Reflections from David Mack Goode Huntington


David Mack Goode Huntington, born December 18th, 1926, is the great, great, great, great grandson of Moses and Elizabeth Porter who, in 1752, built what is now the Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum. For six generations, the family lived in and later summered in this Hadley home, and today, descendants like David, are involved in the museum and keep the history of the family alive. From transcribing his father’s diaries to donating to the museum’s collections, David has played a large role in preserving his family’s history. David’s father, Michael Paul St. Agnan Huntington (known as Paul) was born in Malden, Massachusetts on August 26, 1882. Paul was the fourth son of George Putnam and Lily St. Agnan Barrett Huntington. Paul’s older brother (David’s uncle), Dr. James Lincoln Huntington, opened the Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum and gave tours here until his death in 1968.


Although David was born in Delaware, grew up in New York, and went to school in Massachusetts, he writes in his book, Hadley Memories, “underneath it all, my place will always be this piece of land along the Connecticut River known as Hadley.” Despite not growing up in Hadley, the home his great, great, great, grandparents built still holds a special place. Like his father and grandfather, David spent time at the ‘old house’, as he calls it, during his summers as a child.

Now retired, he spent fifteen years in administrative post at Harvard and the University of Chicago, and more than twenty as executive director of what is now the Greater Milwaukee Foundation. David is the author of two books, Hadley Memories, and First Flight and Other Stories, both of which are available for purchase at the Porter-Phelps-Huntington Museum.

Recently, David shared this piece of prose with the museum and we want to share it with you: