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Title: Famous American Belles of the Nineteenth Century
Author: Peacock, Virginia Tatnall
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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NINETEENTH CENTURY***


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      Internet Archive. See
      https://archive.org/details/famousamericanbe00peac



FAMOUS AMERICAN BELLES OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY


[Illustration: Emily Marshall

(Mrs. William Foster Otis)

From portrait by Chester Harding]


FAMOUS AMERICAN BELLES OF THE NINETEENTH CENTURY

by

VIRGINIA TATNALL PEACOCK

Illustrated



[Illustration]

Philadelphia & London
J. B. Lippincott Company
1901

Copyright, 1900
By
J. B. Lippincott Company

Electrotyped and Printed By J. B. Lippincott Company,
Philadelphia, U.S.A.



    _To
    My Dear Mother
    from whom I derived my first
    conception of all that is
    most beautiful in
    woman_



PREFACE


During the century now drawing to its close there have appeared in
America from time to time women of so pre-eminent a beauty, so dazzling
a wit, so powerful a magnetism, that their names belong no less to
the history of their country than those of the men whose genius has
raised it to the rank it holds to-day among the nations of the earth.
Among them have been women of the highest type of mental and moral
development, women of great political and of great social genius,
all of whom have left the impress of their remarkable personalities
upon their time. When they have manifested these qualities in their
girlhood they have risen frequently to an eminence such as it is
scarcely possible for the women of any other country to attain at a
correspondingly early age.

From among the latter class the subjects of these sketches have been
taken, those having been selected who seemed most adequately to
represent their period and locality and whose fame was beyond question,
it having been frequently of national and sometimes of international
extent.

Rising to wield the magic of their influence in every decade of the
century and in every section of the country, some study of the time in
which each lived has been necessary in order to give her her proper
setting and to justly estimate the power she exercised.

The inventions and discoveries America has given to the world in
this great century have made vast changes in our material condition,
which, in turn, have been productive of striking contrasts between the
existence of the women who gave life and color to the early years of
the century and that of those who reflect the myriad advantages of its
closing days.

It argues the possession of extraordinary attributes to have been a
belle of wide repute in the days when there was no telegraph to flash
the record of a woman's beauty, charm, or social progress from one end
of the country to the other, when the press contained only the briefest
accounts of purely local and wholly public events, when every letter
that might or might not have contained her name or have been a herald
of her loveliness cost its sender twenty-five cents a sheet in postage,
when her few and simple toilets were painstakingly made by hand, when
she went to balls on horseback, arriving sometimes with a wrinkled gown
but seldom with a ruffled temper, when all travelling was done by means
of a stage-coach, and a journey from one city to another was sometimes
the event of a lifetime, and when the comparatively few women who
crossed the seas did so in merchant vessels not infrequently owned by
their own fathers, and spent many long weeks in the passage.

Those who come within the radius of its charm, however, easily
recognize the power of a queenly personality, as the lives of the most
illustrious men in every period of our history have borne testimony.
Among the women who unite the centuries there is a brilliant promise,
moreover, that there will be those in the twentieth, as there have been
throughout the nineteenth, "to perpetuate that empire which beauty
first established."

The writer gratefully acknowledges her indebtedness to all those whose
courtesy or assistance has in any way lightened the task of collecting
the data for these sketches; to those who by kindly lending portraits
in their possession, as well as to those who by graciously permitting
the use of their own portraits, have thereby added so much to the value
and interest of this volume.

  PARIS, June 22, 1900.



CONTENTS


[Illustration]

                                                            PAGE

    MARCIA BURNS (Mrs. John Peter Van Ness)                   11

    THEODOSIA BURR (Mrs. Joseph Alston)                       18

    ELIZABETH PATTERSON (Madame Jerome Bonaparte)             39

    THE CATON SISTERS                                         61

    MARGARET O'NEILL (Mrs. John H. Eaton)                     69

    CORA LIVINGSTON (Mrs. Thomas Pennant Barton)              80

    EMILY MARSHALL (Mrs. William Foster Otis)                 90

    OCTAVIA WALTON (Madame Le Vert)                          102

    FANNY TAYLOR (Mrs. Thomas Harding Ellis)                 118

    JESSIE BENTON (Mrs. John C. Frémont)                     123

    SALLIE WARD (Mrs. George F. Downs)                       148

    HARRIET LANE (Mrs. Henry Elliott Johnston)               161

    ADÈLE CUTTS (Mrs. Robert Williams)                       175

    EMILIE SCHAUMBURG (Mrs. Hughes-Hallett)                  190

    KATE CHASE (Mrs. William Sprague)                        206

    MATTIE OULD (Mrs. Oliver Schoolcraft)                    230

    JENNIE JEROME (Lady Randolph Churchill)                  239

    NELLIE HAZELTINE (Mrs. Frederick W. Paramore)            257

    MARY VICTORIA LEITER (Baroness Curzon of Kedleston)      264

    NEW YORK AS A SOCIAL CENTRE                              288



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

[Illustration]


                                                                    PAGE
  EMILY MARSHALL (Mrs. William Foster Otis). From portrait
      painted by Chester Harding in 1830; owned by her daughter,
      Mrs. Samuel Eliot, of Boston, by whose permission it is
      here reproduced for the first time in colors        _Frontispiece_

  MARCIA BURNS (Mrs. John Peter Van Ness). From miniature by
      James Peale, painted in 1797; owned by the Corcoran Art
      Gallery, Washington, D. C.                                      12

  THEODOSIA BURR (Mrs. Joseph Alston). From the original
      engraving by Charles B. J. F. Saint Memin; owned by Hampton
      L. Carson, Esq., of Philadelphia, by whose permission it is
      here reproduced                                                 22

  ELIZABETH PATTERSON (Madame Jerome Bonaparte). From portrait
      painted by Quinçon; owned by her grandson, Mr. Charles
      Bonaparte, of Baltimore, by whose permission it is here
      reproduced for the first time                                   42

  MARY CATON (Lady Wellesley). From portrait owned by Mrs.
      Charles Carroll Mactavish, of Baltimore, daughter of
      General Winfield Scott. Painted by Sir Thomas Lawrence,
      and reproduced by permission of Miss Emily Mactavish, now
      Sister Mary Agnes of the Visitation, at Mount de Sales,
      Catonsville, Maryland                                           64

  CORA LIVINGSTON (Mrs. Thomas Pennant Barton). From a miniature
      painted by herself. Reproduced for the first time by
      permission of her niece, Miss Julia Barton Hunt, of
      Montgomery Place, Barrytown-on-the-Hudson                       84

  OCTAVIA WALTON (Madame Le Vert). From portrait, reproduced
      by permission of her kinswoman, Miss Josephine Walton.
      Present owner, Mr. George Walton Reab, of Augusta, Georgia,
      grandson of Madame Le Vert                                     104

  FANNY TAYLOR (Mrs. Thomas Harding Ellis). From portrait
      painted by Thomas Sully. Reproduced for the first time by
      permission of her husband, Colonel Thomas Harding Ellis.
      Present owner, her adopted son, Mr. Beverly Randolph
      Harrison, of Amherst, Virginia                                 118

  SALLY CHEVALIER (Mrs. Abram Warwick). Painted by Thomas Sully.
      Reproduced for the first time by permission of Colonel
      Thomas Harding Ellis                                           122

  SALLIE WARD (Mrs. George F. Downs). From a miniature painted at
      the age of eighteen, owned by her husband, Mr. George F.
      Downs, of Louisville, Kentucky, by whose permission it is
      here reproduced for the first time                             150

  HARRIET LANE (Mrs. Henry Elliott Johnston). From photograph by
      Julius Ulke                                                    164

  ADÈLE CUTTS (Mrs. Robert Williams). From portrait by George
      Peter A. Healy, in possession of her husband, General
      Robert Williams, United States Army. Reproduced by
      permission of her daughter, Miss Adèle Cutts Williams, of
      Washington, D. C.                                              178

  EMILIE SCHAUMBURG (Mrs. Hughes-Hallett). From portrait by
      Waugh, in possession of Mrs. Hughes-Hallett, of Dinar,
      France, by whose permission it is here reproduced for the
      first time                                                     194

  KATE CHASE (Mrs. William Sprague). From photograph by Julius
      Ulke                                                           212

  MATTIE OULD (Mrs. Oliver Schoolcraft). From photograph by
      George S. Cook. Reproduced by permission of her cousin,
      Mrs. Virginia Brownell, of Washington, D. C.                   232

  LIZZIE CABELL (Mrs. Albert Ritchie). From photograph.
      Reproduced by permission of her sister, Mrs. John D.
      Lottier                                                        234

  MARY TRIPLETT (Mrs. Philip Haxall). From photograph by Roseti.
      Reproduced by permission of her sister, Mrs. Meredith
      Montague                                                       236

  JENNIE JEROME (Lady Randolph Churchill). From photograph by Van
      der Weyde. Published by permission of Lady Churchill           244

  NELLIE HAZELTINE (Mrs. Frederick W. Paramore). From photograph
      by J. C. Strauss; by permission of her brother, Mr. W. B.
      Hazeltine, Jr.                                                 258

  JENNIE CHAMBERLAIN (Lady Naylor-Leyland). From the painting by
      H. Schmiechen                                                  266

  MATTIE MITCHELL (Duchesse de Rochefoucauld). Daughter of
      ex-Senator Mitchell, of Oregon. From photograph by C. M.
      Bell                                                           272

  MARY VICTORIA LEITER (Baroness Curzon of Kedleston). From
      photograph by Miss Alice Hughes, of London. By permission
      of Lady Curzon                                                 276

  MISS MAY HANDY, of Richmond, Virginia. From photograph by James
      L. Breese                                                      284

  CATHERINE DUER (Mrs. Clarence Mackay), of New York. From
      portrait                                                       288



MARCIA BURNS

(MRS. JOHN PETER VAN NESS)


Marcia Burns! What memories the quaint Scotch lassie's name calls up!

The city of Washington disappears and its site spreads before us in
flourishing farm lands and orchards. Scattered farm-houses raise their
chimneys amid primeval oaks and elms, and from the low doorway of the
humblest emerges the winsome form of Marcia Burns. Six hundred acres,
representing the thrift of generations of Scotch ancestors, surround
her. The Potomac, one of the great water-ways of the South, carrying
the produce of the fertile lands above into Alexandria for consumption
or reshipment, almost kisses her feet. This is her patrimony, over
which she has already heard such spirited debate between her father
and General Washington, then President of the United States, and the
three gentlemen commissioned by Congress, at that time sitting in
Philadelphia, to select and purchase the ground on which is to be
built the capital city. As she looks riverward a canoe is beached in
the shadow of the vine-hung trees, and the President, accompanied by
two of the commissioners, whose forms have of late grown familiar to
her childish eyes, have come again to confer with her father, whom
Washington has already dubbed "the obstinate Mr. Burns."

"And I suppose you think," says Burns, as the dispute again waxes warm,
"that people here are going to take every grist that comes from you as
pure grain. But what would you have been if you had not married the
widow Custis?" Gracefully or ungracefully, however, he must eventually
yield, for the "Widow's Mite," as Burns's acres were described in the
land patent of 1681 which bestowed them upon his emigrant ancestor,
form part of the tract which Maryland has ceded to the nation for its
capital. Here is stalwart Johnson, governor of the State, to emphasize
the fact with many a round oath that makes the gentle Marcia's heart
stand still.

"And yonder lassie," says Daniel Carroll, "will be the greatest heiress
hereabouts." Davy Burns' eyes wander towards his daughter. He is long
silent. The shadows have lengthened into darkness when he says, "Very
well, sirs, take the land, and I leave it to your fairness to fix the
terms."

[Illustration: Marcia Burns

(Mrs. John Peter Van Ness)

From miniature by James Peale, 1797]

Supper is served, and the guests are accommodated for the night beneath
the moss-grown roof of the attic, for Burns' cottage boasts but four
rooms,--two sleeping-rooms, a sitting-room, and a dining-room, the
kitchen being built apart from the house, as was the custom of the time
and country. Unpretentious as the little abode is, the deed conveying
the property to the commissioners, in trust for the government,
provides that the streets of the new city shall be so laid out as
not to interfere with it.

       *       *       *       *       *

Marcia Burns was but yet a child when fate wrought the change in her
destiny which no wisdom could have foreseen. By the death of her only
brother she became sole heiress to what was at that time an immense
fortune. Yet it is not through the magnitude of her wealth that she
illumines the period in which the lines of her life were cast. It is
through the exquisite qualities of a most exalted womanhood.

With wise forethought and some premonition of the change about to take
place in her life, her parents placed her in the family of Luther
Martin, in Baltimore. Martin was at that time at the height of his fame
as an advocate at the Maryland bar. In the enlightened atmosphere of
his home, Marcia grew up in close companionship with his daughters, her
refined nature imperceptibly acquiring that ease and grace which were
ever afterwards characteristic of her, and her receptive mind readily
cultivating those attributes that were to render her most attractive
in conversation to such men as Hamilton, Burr, Marshall, Randolph, and
Webster.

That face of nature familiar to her from her infancy was in a state
of unlovely transition when she again returned to her home. Verdant
orchards and sloping meadow lands had been divided into building lots
and crossed and recrossed by muddy thoroughfares. In what had been
a piece of woods within a stone's throw of her father's home, the
President's house was nearing completion. A mile and a half to the
east, on the summit of a hill, the white walls of the Capitol were
becoming visible to all the surrounding country. At irregular intervals
houses, single and in rows, were in course of construction. There was
nothing in the so-called city of Washington to which Marcia Burns came
home, and of which the government took formal possession in 1800,
that ever so remotely suggested the garden spot that it is to-day.
Members of Congress and foreign ministers alike reviled it, and the
lamentations of Mrs. Adams are too well known to be repeated here.

Of such social life as there was scattered over so vast an area of mud,
in which "pedestrians frequently slumped and horses became stalled,"
Marcia Burns became a central figure. Though she was too gentle and
modest ever to assume a leadership, yet all that was best and brightest
in the life about her naturally gravitated in her direction.

Notwithstanding the pretentious homes that were going up around her,
she still dwelt contentedly in her cottage of four rooms. There, in the
summer evenings, gathered on the low, broad stone slab of its south
door, overhung with blooming wistaria, her friends and neighbors,--the
Tayloes from the afterwards famous Octagon house, the Calverts, and the
Daniel Carrolls from Duddington Manor over near the Capitol.

In the winter season, when Congress was in session, the cheery
sitting-room and the hospitable dining-room were seldom without their
guests. There came Aaron Burr, to flatter her as he flattered every
attractive woman with whom he came in contact, and gallant Hamilton,
the lover of all lovely women, and Randolph of Roanoke, seeking balm
for his tempestuous spirit in that sweet and gracious presence, and
Jefferson, to admire, with all the ardor of his democratic soul,
the simplicity of her life. There, too, Tom Moore was entertained
during his visit to Washington, whence he returned home to write
things that did not make pleasant reading matter about the city and
Mr. Jefferson, who was our President at the time and who had looked
rather patronizingly upon the foppish little Irish bard. There also
came suitors for the hand of Marcia, men with a nobility of soul that
enabled them properly to estimate the beauty of her character, as well
as men who were attracted simply by the stories of her great wealth.

In 1802, when she was twenty years old, she became the wife of John
Peter Van Ness, a member of Congress from New York. He had been
graduated from Columbia College and admitted to the bar of his
native State. In 1800, when he was thirty years old, he was elected
to Congress. His youth, his graceful, winning manners, his handsome
countenance, and his wealth won him an easy popularity in the society
of the capital.

Shortly after the death of Marcia's father, Van Ness erected, close by
the old cottage, one of the handsomest houses of that day in the city
and one that compares not unfavorably with the most elegant homes built
there in recent years. It was designed and built by Latrobe at a cost
of nearly sixty thousand dollars, its marble mantel-pieces, which are
works of art, being imported from Italy. It had, moreover, a _porte
cochère_, which was a rarity in those days,--the President's house
having the only other one in Washington. A truly magnificent home it
was, and destined to be the scene of many brilliant occasions, as also
to witness days as full of heart-rending unhappiness to Marcia Burns
as those both in the cottage of her girlhood and the home of her early
married life had been of pure joyousness.

With all its treasures of art, the chief ornament of the new home
was Ann Van Ness, who completed her studies at a boarding-school in
Philadelphia and returned to Washington about the time her parents took
possession of it. Two years later she married Arthur Middleton, of
South Carolina, the son of a signer of the Declaration of Independence,
and probably that same Arthur Middleton, of whom Mrs. Edward Livingston
made mention in a letter to her husband ten years later to the effect
that his moustaches, whiskers, and velvet shirt were creating more of
a sensation in New York than the quarrel between Jackson and Calhoun.
Ann died within a year after her marriage. She was an only child, and
to her mother life held nothing that could amend her loss. Thenceforth
she withdrew from the sphere to which she had been since her early
girlhood so great an ornament. She frequently sought the seclusion of
the little cottage, and there, perhaps, lived over in memory the days
that had known no shadow.

She did not need the discipline of sorrow, which some natures require
to sweeten them, but under its influence she rose to the loftiest
heights of benevolence. Her pictured face reveals to us the beauty of
her soul. The truth that speaks in her eyes, the spirituality of her
brow, the tenderness of her mouth, combine to make the perfection of
human character. The Washington City Orphan Asylum, which she founded
and to which she devoted both time and means, is a fitting monument to
her memory.

She died on the 9th of September, 1832, and is the only woman who was
ever honored with a public funeral in Washington. Through her charities
she had become as widely known and as tenderly loved in the later years
of her life as she had been in her youth through qualities not less
endearing.

The following tribute to her is by Horatio Greenough:

       "'Mid rank and wealth and worldly pride,
        From every snare she turned aside.
        She sought the low, the humble shed,
        Where gaunt disease and famine tread;
        And from that time, in youthful pride,
        She stood Van Ness's blooming bride,
        No day her blameless head o'er past
        But saw her dearer than the last."



THEODOSIA BURR

(MRS. JOSEPH ALSTON)


Theodosia Burr was, as has been said of the daughter of another eminent
statesman with whom Aaron Burr was closely identified, "the soul of her
father's soul." If we would know the better part of a man who was one
of the most remarkable characters of his age, we must know Theodosia,
through whom, perhaps, his name, which all the subtlety of his soul was
bent on immortalizing, may live to a better fame in the centuries to
come than has attended it through the years of that in which he lived.
Under the inspiration of her presence both her father and husband
rose to lofty pinnacles in the political arena of their country. Her
father on the eve of her marriage stood at the very portals of the
Chief Magistracy. In less than ten years of political life he had so
progressed that the election of 1800 resulted in a tie vote for the
Presidency between Aaron Burr and Thomas Jefferson.

In 1801, while the festivities attending Theodosia's marriage at Albany
were at their height, the House of Representatives at Washington
entered upon that long session of seven days which terminated in
declaring Thomas Jefferson President of the United States and Aaron
Burr Vice-President.

From the moment Theodosia linked her life with another's, and thus in
a measure ceased to be part of his, the retrogressive period of Aaron
Burr's life began.

To her husband she carried that same inspiring influence which she
had wielded over her father. She gave an impetus to his luxuriant and
aimless existence, and at the time of the tragedy which ended her
twenty-nine years of life he was occupying the gubernatorial chair
of his State. Her life was closely allied not only with the private
interests, but with the political ambitions of both. Her father rarely
dined, either among friends or strangers, that her health was not
drunk. He made her known to everybody, and during his travels in Europe
so interested Jeremy Bentham and other writers in her that they sent
her sets of their books.

At a time when woman was regarded rather as the companion of a man's
heart than as his intellectual mate, "the soft green of the soul on
which we rest our eyes that are fatigued with beholding more glaring
objects," Theodosia Burr's mental faculties were so developed and
trained as to fit her for the most complete and sympathetic union with
father, husband, and son.

It is but a negative tribute to say that she was by far the
best-educated woman of her time and country. In the beauty of her mind
and person she realized her father's ideal of a perfect woman, and
amply satisfied his pride and vanity. On the eve of his duel with
Hamilton he wrote to her, "I am indebted to you, my dearest Theodosia,
for a very great portion of the happiness which I have enjoyed in this
life. You have completely satisfied all that my heart and affections
had hoped for or ever wished."

Theodosia was the only child of Burr's marriage with the widow of a
British army officer who had lost his life in the West Indies.

Fresh from the battle-fields of the Revolution, where he had won honors
of which he was ever more tenacious than of those achieved elsewhere,
and but recently admitted to the bar after a brief period of study,
his marriage to a woman ten years his senior and the mother of two
well-grown boys was a source of genuine wonderment to Burr's friends in
New York. Young, of fascinating manner and appearance, some means, and
good family, he might readily have aspired to an alliance with any one
of those families which were a power in the State,--the Livingstons,
the Van Rensselaers, or the Clintons. But before he quitted the army,
Burr had discovered the charms of the society at the "Hermitage,"
presided over by Mrs. De Visme and her two daughters, one of whom was
the widow of Colonel Prevost.

There he met the most distinguished men of his country, through whose
influence this family had been spared the inconvenience of moving
within the British lines at the outbreak of hostilities. In the
library, there, he discovered a treasure-house of French literature,
to which he was ever partial, and in the interchange of thought which
followed his reading, Aaron Burr and Mrs. Prevost became constantly
more imbued with a sense of the beauty and attraction of each other's
minds. Through her he gleaned his first reverence for the intellectual
power of woman, and to her he owed the happiest days of his life.

"The mother of my Theo," he said, speaking of her towards the close of
his life, "was the best woman and the finest lady I have ever known."
In her finished manner, her fine bearing, and her exquisite mind there
was a delicate harmony that soothed and satisfied Burr's artistic soul.
His marriage to her in July, 1782, put an end to the rumor that he was
paying his addresses to Miss De Visme, to which his frequent visits to
the "Hermitage" had given rise.

The first year of their married life was spent in Albany, where he was
engaged in the practice of law, and where Theodosia was born on the 23d
of June, 1783. In the fall of that year her parents removed to the city
of New York, where they had leased a house in Maiden Lane, at a rental
of two hundred pounds per year, to commence from the time the British
troops left New York, which they did on November 23, 1783.

So prosperous were Burr's financial affairs that he early in his
married life acquired also the possession of a country-seat, Richmond
Hill, then two miles from the city. The house, a stately frame building
with a lofty portico supported by Ionic columns, stood on a noble
hill, several hundred feet in height, overlooking the river and the
Jersey shore. It was surrounded by a lawn shaded by oaks, lindens, and
cedars, on the outskirts of which on all sides stretched woods of more
than a hundred acres. Within the enclosure was a pond known for many
years after the property had passed from Burr's possession as Burr's
Pond. On it Theodosia learned the graceful art of skating when still
quite a little girl.

The house, built about the middle of the last century, was Washington's
head-quarters in 1776, and Burr, who was there with him, conceived
his first desire to become its possessor. It was occupied by John
Adams during his tenure of the Vice-Presidency, when New York was
the capital, and Burr's long possession of it culminated in the
elegant hospitality of which it was the scene during his term as
Vice-President. He returned there from Washington at the close of the
sessions of Congress, and entertained with a lavishness that eventually
bankrupted him.

[Illustration: Theodosia Burr

(Mrs. Joseph Alston)

By Charles B. J. F. Saint Memin]

His library, which bespoke the critical taste of the scholar, and
which he had begun to collect as a boy, was a feature of the house,
recalled in after years by men who had been his guests as vividly
as the brilliant dinner-parties given beneath the same roof by the
distinguished Adams and his wife. He had his London bookseller, through
whom he made constant additions to his collection, for Burr was ever
a lover of books, and he recorded in his journal in his days of exile
and want with what pangs he had been obliged to part with some odd
volumes he had with him upon discovering that he was again under the
necessity of dining.

His passion for books he imparted to his daughter, urging upon her
at all times the necessity for study and improvement, and never
relinquishing his endeavors to carry her mind to a high order of
cultivation. In the communication he addressed to his son-in-law on
the night before his duel with Hamilton, he asked as a last favor that
he would urge Theodosia to continue to study. In all his letters to
her his efforts to stimulate this habit were uppermost. "The longer I
live," she wrote to him after her marriage, "the more frequently the
truth of your advice evinces itself, that occupation is necessary to
give us command over ourselves."

In the development of her mind and character he pursued a
clearly-defined and well-directed course. When she was ten years old he
wrote to his wife from Philadelphia, where he was at the time occupying
a seat in the Senate, reminding her that he had left a memorandum of
what Theodosia was to learn during his absence. While his public duties
were such that he was not able always to personally superintend her
studies, he gave minute instructions to the tutors to whom he intrusted
her, and constituted himself their vigilant and inexorable critic. "If
your young teacher," he wrote to her when she was in her sixteenth
year, "after a week's trial should not suit you, dismiss him on any
pretence, without wounding his pride, and take the old Scotchman.
Resolve to succeed, and you cannot fail."

Mary Wollstonecraft's book, "A Vindication of the Rights of Women,"
in which Burr became so absorbed that he sat up all night reading
it, so affected him that its influence told on all Theodosia's
life. On the principles it inculcated were based both her mental
and moral development. "If I could foresee," he wrote to his wife,
"that Theodosia would become a mere fashionable woman with all the
attendant frivolity and vacuity of mind, adorned with whatever grace
and allurement, I would earnestly pray God to take her forthwith hence.
But I yet hope by her to convince the world what neither sex appears to
believe,--that women have souls."

"And do you regret," he wrote to Theodosia herself, when she was a
little more than sixteen, "you are not also a woman? That you are
not numbered in that galaxy of beauty which adorns an assembly-room?
Coquetting for admiration and attracting flattery? No. I answer with
confidence. You feel that you are maturing for solid friendship. The
friends you gain you will never lose; and no one, I think, will dare to
insult your understanding by such compliments as are most graciously
received by too many of your sex."

Burr was himself an ornament to many a drawing-room, and no man ever
had better opportunities for estimating the deficiencies in the system
of educating the women of his day. Theodosia he brought up like a
young Spartan, with few or none of the feminine affectations then in
vogue. Courage and fortitude were his darling virtues, and so instilled
into her from her infancy that they formed almost the groundwork of
her character. "No apologies or explanations. I hate them," he said,
reproving her for some fault of omission when she was a little child.
"I beg and expect it of you," he wrote to her from Richmond, where he
was awaiting trial for treason, and whither she was hastening to him,
"that you will conduct yourself as becomes my daughter, and that you
manifest no signs of weakness or alarm."

Theodosia's affection for her father was the absorbing passion of her
life. "You appear to me so superior, so elevated above other men,"
she once wrote to him, "I contemplate you with such a strange mixture
of humility, admiration, reverence, love, and pride, that very little
superstition would be necessary to make me worship you as a superior
being; such enthusiasm does your character excite in me. When I
afterwards revert to myself, how insignificant do my best qualities
appear. My vanity would be greater if I had not been placed so near
you; and yet my pride is our relationship. I had rather not live than
not be the daughter of such a man."

He sent his love to "the smiling little girl," in a letter he wrote
his wife when Theodosia was two years old, not knowing that with his
going she had not only ceased to smile, but that she wept bitterly
and heart-brokenly whenever his name was mentioned, and that it
required the combined efforts of her mother and nurse to divert her
thoughts from the painful fact of his absence. As her mother said, the
attachment which thus early manifested itself in so marked a manner,
was not of a common nature. Theodosia's life is an evidence of how
exalted it was, when, with all the world against him, she was yet proud
to be his daughter.

Burr exercised an almost hypnotic influence over both men and women,
and there are extant innumerable anecdotes of the conquests he
continually made over those who had gone forth to apprehend him as a
villain. In his intercourse with Theodosia he brought into play all
those delicate attributes of his mind which captivated so many women.
She was constantly in his thoughts. "The ideas of which you are the
object, that daily pass through my mind," he wrote to her in 1799, from
Albany, where the Legislature was in session, "would, if committed to
writing, fill an octavo volume.... Indeed, my dear Theodosia, I have
many, many moments of solicitude about you."

He exacted much of her even as a child, among other things that she
should keep a journal in his absence, to be sent to him at regular
intervals, and that she should answer his letters minutely and
promptly. Writing to her when she was eleven years old, he said,--

"Yesterday I received your letter and journal to the 13th inclusive.
On the 13th you say you got nine pages in Lucian. It was, to be sure,
a most surprising lesson. I suspect it must have been the second time
going over, and even then it would have been great, and, at the same
rate, you will be through a second time before my month is up. I
should be delighted to find it so. I have not told you directly that
I should stay longer than a month but I was angry enough with you to
stay three months when you neglected to write to me for two successive
posts."

"I beg, Miss Prissy," he wrote to her from Philadelphia during the same
year, "that you will name a single '_unsuccessful effort_' which you
have made to please me. As to the letters and journal which you did
write, surely you have reason abundant to believe that they gave me
pleasure; and how the deuce I am to be pleased with those you _did not_
write, and how an omission to write can be called an effort, remains
for your ingenuity to disclose."

In his next letter to her, he referred again to "the unsuccessful
effort."

"Your letter of the 9th, my dear Theo, was a most agreeable surprise
to me. I had not dared even to hope for one until to-morrow. In
one instance, at least, an attempt to please me has not been
'_unsuccessful_.' You see, I do not forget that piece of impudence."

He was mindful, too, of her health, and in one of his letters begged
her to carry herself erect. He had himself a remarkably erect and
graceful carriage, which lent a majesty to his bearing and gave the
impression of much greater height than he possessed.

While his letters to her were full of advice and suggestions for her
improvement, they were by no means lacking in commendation. As she grew
to womanhood this was more marked, as was also his tendency to confide
in her. Her father's frequent and prolonged absences from home, her
mother's long illness, attended with much suffering and terminating
in death when Theodosia was but eleven years old, had necessitated an
early assumption of those responsibilities which mature and strengthen
character. To a suggestion contained in a letter written by her father
shortly before her mother's death, that he would leave Congress that he
might have more time to devote to his wife, Theodosia replied with a
quaintness that was characteristic of her: "Ma begs that you omit the
thought of leaving Congress."

From her close association with her mother under such circumstances
her receptive mind became imbued with the beauties of the Christian
philosophy, which her father, though a grandson of Jonathan Edwards and
a son of the Rev. Aaron Burr, founder and first president of Princeton
College, had not included in the course of studies so exactingly marked
out for her. She was at this time studying Latin, Greek, French, and
music, and learning to dance and to skate.

After her mother's death, Burr, who had a profound admiration for the
language, literature, and people of France, consigned her to a French
governess. She acquired a complete mastery of that tongue, and the
fluency with which she spoke it added much to the grace with which
she presided over her father's home, for Burr frequently entertained
Frenchmen. Louis Philippe, Jerome Bonaparte, Talleyrand, and Volney
were all at various times his guests at Richmond Hill.

When Theodosia was fourteen she took her place at the head of her
father's household and became his inseparable companion, her playful
wit illuminating his hours of relaxation, her steadfast courage, her
strength, her very presence, constituting his most powerful defence in
the darkest hours of his life.

She had much of her mother's self-poise and elegance of manner,
together with her father's dignity and wit. When she reached maturity,
though short in stature like her father's family, she carried herself
with a noble dignity which, with a certain lofty benevolence of
countenance, the refinement of her features, the frank intelligence of
her brow, the healthful bloom of her complexion, made her singularly
beautiful. So absolute was her father's confidence in her that he wrote
when she was but seventeen, "Many are surprised that I could repose in
you so great a trust as that of yourself, but I knew you were equal to
it, and I am not deceived."

He sent Brant, the Indian chief, to her from Philadelphia with a letter
of introduction,--she was but fourteen at the time and mistress of
Richmond Hill, where she entertained him with an ease which gave her
father much gratification. She gave a dinner in his honor, inviting
to meet him some of her father's friends, among them Volney, Bishop
Moore, Dr. Bard, and Dr. Hosack. She was already a belle, with many
admirers ever in her wake, when Edward Livingston, then mayor of New
York, taking her aboard a French frigate lying in the harbor of the
city, thus warned her: "You must bring none of your sparks on board,
Theodosia. We have a magazine here, and we shall all be blown up."

Her life was full of happiness at this time, with Hamilton's wife
and daughters among her friends, her father one of the Presidential
possibilities, and she enjoying much of his society, accompanying him
frequently to Albany on horseback and visiting in the neighborhood
while he transacted his business at the capital.

In February, 1801, a few months before she was eighteen, Theodosia was
married to Joseph Alston, of South Carolina. He also was young, being
but twenty-two, and wealthy, possessing extensive rice plantations,
talented and ambitious, though as yet without a specific object
on which to expend these qualities. He had studied law and been
admitted to the bar, though he had not begun to practise. Upon Burr's
suggestion he entered upon a political career, rising eventually to the
governorship of his State.

Theodosia argued for a deferment of the marriage, quoting Aristotle,
that a man should not marry till he was thirty-six. With convincing
eloquence and ardor, Alston replied, winning his suit, notwithstanding
Aristotle and other equally eminent authorities.

On February 7, 1801, the New York _Commercial Advertiser_ announced
the marriage, which had taken place on the 2d, at Albany, where the
Legislature, of which Burr was then a member, was in session. It was
a period of intense excitement throughout the country, and the names
of Jefferson and Burr were in all mouths. The people of the country
had cast a tie vote, which threw the election into the House of
Representatives. Party spirit manifested itself for the first time in
the young republic, and the strength of the constitution was early put
to a severe test.

Theodosia, on her way to her new home in the South, stopped in
Washington, where, on the 4th of March, she saw her father inducted
into the Vice-Presidency.

Her marriage and her father's new honors inaugurated for her three
years of absolute happiness. Though her husband's home and her father's
were a journey of twenty days apart, she went frequently back and
forth, and though she wrote to her husband during one of her early
visits to her old home, "Where you are, there is my country, and in
you are centred all my wishes," she was undoubtedly in better health
and spirits when in her northern home. Her winters were passed in
Charleston, where she was well received and much beloved, and where she
became an important factor in her husband's political success.

Her father missed her sadly. "For what else, for whom else, do I live?"
he had written to her shortly before her marriage. When she was no
longer at Richmond Hill he returned there with painful reluctance.
Theodosia urged him to marry again, and from the tone of a letter he
wrote to her about this time there seems to have been some probability
of his accepting her suggestion. If he were really in earnest, however,
he at least did not conduct the affair with his usual sapiency, and
though Theodosia from afar threw light on the young woman's vagaries,
it was to no purpose.

Theodosia's only child, a son, she named after her father, to whom he
was a source of much pride and affection. To Burr the anniversaries of
the day of Theodosia's birth were ever occasions for rejoicing. Her
twenty-first birthday, though she was not with him, he celebrated with
a dinner-party at Richmond Hill. He had her portrait placed in a chair
at the table, but, as it was a profile and appeared unsociable, he had
it hung up again. "We laughed an hour, danced an hour, and drank your
health," he wrote to her.

But already the days of her contentment were drawing to a close. Before
this letter telling her of the happiness the day had given him had
reached her, the tragedy of Weehawken had been enacted. Its shadow fell
forever upon him who survived it, and who doubtless became a potent
instrument in Hamilton's canonization. With awful blackness, too, it
fell upon the far-away daughter when she heard that her father was a
fugitive with an indictment for murder hanging over him.

