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 John McCulloch Spencer

John McCulloch Spencer

New York, New York County (Manhattan), New York, USA
Death 18 Jan 1965 (aged 47)
Gardner, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA
Burial Cuttingsville, Rutland County, Vermont, USA
Memorial ID 22690 · View Source
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Philanthropist, Political Leader. Born in New York City as Eric Winter, he was orphaned as a boy and adopted into the Troy, Ohio family that produced Spencer Corsets, a top selling women's undergarment from the late 19th to mid 20th Centuries. Spencer was educated at Alma College and Yale University. A heavy drinker, he was hospitalized for mental health issues in the early 1940s. Upon moving to Vermont in 1945, he turned this experience to his advantage, funding mental health services in Troy and working as a counselor with Vermont prison inmates until becoming Executive Director of the Vermont Association for Mental Health. Interested in improving assistance for mental health and substance abuse patients, and frustrated with what he perceived as the Vermont Republican Party's inactivity, he used his wealth to build the Democrats into a viable alternative. In 1962 Spencer managed the campaign of Philip Hoff, the first successful Democratic candidate for Governor in more than 100 years. In 1964 chronic alcoholism led him to resign as Hoff's Special Assistant, Chairman of the Vermont Board of Health and Chairman of the Vermont Democratic Party. Spencer completed treatment, but became ill and died after several days in a Gardner, Massachusetts hospital.

Bio by: Bill McKern

Family Members



December 4, 1917
January 18, 1965




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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 11 Jun 2001
  • Find A Grave Memorial 22690
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for John McCulloch Spencer (14 Dec 1917–18 Jan 1965), Find A Grave Memorial no. 22690, citing Laurel Glen Cemetery, Cuttingsville, Rutland County, Vermont, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .