Chemist and Industrial Operator

Extracted from:
"Men of Mark
and Representative Citizens of
Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, Virginia"

Born January 26. 1888 in Harrisonburg; attended Harrisonburg Grade and High School and the University of Virginia, graduating in chemistry in 1908; chemist for the Du Pont Company; manager of explosive plants in Colorado, Missouri and Alabama; general manager, Division of Military and Commercial Explosives, Du Pont Company, Wilmington, Del. , director of industrial companies in the United States and Mexico; owner and operator of farms near Harrisonburg.

Mr. Yancey is a son of the late John Gibbons Yancey and his wife Fannie Bradley. His grandfather, William Burbridge Yancev, married on November 4. 1830. Mary K. Smith. and (2) in May 1846, Mary Gibbons, daughter of John and Elizabeth Keffer Gibbons. Of the first marriage there were seven children. of the second, three, of whom John Gibbons Yancey, born November 26. 1853, was the youngest. Col. William B. Yancey. a son of Layton Yancey, a lieutenant of dragoons in the Revolution, was a magistrate and was succeeded by his son William Benjamin (of the first marriage) who was appointed to the office on April 14, 1859. Other items of the Yancey family history are given in the sketch of Mr. Yancey's brother, Philo bradley Yancey on pages preceding.

After his preliminary education in the schools of Harrisonburg. Mr. Yancey entered the University of Virginia majoring in chemistry. He graduated in 1908 and the same year began his connection with the Du Pont Company as chemist. Until 1914 he was employed in chemical research on the nitration of aromatic hydrocarbons and other explosive. The next two years he operated a plant producing T. N. T. explosive shells and bombs. From 1919 to 1923 he was assistant manager of the explosives plant at Gibbstown; N. J. the next five years, manager of similar plants at Louviers, Colorado. Joplin, Missouri, and Birmingham, Alabama. In 1928-29 he was assistant director of production, Explosives Department, of the Du Pont Company, Wilmington, Delaware; for the next six years he was general manager of the same. Since 1935 he has been general manager of the Military and Commercial Explosives Department of the Du Pont Company at Wilmington. He is a director of the Du Pont Company, Wilmington, the Du Pont Company of Scranton, Pa., and Cia Mexicano de Explosivas S. A.. Mexico City, and vice-president and director of the Rio Grande Securities Co. of Wilmington, Delaware.

Mr. Yancey is a 32d degree Mason and a member of the Mystic Shrine, the Wilmington Country Club, the Wilmington Whist Club, the Delaware Turf Club, and the Hickorv Mountain Gun Club. His favorite sport is quail shooting, and his hobbies are livestock and farming. In reading he prefers history and biography.

On October 25 1913. Mr. Yancey married 'Miss Jessie Willits of Philadelphia. Pa., a daughter of Rear Admiral G, S. Willits. U. S. N. About 1935 Mr. and Mrs. Yancey purchased their first farm on the Keezletown Road, three miles southeast of Harrisonburg. Since then they have acquired several other tracts of land, totaling over 1000 acres to which they have given the name of Dogwood Hill Farm. The residence on this farm commands a splendid outlook over a large area of the surrounding country. They are developing herds of livestock in connection with general farming.


New York Times - Oct 1948
Edward B. Yancey of Du Pont is Dead

Vice President pf Corporation
Directed Plutonium Plant Construction on Coast
Wilmington, Del Oct 24 [1948]

Edward B. Yancey, a vice president and member of the board of directors and of the executive committee of E. I. duPont de Nemours & Co. died of a heart attack here today at the age of 60.

During much of the recent World War he was general manager of the Dupont explosives department. Under his direction the department developed quickly a large organization to design, build and operate many of the governments vast military explosive plants and the plutonium plant, the Hanford Engineer Works at Richland, Wash., a vital project in the Governments atomic energy program from which duPont has since withdrawn.

Mr. Yancey was born in Harrisoburg, Va, the son of John G. and Fannie Bradley Yancey. He joined duPont as a chemist at the Repaupo (N.J.) Works in September 1908 after being graduated from the University of Virginia. At Repaupo he served succesively, as a general assistant in the glycerine refinery and general assistant in charge of TNT and heife operations. He was made assistant superintendant of Repaupo Works on Jan 1 1917, and held that position throughout the First World War.

In March 1920 Mr. Yancey became the assistant manager at Repaupo. Then followed a period of eight years in which he served as manager in plants in Colorado, Missouri and at Birmingham, Ala. He came to Wilmington as assistant director of the manufacturing division in 1928, and was appointed assistant general manager of the explosives department in 1929 and general manager in 1935. He was elected to the board of directors in 1938 and became a vice-president and member of the exectutive comittee in 1944.

Mr. Yancey is survived by his widow, the former Jessie Willets of Riverton, N.J. and a brother John G. Yancey and a sister, Mrs. E. R. LineWeaver, both of Harrisonburg, Va.