From that moment shadows gathered about her with ever-increasing
sombreness till they culminated in that hour of darkness in which her
life went out.

In Burr's Mexican scheme, which he set on foot shortly after
the expiration of his term as Vice-President, Theodosia became
involved sentimentally, and her husband financially. The President's
proclamation and Burr's arrest put an end to their visionary dynasty
in Mexico. Instead of beholding him upon a throne, they saw him
arraigned before the tribunal of justice at Richmond, on a charge of
high treason, with Chief Justice Marshall the presiding judge, and
John Randolph of Roanoke foreman of the jury. Never, it has been said,
did two more wonderful pairs of eyes than those of Marshall and Burr,
black, brilliant, and penetrating, look into each other.

In arraigning Burr, there was an element to be reckoned with that is
not ordinarily taken into consideration,--the marvellous personality
of the man. From his appearance, his manners, his voice, his eyes,
emanated an influence not to be lightly estimated. In his bearing and
presence he was peerless. He spoke without effort, in a full, crisp,
rather than powerful, voice, clothing his thoughts in the language
best suited to their most accurate expression, terse, epigrammatic
and devoid of figures, his mobile features lending themselves to the
thought that was severe or scintillating, tender or impressive. With a
woman's tact he combined an adroit intellect equal to any emergency.

He conducted his own defence, supported by the best legal talent in
the country. His son-in-law sat beside him every day in court, and
Theodosia, the beautiful, noble Theodosia, with sublime faith in her
father, inspired a confidence in him in other breasts. She appealed
to the poetic fancy of Washington Irving, then a young barrister, who
was sent from New York to report the trial for his brother's paper, and
whose letters evince an unmistakable sympathy for Burr. Luther Martin,
one of the foremost geniuses of the Maryland bar, defended him with an
eloquence that rendered Martin himself an object of suspicion to Thomas
Jefferson.

"I find that Luther Martin's idolatrous admiration of Mrs. Alston,"
wrote Blennerhassett, "is almost as excessive as my own, but far more
beneficial to his interests and injurious to his judgment, as it is the
medium of his blind attachment to her father, whose secrets and views,
past, present, and to come, he is and wishes to remain ignorant of.
Nor can he see a speck in the character of Alston, for the best of all
reasons with him,--namely, that Alston has such a wife."

Though Burr was acquitted, there was an element of hostility to him
in the government, and much distrust of him among the people of the
country at large. In the following year, therefore, he went to Europe.
Theodosia had gone to New York to be near him. He saw her for the last
time on June 7, 1808, the night before he sailed. She spent that summer
at Saratoga, and the following winter in New York, where she lived in
retirement.

"The world," she said, in one of her letters to her father about this
time, "begins to cool terribly around me. You would be surprised how
many I supposed attached to me have abandoned the sorry losing game
of disinterested friendship." She repeatedly urged him to return,
promising him that if the worst came to the worst, she would leave
everything and suffer with him.

A few months after Madison's elevation to the Presidency she wrote to
Mrs. Madison, whom her father had known when she was a young widow, and
to whom he had introduced Mr. Madison. "Ever since the choice of the
people was first declared in favor of Mr. Madison, my heart, amid the
universal joy, has beat with the hope that I, too, should soon have
reason to rejoice," she wrote. She desired to know if there was danger
of any further prosecution of her father in the event of his return.
For the same purpose she wrote two years later from the Oaks, her South
Carolina home, to Albert Gallatin, then Secretary of the Treasury,
and once a friend of her father's. The letter was calmly logical, yet
eloquent with feeling.

In another year Burr was within sight of his home and country. As he
neared her shores he wrote in his journal, "A pilot is in sight and
within two miles of us. All is bustle and joy except Gamp [the name by
which his little grandson called him]. Why should he rejoice?"

Of all the misfortunes of his life, the heaviest were to fall upon him
that year. A month after her father's arrival in New York, and while
her heart was yet rejoicing that he had been kindly received, the young
life of Theodosia's son, full of beauty and promise, closed. "I will
not conceal from you," wrote Alston to his father-in-law, "that life
is a burden, which, heavy as it is, we shall support, if not with
dignity, at least with decency and firmness. Theodosia has endured all
that a human being could endure, but her admirable mind will triumph.
She supports herself in a manner worthy of your daughter."

Theodosia longed to see her father. We were at war with England at the
time, and her husband, governor of his State and general of militia,
could not leave his post of duty to accompany her to New York. Her
health was so feeble that she could not safely attempt the journey
alone. Her father's old friend Timothy Green offered his services,
going from New York to bring her north. Under his care, and accompanied
by her maid, Theodosia sailed from Charleston on the "Pilot" on the
30th of December, 1812. Save by her fellow passengers on the ill-fated
vessel, she was never seen or heard of again. A violent storm swept the
coast on the following day, and it has been supposed that the "Pilot,"
with all on board, went down off Cape Hatteras. After weeks and months
of despairing silence, father and husband gave her up. Burr during this
period of torturing suspense acquired a habit which clung to him to the
end of his life,--of wistfully scanning the horizon for ships as he
walked on the battery, then the popular resort of all New Yorkers.

Two or three years after she had gone from their lives, her husband
sent a chest of her belongings, which he had not had the courage to
open, to her father. "What a fate, poor thing!" sighed Burr, as he
recognized the familiar articles. Among the contents was a letter
addressed, "To my husband. To be delivered after my death and before
my burial." It was dated August 6, 1805, and had been written during
an absence of her husband from home, at a time when, being depressed
in health and spirits, she feared that death was approaching. After
leaving some remembrance to the various members of her husband's
family, and begging her husband to provide for Peggy, an old servant,
she says,--

  "Death is not welcome. I confess it is ever dreaded. You have made
  me too fond of life. Adieu then, thou kind, thou tender husband.
  Adieu, friend of my heart. May Heaven prosper you, and may we meet
  hereafter. Adieu; perhaps we may never see each other again in this
  world. You are away, I wished to hold you fast, and prevent you from
  going this morning. But He who is wisdom itself ordains events; we
  must submit to them. Least of all should I murmur, I, on whom so
  many blessings have been showered, whose days have been numbered by
  bounties, who have had such a husband, such a child, such a father.
  Oh, pardon me, my God, if I regret leaving these. I resign myself.
  Adieu once more, and for the last time, my beloved. Speak of me often
  to our son. Let him love the memory of his mother, and let him know
  how he was loved by her.

    "Your wife, your fond wife,
        "THEO.

  "Let my father see my son sometimes. Do not be unkind towards him
  whom I have loved so much, I beseech you. Burn all my papers except
  my father's letters, which I beg you to return to him. Adieu, my
  sweet boy. Love your father, be grateful and affectionate to him
  while he lives, be the pride of his meridian, the support of his
  departing days. Be all that he wishes, for he made your mother happy."

After expressing a wish that she may not be stripped and washed
according to the usual custom, being pure enough to return to dust, she
concludes: "If it does not appear contradictory or silly, I beg to be
kept as long as possible before I am consigned to the earth."

Alston, who survived her but four years, wrote heart-brokenly to her
father: "My boy, my wife, gone both! This, then, is the end of all the
hopes we had formed. You may well observe that you feel severed from
the human race. She was the last tie that bound us to the species. What
have we left? Yet, after all, he is a poor actor who cannot sustain his
hour upon the stage, be his part what it may. But the man who has been
deemed worthy of the heart of Theodosia Burr, and who has felt what
it was to be blessed with such a woman's love, will never forget his
elevation."



ELIZABETH PATTERSON

(MADAME JEROME BONAPARTE)


The city into which Baltimore Town was legislated on the last day
of the year 1796 already fostered within its limits the germ of the
dual life, social and commercial, to which it has owed its subsequent
eminence. Not infrequently, in the days of its inception, the same roof
sheltered drawing-room and warehouse, the earlier merchants deeming
it necessary to keep their growing interests constantly beneath their
personal vigilance. Later, the commercial life crowded out the domestic
life, and merchants built their dwellings--stately bricks or frames,
painted blue, yellow, or white, facing on avenues of locust-trees--in
another part of the town, all bearing quaint evidence of the far-away
ports with which their vessels traded, while the whole town was
permeated with the odor peculiar to shipping districts.

The first theatre troupe that took the town by storm played in one
of the old warehouses, whose walls re-echoed the approbation of the
pleasure-hungry audience, among whom were no fastidious critics to pick
flaws in "King Richard III.," and still less in "A Miss in her Teens,"
which followed.

Baltimore never had the qualms of conscience which afflicted some
of her puritanical sister towns concerning the pleasures in which
she might rightly indulge. She looked out upon life, rather, with a
liberality of mental vision which partook of the breadth of the seas
her merchantmen traversed.

The brick theatre built in 1781 became one of the most revered spots in
the town, and when the actors came her way, Baltimore turned out _en
masse_ to give them royal welcome.

At the close of the Revolutionary War a number of the French officers
of the army and navy who had remained in this country settled in
Baltimore, thereby adding a foreign flavor to the social side of its
existence, which, like that of all the cities and towns of the young
Republic, was characterized more or less by a wholesome simplicity.

In the town, a dozen years before it blossomed into the city, before
its streets were paved, when its only communication with inland towns
was by means of the stage-coach, and three years before Maryland had
ratified the Constitution of the new union of States, there was born
to one of her merchants, William Patterson, a daughter, the repute of
whose beauty was destined to fill two continents, the spicy aroma of
whose wit to penetrate the sacred precincts of imperial throne-rooms,
and the story of whose life to touch the hearts of many generations.

The daughter of one of the self-made men whose sterling qualities
have lent such stability to the industries and development of the
country, who, born of Irish parentage and coming to this country in his
fourteenth year, had carved his own way shrewdly and judiciously to
the position of distinction he held among his fellow-townsmen and the
people of his adopted country, Elizabeth inherited many of his dominant
characteristics. He was estimated to be the wealthiest merchant, and,
with the possible exception of Charles Carroll, the wealthiest man,
in the United States. Her mother, Dorcas Spear, came of good Maryland
lineage, and was a woman of gentle character and cultivated mind.
She superintended for the most part Elizabeth's education, which, if
somewhat erratic, was, nevertheless, superior to that enjoyed by the
average woman of that period. It is said that she acquired an early
familiarity with Rochefoucauld's "Maxims" and committed to memory
Young's "Night Thoughts." Lady Morgan, whose friendship she formed
later in life, realizing the brilliancy of her mind, regretted that its
earlier direction had not been more systematic.

Her father, from his own statement, seems to have looked after the
conduct of his family with the same minute vigilance which he bestowed
upon his financial concerns.

"I always consider it a duty to my family," he said, "to keep them as
much as possible under my own eye, so that I have seldom in my life
left Baltimore either on pleasure or business. Ever since I had a house
it has been my invariable rule to be the last up at night, and to
see that the fires and light were secured before I retired myself, by
which I found little risk from fires and managed to have my family keep
regular hours. What I possess is solely the product of my own labor. I
inherited nothing of my forefathers, nor have I benefited anything from
public favors or appointments."

Strangely similar is the concluding sentiment to that expressed by the
founder of another family on another continent,--Napoleon Bonaparte.
"Sole fabricator of my destiny, I owe nothing to my brothers," said
he, whose fortunes, though he had reared them upon a loftier pinnacle,
were, nevertheless, to be crossed by those of the Patterson family.

The eldest daughter in a family of thirteen children, Elizabeth
Patterson grew up at a period when the beaux of society read
Chesterfield, when no man begrudged the time expended on the profound
and sweeping bow then dictated by gallantry, and when fencing and
dancing formed a part of every gentleman's education.

[Illustration: Elizabeth Patterson

(Madame Jerome Bonaparte)

From portrait by Quinçon]

"She possessed the pure Grecian contour; her head was exquisitely
formed, her forehead fair and shapely, her eyes large and dark, with
an expression of tenderness that did not belong to her character;
and the delicate loveliness of her mouth and chin, the soft bloom of
her complexion, together with her beautifully rounded shoulders and
tapering arms, combined to form one of the loveliest of women." She
had had numerous offers of marriage before she reached her eighteenth
year, her father's wealth and prominence, independent of her own
attractive personality, having insured her social prestige, but as yet
she walked heart whole and fancy free.

In the summer of 1803 Jerome, the youngest brother of Napoleon
Bonaparte, and then less than nineteen years of age, detaching himself
from naval duty in the West Indies and following the bent of his own
inclination, eventually put into the port of New York. Whatever breach
of military discipline this implies will in no way astound those
familiar with Jerome's character.

Too young to have taken part in the struggles that had elevated his
family to such dizzy heights, he yet, at an age most susceptible to the
altered conditions of his life, came into the full enjoyment of all the
advantages they offered. Napoleon was wont to take a humorous rather
than a serious view of this "_mauvais sujet_," as he frequently called
Jerome. Madame Junot relates a characteristic anecdote in her memoirs
which, she says, she had from the Emperor himself. Returning to Paris
after the battle of Marengo, Napoleon was presented with various bills
contracted by Jerome during his absence. One of these, to the amount of
twenty thousand francs, was for a superb shaving set in gold, mother
of pearl, silver, ivory, and costly enamels. It was a work of art, but
of no possible use to Jerome, who, being but fifteen years old, was
without the suggestion of a beard.

To his mother he was an idol, and to the end of her life he was able to
extract from her in generous measure much of that substance which she
expended grudgingly even upon herself.

Enveloped in the glory of a great name, Jerome's advent into the social
current of New York was noised abroad in the few and ordinarily but
little-read newspapers of the day.

By stage the news was brought to Baltimore. The returning coach took
an urgent invitation to Jerome and his suite to visit that city from
Commodore Barney, who had been his recent comrade-in-arms in the West
Indies. They accepted the invitation, and early in September found
themselves the objects of a lavish hospitality.

Shortly after their arrival one of Jerome's suite, General Rewbell,
lost his heart to Miss Henrietta Pascault, one of the belles of the
town, to whom he was, after a brief courtship, married.

At the fall races, which were in progress when he arrived in Baltimore,
Jerome for the first time saw the woman in whose life he was thereafter
destined to play so conspicuous a part. We may well believe that she
was radiantly beautiful in a gown of buff silk with a lace fichu and a
leghorn hat with tulle trimmings and black plumes.

He had already heard of the beautiful Miss Patterson, and had declared
with youthful impetuosity that he would marry her. The fact that she
was aware of his preconceived sentiments gave a piquancy to their
first meeting, which was enhanced by the boyish enthusiasm with which
he referred to her as his "_belle femme_." The coquetry with which
she resisted his too evident admiration had the invariable effect of
further ensnaring his princely affections.

They met frequently in those centres of hospitality, the home of
Samuel Chase, who twenty-odd years before had put his name to the
Declaration of Independence; at "Belvedere," the home of Colonel John
Eager Howard, the hero of Cowpens; at "Greenmount," "Druid Hill," and
"Brooklandwood," where three other afterwards celebrated beauties were
in course of development.

When the festivities in honor of Jerome were at their height, Elizabeth
was borne away to the seclusion of a Virginia estate, under the wing
of a vigilant mother, who rightly interpreted the course of events
and foresaw the obstacles that loomed in the pathway of their happy
termination. There only an occasional echo of the gayety that was rife
at Baltimore reached her, making unbearable that rural quiet, which
means happiness only to a contented mind, and is a veritable torture
to such a restless spirit as ever possessed Elizabeth Patterson. Her
entreaties at length prevailed, and she was brought back to the city,
where, on the 29th of October, to prove how futile the separation had
been, scarcely eight weeks after their first meeting, Jerome procured a
license of marriage.

He was probably remonstrated with by the members of his suite, whose
age and the length of whose friendship made possible that liberty.
Rewbell, in the first flush of his own happy union doubtless gave
Jerome a reckless support that not even the crafty Le Camus could
counterbalance. To such opposition as Elizabeth's family offered, she
replied that she "would rather be the wife of Jerome for one hour than
of any other man for a lifetime."

On Christmas Eve, 1803, Jerome Bonaparte, brother of the man who
five months later declared himself Emperor of France, and Elizabeth
Patterson, daughter of an American merchant, entered into that union
whose subsequent rending was to echo throughout Christendom. The
ceremony was performed in the home of Elizabeth's father, according to
the rites of the Catholic Church, by the Right Reverend John Carroll,
first archbishop of America. It was witnessed by the French Consul at
Baltimore, M. Sotin, Alexander le Camus, who was Jerome's secretary,
and the mayor of Baltimore.

The marriage contract, which was drawn up by Alexander J. Dallas,
afterwards Secretary of the Treasury, bears evidence of the
apprehension felt by Elizabeth's family as to the outcome of this
international union with so youthful a bridegroom.

The dress worn by Elizabeth on her bridal night was of exquisitely fine
white muslin, elaborately embroidered. She said of the gown in after
years that it was one she had frequently worn, as she particularly
desired to avoid anything like vulgar display. "And to tell the truth,"
she added, "there was as little as possible of any gown at all, dress
in that day being chiefly an aid in setting off beauty to advantage,"
which concurs with the statement made by a man who was present at the
wedding, to the effect that he could have put all the clothes worn by
the bride into his pocket.

The honeymoon days of Jerome and Elizabeth were passed at her father's
estate outside of Baltimore, "Homestead." Late in January they were
mingling with the merrymakers one afternoon in Market Street. There
was good sleighing, and the crisp air rang with the joyousness of an
old-time winter. A snowball, sent with the unerring aim and democratic
disregard of a small boy of the town, struck Elizabeth. Jerome was
outraged at the indignity, and offered a reward of five hundred dollars
for the discovery of the youthful miscreant. How trivial seems this
"missile light as air" by comparison with those shafts sped later
by a not less unerring hand, and striking into the very soul of her
womanhood, Jerome making no effort to avert them.

