Branding holistic entrepreneur, Pierre S. du Pont as a “Rare Genius”


Nestled in the idyllic Brandywine Valley in Chester County, PA is one of the United States premier botanical gardens. Consisting of 1,077 acres, Longwood Gardens is a horticulturists dream. Upon entrance into the gardens, visitors experience breathtaking flower gardens, majestic water fountain displays, tree-lined woodlands, lush green meadows and an impressive 4-acre conservatory filled with plants from around the world.


Founder Pierre S. du Pont drew inspiration for Longwood from the gardens of Versailles and Italian estates, including Villa d’Este an estate near Rome, Italy.

What began as a project to save the trees became a lifelong passion for Pierre. Today, his legacy is open yearly to the public and is protected by a Board of Trustees who oversee the charitable not-for-profit corporation.

Pierre was not only a conservationist who built a botanical garden; he was also an entrepreneur who transformed his families gunpowder company into the world’s third largest chemical company. DuPont is based out of Wilmington, DE and has developed revolutionary products including Kevlar, Corian, and Rayon.

Known as the “reluctant newsmaker,” Pierre made waves in both the private and public sector. His success as an executive for both General Motors and DuPont made him a household name. The New York Times Magazine observed in 1934, “The average man is exposed to Du Pont products from the time he starts to shave in the morning, with a shaving brush whose handle is probably made of plastic, to the moment when he peels off his rayon undershirt at night.” Advertisements for the DuPont brand during the 1920s and 1930s were everywhere in the marketplace. One could argue that Pierre was also a master of branding and advertising.

Because the du Pont name carried a certain amount of weight, Pierre as a philanthropist, was able to transform and improve the failing schools of Wilmington Delaware.

Ultimately, Pierre was more than an entrepreneur. His legacy spanned across a set of varied holistic initiatives. In his own words, “ I’m in a wonderful position; I’m unknown, I’m underrated, and there’s nowhere to go but up.” Michelle Ferrari, biographer of Pierre S. du Pont, highlighted his posthumous legacy by titling her biography “Pierre S. du Pont – A Rare Genius.”

I am fortunate that Longwood Gardens is close to my home. I use my annual pass to reconnect with all that nature has to offer, and I enjoy all the featured social activities available during the year. Check out all the paths of engagement the brand currently leverages.


Have you ever visited a botanical garden like Longwood Gardens? If so, please comment below.

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One Response to “Branding holistic entrepreneur, Pierre S. du Pont as a “Rare Genius””

  1. Rick Bryson Says:

    Great post! Believe it or not, I only live 40 min. away, and just went there for the first time a little over a year ago. Longwood is fantastic… even if you are not a green-thumb type. Highly recommended for the whole family – especially at Christmas.

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