"Born in Palmyra, Missouri, only days after the Civil War ended, Sam Sr. moved to St. Louis as an adult when he went to work for the Wabash Railroad. Marrying Ruby Permelia Jacques in 1894, Sam Sr. started his family in the outskirts of St. Louis in the suburb of Ferguson. Sam Sr.'s career took a variety of turns as he moved from chief purchasing agent of the Wabash Railroad, to vice president of Simmons Hardware Company, to president of the Southern Wheel Company, a subsidiary of the American Brake Shoe and Foundry Company.
In 1914, he moved his family east as president of Remington Arms Company in New York at a time when war in Europe would bring large contracts to munitions manufacturers. Living for a time on Maple Avenue in Greenwich, Connecticut, the family eventually purchased twenty acres in Field Point Park on the edge of a hill that sloped down to the water's edge. Hiring the architectural firm Cross and Cross, the design of the Pryory had begun.
Sam Jr. was born in Ferguson, Missouri, on March 1st, 1898. When his father became the general manager of Remington Arms, the family relocated to Greenwich, Connecticut. Sam Jr., 16 at the time, was sent off to the exclusive prep school, Taft School, with his brother. In 1917, Sam Jr. enrolled in Yale College, where he started relationships that lasted for the rest of his life. Many of his peers at Yale later were high ranking individuals at Pan American Airways.
After Yale, a trip around the world, and working in the railroad business, Pryor deftly managed the 1940 nomination of presidential candidate Wendell Willkie. Joining fledgling Pan American Airways, he built a global web of airports, making international travel a reality. Always ready for more, he became a special agent of the Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs, taking part in a raid on the group known as the French Connection. In retirement on the island of Maui, surrounded by pet apes and tropical gardens, he established a new national park.
Whether in politics, aviation, business, crime fighting, or conservation, Sam Jr. carved his own path with outlandish enthusiasm. "Luck doesn't just happen," he told his children, "You make it happen." His lack of pretension and extraordinarily warm personality garnered him a vast array of friendships and the respect of the famous and powerful."
Reproduced from the Pryory website, https://www.pryory.net/the-sams