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Searching for Beauty

The Life of Millicent Rogers, the American Heiress Who Taught the World About Style

Cherie Burns

St. Martin's Griffin

"Burns makes it abundantly clear . . . they just don't make heiresses like Millicent Rogers anymore.” —Hampton Sides

 

Nobody knew how to live the high life like Standard Oil heiress Millicent Rogers. Born to luxury, she lived in a whirl of European vacations, exquisite clothing, and dashing men. 

In Searching for Beauty, Cherie Burns chronicles Rogers's rebellious life from her days as a young girl afflicted with rheumatic fever to her final days as one of the legendary chatelaines of New Mexico. She eloped with a penniless baron; danced tangos in European nightclubs; romanced Roald Dahl, Secretary of Defense James Forrestal, and Hollywood icon Clark Gable; and triumphed in the world of fashion. She was muse to legendary American designer Charles James, appeared in Vogue and Harper's Bazaar and popularized Southwestern style by adopting turquoise jewelry, squaw skirts and short-waist jackets as her signature look. 

With Searching for Beauty, Millicent Rogers enters the pantheon of great American women who, like Diana Vreeland and Babe Paley, put their distinctive stamp on American style.

"Burns makes it abundantly clear . . . they just don't make heiresses like Millicent Rogers anymore.” —Hampton Sides

 

Nobody knew how to live the high life like Standard Oil heiress Millicent Rogers. Born to luxury, she lived in a whirl of European vacations, exquisite clothing, and dashing men. 

In Searching for Beauty, Cherie Burns chronicles Rogers's rebellious life from her days as a young girl afflicted with rheumatic fever to her final days as one of the legendary chatelaines of New Mexico. She eloped with a penniless baron; danced tangos in European nightclubs; romanced Roald Dahl, Secretary of Defense James Forrestal, and Hollywood icon Clark Gable; and triumphed in the world of fashion. She was muse to legendary American designer Charles James, appeared in Vogue and Harper's Bazaar and popularized Southwestern style by adopting turquoise jewelry, squaw skirts and short-waist jackets as her signature look. 

With Searching for Beauty, Millicent Rogers enters the pantheon of great American women who, like Diana Vreeland and Babe Paley, put their distinctive stamp on American style.

BOOK EXCERPTS

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CHAPTER ONE

Farewell to an Heiress
 

JANUARY 1953
The procession of mourners wound along the rutted unpaved road toward a weedy little graveyard next to Indian land. Behind it tolled the bells of Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in town; ahead of it rose Taos Mountain, the Sacred Mountain, all white with its peak hidden in the clouds. Brightly colored plastic flowers, indigenous to Spanish gravesites, bloomed from decorated crosses and gravestones in the high-desert resting place for local Spanish families and anglos. Millicent Rogers, in a manner as improbable yet fitting
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Cherie Burns

  • CHERIE BURNS is author of The Great Hurricane: 1938. Her work has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, People, and Glamour, among others. She lives in Taos, New Mexico.

  • Cherie Burns
    Cherie Burns

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Searching for Beauty

The Life of Millicent Rogers, the American Heiress Who Taught the World About Style

Cherie Burns

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FROM THE PUBLISHER

St. Martin's Griffin

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