Davis died peacefully July 2, 2021, at his home in Charleston, W.Va. He was 89.

He was born in Charleston and came to Princeton after attending Charleston public schools and Lawrenceville School. He joined Tiger Inn, majored in history, and wrote his thesis on “The Growth of Manufacturers and Railways in the South: 1840-1860.” 

After graduation, Davis returned to West Virginia, where he spent his entire business career with the Bank of West Virginia, stepping down as president in 1979 to devote more time to his various nonprofit interests throughout the state. He twice served as the head of the West Virginia Commission on the Arts, appointed by the governor in 1968 a year after the commission’s founding, and remained on the commission through 2004. He also served on the foundation board of the Kanawha County Public Library and supported the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences (formerly Sunrise Museum); various music organizations such as Chamber Music and the West Virginia Symphony; the University of Charleston, of which he once served as acting president; his schools, Princeton and Lawrenceville; many auto-related museums; and his church. 

A passionate automobile enthusiast, Davis judged the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance for more than 30 years. He was the oldest continuous American member of the UK-based 20-Ghost Club, the oldest Rolls Royce auto club in the world, and his cars often won best in class. On one occasion, he took an American-built left-hand-drive 1928 Rolls Royce Springfield (Mass.) roadster to England with him on the QE2. 

Davis is survived by a nephew, a niece, and five great-nieces.

Undergraduate Class of 1953