Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 9
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Coldwell Banker Princeton Office

Prudential Fox and Roach, Realtors

Gloria Nilson GMAC Real Estate

Henderson Sotheby's International Realty

N.T. Callaway Princeton Office

Stockton Real Estate, LLC

Weichert, Realtors

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Iris Interiors

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Weather Forecast


Theodore Lamont (Ted) Cross

Catherine Cortelyou

Jessie Nelms “Betsey” Petty

Robert J. Shaw

William Summerscales

Theodore Lamont (Ted) Cross

Theodore Lamont (Ted) Cross

Theodore Lamont (Ted) Cross, 86, of Princeton, died February 28 at a hospital in Fort Myers, Florida. He was an author, publisher, civil rights activist, and bird photographer.

A native of Wellesley, Mass., he was a 1946 graduate of Amherst College. After serving as a naval officer in the South Pacific in the closing days of World War II, he enrolled at Harvard Law School where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. After graduating from Harvard Law School in 1950, he pursued a number of careers, beginning as General Counsel of the Sheraton Hotel chain. In this position he negotiated a settlement of one of the early civil rights protests at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. After joining Martin Luther King Jr.’s 1965 voting rights march in Selma, Alabama, he took a leave from Sheraton and became a minority economic development and community action consultant in Washington.

For many years, Mr. Cross was a leading spokesman for black economic development. His book, Black Capitalism, inspired a number of new federal programs aimed at strengthening black business and employment. His second book, The Black Power Imperative, argued that the unequal distribution of political power and investment capital among blacks and whites have been prime causes of other forms of black inequality. These themes informed the corrective strategies of the Opportunity Funding Corporation which he designed and organized under White House sponsorship in 1970.

In the early 1970s, Mr. Cross turned his attention to publishing. With his two brothers, Warren and Gorham, he founded and built over a period of 20 years the firm of Warren, Gorham & Lamont, which became one of the nation’s largest publishers of professional books and services. In later years, Mr. Cross succeeded in rehabilitating failing publishing companies. In 1983 he bought Wall Street’s Investment Dealer’s Digest; two-and-a-half years later, after reviving the Digest editorially and creating a securities database from its archives, he sold the company for many times its purchase price.

Throughout his life Mr. Cross was interested in the impact of American capitalism on weaker social groups. In 1971 he founded Business and Society Review, a journal on corporate ethics and responsibility. Profits from the publication were used to finance lawsuits designed to racially integrate television stations in the South.

Mr. Cross was a trustee of the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, the Legal Defense and Educational Fund of the NAACP, Princeton University Press, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation, and the National Humanities Center. He served as Public Governor of the American Stock Exchange during the years 1972-1977. For many years he served as a trustee of Amherst College and as chairman of its Investment Committee. At his death, he was a life trustee of Amherst College. He was also a trustee of the Institute for Advanced Study, a former treasurer and current member of the American Philosophical Society, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, and a member of the advisory council of the Center for African-American Studies at Princeton University.

Mr. Cross was a distinguished bird photographer. In 1989, at the invitation of the Soviet Academy of Sciences, he became the first Westerner to visit the Kolyma River Delta of the eastern Siberian Arctic, where he photographed the Ross’s Gull, a rare Arctic seabird. His photographs appear in his books Birds of the Sea, Shore and Tundra, and Waterbirds. He was the founder of Birders United, an organization that served as a watchdog group holding government officials accountable for their actions impacting birds and their habitats.

Mr. Cross was known in recent years as founder and editor of The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education, in which he published comparative statistics on the success of American colleges and universities in bringing black faculty and students to their campuses. Until his death, he remained active in writing and editing the quarterly journal and its weekly online edition.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Cross, an author and photojournalist; his daughters Amanda Cross of Sanibel, Fla. and Lisa Pownall-Gray of Weston, Conn.; three stepdaughters, Stuart Warner of Woodbridge, Conn., Ann Anderson of Narragansett, R.I., and Polly Warner of Denver, Colo.; three grandchildren; and eight step grandchildren.

A memorial service will be scheduled at a later date.

Catherine Cortelyou

Catherine Cortelyou, 90, of Princeton, died February 28 at Buckingham Place.

Born and raised in Perth Amboy, she attended St. Mary’s High School in Perth Amboy.

She was an administrative officer with Equifax Company of Georgia where she retired after many years of service.

She was a member of the National Association of Accountants, the National Federation of Business and Professional Women’s Club (BPW), and a Junior Achievement advisor of Atlanta, Georgia. She was also a member of the Soroptomist Club and St. Paul’s Ministry, and an avid golfer. She loved to travel.

