Palm Beach, Florida

1919 - 1959


North Ocean Boulevard entrance to El Mirasol

Royal Palms at North Ocean Boulevard entrance to El Mirasol, circa 1925

In 1919, Eva Stotesbury saw how architect Addison Mizner had created the Everglades Club in Palm Beach, and she asked him to create the same sort of effect for their mansion in Palm Beach. The result was El Mirasol (Spanish for "the sunflower"), which was one of Mizner's greatest and largest creations. El Mirasol reflected a Spanish and Italian mediterranean influence that became the architectural rage in Palm Beach. The parties hosted there by the Stotesburys became legendary, and even during the Depression, Mr. Stotesbury's birthday party celebration in February at El Mirasol was always THE social event of the season. It is all too unfortunate that nothing from the original house remains, and the Australian pine trees along Wells Road are among the few reminders of a world that has largely disappeared.

Click here to watch a video about El Mirasol

(Be sure to turn on your audio to hear the music)








Below is a link to a 1919 newsreel film of E.T. Stotesbury hosting a reception at what appears to be the courtyard at El Mirasol (at that time still under construction). Note the hats on the ladies!

Click here to watch the newsreel of E.T. Stotesbury's reception at El Mirsasol in 1919



Below is a link to a newsreel film of E.T. Stotesbury on the beach at Palm Beach in 1922. Ned Stotesbury appears in his usual natty attire in the first five seconds of the clip

Click here to watch Ned Stotesbury amid the swimsuit fashions in Palm Beach in 1922

Below is a link to a video podcast celebrating the 100th wedding anniversary of the marriage of Brigadier General Douglas MacArthur and Louise Cromwell Brooks, which was held at El Mirasol on February 14, 1922

Click here to watch the podcast on the 1922 MacArthur - Brooks wedding


Below is a link to a clip from the W.C. Fields' 1926 comedy "It's the Old Army Game," which shows the scene filmed on the front lawn of El Mirasol. This shows the Ocean Boulevard entrance driveway before the hurricane of 1928 wiped out Ocean Boulevard north of Wells Road. Note that some of this was filmed at a movie set and not at El Mirasol. The set was used starting at 1:11:34 and ending at 1:16:13. In these scenes, the terrace no longer has wrought iron railing, there are two side windows with iron railings that do not exist on the real El Mirasol house, and of course the interior shots with the footman are not El Mirasol.

Click here to watch W.C. Fields have a family picnic on the front lawn of El Mirasol



Although this was not in Palm Beach, Philadelphia will do nicely: here is a link to a clip showing E.T. Stotesbury escorting the world famous aviator Charles Lindbergh at a large rally in the City of Brotherly Love.

Click here to watch E.T. Stotesbury and Charles Lindbergh


Below is a link to a newsreel film of E.T. Stotesbury's 81st birthday party held at El Mirasol in February 1930. Howard Lanin and his orchestra are featured and are playing music in the background, while servants in white tie serve champagne in regular highball glasses (after all, this still was during Prohibition!). If you look carefully, you can notice Eva Stotesbury's magnificent necklace of real pearls draped around her neck when she joins her husband Ned for a brief period in the receiving line.

Click here to watch the newsreel out-takes of E.T. Stotesbury's 81st birthday party in 1930


Below is a link to a 1934 newsreel film of a Charity Baseball game in Palm Beach, starring E.T. Stotesbury, comedian George Jessel, and others.

Click here to watch E.T. Stotesbury throw out the first ball in 1934

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