Edward Foote Ulmann, known as Eddie to his friends, died in Southampton on May 4, after a long battle with cancer. He was 70.
Mr. Ulmann was born in New York City to Alec Ulmann and his English wife, Beatrice Mary Foote, and attended St. Bernard’s School, a private elementary school founded at the turn of the 20th century by two Englishmen. Many of Mr. Ulmann’s teachers at St. Bernard’s were from the UK, and this fact, together with his mother’s provenance, no doubt explains an “irremediable Anglophilia” throughout his life, his survivors said.
While at grammar school, Mr. Ulmann revealed an inquisitive mind, robust sense of humor and superior athletic talent that was to prove anticipatory of his subsequent success in racquets and court tennis, survivors said. Also at St. Bernard’s, a performance as Katherine in Shakespeare’s “The Taming of the Shrew,” highlighted by a blond wig and floor-length dress and petticoat, added diversity to Mr. Ulmann’s interest in the English language and literature, both of which were significant influences in his life.
Mr. Ulmann graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy and received his college degree from Columbia University. Early in his career, he helped his father manage the famous annual Sebring sports car race, but as this activity waned, he began to cultivate an ever-growing interest in racquets and court tennis, which had been with him ever since he joined the New York Racquet and Tennis Club after graduating from college.
In racquets, he won some nine national amateur racquets doubles championships with such world champions as Willie Surtees and Willie Boone, in addition to numerous Racquet Club championships over the decades. He also participated in the evolution of the North American Racquets Association and was a regular visitor to the cities that hosted racquets tournaments, where his enthusiasm for the competition and his vigorous involvement in the social aspects of those tournaments were said to be unmatched. Mr. Ulmann served on the board of managers at the New York Racquet and Tennis Club for more than 30 years, and was a stalwart in maintaining its high standards; he was also chairman of the club’s famous sporting library.
After his retirement as chairman of Allied International Corporation in New York during the 1990s, Mr. Ulmann began a career in writing for the New York Press, a weekly publication, under the pseudonym “Classicus.” When the Press folded, he began writing on a regular basis for Quest, Avenue, and Taki’s Mag, a website run out of London with more than a million viewers. During his literary career, Mr. Ulmann wrote numerous articles that did not hesitate to disabuse readers of their misconceptions about present-day society and what he regarded as its failings, principally its departure from the cherished manners and conventions of the past.
Survivors recall him as a true gentleman of the old school.
Mr. Ulmann is survived by his wife, Priscilla G. Ulmann; a daughter, Priscilla S. Ulmann; a brother, Alec E. Ulmann; and a nephew, A.E. Ulmann III.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, July 13, at 4 p.m., at St. Andrew’s Dune Church in Southampton.