Paul H Deming (19 Jun 1874 - 6 Oct 1961)
and Helen Smith
(25 Dec 1875 - 10 Mar 1962)


Paul Harvey Deming, abt 1910
Helen Deming, 1944
     The third child of George Deming and Celia Bigelow, Paul was educated in the Cleveland public schools and the University School of Cleveland, then entered Cornell University, where he studied law and civil engineering. After graduating from Cornell, he pursued an interest in the automotive industry, taking a position with Cleveland's White Company, which manufactured the White steamer. White sent Paul to New York City, where he was supervisor of business operations for the eastern U.S. Ending his association with White, Paul came to Detroit in 1905, taking a position as vice president of the American State Bank, which he held until December of 1918. In July of 1919, he joined the House Financing Corporation as vice president and treasurer. He was also chairman of the board of the George Worthington Company of Cleveland, the wholesale hardware company for which Paul's father had been an executive, and a director of the Union Commerce Corporation and the Union Trust Company of Detroit.
     In 1904, Paul married Helen Smith, daughter of financier and lumber baron Martin S. Smith.  It is not entirely certain that Helen was Martin Smith's natural daughter; family legend has long suggested Helen may have been left on the Smiths' doorstep as an infant, but thus far evidence has not been found to either confirm or deny the story.
     Paul built a large home in Grosse Pointe Farms called Cherryhurst (photos below). He also took an interest in the public affairs of Grosse Pointe Farms, serving as president of the village, and remaining deeply involved in village business even after his term was finished.
     The Depression had greatly diminished Helen's fortune, and it is a credit to Paul's business and financial skills that he stretched it out as far and as long as he did. By the early 1960's, however, the inevitable finally overtook him. Unable to bear the prospect of financial collapse, he took his own life. Date of death is from family records.
Helen Smith wedding gown, 1904Paul and Helen Deming

Paul Deming and eldest daughter, Mary, about 1910.
Deming family photo, 1944
Rear: Paul Deming Sr, Paul Deming Jr (in uniform), William Harts
Middle: Helen Parker, Edward Parker Jr, Celia Deming Harts, Edward Parker Sr
Front: Helen Deming, Mary Deming, Deanne Harts, Lynda Deming, Mary Deming Parker

Below: Cherryhurst - the Grosse Pointe Farms home of Paul and Helen Deming.

Three exterior views, and one interior (click on image for full size)

     The house, a U-shaped, 2 1/2 story Tudor revival, stood on two acres at 111 Lake Shore Dr in Grosse Pointe Farms, and faced out onto Lake St. Clair.  It was constructed for Paul Deming shortly after his arrival in the Detroit area in 1905.  Paul Deming would own the home until his death.  Later suffering from neglect, it would be extensively restored in the 1980's and would receive State and National Historic registries in 1996.  These latter efforts were an attempt to preserve the house, but ultimately proved futile, as the house was torn down and the property developed into Cherryhurst Subdivision.  At the Wikipedia page for Grosse Pointe (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grosse_Pointe), a picture appears of a house that is described as 'Paul Harvey Deming House "Cherryhurst" ', but the house pictured is actually one of the houses on the new Cherryhurst Lane.
     More information on the architecture of Cherryhurst can be found at the website, MI State Historic Preservation Objects, from which these pictures were obtained.
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