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Gifts totaling $125 million given to art museum, VCU, other nonprofits

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Trusts created by a Virginia couple who died in the 1950s have resulted in $125 million in donations to the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University and 13 other nonprofit organizations.

Nearly $70 million will go to the museum to create an art purchase endowment and help pay for its recent renovation and expansion.

Another $45 million will go to VCU to support research and treatment of cancer and degenerative diseases.

The remaining $10 million will be shared by 13 nonprofits, all but two of which are based in Virginia.

Alex Nyerges, director of the art museum, said money from the trusts of Arthur and Margaret Glasgow represented the largest single cash gifts to the VMFA and VCU.

He added that $60 million of the $70 million given to the VMFA would be used to create the seventh largest art acquisition endowment among museums in the U.S.

The 13 organizations sharing the $10 million are: Sheltering Arms Hospital, Richmond Memorial Health Foundation, Jenkins Foundation, Virginia Home, Children’s Hospital of Richmond, Virginia Healthcare Foundation, Historic Richmond Foundation, Virginia Historical Society, Second Presbyterian Church of Richmond, Saint Paul’s Church of Richmond, Washington & Lee University, Wabash College in Indiana and Stevens Institute of Technology in New Jersey.

The Glasgows’ trusts were terminated earlier this summer after the death of their son-in-law, Ambrose Congreve of London, at the age of 104. He married the Glasgows’ only child, Marjorie, in 1935.

A native of Botetourt County, Arthur Glasgow was chairman of Humphreys & Glasgow, an engineering firm based in London. Ellen Glasgow, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author, was his sister.

Margaret Glasgow was a descendent of the prominent Branch family in Richmond. Author James Branch Cabell, for whom VCU’s library is named, was her cousin.

Margaret Glasgow died in 1952 and her husband died in 1955. They are buried in Richmond’s Hollywood Cemetery.

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