AMY VANDERBILT Biography - People in the News and Media


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Name: Amy Vanderbilt                                                               
Born: 22 July 1908                                                                 
Died: 27 December 1974                                                             
Amy Vanderbilt (July 22, 1908 - December 27, 1974) was an American authority on     
etiquette. In 1952 she published the best selling book Amy Vanderbilt's Complete   
Book of Etiquette. The book, later retitled Amy Vanderbilt's Etiquette, has been   
updated and is still in circulation today. The most recent edition                 
was edited by Nancy Tuckerman and Nancy Dunnan. Its longtime popularity has led     
to it being considered a standard of etiquette writing.                             
She is also the author or collector of cooking materials, including the 1961       
book "Amy Vanderbilt's Complete Cook Book" illustrated by Andy Warhol.             
Vanderbilt descended from either an uncle or brother of Cornelius Vanderbilt and   
is therefore not an official descendant-member of the Vanderbilt family. She was   
born in New York City and worked as a part-time reporter for the Staten Island     
Advance when she was 16. She was educated in Switzerland and at the Packer         
Collegiate Institute in Brooklyn before attending New York University. She         
worked in advertising and public relations, and published her famous book after     
five years of research. From 1954 to 1960 she hosted the television program It's   
in Good Taste and from 1960 to 1962 she hosted the radio program The Right Thing   
To Do. She also worked as a consultant for several agencies and organizations,     
including the U.S. Department of State.                                             
On December 27, 1974, she died from multiple fractures of the skull after           
falling from a second-floor window in her townhouse on East 87th Street in New     
York. To this day, it is not clear whether her fall was accidental (most likely     
due to the medications she took for hypertension, which friends and relatives       
later said caused her to have severe dizzy spells) or whether she committed