In February this bride and groom of the early century went to
Washington, whither since have wended their way so many happy bridal
couples. Of the journey there, made in a stage-coach, General Samuel
Smith, member of Congress from Maryland, wrote to Mr. William Patterson
describing the runaway of the horses as they entered the city and
Betsy's presence of mind. The driver having been thrown from his seat,
Jerome sprang from the coach with the hope of catching the horses. But
as they still sped on, and her danger increased as they penetrated
towards the centre of the straggling little capital, Elizabeth opened
the door and jumped out into the snow without injury.

While in Washington they were the guests of the French Minister,
General Tureau. Aaron Burr, then Vice-President of the United States,
meeting Elizabeth at this time, wrote to his daughter Theodosia, whom
he thought Elizabeth much resembled, and referred to her as "a charming
little woman with sense, spirit, and sprightliness."

Jerome's thoughts were already turning towards France, where every
effort was being made to bring about his return--alone. While in New
York during the following summer he was made acquainted with the
annulment of his marriage, as follows: "By an Act of the 11 Ventose,
all the civil officers of the Empire are prohibited from receiving
on their registers the transcription of the act of celebration of a
pretended marriage that Jerome Bonaparte has contracted in a foreign
country during the age of minority, without the consent of his mother
and without the publication in the place of his nativity."

In February following the marriage Mr. William Patterson had written
to our Minister at Paris, Robert Livingston, enclosing him letters
from the President and Secretary of State, to be presented to Napoleon
with the hope of obtaining his approval, or at least mitigating any
displeasure the marriage might have caused. "I can assure you," he
wrote to Livingston, "that I never directly or indirectly countenanced
or gave Mr. Bonaparte the smallest encouragement to address my
daughter, but, on the contrary, resisted his pretensions by every means
in my power consistent with discretion. Finding, however, that the
mutual attachment they had formed for each other was such that nothing
short of force or violence could prevent their union, I with much
reluctance consented to their wishes."

He had, moreover, despatched his eldest son, Robert Patterson, to
Paris, to discover which way the wind of the imperial temper blew. As
the matter lay rather outside the pale of usual diplomatic issues,
it required most delicate manipulation, and while young Patterson
received kindly yet cautious expressions of interest and good-will
from Napoleon's brothers, an ominous and forbidding silence enveloped
the First Consul. His indignation increased with Jerome's continued
absence, and when at length he spoke through his Minister of Marine,
it was to bid Jerome, as lieutenant of the fleet, to return to France,
at the same time forbidding all captains of French vessels to receive
on board "the young person to whom Jerome had attached himself."
Through the same channel Napoleon offered his forgiveness to Jerome
on condition that he abandon Elizabeth and return to France, there to
associate himself with his fortunes. Should he persist in bringing her,
she would not be allowed to put foot on French territory. Jerome's
mother wrote to him at the same time, suggesting that he return to
France alone and send his wife to Holland. Robert Patterson, however,
who succeeded admirably in keeping himself posted on the variations in
the attitude of Jerome's family, advised that Jerome should not return
to France without his wife.

Though he made several efforts during the year that followed to return
thither, there is only one on record when it was his purpose to sail
alone.

In September, 1804, General Armstrong sailed from New York to replace
Livingston at Paris. He had agreed with Jerome to take Madame Bonaparte
with him, Jerome himself intending to go on one of the French frigates
then in New York harbor. She could thus, at least, have landed in
France as a member of the family of the American minister, who might
have succeeded in presenting her to Napoleon, with whom she could,
no doubt, have pleaded her cause with more effect than could have
been produced by any amount of diplomatic correspondence or family
intervention. She had the gifts which he most admired in women, great
personal beauty and wit, and though the latter might have been too keen
for his entire appreciation, she no doubt would have been shrewd enough
to temper it to his taste.

She wrote her father from New York, September 5, 1804, of her
disappointment at Armstrong's having sailed without her. The reason
given was that Jerome and Elizabeth had arrived by stage a few hours
after the ship had sailed.

An effort to sail during the following month ended in shipwreck off
Pilot Town, where they were finally landed and temporarily housed by
one of the inhabitants, on whose clothes-line Madame Bonaparte dried
her wardrobe, and from whose hospitable board she enjoyed a dinner
of roast goose with apple-sauce, being in exuberant spirits over her
rescue.

On March 11, 1805, they finally made their departure from Baltimore in
the "Erin," a ship belonging to Mr. Patterson. Though they sailed at an
early hour in the morning, and the arrangements for their departure had
been conducted with much secrecy, General Tureau wrote from Washington
two days later to Mr. Patterson to ask what disposition had been made
of Jerome's four carriage-horses, and to suggest, if they were to be
sold, that he should like to be considered as a purchaser.

The "Erin" reached Lisbon on April 2, whence Jerome wrote in English to
his father-in-law of their safe arrival, and took the opportunity to
express his affection for and gratitude towards his second family. He
spoke of Elizabeth having been very sea-sick, and added,--

"But you know as well as any body that sea-sick never has killed
nobody."

Napoleon's ambassador met the ship upon its arrival, and called upon
Elizabeth to ask what he could do for her, addressing her as Miss
Patterson.

"Tell your master," she replied, "that Madame Bonaparte is ambitious,
and demands her rights as a member of the Imperial family."

She was forbidden to land, and Jerome, taking that farewell of her
which fate had destined should be his last, went overland to Paris,
while the "Erin" sailed for Amsterdam.

On his way to Paris Jerome met General and Madame Junot _en route_
for their new post in Spain. He breakfasted with them and opened his
anxious young heart to them, showing them a miniature of Elizabeth,
from whom, he declared, nothing should ever separate him.

Upon reaching Paris he went at once to Malmaison and sought an audience
with Napoleon, who refused to see him, bidding him write what he wished
to say. He wrote, simply announcing his arrival, and received the
following reply:

"I have received your letter this morning. There are no faults you have
committed which may not be effaced in my eyes by a sincere repentance.
Your marriage is null and void, both from a religious and a legal point
of view. I will never acknowledge it. Write Miss Patterson to return
to the United States, and tell her it is not possible to give things
another turn. On condition of her return to America, I will allow her a
pension of sixty thousand francs a year, provided she does not take the
name of my family, to which she has no right, her marriage having no
existence."

From this position Napoleon never swerved. The annuity was paid to
Elizabeth after her return to America until the fall of the Empire,
and formed the basis of the fortune of one and a half million dollars,
accumulated through a long life of frugality and cautious investment,
of which she died possessed.

The reply of Pope Pius, to whom Napoleon appealed for the annulment of
the marriage, accompanying his request with a costly gold tiara, to the
effect that after mature deliberation he had been able to discover no
grounds on which the marriage could be cancelled, though it chagrined
the Emperor to an extent which he never forgave, did not yet alter the
stand he had taken. When Jerome was finally admitted to his presence,
he greeted him with that magnetic smile whose potency swayed men and
women alike.

"So, sir, you are the first of the family," he said, "who has
shamefully abandoned his post. It will require many splendid actions to
wipe off that stain from your reputation. As to your love-affair with
your little girl, I pay no attention to it."

The "Erin," meanwhile, arrived in the Texel Roads, where, though flying
the flag of a friendly power, and a merchant vessel whose clearance
from Baltimore showed that she carried no guns, she was placed under
guard of two French men-of-war and all communication with the shore
prohibited. Through the intercession of Sylvanus Bourne, our Consul at
Amsterdam, she was permitted at the expiration of a week to depart,
and, bearing her full measure of human desolation, she headed towards
the shores of England. The fame of her fair passenger had preceded her,
and so large a concourse of people had gathered at Dover to witness the
landing of Madame Jerome Bonaparte that Mr. Pitt, then Prime Minister
of England, sent a military escort to protect her from possible
annoyance of a sympathetic though curious throng.

At Camberwell, near London, her son was born on the 7th of July, 1805,
and named Jerome Napoleon.

In June of that year, two months after his return, Jerome had been
restored to his rank in the navy and was cruising off Genoa, whence
he wrote, through his secretary, Alexander le Camus, to Mr. William
Patterson, of Baltimore, expressing his dissatisfaction at Elizabeth's
having gone to England, that country being at the time at war with
France. The tone of the letter betrays the change that was already
working in Jerome's feelings, though he was at that time sending
Elizabeth by every available opportunity messages and pledges of his
unswerving love for her.

When we judge him, let us bear in mind not only his youth and all the
circumstances of his life, but, above all, that soul-crushing will
which he, weakly enough it seems to us, was striving to stand against.

In a subsequent letter to Mr. Patterson, written also by Mr. le Camus,
in the course of which Jerome expressed the desire that Elizabeth
should return to America and wait there in her own home till he
obtained her recall from the Emperor, one feels instinctively that
between the lines is written the finale to the short chapter of the
romance of Elizabeth Patterson and Jerome Bonaparte.

She returned to her father's home in the fall, though she had written
shortly before that she was glad to be among strangers, because "in
Baltimore, where people are always on the watch," she would be more
observed.

On August 12, 1807, Jerome married Princess Frederika Catherine,
daughter of the King of Wurtemburg. As King of Westphalia he offered
Elizabeth a home within his dominions, with the title of Princess of
Smalcalden and a pension of two hundred thousand francs per year. In
regard to the former, she replied that Westphalia was a large kingdom,
but not quite large enough for two queens, and with regard to the
pension, having already accepted Napoleon's annuity of sixty thousand
francs, she made the oft-quoted response that she preferred "being
sheltered under the wing of an eagle to being suspended from the bill
of a goose."

Napoleon, with his high appreciation of a _bon mot_, desired to know
what favor he could bestow upon a woman capable of this witticism.
Elizabeth replied through the French Minister at Washington that she
was ambitious, and would like to be a duchess.

The Emperor promised the gift, but never conferred it. Notwithstanding
her unremitting yet ever futile struggle for recognition, Madame
Bonaparte cherished always the most enthusiastic admiration for the
genius of the man who had blighted her life. In one of her letters to
her father, written from Europe, whither she returned after the fall
of the Empire, she said, "They do not in England pretend to revile
Napoleon as we have done. His stupendous abilities are admitted; his
misfortunes almost respected by his enemies. I listen silently to any
discussion in which he bears a part. I easily perceive that he has more
justice done him here than with us."

In a subsequent letter she details more fully her attitude towards the
entire family.

"I cannot say," she writes, also to her father, "that I have the least
reliance on that family, although I am inclined to reciprocate their
kind words and receive their offers of friendship without allowing
myself to be deceived by either." And farther on in the same letter
she says, in regard to allowing her son to visit Pauline Bonaparte,
then the Princess Borghese, at Rome, "My resolution is uninfluenced
by personal feelings, never having felt the least resentment towards
any individual of that family, who certainly injured me, but not
from motives which could offend me. I was sacrificed to political
considerations, not to the gratification of bad feelings, and under the
pressure of insupportable disappointment became not unjust."

From her letters there seem to have been frequent rumors afloat in
regard to her marrying again, both in this country and in Europe, where
she was greatly admired. In one letter to her father, written in 1823,
she says that while the American newspapers were marrying her she was
making her will.

Though she obtained from the Maryland Legislature a divorce, after
the fall of Napoleon, it seems to have been rather as a precautionary
measure against any possible demands Jerome might make upon her
financially than with a view to marrying again.

Tom Moore, whom Lady Morgan sent to her with a letter of introduction,
afterwards described her as a beautiful woman, but destitute of all
sentiment and with a total disbelief in love, on which, indeed, she
bestowed only ridicule. There can be no doubt, however, of the concern
and tenderness which she expended upon a dog, Le Loup, which belonged
to her son, and which she said was "superior to half the persons one
meets in the world." There are many traditions of her wit, which,
though tinged with asperity, was ever ready and scintillating. The
Honorable Mr. Dundas, who sat beside her at a dinner in London, she
speared so unsparingly with the shafts of her sarcasm that his egotism
never forgave her. When he asked her, finally, if she had read Captain
Basil Hall's book on America, she replied affirmatively. "And did you
observe," he continued, bluntly, with the hope of avenging his wounded
self-love, "that he called all Americans vulgarians?" "Yes," replied
Madame Bonaparte, while the table paused to listen, "and I was not
surprised. Were the Americans descendants of the Indians and Esquimaux,
I should have been. But being the direct descendants of the English,
nothing is more natural than that they should be vulgarians." For both
her wit and her beauty she was admired by men and women of fastidious
taste, among whom were Sir Charles and Lady Morgan, Talleyrand,
Gortschakoff, and Madame de Staël. She so fascinated the Prince of
Wurtemburg, uncle of Jerome's second wife, that he confessed his
wonderment that Jerome could ever have abandoned her. "Si elle n'est
pas reine de Westphalie, elle est au moins reine des coeurs," was Baron
Bonsteller's tribute to her.

She seldom alluded to Jerome, though she believed that she always
stood first in his heart. She referred in a letter to her father to
the probability of his coming to Rome while she was there, but added
that she should not see him, "nor would he like it himself after the
unhandsome way in which he has always conducted himself. I shall hold
my tongue, which is all I can possibly do for him."

Though the greater part of her life was spent in Europe, and she was
for a time on terms of considerable intimacy with his family, she met
Jerome but once, when they passed each other in the gallery of the
Pitti Palace in Florence, Jerome with the Princess Catherine upon his
arm. Though they recognized each other, they passed without greeting,
Jerome exclaiming, "That was my American wife." Jerome Napoleon, the
son of his American wife, was frequently his guest, and was treated
with much kindness by the Princess Catherine. Jerome, however,
added practically nothing to this son's material comfort, much to
his mother's chagrin, and at his death in 1860 it was found that he
had not even mentioned his name in his will, a lack of recognition
which wounded both mother and son in a more profound sense than his
lifelong failure to make provision for him had done. So great was his
son's resemblance to his family, and particularly to the Emperor,
that the _chargé d'affaires_ of France at Amsterdam, in 1820, refused
his mother a passport for him to travel through France. It was a
strange coincidence that Madame Jerome Bonaparte herself should bear
a remarkable resemblance to the Bonaparte family, particularly to
Napoleon and Pauline, even having some of their mannerisms.

In August, 1855, Louis Napoleon offered to create Jerome Napoleon
Bonaparte Duke of Sartène, but he declined the honor, as the object
was to take away his name and the rights he possessed as his father's
eldest son.

At the request of his half-brother a family council was called, before
which the celebrated Berryer pleaded the cause of Madame Jerome
Bonaparte and her son, whose rights were ultimately defined as limited
exclusively to the use of the name.

On November 3, 1829, Jerome Napoleon Bonaparte, to his mother's intense
dissatisfaction and disappointment, married an American, the lovely
Miss Susan Mary Williams, of Baltimore. During a long residence abroad
Madame Bonaparte had become imbued with the idea that it was a duty
her son owed both to her and to himself to ally himself matrimonially
with some European family of distinction. Writing to her father from
Florence, where she was residing at the time of her son's marriage, she
said, "I would rather die than marry any one in Baltimore, but if my
son does not feel as I do upon this subject, of course he is quite at
liberty to act as he likes best."

Her father died in 1835. He had never been in sympathy with her desire
to live in a foreign country, and had frequently upbraided her for
her prolonged absence from home. In his will he denounced her as an
undutiful daughter, bequeathing her a few small houses besides the home
in which she was born, on the east side of South Street, with the lot
surrounding it.

In April, 1879, Madame Bonaparte, who was then in her ninety-fifth
year, having outlived her son and all of her own generation, passed
from the sphere where she had been so conspicuous a figure. She died
in a boarding-house in her native city, where she had acquired the
reputation of being a keen, eccentric old woman. The sorrows of her
youth, belonging to the early days of the country, were too remote to
be remembered by her later-day contemporaries, who discovered in her no
trace of the bewitching Elizabeth Patterson who had taken by storm the
heart of the youthful Prince Jerome.

She rests to-day in Greenmount Cemetery, Baltimore, in a small
triangular lot which she selected shortly before her death, saying that
as she had been alone in life, so she wished to be in death. On her
monument are graven the words that express so much for her,--"After
life's fitful fever she sleeps well."



THE CATON SISTERS


Among the belles of the early century loom the forms of those gracious
women whose names are interwoven with those of the most historic
figures of their age, the Caton sisters of Baltimore. Granddaughters of
Charles Carroll of Carrollton, one of the most illustrious Americans
of the period, they became through marriage identified with the most
distinguished families in England.

In 1787 Richard Caton, an Englishman who had settled in Baltimore two
years before, and engaged in the manufacture of cotton goods, succeeded
in winning the fair hand of Mary Carroll. Rumor said that it had been
already partially plighted to her cousin John Carroll of Duddington
Manor. Cousin "Longlegs," however, as Kitty, her irreverent younger
sister, called him, was in Europe at the time with her brother Charles,
and in those days of slow travel Mary had probably capitulated to the
young Briton before John even knew that he had a rival.

Her father, who was reputed the wealthiest man in America, and who
provided liberally both for his children and grandchildren, settled
upon Mary at the time of her marriage to Richard Caton, the beautiful
estate of "Brookland Wood," in the centre of the suburb which has since
sprung up and been named for them, Catonsville. Their four daughters
were born there and grew up to beautiful womanhood,--Mary, Elizabeth,
Louisa, and Emily. They derived every grace of mind and body from
a cultivated and accomplished mother who had been educated abroad,
and who, accompanying her father to Philadelphia when Congress met
there, had known the best there was of social life in America. Closely
associated, moreover, from their infancy with their grandfather, a
most courtly gentleman, who ever beheld in woman an object worthy
of his most chivalrous devotion, they bore every evidence of that
innate refinement which created distinction for them in England as the
"American Graces."

