1966.

They had five children: Mark Edward b. May 24, 1950; Mary Katharyn b. Dec. 31, 1951; William Ward b. Mar. 8, 1953; Susan Ellen b. Oct. 29, 1954; Joanne b. Jan. 17, 1959.