Alfred I. duPont
Alfred Irénée duPont was a man of intriguing contrasts. A successful industrialist and banker, he also had a flair for playing and writing music. His wealth allowed him to travel the world, but he had some of his happiest moments hunting in rural Virginia. He left his fortune for the care and healing of crippled children, yet was not known to have had any significant relationship with disabled children during his lifetime.
As the eldest son of the eldest son of the eldest son of Eleuthère Irénée duPont, the founder of the duPont gunpowder dynasty, Alfred took seriously his sense of duty to his family's heritage. He was a man of intense convictions who held tightly to his own judgment of what was right and wrong. His determination to pave his own path earned him a reputation as the duPont's "family rebel."
Alfred's passions, aside from business, were music and machinery. He was as adept at playing the violin as he was conjuring up a business deal or designing a gadget for his home. An amateur musician and composer, he formed an orchestra called the Tankopanicum Musical Club with friends and his workers. During his life Alfred published nine pieces of music, eight marches and one gavotte, a French peasant dance, which was performed at the Grand Opera House in Wilmington in 1907. Another musical highlight was when one of Alfred's marches was performed by his friend John Philip Sousa.