The Vanderbilt family. c.1874. Going to the Opera, by Seymour Guy. Painted prior to William Henry Vanderbit erecting his triple mansion at 640 Fifth Avenue. Florence Vanderbilt and later Twombly (as she married financier Hamilton Twombly) with Willie K. at her side. Margret, in green, unfurls a fan in the foreground. Behind her to the right, her husband Elliot F. Shepard is being help into his overcoat by the butler. At right stands Cornelius Vanderbilt 11, beside his seated wife Alice.
William Kissam Vanderbilt (1849–1920) had three houses designed by Richard Morris Hunt. His townhouse, the "Petit Château" at 660 Fifth Avenue, New York, with details drawn in part from the late-Gothic Hôtel de Cluny, Paris, proved an influential example for other Gilded Age mansions, but was demolished in 1926.
A Guide to the Gilded Age Mansions of 5th Avenue's Millionaire Row
William H. Vanderbilt's Twin Mansions: William H. lived in the nearer building (640 Fifth Avenue) while his two married daughters and their families lived in the 642 Fifth Avenue address which was divided into two residences.