The sitter was born on May 28, 1840 and died on April 12, 1896. He was scion of the famous Swiss publishing firm Benziger Frères, New York. He is buried in Saint Peter’s Cemetery, West New Brighton, New York. His wife Louise Nechler Benziger was born on January 6, 1842, and died on July 23, 1921. They are commemorated in a small memorial in the north-west corner of S. Patrick’s Cathedral, New York.
In his diary for October 20, 1943 Muller-Ury says that he was dining with the sitter’s son Bruno and his wife but that ‘non possano mai fare qualche cosa per me e cio mi fa pena, specialmente al padre di Bruno il quale tanto feci per ajutarmi.’ He says more in an entry dated December 24, 1943, when he attended a Christmas party given by Bruno at the Plaza Hotel, ‘Ma questi amici sono veri – non sfortunatamente non artistici come il padre il quale riesci dapertutto aver qualche ordine per ritratti.’ Bruno married Miss Marie Louise Schickel in November 1908. Marie Schickel and her sisters were involved with Roman Catholic charities with which Countess Anne Leary was associated, and their father, William Schickel, an architect, built many churches. Muller-Ury was friends with Bruno Benziger from this date, and in fact Bruno Benziger and his wife were two of the three people who attended Muller-Ury’s interment in Calvary Cemetery in 1947. In 1927 he was living at 687 Lexington Avenue, New York. Bruno Benziger died in November 1955, and his wife on February 4, 1965.