Emily B. Norris Alig Daniels
An Indianapolis resident, died peacefully in her home November 30, 2012, she was 82 years old. Emily was born in Hempstead, Long Island, New York on February 16, 1930, the daughter of Alfred O. Norris and Adeline E. Greenleaf, also of New York. At a young age she and her sister Connie moved with their parents to Havana, Cuba where their father worked with the American Water Company. A few years later, they transferred their family home to Birmingham, Alabama, where Emily lived as a teenager. The family's final move was to Indianapolis in 1949.
Emily graduated from Miss Porter's School in Farmington, CT and Parson's School of Design in NYC. After Parson's she traveled through Europe with art historian and interior designer, Albert Hadley. Upon her return to Indianapolis, she met Cornelius O. (Neal) Alig Jr. while riding with the Traders Point Hunt. They were married in 1954 and raised four children. Neal, with Indiana National Bank for 32 years died in1981. Several years later Emily met Gilbert S. Daniels, PhD, of Pittsburgh, PA on an Amazon River cruise. Gil, a botanist and former president of the American Horticulture Society moved to Indianapolis soon thereafter where they were married nearly 30 years ago.
Emily was very interested in design, interiors, and ultimately plants and gardening. Her home of 56 years in the Town of Crows Nest was designed and built with her oversight. After her children were grown, she and Gil transformed the open space around their home into an impressive series of gardens inspired by landscape architect Jens Jensen. Their grounds were toured regularly by both local and nationally based garden enthusiasts. (See YouTube, "The Daniels Residence, Indianapolis").
In addition to spending time in her own garden, Emily contributed her energies to the local Indianapolis chapter of the Garden Club of America. She assisted in the creation of The Indianapolis Garden Club's Heritage Garden at the Indianapolis Zoo, compiling lists of historically accurate plants to incorporate into the garden plan. As the only remaining descendant of J.F.D. Lanier in the area, Emily also worked with the State of Indiana to restore and refurnish the historic Lanier Mansion property in Madison, Indiana. She and her husband, Gil, were both very active with the Indianapolis Museum of Art Horticultural Society as well as The Alliance for Historic Landscape Preservation.
She is survived by her husband Gilbert S. Daniels; stepsister Roberta N. Ellsworth (Shawn); children Cornelius M. "Lee" Alig (Dorothy Stites), Marion G. Alig (Steve) Scherer, Frances W. Alig and Alfred N. Alig (Margaret "Peg" Weincek); step children Deborah Daniels, Geoffrey Daniels (Dorene) and Gregory Daniels; six grandchildren Lucie, James, Finn and Rowan Alig and Emily and Meredith Scherer. In addition to her first husband Cornelius O. Alig Jr., she was preceded in death by her sister and best friend Constance N. Moxley.
Friends are invited to attend a Celebration of Life gathering on Saturday, December 8th from 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. in the Crown Hill Funeral Home Celebration Hall , 700 West 38th Street. A private service for the family will follow at the Crown Hill Cemetery Gothic Chapel.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the Indianapolis Museum of Art for the Emily N. Daniels Horticulture Symposium Fund… Please mail to the Indianapolis Museum of Art, 4000 Michigan Road, Indianapolis, IN 46208. Online condolences can be sent by viewing the memorial tribute at: http://www.crownhill.org