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Ann Harden Babcock

Born: Sun., Aug. 31, 1924
Died: Thu., Aug. 15, 2019


Memorial Service

11:00 AM Fri., Aug. 30, 2019
Location: McConnellsville Community Church


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Music by The Piano Brothers


Ann Harden Babcock of McConnellsville, New York, Hyannis Port, Massachusetts and North Palm Beach, Florida passed away on August 15, 2019 at the age of 94.  She was a lifelong resident of the village of McConnellsville, home to the Harden Furniture Company, a business started by her ancestors just after the Civil War.  The firm grew to be one of the largest family-owned furniture manufacturers in the country.  
Ann was valedictorian of her class at Camden High School, where she met her future husband, Gordon Babcock.  She graduated from Wells College in 1945 and moved to New York City where she studied interior design before returning to upstate New York.  Ann and Gordon were married at her parent’s home on October 23, 1948.  
With her professional training and innate sense for color, scale and pattern, Ann devoted her career to Harden Furniture, selecting fabrics and guiding the design of many successful collections.  Together with Gordon, the firm’s Vice President of Manufacturing, she traveled to industry trade shows in New York, Chicago and North Carolina, developing many friendships with customers and other manufacturers.  She was respected in the industry and was beloved by many Harden Furniture employees.  In a 2012 Citizen of the Year tribute to Ann and her brother, Dave Harden, the speaker described her as “a woman of graceful distinction [and] integral and highly valued part of Harden Furniture.”
A talented musician, Ann served as organist and choir director for the McConnellsville Community Church (United Church of Christ) for more than 60 years.  She participated in a number of local organizations, most lovingly the McConnellsville Garden Club, and supported several local charities, either personally or through the Harden Foundation.  She was a member of the Hyannisport Club, the Lost Tree Club, and an honorary member of the Onondaga Golf and Country Club.  She served on the board that brought Upstate Medical Center to Syracuse and was a Commander Sister in the Order of St John, dedicated to eye care in Jerusalem.  A strong supporter of education, she served on the Board of Trustees of Wells College beginning in 1992 and later as an Honorary Trustee.  
Ann was happiest when entertaining family members who gathered each summer at the family house in Hyannis Port.  There, she was a member of the Union Chapel and St. Andrew’s by the Sea.  During her winter stays at her home in North Palm Beach, Florida, she was a member of the Lost Tree Chapel and was a trophy winning member of the “Pelican Putters” at the Lost Tree Club.
Ann was preceded in death by her husband, Gordon, her brother David Harden, and his wife, also named Ann.  She is survived by her son, Christopher Harden Babcock of Hyannis Port and New York, daughter Pamela Babcock Stein and husband Mark, of Dallas and New York, grandchildren Anne Chrestien Stein of Brooklyn, and Jonathan Babcock Stein and wife Polina Khentov of Manhattan, and two great-granddaughters Sasha Ann and Sydney Ludlow Stein.
The family wishes to express its gratitude to Judy and Jim Moore for their many years of assistance and friendship to Ann, and to the team of caregivers who made it possible for her to remain at her home during the past several months.
          A memorial service celebrating the life of Ann Harden Babcock will be held at the McConnellsville Community Church at 11 am on August 30, 2019.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to McConnellsville Community Church, UCC, McConnellsville, New York, 13401.

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Janet Dixon
   Posted Mon August 19, 2019
My condolences to the family. I worked with Ann on the fabrics at Harden once I took over Donna Christmas's position. I admired her so, she was my mentor. A true lady in every sense of the word. While she was in Florida for the winter, I handled a few things for her and she would always bring me back some pretty piece of jewelry. She was so appreciative of anything anyone did for her. I will cherish my jewelry more than ever now. I am truly sorry for your loss. Janet Dixon

John Kelley
   Posted Thu August 22, 2019
Ann is the essence of grace and elegance. She taught me so very much, and I've thought about her daily since leaving Harden. It is a sad day that we have lost her... yet so many were blessed to merely be in her presence. Sure do miss Gordon, Dave, you and the rest of our family. Go rest high on that mountain Ann...

Suzi Hemingway
   Posted Sun August 25, 2019
To the Family of Mrs. Babcock,

My name is Suzanne Fox Hemingway. I am the granddaughter of Edna and Newell Backus who lived in McConnellsville, on the road that used to be RD2. My mothers name is Phyllis. But, it was my Aunt Leona (later Bobbie) that grew up with Mrs. Babcock's brother Dave. She might have also known my father, Clarence Fox (always known as Foxy) who lived in Camden, and they all went to Camden High School, along with my fathers sister Viola (12 yrs older). I have heard stories all my life, about their adventures, and always 'Dave Harden' was a very big part.

We live in Charlotte, N.C. now, but I grew up in Conn. and Long Island, so going to visit my grandmother and spending many weeks in McConnellsville was my dream come true! When my grandfather Newell passed away, my mom and I stayed with my grandmother for quite a long time as I recall, and attended the little school for awhile, ..the teacher being a friend of Grandmothers, I couldn't get away with a thing!

Well, we get The NY Times, and when I saw 'McConnellsville, my heart stopped!!! Being an only child on both sides, I inherited many many pieces of Harden furniture, which I cherish! I am also an Interior designer, and you can bet the first time I attended the furniture market in High Point, NC I headed directly to the Hardens show room! I recognized almost everything!!

Again, I am so sorry for your loss, but know how much joy Mrs. Babcock gave to a perfect stranger.

Best Regards,
Suzi

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