The life at that time surrounding such men as Carroll was idyllic.
Honored by his countrymen, blessed with the wealth giving him every
material comfort and luxury, owning his town house, his estate of
Doughoregan, and his plantation the famous Carrollton, sought out by
the most distinguished men and women at home and from abroad, to say
nothing of the myriad resources which such a man as Carroll possessed
within himself, he already saw his family--the third generation born in
America--well established, with the roof-trees of his son and daughters
close by his own. His granddaughters were much with him, and though
they were the belles of Baltimore town from their earliest girlhood, a
very delightful phase of their life was that portion of it spent on
their own and their grandfather's estates. There is frequent mention
both in the journal and letters of Charles Carroll of visits from them
and also of that princely hospitality that is ever associated with the
names of many of the old Maryland estates.

In one letter he alludes to a ball to be given by Captain Charles
Ridgley of "Hampton," for which three hundred invitations were out, and
to which Mary, Betsy, and Louisa were all going. In another he mentions
a ball given by Louisa, who was entertaining the Misses Pinkney at his
place at Annapolis.

Many a belle in those days went to balls on horseback with a blanket
thrown over her muslin gown to protect it from the dust. Yet it was
not too much of an undertaking to go all the way from Annapolis to
Baltimore, or _vice versa_, for the pleasure of being present at
somebody's ball or dinner-party. Roads and weather permitting, the
Catons occasionally made the trip in winter time in a "sled." Roads and
weather had much to do with the timing of one's visits in those days
of primitive transportation facilities when Charles Carroll recorded
that he sent his servant from Doughoregan with a led mare to fetch Miss
Nancy Robinson who had been visiting at Homewood, his son's estate.

Nature lent her perfecting hand to the rural life of these people, for
nowhere was she ever more munificent in the bestowal of her epicurean
gifts than in the State of Maryland, whose lands and whose waters alike
cater to the gastronomic proclivities of the _bon vivant_.

Oliver Wendell Holmes at a later period attributed a lack of
appreciation of literature which he fancied he had detected among
the Baltimoreans to the preponderance of these very blessings, and
suggested that the highest monument in the city should be crowned with
a canvas-back duck.

There were club-houses and merrymaking in plenty, with oysters,
soft-shell crabs, terrapin, canvas-back ducks, and a roasted young pig
with an apple in its mouth, or a turkey stuffed with oysters, as _pièce
de résistance_, with a nip of punch for sauce. Miss Ridgley depicts it
very temptingly in her little book.

Foremost among the beautiful women whose presence lent piquancy to
this life were the Catons. In 1807 Mary, who was at the time nineteen
years old, was married to Robert Patterson, the eldest son of William
Patterson. She thus became the sister-in-law of the unhappy Madame
Jerome Bonaparte, between whom and herself there seems to have existed
no great sympathy, through no fault of Mary Caton's.

[Illustration: Mary Caton

(Lady Wellesley)

From portrait by Sir Thomas Lawrence]

The event was a welcome one to William Patterson, who was at the time
the wealthiest merchant in America. The wedding ceremony was performed
in the private chapel of the Carroll family by Archbishop Carroll, who
four years previously had similarly united Elizabeth Patterson and
Jerome Bonaparte. In April, 1811, Robert and his wife, accompanied by
her sisters Elizabeth and Louisa, went abroad, sailing from Baltimore
on one of his father's ships and landing in Lisbon in the latter
part of May. Robert Patterson had already travelled and lived much
in Europe. To the Catons it was the first of a series of numerous
trans-Atlantic trips.

While in Spain they met the Duke of Wellington, who was there at that
time conducting the peninsular war, and Colonel Sir Felton Bathurst
Hervey, who had been his aide-de-camp at Waterloo and whom Louisa
Caton afterwards married. Charles Carroll, writing of Hervey after his
marriage to Louisa, which occurred on the 1st of March, 1817, said,
"All who know him love him." He was a gallant soldier and had lost his
right arm at Vittoria.

The Duke of Wellington's ardent admiration for Mrs. Patterson drew him
within the wake of the little American party as they progressed in
their travels over Europe, lending them the prestige which opened for
them the most exclusive houses in England. Apparent as his admiration
was, not the least breath of scandal ever touched the name of this
beautiful young matron. The Prince Regent, to whom Wellington presented
her, spoke later to Richard Rush, the American Minister, of her unusual
beauty. When she came, later in life, into contact with William IV. as
first lady in waiting at Windsor, she won the sincere admiration of
that sovereign on account of the high standard of morality which she
maintained.

After the marriage of Hervey and Louisa Caton they were entertained by
the Duke of Wellington at Walmer Castle. The Duchess of Rutland gave
them a ball, and bestowed upon the sisters on that memorable night the
title under which they became famous,--the "American Graces." Hervey's
death occurred in 1819, and Robert Patterson's at Baltimore in the
fall of 1822. The widow of the latter shortly afterwards rejoined her
sisters in England, where they were again entertained at Wellington's
country-seat. While there they met for the first time his eldest
brother, Richard Wellesley, Earl of Mornington, and like himself a
soldier and a statesman. In 1797 he had been made Governor of India by
George III., who, in return for the services he rendered there, had
created him Marquis of Wellesley. At the time he met Mrs. Patterson and
her sisters he was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. Two years later, when
Mrs. Patterson and Elizabeth Caton visited Dublin, he entertained them
royally, bestowing the most devoted attentions upon the former, to whom
he subsequently offered himself.

After a brief engagement they were married at the viceregal castle,
the ceremony being performed twice, to accord with the religious
convictions of both the bride and the groom, the Archbishop of Dublin
marrying them according to the rites of the Catholic Church, and the
Lord Primate of Ireland according to those of the Church of England.

Unusual magnificence marked the festivities which followed this event,
as well as those of the remainder of Lord Mornington's reign as viceroy.

On July 4, 1827, Bishop England, of South Carolina, gave the following
toast to Charles Carroll, who was the last survivor of the signers of
the Declaration of Independence: "To Charles Carroll of Carrollton: in
the land from which his grandfather fled in terror his granddaughter
now reigns a queen."

It was rather a strange coincidence that two daughters of the little
American town of Baltimore, Elizabeth Patterson and Mary Caton,
neighbors and contemporaries, should have married brothers of two of
the most formidable characters in modern history,--Napoleon Bonaparte,
the self-styled conqueror of the world, and the Duke of Wellington, his
conqueror.

Madame Jerome Bonaparte, who was in Europe at the time of her
sister-in-law's second marriage, thus wrote to her father concerning it:

    "HAVRE, November 21, 1825.

  "DEAR SIR,--I write by this packet to announce to you the marriage
  of Mrs. Robert Patterson. Mrs. Brown received a letter from Betsy
  Caton the day on which it was to take place. She has made the
  greatest match that any woman ever made.... The Marquis of Wellesley
  is Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. He is sixty-five. He married an
  Italian singer, by whom he had a family of children. She is dead. He
  has no fortune. On the contrary, he is over head and ears in debt.
  His salary is £35,000 per annum as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. He
  will be there eighteen months longer, and if the King does not give
  him another place he is entitled as a poor nobleman to at least a
  thousand pounds a year. He is brother of the Duke of Wellington.
  Mary's fortune is reported in Europe to be £800,000 cash. It has been
  mentioned in all the papers at that sum."

Wellesley retained his position in Ireland till 1828. He was then
appointed Controller of the Royal Household of William IV., and his
wife first lady in waiting at Windsor Castle. Wellesley's death
occurred in 1842, the Marchioness surviving him over eleven years. The
latter part of her life was spent at the Royal Palace at Hampton Court,
where Queen Victoria presented her with a house in recognition of her
husband's services.

Louisa Caton was married for the second time in 1828 to the eldest son
of the Duke of Leeds, Francis Godolphin D'Arcy Osborne, Marquis of
Carmarthen, who came into his title and estates ten years later.

This marriage called forth another letter from Madame Jerome Bonaparte
to her father: "Louisa has made a great match. He is very handsome, not
more than thirty-eight, and will be a duke with £30,000 a year."

Elizabeth Caton married once, and that much later in life than her
sisters. She became, in 1836, the wife of Baron Stafford, whose family
name was Jerningham.

Emily Caton, the youngest of the four sisters, and the only one who
left descendants, married John Mactavish, a Scotchman, who had settled
in Canada, whence he was sent as consul to Baltimore. Josiah Quincy,
who met her at dinner at her grandfather's in 1826, recorded in his
journal that he had been much impressed with her air of high breeding.



MARGARET O'NEILL

(MRS. JOHN H. EATON)


To the student of social history few careers surpass in interest that
of Margaret O'Neill. Born of humble parentage, she ran the gamut of
social possibilities, exercising more influence over the political
destinies of her country than any other American woman has ever done.

Unlike other great belles who owe their fame to the universal
admiration they evoke, Margaret O'Neill owed hers quite as much to the
animosity she roused. Her cause hotly espoused by the President of
the United States, her conduct made the subject of cabinet debates,
she rose to fame as broad as the land of her birth, and later beyond
the seas to a fame unshadowed by enmity, though not dearer to her
patriotic soul. Born late in the last century, she came to be a belle
in so far as having beaux makes a girl a belle in the days when the
native Washington girl had few rivals. The shriek of Fulton's steamboat
had not yet startled the world. The stage-coach was the universal
means of conveyance, though the daughters of some Southern and Western
Congressmen, from districts unfamiliar even with its lumbering
proportions, ambitious to taste the pleasures of a season at the
capital, used frequently to make the tedious journey on horseback. Her
girlhood belleship had well terminated, indeed she had married and
brought children into the world, before the completion of the great
canal in 1826, which made the more sanguine voyager of that day hopeful
that eventually eight miles might be travelled in an hour!

Though she never knew the exact date of her birth, she had heard
it frequently related that she was two weeks old at the time of
Washington's funeral, December 18, 1799. She was the eldest daughter
of William O'Neill, a descendant of the O'Neills of Ulster County,
Ireland, and himself a native of New Jersey, who had migrated to the
capital with the hope of improving his fortunes. There he opened a
tavern in the western section of the city, a short half-mile from the
President's house. He was a genial host, and his house soon attained
popularity with the _jeunesse dorée_, as well as with military men
and Congressmen, though it was a long way from the Capitol. The Union
Tavern, in Georgetown, however, which was also popular with our early
law-makers, was still farther away. From its door to the Capitol the
old 'bus known as the Royal George, one of Washington's earliest
institutions, made frequent trips, stopping at O'Neill's and other
taverns and boarding-houses along the route to pick up its patrons.

Margaret grew up in the unconventional atmosphere of the tavern, a type
of undisciplined American girlhood, wayward, high spirited, full of
generous impulses, her mind fed on impetuous and misguided admiration,
and herself blessed with a magnetic soul that drew most men and many
women irresistibly to her. She was a toast that stirred the hearts of
the most phlegmatic of mankind and evoked unparalleled enthusiasm from
those of more ardent temperament. Hers was the highest type of Irish
beauty, a marvellously white skin, soft gray eyes, warm chestnut hair
that curled above an expressive brow, exquisite features, a small round
chin, a delicately beautiful figure of medium height, with an erect
carriage and her spirited head nobly poised.

The "Health," written by Edward C. Pinkney, whom Edgar Allen Poe placed
first in his estimate of lyric poets of America, is said to have been
inspired by her in 1824.

       "I fill this cup to one made up of loveliness alone,
        A woman, of her gentle sex the seeming paragon,
        To whom the better elements and kindly stars have given
        A form so fair that, like the air, 'tis less of earth than
            heaven.

       "Her every tone is music's own, like those of morning birds,
        And something more than melody dwells ever in her words;
        The coinage of her heart are they, and from her lips each flows,
        As one may see the burthened bee forth issue from the rose.

       "Of her bright face one glance will trace a picture on the
            brain,
        And of her voice, in echoing hearts a sound must long remain;
        And memory such as mine of her so very much endures,
        When death is nigh, my latest sigh will not be life's, but hers.

       "Affections are as naught to her, the measure of her hours;
        Her feelings have the fragrancy, the freshness of young flowers.
        And lovely passions, changing oft, so fill her, she appears
        The image of themselves by turns the idol of past years.

       "I filled this cup to one made up of loveliness alone,
        A woman, of her gentle sex the seeming paragon.
        Her health! And would on earth there stood some more of such a
            frame,
        That life might be all poetry and weariness a name."

She went to school at Mrs. Hayward's seminary, and later to Mr. Kirk.
She also attended a dancing-school that gave exhibitions of the grace
and proficiency of its pupils in the parlors of the Union Tavern in
Georgetown. At one of these exhibitions Margaret was crowned by Mrs.
Madison, the wife of the President, as the prettiest girl and most
graceful dancer in the room. Naturally ambitious, this first social
triumph pointed out the possibility of greater ones, to be achieved
only after bitter contests that would have crushed the spirit of a more
sensitive woman.

Her father deeming her sufficiently well educated, in which opinion she
concurred, she quitted school in her fifteenth year, and, being now
a young woman of bewitching beauty and abundant leisure, she entered
extensively upon her career as a belle.

Two young military men whom her fascinations had ensnared were at one
time on the point of a duel. With one of them, Captain Root, she had
planned an elopement, and was actually about to descend from her
window when she accidentally overturned a flower-pot: this crashing on
the ground below, roused her father and put an end to her flight. More
than that, her indignant parent carried her off to New York, where he
left her under the wing of his old friend Governor De Witt Clinton, to
go to Madame Nau's school. Clinton was very severe with the spoiled
little beauty, and the staid atmosphere of his home was not congenial
to her. She wrote her father very homesick letters, in one of which she
promised that if he would take her home "neither Root nor branch should
ever tear her from him." Her wit greatly pleased him, and after he had
passed the _bon mot_ around among his guests and his Peggy's admirers,
he went to New York and brought her home.

It has been said that she was not yet sixteen when from a window of her
father's tavern she for the first time saw John Bowie Timberlake, as
he passed along Pennsylvania Avenue on horseback. Their acquaintance,
engagement, and marriage followed within the space of a few weeks.

Several years of quiet happiness ensued, during which three children, a
son, who died in infancy, and two daughters, were born to them.

Timberlake was a purser in the navy, and when he was ordered to sea
duty he closed his little home, and his wife and children went to her
father's to stay during the time of his absence. He died of asthma
aboard the "Constitution," at Port Mahon.

His widow shortly afterwards married General Eaton, who was at that
time a United States Senator and a guest at her father's house. For the
first time the little Peggy O'Neill, of triumphant dancing-school days,
felt that her foot was actually upon the rounds of the social ladder.
John Quincy Adams was President at the time, and one of the bitterest
Presidential campaigns this country has ever witnessed had just drawn
to a close in the election of Jackson. One victim of the freedom
of press and speech, everywhere indulged in, was the wife of the
President-elect. Her gentle soul, stung by the breath of slander, which
all the vigilance of a devoted husband had been powerless to avert, had
passed unregretfully from earth. Jackson came to Washington a bereaved
and embittered man.

There was a puritanical tendency among the women who made up the
society of that era, and to whom Margaret O'Neill appeared as the
embodiment of a sport-loving element that prevailed among men.

Life had a rural quality in those days which it has since lost.
Horse-racing was universal, and the great race between Eclipse and Sir
Henry, run on Long Island May 27, 1823, for a purse of ten thousand
dollars, was a national event. Hundreds of thousands of dollars had
been staked, and Peggy O'Neill no doubt was intimately acquainted with
some of the heaviest winners and losers, among the latter of whom was
John Randolph. Though she was far too young to remember the opening
of the first race-track in Washington, November 3, 1803, she was yet
familiar with all the details of its inauguration, on which occasion
both houses of Congress had adjourned, the Senate to have the ceiling
repapered, and the House, which was apparently less resourceful,
because it had no pressing business on hand.

Growing up in a public house, she was undoubtedly familiar with much in
the lives of men of which other women of her day, leading more secluded
lives, feigned ignorance. Yet she had become in no way contaminated by
the liberal atmosphere she had breathed from infancy.

General Eaton and his bride returned from their honeymoon shortly
before Jackson's inauguration. A few of the Senators' wives called upon
her, but she was generally not well received, and slander had already
begun its mischievous work when Jackson appeared in Washington and
swore "by the Eternal" that his little friend, whom he had known all
her life, should not be defamed.

Her name was already on every lip at the capital, and there is no doubt
that as many went to Jackson's inauguration ball to see her as to
see the President. They stood on chairs and benches in their efforts
to catch a glimpse of her, and she made a picture worthy of their
endeavors, in her pink gown, with her headdress of nodding black plumes.

Eaton was made Secretary of War. He was Jackson's old friend, and
had labored unremittingly for his election. Moreover, thought the
chivalrous old President, this would insure Mrs. Eaton's triumph. The
women of the cabinet, however, refused to recognize her. Though Mrs.
Calhoun, the wife of the Vice-President, had called upon her as a
Senator's wife, she declined to associate with her as the wife of a
cabinet minister. Calhoun, to whom an appeal was made, declared himself
powerless, as "the quarrels of women, like those of the Medes and
Persians, admitted of neither inquiry nor explanation."

Van Buren, Secretary of State, and Barry, Post-Master-General, the
former a widower and the latter a bachelor, stood aloof from the
tempest in which their fellow-officials were engulfed. That astute
politician and prince of diplomats, Martin Van Buren, won Jackson's
undying friendship by the warmth with which he took up his friend's
cause. He had been a beau at evening functions when he was in the
Senate, and he knew the social status of every one at Washington, and
precisely what brought every stranger to the capital. While he admired
Mrs. Eaton and desired to defend her, he also undoubtedly realized all
the advantages to be gained by such a course.

