Collections Lawyer Montgomery

Colonel Robert H. Montgomery was one of the founding partners of the accounting firm, Lybrand, Ross Bros. & Montgomery—known today as PricewaterhouseCoopers. He wrote more than 40 books about accounting practice and tax law. In addition to being a lawyer, accountant, and book collector, Colonel Montgomery was a lover of plants. In 1936, he founded Fairchild Tropical Garden (FTG), just 1 mile north in Coral Gables. He and his wife, Nell, donated the 83-acre tract of land as well as money for developing the plant collections. On May 2, 1953, while napping in his Florida home, 80-year-old Robert Montgomery died. He and Nell had just completed their daily stroll through the Coconut Grove Palmetum.
Upon Robert’s death in 1953, his wife, Eleanor “Nell, ” inherited the Coconut Grove Palmetum. Nell wanted to perpetuate her late husband’s name in association with the plant collections and the estate. She also desired to provide a site for research investigations on the collections. With these goals in mind, she created The Montgomery Foundation, Inc., on November 20, 1959, as a private, non-profit, operating institution devoted to advancing the science of tropical botany by building research-oriented plant collections. In 1998, the name was changed to the Montgomery Botanical Center (MBC).

For over 30 years, Nell committed her life to the development and growth of MBC and FTG. Upon her death on June 4, 1990, she left the balance of her estate and an endowment to maintain the property to MBC.
Since Nell’s death in 1990, MBC directors and staff have worked to secure and promote Nell’s vision. As part of the transition...

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