Prominent Richmond couple goes bankrupt

The recession has claimed another victim: this time, the former head of one of Richmond’s old guard investment banking firms.

Allen Mead Ferguson, the former chairman and chief executive of the former Craigie Inc., filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy along with his wife, Mary Rutherfoord Ferguson.

The bankruptcy, filed March 31, lists the Fergusons as having assets of between $1 million and $10 million and debts in the same range.

Craigie was founded in Richmond in the 1920s and was eventually acquired by BB&T.

The bankruptcy filing listed the 20 largest unsecured creditors, who are owed a total of $3.82 million by the Fergusons. Those debts include $1.53 million to EVB, $746,650 to Union First Market Bank and hundreds of thousands to other Richmond locals. A $662,924 secured debt to Wells Fargo was also listed.

Craigie Inc. was a Richmond bond firm that was acquired in 1997 by Southern National Corp., then the parent of BB&T, for an undisclosed amount. In 1998, BB&T struck a deal to acquire Scott & Stringfellow, into which Craigie ultimately folded.

Roy Terry, an attorney with DurretteCrump who is handling the Fergusons’ case, said the bankruptcy of such a prominent local family speaks to the reach of the recession.

“The recession affected the value of both their assets and their income,” Terry said. “ But for the recession, they would have been comfortable.”

Terry said the Fergusons are in their 70s and have been retired for a while.

“The bankruptcy was filed so that they could have control over an orderly liquidation of assets in a manner designed to pay their creditors,” Terry said.

The Fergusons’ million-dollar home on Three Chopt Road in Henrico County was headed to foreclosure, but that was canceled just before the bankruptcy filing.

Other unsecured creditors listed in their bankruptcy include $125,000 owed to an entity called Haulover Creek Development Co. LLC, and tens of thousands to other Richmonders, including Austin Brockenbrough III, Charles Luck and Wallace Stettinius.

Terry said many of those creditors are friends of the Fergusons who tried to help them out of trouble.

The Fergusons are known across town for their involvement in philanthropic efforts, including the Richmond Symphony, the Virginia Historical Society and other organizations.

Terry said the bankruptcy wouldn’t thwart those efforts.

“They fully intend to continue doing those activities,” he said.

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Cindy
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Cindy

Something’s fishy here: why do they owe so much money? Sure, their income from stocks went down, but what on earth are they buying that ends up oweing $10 million? They should have paid off that million dollar house decades ago. If their income goes down, cut back on the caviar, not take out $10 million in loans. Something more is going on.

Faiz Oley Jr
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Nothings fishy here: Mr and Mrs Ferguson are the salt of the earth. He made everything he has the hard way and started from an old farm in K.Y He proudly served our U.S.M.C and is finest gentelman who has ever walked the earh. They are the proud parents of 4 very succesful chidren and if they are at fault for anything its giving too much away. She is the sweetest lady who has never spoke a cross word about anyone and next to my mom the best mother/grandmother anyone could ask for. I know for a fact we’re gonna… Read more »

fran kay
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A word to Cindy and others like her,
What is it to you? You might think twice before you are so critical. As many of us are saying,” but by the grace of God, go I”. I would suggest that instead of making judgmental remarks, why don’t you get out there and do as much for our community as the Ferguson. You obviously do not have enough to do with your time!

Mr powers
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Mr powers

Here is how you should live if you have money. By the way I love how people think they are rich but have tons of debt or a job. I’m not old and I’m not going to work tomorrow because I don’t work I just invest and right now is a great time to be an investor. I avoid other rich people. Rich people make me think I need to go to Italy for vacation and sit around and drink wine. Instead I go to Mexico and drink cheap beer, dance on tables and spend 4500 for a month. I… Read more »

Rcw
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Rcw

You sir, should move Back to Atlanta.

Bill
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Bill

Mr. Powers…You’d better have a ton of money, since with your selfish and naive attitude, you are surely headed for the poor house. Obviously, you didn’t earn your money through work or investments. Wherever it came from isn’t important. However, anyone as young as you has insufficient experience in the investment world to think you can simply use arrogance to mask your stupidity. Furthermore, your attitude of not sharing your “wealth” with those not so fortunate or to further the amenities of society speaks volumes of your character or lack thereof. I wish you no ill will, but get help… Read more »

Me
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Me

And furthermore Mr. Powers, you leave GIN out of this. I could be deadbeat broke and I’d beg for enough change to buy a bottle of gin. Love it.

sara kelmo
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sara kelmo

Anyone who checks out the foreclosures notices would have seen this weeks ago.
http://www.richmondbizsense.com/2011/03/21/foreclosures-for-3-21-11/#comments

There *is* something fishy about this.
I am sure the wife is very nice, blah blah blah, but that is not the point.
These people had TONS of money, and although they damn well knew how to manage it properly, they chose not to. Simple as that.
This is what happens when people do not live within their means and choose to leverage everything they have in order to come off like a modern-day Gatsby.

Observer
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Observer

They purchased the house on Three Chopt in 1980 for $255,000. The foreclosure amount is $1,450,000. FWIW