A Park, a new Town Hall, a refurbished Church & Parsonage
To memorialize her late husband and son
Irene Kilmer Wilcox, a local woman who was part of a well known local family of several generations, lost her husband in 1942 and her only child, a son, in 1950.
In response, she decided to effectively donate the 620-acre family farm to Dutchess County, which is now known as Wilcox Park, saying she wanted to memorialize her late husband and son, and “give happiness to people while I’m alive and can see it.”
She paid for the land and construction costs of the Milan Town Hall, as well as an endowment for the Town.
She paid for the refurbishment of both the Rowe Church and its Parsonage, and left an income for the Church’s use which helps sustain scholarships.
She asked for her husband, Frederick Peck Wilcox, and son, Jr., to be remembered. She specifically left personal mementoes to be shown at the Town Hall, some of which are shared here.
Frederick P Wilcox, Sr. was a director of the International Silver Company in Meriden, CT, which had bought out the silver company his father and uncle (Dennis C & Horace C) had founded, the Meriden Britannica Silver Company.