William du Pont Jr. (1896-1965)

William Francis du Pont Jr., of Liseter & Bellevue Hall, Delaware

Associated Houses

Loseley Park




Bellevue Hall


He was born at Loseley Park in Surrey, England, and grew up at the historic Montpelier in Virginia surrounded by horses, a passion that in later life would see him build 23 racecourses including Fair Hill and Delaware Park. He was a director and later succeeded his father as President of the Delaware Trust Company. He inherited Bellevue Park in 1928 and remodelled it into a replica of Montpelier. In 1919, he married Jean, one of the two daughters of William Liseter Austin, of Rosemont, Delaware Co., Pennsylvania. They lived at Liseter Hall (also modelled on Montpelier) on a 600-acre estate where they developed one of the country's premier thoroughbred horse farms with every modern facility conceivable. They divorced in 1941 and she remained at Liseter Hall Farm (also known as Foxcatcher Farm) while he made his permanent home at Bellevue Hall. In 1947, he remarried the American tennis champion, Margaret Osborne duPont. They divorced in 1964 and he died the following year. He had four children by his first marriage and one by his second. His son, John, is portrayed in the movie Foxcatcher and is the only person listed on the Forbes 400 to have been convicted of murder. 
Contributed by Mark Meredith on 04/02/2021 and last updated on 04/02/2021.