Question from Stretch

Q:  I was wondering, your name is so political,are you any relation to the Tennessee Gores, Al and Tipper? or to Howard Dean? Also, could there be some connection between the Gores and Gore Vidal? I saw a wonderful write up about a reception that you had for Mr. Vidal in your  Georgetown Store. Thanks for any info. By the way, I love the Marbury sofa.

A:  I usually get this question sooner or later.  Yes I am very proud of my family and all the varied personalities that are part of it.  We did have a great party for Gore’s last book.  It was amazing the number of truly great people who showed up to honor him from media stras to authors. No politicians though…they stay away from his acerbic wit.  The party was held by myself and my cousin Nina Auchincloss Straight who is Gore’s sister. She is also the mother of Burr Gore Steers who wrote the very moving, “Igby Goes Down”. 

Any family would be proud of Albert.   Not just his books and years as Vice President but for the strength he has shown to move forward in public life to do truly,  globally,  important work.  The enitire family has always loved Tipper and she looks so much like all the women in the family that people often forget that she isn’t born in to it.  Albert ‘s sister Nancy was one of the nicest and coolest older cousins in the world.  I suppose the fact that we all grew up in a hotel in Washington DC is something that I should write about some day.  It was hilarious but also a bit lonely. Try selling Girl Scout cookies door to door in a hotel. The thought of that these days gives me the willies.  There were great days however, like having Bob Feller playing catch on the front lawn of the hotel and Eva Gabor coming down in to the lobby in her negligee to get the paper. It Was different!

I also have (I should say “had” but its too sad) a great mother, Mary Gore Dean and an aunt Louise Gore who was an Ambassador under President Nixon to UNESCO and ran twice for Governor of Maryland. Two uncles Grady and Jimmy. My father, however, deserves mention.  His name was Gordon Dean and he was Chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission under Roosevelt and received the Medal of Freedom for his work at the Nuremburg Trials.  My dad had two children before my mom- Frank and Martha.  And then my brother Gordon and his beautiful wife Kristin,  along with numerous cousins,  make up the family.  You know I forgot somebody.

Both Gore Vidal and Al Gore are my distant cousins.  I like to say that I am a second cousin, once removed –forcibly.

There is no relation to Howard Dean but you have to give him credit —his populous campaign style which did not catch on was the precursor for the Obama campaign which probably involved more active volunteers than any campaign in our history.  No matter which side of the political aisle you are on, you have to ackowledge that so many young people entering the polling booths for the first time was what our Country needs. Plus the wave of interest from these young people who are looking to volunteer and make a difference; will make our Country stronger, smarter and more compassionate.

So no to Howard Dean and certainly no to John Dean who is pathological in my mind. (don’t get me started!)

I am glad you like the marbury sofa.  It was actually designed for my Aunt Louise. There you go…it all ties in neatly.- DEB

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