Wife of the late Edmund C. Craft and Dr. Thomas P. Cortelyou, and mother of the late Betty Jane Peterson, she is survived by a son, Edmund C. Craft of Dataw, S.C.; a daughter, Mary Ann Rayner of Rocky Hill; two brothers, Thomas Deverin of Carteret and Bernard Deverin of Red Bank; eight grandchildren; and 10 great–grandchildren.

The funeral will be held at 10 a.m. this Friday, March 5 at The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home, 40 Vandeventer Avenue. A Mass of Christian Burial will follow at 11 a.m. at St. Paul’s Church, 214 Nassau Street. Burial will be in Princeton Cemetery.

Calling hours will be from 7 to 9 p.m. tomorrow, March 4 at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to American Parkinson Disease Association, J. Louis Blumberg Chapter, 332 Gerard Avenue, Elkins Park, Pa. 19027.

Jessie Nelms “Betsey” Petty

Jessie Nelms “Betsey” Petty

Jessie Nelms “Betsey” Petty, 90, a longtime Princeton resident, died February 23, peacefully, at home.

Married for 63 years to the late Orville A. “Doc” Petty II, she moved to Princeton in 1960 when her husband was named vice president of marketing at Lenox China. 

Active in the community and as a volunteer, she was a member of The Present Day Club, Bedens Brook Club, The Garden Club of Trenton, and The Contemporary Garden Club. She was president of the board of the New Jersey Neuro-Psychiatric Institute and the Ballet Society of Princeton, and was a member of the Trinity Church congregation for 50 years, where she served on the Altar Guild. She won numerous prizes for flower arranging and had a great love of animals.

Born and raised in Philadelphia, she graduated from Arlington Hall and attended Drexel University. Her summers were spent in Ocean City, New Jersey, where her father, Richard Nelms, was commodore of the Ocean City Yacht Club. 

She is survived by her daughter, Gail Nelms Petty Riepe of Cockeysville, Md.; four grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

A memorial service was held at Trinity Church on February 27.

Memorial contributions should be directed to Trinity Counseling Service, 22 Stockton Street, Princeton 08540.

Arrangements were by The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.

Robert J. Shaw

Robert James Shaw, 91, of Lake Wales, Fla., formerly of Princeton, died February 21 in his home at Mountain Lake in Lake Wales.

Born in New York City, he graduated from Cornell University in 1940 and joined the Army as an Ordnance Officer, serving five years during World War II. After the war, he became a long-term resident in Princeton.

During his business career he served in senior marketing executive positions with Johnson & Johnson, Chesebrough-Ponds, and Shulton, Inc., having executive responsibilities for well known brands.

He was a member of Pine Valley Golf Club, the Bedens Brook Club, the Kittansett Club, Mountain Lake Club, and the Royal and Ancient. He was a longtime member of the U.S. Seniors Golf Association, where he served on tournament committees and played on international teams. His community interests included service as a warden of Trinity Church in Princeton, a member of the Princeton Zoning Board, and chairman of the Middlesex County United Fund.

Predeceased by his first wife, Jane Tyrie Shaw, he is survived by his wife of 26 years, Patricia French Shaw, of Lake Wales and Marion, Mass.; a sister, Julie Danoff of Tucson, Ariz.; two daughters, Barbara Jane Shaw of San Francisco and Jeanie Shaw Byrne of Hope Sound, Fla.; three granddaughters; six great-granddaughters; two stepchildren, Nancy Johnson and H. Carter Davis; and two step grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Good Shepherd Hospice, 105 Arneson Avenue, Auburndale, Fla. 33823.

William Summerscales

William Summerscales, 88, of Princeton, died February 25 in the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born in Silsden, Yorkshire, England, he had resided at The Windrows in Princeton for the last 10 years.

A former minister, Mr. Summerscales retired as a Professor and Director of Development at Teachers College, Columbia University, New York City. An author and speaker, he wrote numerous books and papers.

Son of the late Edmund and Margaret Newns Summerscales, father of the late Stephen T. Summerscales, grandfather of the late Kelly Ann Ramirez, and brother of the late Edmund, George, and Jack Summerscales, he is survived by his wife, Elpida Tsonides Summerscales; a daughter, Marjorie Summerscales Heiler of Linden, Va.; a sister, Pat Bissell of Canada; four grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.

Arrangements are under the direction of The Mather-Hodge Funeral Home.

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