The spirit of hostility gradually spread to every branch of society.
The Diplomatic Corps became involved; Vaughn, the British minister, and
Baron Krudner, the Russian envoy, both bachelors, ranged themselves
beneath Mrs. Eaton's standard. They féted and dined her, and gave her
substantial evidence of their adherence to her cause. Huygens, the
Dutch minister, having a wife who belonged to the opposition, was less
fortunate. Finding herself placed next to Mrs. Eaton at dinner on one
occasion, Mrs. Huygens took her husband's arm and turned her back upon
the assemblage. While all who witnessed the affront were appalled into
an awkward silence, Mrs. Eaton, following the retreating form with
critical eyes, commented admiringly upon her fine carriage.

Between her defenders and her defamers her Celtic blood bore her
up, and her sunny soul lost none of its serenity. One of Jackson's
biographers, however, states that when the matter reached the ears of
the irate President, he threatened to demand Huygens's recall unless he
and his wife forthwith apologize to Mrs. Eaton.

The contest waxed warmer day by day, both houses of Congress furnishing
recruits to one side or the other.

The cabinet was dubbed the "Petticoat Cabinet," and Mrs. Eaton's fame
as Bellona, the Goddess of War, spread through the land. Calhoun
attacked the President for retaining in his cabinet an element of so
much discord. But Jackson was a true knight, and his friendship was
stanch.

The bitter feeling, meanwhile, among the cabinet ministers had attained
such a pitch that they could no longer come together amicably. Their
resignations were tendered to the President and accepted, and a new
cabinet was formed.

It was during a recess of Congress. Van Buren was sent as minister to
England, where he was cordially received. When Congress reassembled,
however, the Senate refused to confirm his appointment, Calhoun casting
the decisive vote.

A letter of Daniel Webster's, written about this time, reveals the
seriousness of the situation. "It is odd enough," he wrote, "that the
consequences of this dispute in the social and fashionable world are
producing great political effects, and may very probably determine who
shall be successor to the present Chief Magistrate." And they did.
Jackson's power and popularity were such that he was in a position
to dictate to his party the choice of his successor. His choice fell
upon Van Buren, who had undoubtedly labored for him in the days of his
bitter fight for the Presidency, and who had further and effectually
endeared himself to his chief by his zealous defence of Mrs. Eaton,
who in Jackson's eyes was not only a fair and beautiful woman, but the
representative of oppressed womanhood.

General Eaton was appointed governor to the Territory of Florida, and
later he was sent as our minister to the court of Madrid.

This ended Mrs. Eaton's social conflict. She was graciously received
and universally admired in that land of aristocrats, and her long
residence there and in Paris, whither she went before returning to this
country, formed one of the happiest periods of her life.

One of her daughters, the beautiful Virginia Timberlake, familiarly
known among the men and women who were young with her, as "Ginger"
Timberlake, married the Duke de Sampoyo and went to live in France,
where, in turn, one of her daughters has recently married a son of the
elder Rothschild. Margaret, Mrs. Eaton's second daughter, married one
of the Virginia Randolphs. To the children by this marriage, deprived
by death of both parents, Mrs. Eaton devoted many years of her life.
General Eaton died in 1859.

A third marriage contracted by his widow late in life, and subsequently
annulled, was productive of much unhappiness in her home.

On the 8th of November, 1879, she reluctantly gave up her hold on life,
whose volume had held for her so few blank pages.

In the presence of that foe which every woman fears most, slander, she
had never retreated from the position she early determined to carry,
and which circumstances proved she was well able to fill. She bore all
with a sweet courage, feeling keenly, but not morbidly, the world's
sting.

Preserving to the end her wonderful elasticity of spirit, she went
out from a life that had been one of alternate turmoil and triumph,
beholding only its beauties and loving it to the last. "I am not afraid
to die," she said, "but it is such a beautiful world to leave."



CORA LIVINGSTON

(MRS. THOMAS PENNANT BARTON)


Cora Livingston was born in New Orleans, "the little Paris of America,"
on the 16th of June, 1806, the year of the great eclipse. Her father,
writing to announce her advent to his sister in New York, said God had
given him so fair a daughter that the sun had hidden its face.

Though she was a great belle with a national reputation during the
decade from 1820 to 1830, those who attempted an analysis of her charm
declared that she lacked that attribute which many would esteem the
first requisite to belleship,--beauty. Yet she was a notable example of
that subtle power that raises a woman above her contemporaries, that
evokes an involuntary homage from every eye.

Her mother, writing of her when she was about sixteen and already the
belle of New Orleans, to one who had never seen her, said, "She is not
a beauty, not a genius, but a good and affectionate child."

Josiah Quincy, that ubiquitous beau who paid his court to the belles of
so many cities, seeing her in Washington in 1826, declared that she was
not handsome, while he admitted that she was undoubtedly the greatest
belle in the United States. "She has a fine figure, a pretty face,
dances well, and dresses to admiration," he continued, endeavoring
to solve the mystery of the attraction exercised by this exquisite
specimen of womanhood. He further confessed that when he left her he
bore away an image of loveliness and grace never to be erased, and he
went on to quote Burke's apostrophe to the Queen of France,--"Surely
never lighted on this orb, which she hardly seemed to touch, a more
delightful vision."

She was the daughter of Edward Livingston, a brother of that Chancellor
Livingston who, on the 30th of April, 1789, administered the oath of
office to the first President of the United States, and of an eminently
beautiful creole, Louise Moreau.

Fleeing the terrors of the negro insurrection in San Domingo, Madam
Moreau, a young widow, arrived in New Orleans just as the Louisiana
purchase was consummated and the province became the property of the
United States. French then to the very core, the city has retained
evidences of its origin longer than any city of the Union. The thrill
of anguish with which it realized that Louisiana had been sold by
Napoleon to the United States "on this 9th of July, 1803, at seven
P.M.," left its indelible impression upon a people loyal to their
nationality and tenacious of its prerogatives.

The wave of emigration which swept into the newly acquired territory
from the north bore thither Edward Livingston, of New York. Fortune's
reverses had driven him into the new country with the hope of finding
there a more promising field for his talent and labors.

The Americans were not well received. Scarcely more than a hundred out
of the eight thousand inhabitants had greeted the stars and stripes as
they were raised for the first time over the city. So strong, indeed,
was the prejudice against them that every unfortunate occurrence was
instantly attributed to them. Miss Hunt relates that upon one occasion
when a ball was interrupted by an earthquake an indignant old creole
gentleman exclaimed that the pleasure of ladies had never thus been
interrupted in the days of Spanish or French dominion.

Livingston's knowledge of the language, his tact, his adaptiveness,
together with his splendid ability, soon raised him to a conspicuous
place at the bar. He was a widower, thirty-nine years of age, when
he married Madam Moreau, who was but nineteen. Cora was the only
child of this marriage, and ever, even after her own marriage, the
inseparable companion of both parents. From her father she derived a
sound knowledge of the political questions of the day that made her
an intelligent spectator of the historic period in which she lived.
From her mother she inherited that grace, mental and physical, that so
indelibly impressed her upon the life of which she formed so brilliant
a part that her name can no more be eliminated from it than can the
names of Andrew Jackson, Martin Van Buren, Daniel Webster, or Henry
Clay.

The cultivation of her mind was intrusted to her uncle, Major August
Davezac, from whom she received an education of unusual scope. She
matured early, being probably more or less at all times a part of the
social life that surrounded her parents and into which she made her
formal _entrée_ at the age of fourteen.

The social atmosphere of New Orleans at this time was like that of
no other city on the North American Continent. Creole tastes and
institutions were predominant. The only society of the city was Creole,
and very delightful and very exclusive it was. The French opera was
then, as it has been since, one of its conspicuous features. Tuesdays
and Saturdays were the nights when the fashionable world was to be seen
in the boxes, and the stage presented nothing more attractive than
the beautifully dressed women of the audience, with their artistic
coiffures. There were receptions in the boxes between the acts, and a
belle's powers of attraction were thus publicly manifested to a people
ever ready to add the tribute of its homage.

Cora Livingston before she was sixteen years old, gentle and retiring,
shrinking from publicity such as attaches to belles at this end of the
century, was known throughout the city of her birth as its greatest
belle. In the evenings of the warm season, when the balcony of her
house in Chartres Street was converted into a reception-room, in the
midst of a devoted family she received not only the admiration of
distinguished guests, but the chivalrous and silent homage of many an
unknown passer-by.

Frenchmen visiting New Orleans frequently brought letters of
introduction from Lafayette to Livingston, whom he had known in New
York. Cora thus early became accustomed to an association not only with
people of her own city, but with many eminent cosmopolites.

In 1812, when war was declared against England, New Orleans fell into
line and gave glorious proof of her loyalty. Her prejudices were
swallowed up in the common cause that drew all sections of the country
together, and she became in deed, as she already was in name, an
American city.

General Jackson's friendship for the Livingstons, of which he gave so
many handsome proofs, began at this time.

In 1822 Edward Livingston was elected to Congress, and for eleven years
thereafter Washington became his home. While he achieved prominence
as a legislator and statesman, the brilliancy of his daughter was
acquiring for her a national reputation. He leased the Decatur
residence on Lafayette Square, within a stone's throw of the White
House, and there gathered about this distinguished family the most
cultured element of the Washington of that period,--the Calhouns and
their gifted daughter with her perspicuous political theories, the
Adamses, Webster, Clay, Chief Justice Marshall, Martin Van Buren, Mrs.
Madison, their neighbor across the Park, and the widow of Admiral
Decatur.

[Illustration: Cora Livingston

(Mrs. Thomas Pennant Barton)

From miniature by herself]

It was the exception in those days for members of Congress
to have their own homes. They lived for the most part in hotels
and boarding-houses, and the resident branch of society was more
distinctive. Mrs. Decatur, widowed by the famous Bladensburg duel of
March 20, 1820, had retired to her estate at Kalorama, which became
one of the most delightful centres of resident society. She favored
the Livingstons with her sincere regard, and included them among her
guests, frequently as often as three times in one week. To stand
forth as she does from among the bevy of brilliant women who led the
social life of Washington, at a time when conversation was a fine art,
deriving a stimulus from such men as Randolph, Pinckney, Webster, and
Story, and when women were quite the equals, in wit, humor, and happy
rejoinder, of these veteran conversationalists, is an indisputable
proof of the superior mental endowments of Cora Livingston.

The Capitol was then as much a feature to the people of Washington as
it is to-day to the people outside of Washington. Thither the belles
and beaux of the city betook themselves as regularly as the session
opened, walking down Pennsylvania Avenue beneath the double row of
Lombardy poplars, planted when Jefferson was President. The halls of
Congress were smaller and better adapted to both seeing and hearing
than they are at present. The discussion of public questions differed
also from what one hears nowadays, there being more spontaneity in the
oratory and a larger number participating, unless, indeed, there was a
grand occasion when the big guns were brought into action, and Clay's
mellifluous voice was heard, or Webster's organ notes pealed forth, or
Randolph's shrill pipe rent the air.

A distinctive social feature of the time were the assembly balls,
held usually at some such place as Carucci's, where Cora Livingston's
graceful dancing again made her the cynosure of all eyes. The set
in which she danced--there were no round dances in those days--was
continually surrounded by admiring spectators, many dancers foregoing
that pleasure for the greater one of watching her. Cora Livingston
in a ball-gown, going through the stately evolutions of a quadrille,
the very embodiment of winsome grace, was a vision that tarried long
afterwards with many who so beheld her.

It was at Carucci's in the winter of 1826, when Miss Livingston's
belleship was at its height, that the waltz was first seen in
Washington. Baron Stoekelburg, of the Russian legation, was its
sponsor, and all Washington looked on with dismay, the Baron and his
fair partner, whose name has been lost in oblivion, though her temerity
should have earned her a better fate, having the floor to themselves.

In 1829 Livingston went into the Senate, and in May, 1831, he succeeded
Van Buren as Secretary of State, Van Buren having taken the high
ground, so Livingston expressed it, that as a candidate for the
Presidency he should not remain in the Cabinet.

In 1833 President Jackson offered Livingston the mission to France.
Our affairs with that country were in a complicated condition, and
Livingston's patriotism induced him to accept the office.

In April of that year his daughter was married to Thomas Pennant
Barton, a son of Dr. Benjamin Barton, of Philadelphia. President
Jackson appointed him Secretary of the legation at Paris, sending
his appointment enclosed in a note to Cora, that she might have the
pleasure of presenting it to him with her own hands. Her intimate
acquaintance with the President dated back to her early childhood, when
she was scarcely taller than the cavalry boots worn by the hero of
the battle of New Orleans, who readily promised to hang Mitchell, the
highest English officer among the prisoners, if the British so much as
touched a hair of her father's head. He evinced a paternal pride in the
adulation she everywhere received as a woman. At his request she stood
as godmother to his wife's great niece, Mary Donalson, now Mrs. Wilcox,
who was born in the White House during his term of office.

On their return to America, in 1835, both the Livingstons and Bartons
made their home at Montgomery Place at Barrytown on the Hudson, an
estate of three hundred acres, which Mr. Livingston had inherited
from his sister, Mrs. Montgomery, the widow of General Montgomery, of
Revolutionary fame.

Mr. Barton was a man of scholarly tastes, to which the tranquil
atmosphere of Montgomery Place, with all its historic associations,
together with the close companionship of his gifted wife, was an
inspiration. He accumulated there a library which, at the time of his
death, was considered one of the most valuable private collections
in America. He bequeathed it to his wife with the request that she
make such disposition of it as best pleased her. Shortly before her
death she arranged for its transfer to the Boston Library, where it is
preserved, as she knew her husband desired his life work should be, in
its entirety, and known as the Barton collection.

In 1870 she went to France to superintend there the publication of
a new edition of her father's work on Penal Laws, which appeared
simultaneously with an English edition. In France a number of her
father's friends were still living, among them Mr. Charles Lucas, of
the French Institute, who wrote the Preface to the edition brought out
in that country.

Having survived her parents and husband, Mrs. Barton died suddenly at
Montgomery Place on the 23d of May, 1873.

The last two winters of her life were spent in Washington, where, at a
time when American society was singularly rapid, she shone as the last
ray from the glory of an age that was gone, in her whole manner and
bearing the unmistakable gentlewoman.

Going one day to her former home, the Decatur House, she requested,
without giving her name, that she might be permitted to see the
drawing-room. General Beale, who then occupied the house, of which
his widow still retains possession, in courteous compliance with her
request, led the way thither. As she entered the familiar apartment,
memory, conjuring up the forms that were no more, shut out the actual
presence of her host. At length regaining her self-possession, she
said, "A strange desire has of late possessed me to see again this
house in which I spent such happy days. Just where I am standing now I
stood thirty-nine years ago and was married." "You then were Miss Cora
Livingston," said the general, entering into her mood and reverting
instinctively to the days when her scintillating wit had made the name
famous, though in the sorrow-laden woman there was no trace of the
glorious girl.



EMILY MARSHALL

(MRS. WILLIAM FOSTER OTIS)


Boston claims as her own the greatest American man of the nineteenth
century, and even with more justice, the most beautiful woman born in
America within the same period. "Emily Marshall as completely filled
the ideal of the lovely and feminine, as did Webster the ideal of the
intellectual and the masculine," Quincy, a native of the same State,
has written of her, adding that though superlatives were intended only
for the use of the very young, not even the cooling influences of half
a century enabled him to avoid them in speaking of her.

He never forgot the first time he saw her walking on Dover Street
Bridge, Boston's fashionable promenade in those days. "Centuries are
likely to come and go," he continued, "before society will again gaze
spellbound upon a woman so richly endowed with beauty as was Miss Emily
Marshall. She stood before us, a reversion to that faultless type of
structure which artists have imagined in the past, and to that ideal
loveliness of feminine disposition which poets have placed in the
mythical golden age."

Daniel Webster upon one occasion, during his residence in Boston,
entered the old Federal Street Theatre, and was hailed with cheers.
A few minutes later Emily Marshall appeared in her box, when the
entire audience rose as one man and offered her the same homage it had
bestowed upon Webster. To us who look back upon her, through nearly
three-quarters of a century, she stands forth in such exquisite relief
from her environment that we are conscious of it only where the light
of her beguiling presence touches it.

She was the daughter of Josiah Marshall, a Boston merchant in the
China trade, a man of sagacity and enterprise in business affairs, and
possessed of those traits that made him a most lovable father, wisdom,
benevolence, and gentleness, with a quaint humor and readiness in
_repartée_ that enhanced the bond of comradeship between himself and
his children.

The people of his own State, as well as the inhabitants of the far-away
Sandwich Islands, are indebted to him for many benefactions. To the
latter his ships carried the first missionaries, the materials for
the first houses erected there, and the carpenters to build them.
Upon being charged duty on some salmon which he had imported from
the Columbia River, he pointed out to Louis Cass the desirability of
establishing the claim of the United States to the region of Oregon.

In the improvements which added so much to the prosperity of Boston in
1826 he was Mayor Quincy's constant adviser and abettor.

He was a handsome man, with firm mouth and kindling eyes, and his quick
step was well known in the business world, where to many a young
man he gave the opportunity which was the opening of a successful
mercantile career.

He was a son of Lieutenant Isaac Marshall of the Revolutionary
army, and a great-grandson of John Marshall, one of the founders of
Billerica, Massachusetts, in which town he was born. In the year 1800
he married Priscilla Waterman, a daughter of Freeman Waterman, who
represented the town of Halifax in the Cambridge Convention which
ratified for Massachusetts the Constitution of the United States.

Waterman had a sister who was distinguished for her charm, and who
married a Mr. Josselyn. Traditions of the Josselyn beauty lingered in
Plymouth until Emily Marshall's time. Mrs. Marshall was a woman of much
beauty, grace, and dignity.

Emily was born in the year 1807 on an estate at Cambridge, which had
been laid out a century before by Thomas Brattle. Shortly after her
birth her parents moved into a house in Brattle Square, Boston, known
as the White House. It was built upon a terrace, with steps running
down to the square. A large, old-fashioned garden in the rear was
one of its attractions. The house had already had two distinguished
tenants, Lieutenant-Governor Bolin and John Adams, the latter having
lived there when he was a young lawyer.

When Emily was fourteen years old her family once more transplanted
their household gods, going this time into the house on Franklin
Place, to which her beauty brought such fame. It had already begun to
manifest itself, and when she was but nine or ten years of age she was
frequently stopped on the street by strangers, who asked whose child
she was and involuntarily told her of her budding loveliness. Yet so
unconscious did she ever appear of its possession, so wholly lacking
in personal vanity, that one of her sisters, gazing upon her one night
arrayed in a ball-gown, and unable to restrain her admiration, asked
her if she realized how beautiful she was. "Yes," she replied, "I know
that I am beautiful, but I do not understand why people act so unwisely
about it."

Her education was begun at Madame English's school, where Russell
Sturgis, afterwards a partner of the Barings, said he first made her
acquaintance. Like every one else who ever saw her, he never forgot
her. More than forty years after her death, writing to thank her
daughter for the photograph of a portrait she had sent him, he said, "I
remember perfectly the portrait and the time when it was painted. No
painter could ever give the brilliant expression which always lighted
her beautiful face; the portrait is as good, therefore, as any one
could make it."

At Dr. Park's school on Mount Vernon Street, then one of the best
girls' schools in Boston, Margaret Fuller was one of her school-mates,
and confessed later to a sister of Emily's that she would willingly
have changed her mental gifts for those of the beauty and magnetism
with which Emily was endowed.

From Dr. Park's Emily went to Madame Canda's French school on Chestnut
Street. Her musical education, which continued till the time of her
marriage, was conducted by Mr. Matthew, Mademoiselle Berthien, and Mr.
Ostinelli.

The long acquaintance existing for generations among the families and
individuals who made up the Boston society of Emily Marshall's day,
had instilled into it a spirit of delightful simplicity. A traveller
from Great Britain who visited the United States early in the century
declared that all the people of the Bay State called one another by
their Christian names.

Dinner-parties were daylight affairs, beginning usually not later than
four o'clock. The dinner was served in courses, beginning with soup,
which was followed frequently by a corn-meal pudding designed for the
avowed purpose of mitigating the appetite before the introduction of
the roast, which was carved upon the table by the host, and served with
Madeira, port, or sherry.

One of Harrison Gray Otis's favorite after-dinner stories, which he
told in his own matchless way, was of the first appearance of champagne
in Boston. It was introduced by the French consul, the unsophisticated
Bostonians partaking of the palatable beverage with all the confidence
which they were wont to bestow upon cider, of which they thought it to
be only a mild form and of foreign extraction.

From eight until twelve were the hours for balls, at which girls
out for the first time wore white book-muslin frocks, the belles of
a season or more appearing in tarleton, and dancing out a pair of
slippers in an evening, slippers then being made with paper soles and
no heels. Light refreshments, such as nuts, raisins, or oysters, were
served at these evening affairs, and were passed on trays, there being
no elaborately set supper-tables.

The five-o'clock tea, now so prevalent throughout the country, made its
way first into Boston and New York, where it appeared in all its native
English simplicity.

From England also came actors bringing us our first conception of
Shakespearean characters, Cooper interpreting Hamlet to a Boston
audience in 1807, the year Emily Marshall was born, followed by
Wallack, Edmund Kean, Charles Matthews, the comedian, and Phillips,
with his infectious songs, the echoes of such refrains as "Though love
is warm awhile" floating long after from drawing-room, nursery, and
kitchen.

From the mother-country came our literature of the early century,
Scott, the new writer, being much read, also Fanny Burney, Jane Austen,
Maria Edgeworth, and Shakespeare always.

Boston early achieved her reputation as a patroness of letters. At her
noted seat of learning not only the youth of America, but a number of
foreigners were even then educated. Many an American boy who claimed
Harvard as his Alma Mater had journeyed to her sacred precincts, when
the country was in its teens, all the way from the wilds of Kentucky on
horseback.

Commencement day was a State holiday, when the flower of Massachusetts
womanhood united to do honor to the occasion. Many a man went thence
on his way with a face enshrined in his memory that he had not found
in his Virgil or his Homer, though nothing more perfect graced those
classic pages than the face of Emily Marshall.

Though Willis's sonnet speaks of her eyes as hazel, they have been
described elsewhere as black. It is probable that their color varied
and intensified with every thought or emotion. Her hair was of that
golden brown that flashes like bronze in the sunlight. In height she
was five feet and five inches. "Her personal grace," said one of her
admirers, a judge of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, "was not
acquired; a creature of such absolute natural perfection was physically
unable to make an ungraceful movement."

One who knew her in daily life writes: "The unspeakable grace, the
light of the eye, the expression of the face, they come back to me as I
think of her, but I cannot convey them to others. It was the light in a
porcelain vase. You could draw the outlines of the vase, but when the
light was quenched it could be known no more."

Enshrined in this form of almost unearthly loveliness was a spirit of
even rarer beauty, a character that would have made even an ugly woman
a force. In every relationship she wielded an exquisite influence. With
a nature profoundly and silently religious were combined a high sense
of duty, a ready sympathy, an absolute frankness and simplicity, a
clear, practical judgment, and a rapid insight into character.

In conversation she drew out the best thoughts of others intuitively
and without vanity, reserving her own brilliant intellect and ready wit
for those who really enjoyed it.

To her children, her self-abnegation, her gentleness, her faultless
judgment, the intense womanliness of her nature, made her an ideal
mother. She was as tenderly loved by women as she was chivalrously
worshipped by man. Her twenty-nine years of life were all too short for
those who prized and lost her.

"Say that no envious thought could have been possible in her presence,"
is another woman's tribute to her; "that her sunny ways were
fascinating to all alike; that she was as kind and attentive to the
stupid and tedious as if they were talented and of social prominence."
Of the effect everywhere produced by so exquisite a personality there
are countless evidences. It was not restricted to any age, sex, or
social class. Mr. William Amory claims to have been in his youth the
most distinguished man in Boston, because he was not in love with Emily
Marshall.

A carpenter, whose shop was near the house in which she lived after her
marriage, failed to go home to his dinner one day, and being asked the
reason, replied that he had seen Mrs. Otis go out earlier in the day
and he hoped that she might come back that way, adding that he would
rather see her any day than eat his dinner.

Franklin Place became the favorite walk with the young men of Boston,
many of whom never failed once or twice daily to pass her house, with
the hope of catching a glimpse of her at one of its windows. Dr.
Malcolm's church, of which she was a member, also added many devotees
to its congregation, William Lloyd Garrison being among the number, who
confessed that he occasionally went there with the hope of seeing the
lovely face of Emily Marshall.

Nor was the repute of her beauty confined to her native city. Wherever
she went her unusual presence was instantly felt; she needed no society
correspondent to herald her, no princely admirer to create prestige for
her. Her claim to the world's homage was self-evident. She was a queen
in her own right.

When she visited Philadelphia, so great was the desire to see her that
the young girls were let out of school before the usual closing hour,
that they might have an opportunity to see her as she passed along the
street.

While she was at Saratoga, "gay, amusing, and confusing," reached
in those days from Boston by a tedious stage-coach ride across the
country, she never left the hotel nor returned to it without attracting
a throng of people, eager even for a passing glimpse of her.

Nathaniel Parker Willis, who once had made a journey in the same
coach in which Emily Marshall and her mother were travelling, related
afterwards that wherever the coach stopped for dinner the news of the
marvellous beauty of one of the passengers was spread abroad so rapidly
that by the time Miss Marshall returned to her seat in the coach a
great crowd of people would be assembled to see her.

The following is Willis's very pretty acrostic on Emily Marshall, which
is included in his published verses in the form of a sonnet:

       "Elegance floats about thee like a dress,
          Melting the airy motion of thy form
        Into one swaying grace, and loveliness,
          Like a rich tint that makes a picture warm,
        Is lurking in the chestnut of thy tress,
          Enriching it as moonlight after storm
        Mingles dark shadows into gentleness.
          A beauty that bewilders like a spell
        Reigns in thine eyes' dear hazel, and thy brow,
          So pure in veined transparency, doth tell
        How spiritually beautiful art thou,--
          A temple where angelic love might dwell,
        Life in thy presence were a thing to keep,
        Like a gay dreamer clinging to his sleep."

Percival's sonnet, published in the _Literary Gazette_ of Philadelphia,
August, 1825, is perhaps the best known of the poetical outpourings
which her loveliness inspired. It also is an acrostic.

       "Earth holds no fairer, lovelier than thou,
          Maid of the laughing lip and frolic eye;
        Innocence sits upon thy open brow
          Like a pure spirit in its native sky.
        If ever beauty stole the heart away,
          Enchantress, it would fly to meet thy smile;
        Moments would seem by thee a summer's day
          And all around thee an Elysian isle.
        Roses are nothing to thy maiden blush
          Sent o'er thy cheek's soft ivory; and night
          Has naught so dazzling in its world of light
        As the dark rays that from thy lashes gush.
          Love lurks among thy silken curls and lies,
          Like a keen archer, in thy kindling eyes."

William Foster Otis, to whom she was married in May, 1831, first saw
her when she was fourteen years old, on her way home from school. He
loved her from the moment his eyes fell upon her, and honored her with
the loyalty of a lifetime, though death robbed him of her five years
after their marriage.

Of the wedding there is extant a very good description in the form of a
letter written by the bridegroom's sister, under date of May 20, 1831.

  "There were fifty guests at the wedding, an enormous crowd at the
  visit [reception] which kept us until half-past ten from supper.
  The bride looked very lovely, and was modest and unaffected. Her
  dress was a white crêpe lisse, with a rich vine of silver embroidery
  at the top of the deep hem. The neck and sleeves were trimmed with
  three rows of elegant blond lace very wide. Gloves embroidered with
  silver, stockings ditto. Her dark-brown hair dressed plain in front,
  high bows with a few orange-blossoms and a rich blond lace scarf,
  tastefully arranged on her head, one end hanging front over her left
  shoulder, the other hanging behind over her right. No ornaments of
  any kind, either on her neck or ears, not even a buckle. I never saw
  her look so beautiful. Every one was remarking on her beauty as they
  passed in and out of the room. Mrs. Marshall [the bride's mother]
  looked extremely handsome. William [the bridegroom] looked quite as
  handsome as the bride, and seemed highly delighted. The bride and
  groom went to their house alone [70 Beacon Street] about one o'clock
  [in the morning]. The groomsmen serenaded them until the birds sang
  as loud as their instruments."

James Freeman Clarke, who was present at her wedding, said afterwards
that he "had often been perplexed at the accounts he had read of
the great personal power of Mary Queen of Scots. He had never been
able to comprehend how the mere beauty of a woman could so control
the destinies of individuals and nations, causing men gladly to
accept death as the price of a glance of the eyes or a touch of the
hand." After he had beheld Emily Marshall, however, he realized the
possibilities of such a power that is not created once in a century.

She died in 1826, leaving two daughters and an infant son.

       "She had no autumn, not a storm
          Darkened her youthful happiness;
        No winter came to bend that form,
          Or silver o'er a silken tress.

       "We miss her when we gaze on beauty's throng,
        We miss her, aye, and we shall mourn her long.
        Yet mourn her not, she had the best of life;
        A tender mother and a happy wife."

The above lines were written by her friend Fanny Inglis, afterwards
Madame Calderon de la Barca.

The chivalrous devotion which her daughters call forth, after more than
threescore years, from the men who knew her is in itself sufficient to
place her among the classics of American womanhood.



OCTAVIA WALTON

(MADAME LE VERT)


Into a world in which so many are born strangers, some later to know it
in part and others destined to remain forever out of touch with life,
and lonely spectators rather than a part of it, Octavia Walton came as
unto her own. Every atom of her being was in absolute accord with the
universe. No bristling antipathies hedged in her genial personality nor
raised barriers between herself and the beauties of life. She perceived
them always and with an enthusiasm that raised not only her own
existence, but that of many others, above the level of the commonplace.
She was a sort of social sun, radiating light, warmth, and beauty upon
all the lives that touched hers, and it has been said that no one
ever came in contact with her, of no matter what rank or condition in
life, without experiencing a sense of elation. She was one of nature's
cosmopolites, a woman to whom the whole world was home and the people
of all nations her friends. Far more to this gift of temperament than
to those of her personal beauty or intellect, does she owe the eminence
of her position among the American women of her century.

She was born early enough in the history of the Republic to partake
in a measure of the glow of patriotic enthusiasm that had been the
inspiration of its founders. Though she was intensely American, she
grew up with no touch of bitterness for the mother-country, cherishing
the memory of Chatham's words uttered in the House of Lords, "You
cannot conquer America," rather than his sovereign's misguided efforts
"to be a king."

Her grandfather, George Walton, who died two years before her birth,
was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. He was a
native of Prince Edward County, Virginia, but removed, prior to the
Revolution, to Georgia, whence he was sent as a delegate to the first
Congress. He had married, in the State of his adoption, Miss Camber,
the daughter of an English nobleman and the heiress to large tracts
of land that were grants from the crown. To this grandmother Octavia
Walton was indebted for many graphic stories of the thrilling days
through which her country had passed in establishing itself as an
independent nation. She was in Philadelphia with her husband, who was
in attendance upon the Congress there, when the news of the fall of
Yorktown was received. The town was quietly sleeping when the watchman
calling the hours announced, as usual, "Past midnight, and all's well!"
then, after an instant's pause and in a voice that resounded through
the streets, "And Cornwallis is taken!" It sent a thrill through the
town, and turned that October night into day, for presently the streets
were swarming with people wild with joyous excitement.

When Madame Le Vert related to Lamartine, with whom she passed
an evening during one of her visits to Paris, in speaking of the
Declaration of Independence, that her grandfather's name was thereon
inscribed, and that he had given his blood and his fortune to the cause
of America's freedom, the Frenchman arose and bowed to her profoundly.
"Madame," he said, "in his name you have a noble heritage. It is the
true patent of nobility, and you rightly cherish your descent from such
a brave and heroic patriot with honest pride."

The State of Georgia gave George Walton high honors, making him
governor and, later, judge of the Supreme Court, and erecting a
monument to commemorate his sterling qualities in one of the principal
thoroughfares of the city of Augusta. His son and namesake married
the accomplished and beautiful Miss Sally Walker, the daughter of
a distinguished jurist of Georgia. Of the two children of their
marriage,--a son and a daughter,--the latter was born at Bellevue, near
Augusta, in the year 1810. She was named by her mother after the Roman
Octavia, the beloved and noble sister of Augustus and the deserted wife
of Marc Anthony, and was taught to revere the beauty of a character
that possessed, as Pope Pius IX. said, when Madame Le Vert told him for
whom she was named, "every virtue and grace that should adorn a woman."

[Illustration: OCTAVIA WALTON

(MADAME LE VERT)]

Her early education was directed entirely by her mother and
grandmother. An old Scotch tutor later assumed charge of the studies
of Octavia and her brother, instructing them together in the
sciences and languages. The facility with which Octavia mastered the
latter was an evidence of the remarkable elasticity and adaptability
of her nature. She acquired readily not only the language, but all the
gestures and mannerisms of a foreign people. To her father this branch
of her education was a matter of much interest. In the year 1821, when
she was eleven years old, he became Secretary of State for Florida
under Andrew Jackson, who was governor of the Territory. There often
came to him in connection with the affairs of his office, letters and
despatches in French and Spanish, of both of which languages she had so
accurate a knowledge that he could entirely rely upon her translations
of them. During a court ball at which she was present while in England,
some years after her marriage, she delighted the ambassadors from
France, Spain, and Italy by talking with each in his own tongue. She
pleased the Holy Father no less upon the occasion of her audience with
him, when, after he had spoken with her in both French and Spanish,
thinking it might be less of an effort for him, she asked him to speak
in his own tongue. During her residence in Florida, where her father
succeeded General Jackson in the governorship, she also acquired a
goodly store of Indian legends, which became later the delight of many
an audience. She related on shipboard one night the story of Alabama
having received the name from a tribe of Indians who were driven by a
fierce northern foe to the forests of the southeast, and, coming upon a
beautiful river, the chief struck his tent-pole, exclaiming "Alabama!
Alabama!" meaning, "Here we rest." She was greeted, upon going on deck
the following day, with an outspread buffalo-robe, which a Chicagoan
was taking to England as a gift for the Queen, and requested to make it
her "Alabama" during the remainder of the voyage.

When her father selected a permanent seat of government for Florida, he
permitted her to give it a name, and she called it Tallahassee,--the
Indian word for "beautiful land,"--as a courtesy to the Seminole chief
who had first pitched his tent on the spot. She had much sympathy and
affection for the Indians, often pleading their cause against some act
of aggression or injustice, and they had a tender reverence for her,
calling her frequently "the white dove of peace."

One of the memorable events of her young life was the visit of
Lafayette to America. It enters into the record of many lives that
covered that period, some of which were far spent and some so
tenderly youthful that the little marquis saluted them only by proxy,
delegating somebody else "to kiss the babies" while he shook countless
outstretched hands, for he was as complaisant as he was artistic.
He wrote to the widow of his old friend, General George Walton,
expressing a wish to see her during his stay in Mobile. Her health
was not sufficiently robust, however, to admit of her undertaking a
journey with the few comforts that were then possible. She sent her
daughter-in-law and her granddaughter to represent her, intrusting to
Octavia a miniature of her husband, the better to recall his features
to Lafayette's memory and to enable him to realize how strong was the
resemblance the little girl bore to her illustrious grandfather. She
talked to him in French, so that the interview was to Lafayette a time
of delightful relaxation, and it was with genuine reluctance that he
saw it draw to a close. To Octavia it was the first in a long series of
interesting memories associated with Mobile, whither her family removed
from Florida in the year 1835. In the latter State, however, she spent
the happy period of her young womanhood; hence Lady Emmeline Stuart
Wortley, in some lines addressed to her at a later period, calls her
"Sweet Rose of Florida."

Pensacola was the naval station of the gulf coast, and the constant
coming and going of men-of-war, with the attendant festivities of balls
of welcome and farewell banquets, were a distinctive feature in the
social life of that portion of the Territory.

Octavia Walton, the governor's daughter, cultivated intellectually
to a degree that made her the appreciative listener and intelligent
talker among men of science and of letters, and with a personal beauty
that made her the admiration of every one, occupied from her earliest
girlhood a position of unusual prominence.

Long runs with her brother in the invigorating air of the coast had
given to her supple figure, with its graceful curves, that erect
carriage which she always retained. Her head was well poised, and her
soft brown hair parted simply above a broad brow of unusual whiteness
and transparency. In her blue eyes there lurked a suggestion of
the cool and quiet depth of a forest, while her mouth, that feature
which, says Oliver Wendell Holmes, we all make for ourselves, denoted
the sweetness of her character. These were the visible forms of the
loveliness of the young Octavia Walton, whom Frederika Bremer, the
Swedish novelist, called "the magnolia flower of the South."

In 1835, the year her family moved to Mobile, accompanied by her
mother and brother, she made a tour of the United States, visiting
during the summer the famous resort of the North, Saratoga Springs,
and going to Washington after the assembling of Congress in December.
She attained a fame during that year that made her the inspiration of
poets noted for the beauty of their lyric verse, and the subject of
several analytical writings. She formed during the same period the
friendship of two of the most eminent men of that time, Washington
Irving and Henry Clay. She met Irving in travelling, and discovered
his identity in a singular way. It was three years after his return
from Spain, where he had represented his country with so much dignity
and ability that his welcome home had been much in the nature of an
ovation. The stage-coach, in which so many pleasant acquaintances were
made, was yet the usual means of transportation, though the duration
of journeys had been greatly lessened by the successful introduction
of the steamboat, in which enterprise Fulton already had competitors,
one young Vanderbilt running a rival line on the Sound between New York
and Providence. Irving, who had been on the dock when Fulton made
the first experiment with his steamer, used to relate with exquisite
humor how the breathless silence of the crowd of curious spectators
who watched her puff off into the stream was broken by the voice of
an incredulous man saying, "She may go well enough for a time, but
give me a good sloop." Being singularly shy, he usually talked but
little among strangers. Divining in the young girl, who sat opposite
him in the stage-coach for several days during the summer of 1835,
those same qualities--"the sound and pure intellect and the heart
full of affection"--that so endeared her to Miss Bremer, he dropped
frequently into the current of bright talk she kept up with her mother
and brother. They speculated frequently upon his identity, for his
appearance was unusual, his manner courtly, and his language that of a
most cultivated man. While she was talking with her brother in Spanish
one day, he joined in their conversation and related some incident in
connection with a bull-fight he had seen when in Spain. Octavia had
already heard the identical story from another source, and, connecting
the two narrations, she exclaimed, quickly, and quite unconsciously
betraying the fact that his identity had been a matter of curiosity
to her, "I know who you are! You are Washington Irving. Mr. Slidell,
who related that story to me, told me that Washington Irving was
standing beside him when it happened." Thus began a friendship that
had an extensive influence upon her life. Realizing how keen were her
powers of observation, and how unusual her command of language, he
advised her to keep a journal, which was her first effort at writing,
at which she attained later a leading position among women of letters
at the South. He corresponded with her till the end of his life, and
aided her with many suggestions gathered from his own experience in
a long literary career. She in return shed many a ray of brightness
over an existence that, with all its fame and success, was not without
its lonely hours. The last time they met he reluctantly watched her
departure from Sunnyside. "I feel, my child," he said, "that you are
taking all the sunshine away with you."

Henry Clay looked upon her with the same tender pride that
characterized Irving's attitude towards her. The beauty of her feet
being at one time a subject of comment in his presence, he said that,
while he was not prepared to pass judgment upon them, he was proud to
be able to bear testimony to a beauty of tongue that he considered
without parallel. Like Irving's, his friendship for her knew no change
during the remainder of his lifetime. When the corner-stone of the
monument erected to his memory in New Orleans was laid, she delivered
an address that was well worthy of the eloquence of the man it
eulogized.

In 1836 Octavia Walton was married, in the city of Mobile, to Dr.
Henry S. Le Vert, a son of Dr. Claud Le Vert, who, coming to America
as surgeon of the fleet under Rochambeau, had remained there after
the termination of hostilities, settling in Virginia, and marrying a
niece of Admiral Vernon. As Madame Le Vert, Octavia Walton attained
that same social sovereignty that was achieved a few years later by
Mrs. Rush, of Philadelphia, and at a still more recent period by Mrs.
Astor, of New York. The same sort of instinctive tribute was everywhere
accorded each of these women, raising her to an eminence in which
she was sustained by the unusual order of the gifts with which she
was endowed. In Mobile, so absolute was the leadership of Madame Le
Vert that she was frequently designated simply as "Madame," it being
everywhere understood that the title without the accompaniment of any
name applied only to her.

Her home on Government Street was the most noted of the city. There
she entertained at various times not only the most distinguished of
the people of her own country, but many eminent foreigners, Kossuth,
among others, and Frederika Bremer. Lady Emmeline Stuart Wortley, the
daughter of the Duke of Rutland, having been her guest for several
weeks, gave her later that introduction that made possible the
establishment of her social fame in England.

Joseph Jefferson, growing up in the profession in which he now stands
in the foremost rank, and in whom she early recognized the divine spark
of genius, had frequent proofs of the kindliness of her hospitality.

Her library was the feature of her home in which she always evinced the
most interest. She never abandoned those habits of study which kept
her in touch with the progressive minds of the world. Beauty alone
is not sufficient to give a woman the place Madame Le Vert filled.
It attracts, but there must be behind it the sustaining force of an
intelligence radiating sympathy, of a mentality developed and adorned
with those graces that enable it to enter into and illuminate the
lives that approach it. She continued to read in the foreign languages
she had mastered in her early girlhood, painstakingly teaching them
to her children, whom, in their infancy, she often sung to sleep with
the love ditties of Italy. To her husband she was a continual source
of revelation and pride. Precise, practical, profoundly interested
in his profession, he felt little interest in the purely fashionable
element of the life that revolved about her. In her relationship to
it, however, her power to attract and hold such a diversity of tastes
and temperaments he found an interesting study. At her levees and
receptions it was his delight to take up his position where he could
watch her, and, if possible, where he could occasionally catch the
sparkle of her words.

To a nature keenly alive to every impression, the loss of her only
brother, to whom she was attached by ties of an extraordinary sympathy,
brought a grief that for a long time overshadowed her happy spirit. A
few years after this loss,--in June, 1853,--accompanied by her father
and the elder of her daughters, she made her first visit to the Old
World, whose treasures and resources her classical education had so
ably fitted her to enjoy. Her journal and letters written during this
period and a subsequent trip ring with the enthusiasm of a girl. They
formed the basis of her first published work, which met with much
success, for in those days the theme was fresher, and she handled it
with a sprightliness that gave individuality and interest to every
page. Very graphically she relates how the first ardor with which she
embarked upon the new and delightful experience of a transatlantic
voyage was quenched by that unromantic malady, sea-sickness. With the
memory of the torture fresh upon her, she wrote that Solomon, when
he ejaculated, "O that mine enemy would write a book!" probably knew
nothing of the agonies of sea-sickness, or he would rather have invoked
that malady upon him.

The London season was at its height when she arrived there. Well
introduced, she created so favorable an impression upon a society
where the success of an American depends largely if not entirely upon
personal merit as evinced by his or her good breeding, intelligence,
and powers to entertain, that she experienced all the delights of a
hospitality which to the uninitiated is cold and exclusive. She was
presented to the Queen at a court ball, to which she received the
unusual honor of an invitation without a previous presentation to Her
Majesty. With genuine regret she saw the days allotted to her stay
in England draw to a close. Everywhere, however, she found and made
friends, many strangers recognizing in her, in all its strength and
purity, that sympathy which makes the world akin, and involuntarily
opening their hearts to her. She was intensely interested in every
one and everything, so that her life never contracted. Her early
memories were associated with the Spanish, and she never outgrew
her appreciation for the grace of their civilization. Her ability to
speak the language added much to the pleasure and profit of her visit
to Spain, and her journal recounting her stage-coach experiences
contains frequent allusions to the unfailing courtesy of the people
of that country. In Italy her knowledge of the language of the land
again made her the spokesman of her little party, and with beneficial
results. In Florence she had the pleasure of meeting the Brownings,
and the interest they inspired in her seems to have been mutual. Mrs.
Browning, whose health did not permit her to go out in the night air,
broke the rule it had entailed upon her and went to a party given in
honor of Madame Le Vert on the eve of her departure, that she might
once more have the pleasure of seeing and talking with her. During one
of her visits to Rome she had one of those peculiar experiences that
evinced the friendliness she everywhere inspired. She had gone with her
daughter to St. Peter's to attend the ceremony known as the Apostle's
banquet. At the termination of the exercises there began an awful
struggle for liberty in the packed aisles of the great church. Madame
Le Vert was well-nigh overpowered, when suddenly she felt herself
lifted from her feet, raised high in the air, and safely ensconced on
a window-ledge, while a reassuring voice whispered, in French, "There,
little woman, don't be afraid; you'll be safe there." Her rescuer was
a powerful Russian woman, who, when she had placed Miss Le Vert beside
her mother, said, simply, "Do not forget me when you think of the
Apostle's banquet," and moved away with the surging crowd.

In all her journeys, both in her own country and in Europe, she was
accompanied by her colored maid Betsey. "North, South, East, and
West," wrote one of her friends, "goes Betsey with her mistress
through bristling ranks of abolitionists, up the Rhine, over the Alps,
everywhere goes Betsey."

"If you would see the ideal relationship between a lady and her female
slave," said Frederika Bremer, "you should see Octavia Le Vert and her
clever, handsome, mulatto attendant, Betsey. Betsey seems really not to
live for anything else than for her mistress Octavia."

At the Austrian border they were put through a series of questions,
all of their responses "being recorded," said Madame Le Vert, "for
the benefit of posterity." Betsey was put down as a Moor, much to her
dismay, and she besought her mistress to assure them that she "had
nothing but pure American blood in her veins, and was a slave from the
South."

During her second visit to Europe, in 1855, Madame Le Vert spent the
summer in Paris, the governor of Alabama having named her Commissioner
from that State to the Paris Exposition of that year. His gallantry was
a frequent subject of comment and appreciation, for she was the only
woman among the commissioners. The position, however, seems to have
been purely honorary, for she lamented that when asked to point out
the products of Alabama in her department, she could only indicate her
daughter. "If there had been even only a few cotton-seed," she said,
"it would at least have served to swear by."

She witnessed the enthusiastic reception tendered by the French nation
to the Queen of England, was present at the ball given by the Emperor
in her honor, and was at the opera the night the royal party visited
it, when the whole audience rose _en masse_ at the first note of
England's national anthem, sung by Roger, Alboni, and Cruvelli. She
heard with a thrill of enthusiasm the "Vive la Reine Victoria" that
burst from a thousand lips, and saw the Emperor lead the gracious queen
three times to the front of the box to acknowledge the tumultuous
tribute. In her own box sat, on that memorable night, an ex-President
of the great republic across the water,--Millard Fillmore.

A visit made during her stay in Ferrara, Italy, to the home of the poet
Ariosto so impressed Madame Le Vert that it was productive of a notable
result after her return to America. His house had been purchased by the
government, and everything in it was preserved in the order in which he
had left it at the time of his death. Realizing that it was regarded
as a shrine, and devoutly visited by those who would honor the memory
of the immortal poet, her thoughts reverted to the home of the great
American general, Mount Vernon, then falling into decay, whereas it
might be similarly preserved by the patriotism of the people. She took
up the question earnestly after her return to America, and did for the
cause at the South as much as Mrs. Harrison Gray Otis did for it at
the North. In one day she received at her home in Mobile, in small
contributions, upward of a thousand dollars.

Many of Madame Le Vert's most charming letters were written to her
mother. After a long day of travel or sight-seeing she frequently sat
up far into the night that she might not neglect the pleasant duty of
writing these letters.

Her parents' home in Mobile, of which city her father was for a time
mayor, was near her own, and she continued to be much with them until
their lives closed, which they did in close succession, shortly before
the outbreak of the war. Her husband's death occurred during the last
year of that melancholy period which shook the homes of the South to
their foundation. She went North and remained for over a year after the
close of the war, accompanied by her two daughters. She returned to
the South for a time, but eventually removed to New York, disposing of
her home and many of her possessions, the losses she had sustained and
the altered conditions of her life rendering Mobile no longer to her a
place of happy existence.

Having been so long a leader, she continued to exercise various queenly
prerogatives, which to many people at the North seemed eccentric. She
had not the prestige there that would have made them possible, though
she was never without her coterie of admirers.

Her later years were not affluent, and she was obliged to put her
talents to bread-winning purposes. She died in the city in which she
had been born, Augusta, Georgia, on the 13th of March, 1877.



FANNY TAYLOR

(MRS. THOMAS HARDING ELLIS)


The loveliness of Virginia women has been a theme of song and verse.
Among the Richmond belles of sixty years ago none were more justly
celebrated than that trio known as the Richmond Graces, Sally
Chevalier, Fanny Taylor, and Sally Watson. Close companions from early
childhood, their unusual beauty as they grew to womanhood brought
them fame individually and collectively. Sally Chevalier became the
wife of Abram Warwick, Sally Watson, of Alexander Rives, and Fanny
Taylor, of whom this sketch is designed to treat at greater length,
was twice married. She was educated at the excellent school of Miss
Jane Mackenzie, in Richmond, at a time when a young lady's education
embraced a rather superficial dip into the languages, a good deal of
poetry, some history, a neat Italian handwriting, and a care of their
peach-blossom complexions and slender hands. Frivolous as it sounds
compared with the curriculum of girls' schools in good standing at this
end of the century, the history of the South furnishes many evidences
of the profundity as well as the brilliancy of its women.

[Illustration: FANNY TAYLOR

(MRS. THOMAS HARDING ELLIS)

From portrait by Thomas Sully]

With her friends, Sally Chevalier and Sally Watson, Fanny Taylor was
a pupil in the dancing academies of Mr. Xaupi and Mr. Boisseau. They
excelled in the grace and beauty of their dancing, and at the Assembly
balls it was their custom to occupy places in the same cotillon. They
enjoyed the delicate celebrity of having pieces of dancing-music named
after them, and when "Sally Chevalier," "Fanny Taylor," or "Sally
Watson," was called for, Judah, Ruffin, and Lomax, those dusky magnates
of the ball-room, brought forth the melody with an air that was their
own peculiar tribute to the fair young queens.

About the time she reached maturity, Fanny Taylor removed with her
mother from Richmond to "Glenarron," the superb James River estate of
her brother-in-law, Mr. William Galt. Shortly afterwards she returned
to Richmond, where she spent a winter as the guest of her friends, Mr.
and Mrs. Warwick. She became noted as the most beautiful woman in the
Old Dominion. In a word, she was the belle of Richmond, which boasted
the most delightful society in the South, and she would not have
exchanged places with a princess of the royal house of England.

Richmond of those days was too small for social divisions and
subdivisions. There was but one set, and every one who went
into society at all belonged to it. It was well established and
conservative. Its traditions were ancient, and it tolerated no
innovations. It had its calling hours from twelve till four, when
its drawing-rooms were crowded with young men from the neighboring
plantations, professional men, and legislators, on whose ears the tones
of the Capitol bell announcing the opening of the session were wont to
fall in vain. There were dancing-parties for young people, beginning
at seven or eight in the evening, and dinner-parties for distinguished
guests at four o'clock in the afternoon.

The graceful art of carving formed an indispensable part of a
gentleman's education, and a host gave tangible proof of his
hospitality when from his end of the table he served his guests with
his own hand, selecting the choice parts of a joint or fowl for the
guest of honor.

The ladies retired at the conclusion of dinner, leaving the gentlemen
in possession of the table, being a custom of their English forefathers
which their colonial antecedents had adhered to probably in the
log-cabin days when there was a state occasion.

There were no teas and no _débuts_. Girls never came out, because, as
Thomas Nelson Page has said, "they had never been in." As soon as they
were old enough to be out of the nursery they drifted naturally into
the drawing-room, and there grew up in that social sphere which many of
them were destined later to sway as queens.

Within a year after her reign in Richmond society Fanny Taylor became
the wife of Archibald Morgan Harrison, of Fluvanna County, a most
distinguished agriculturist, at a time when it was worth being a
Virginia farmer and a country gentleman. They lived at "Carysbrook,"
Mr. Harrison's estate on the Rivanna River, in the royal style
easily possible to the South in her days of prosperity. She was a
great-granddaughter of Benjamin Harrison, a signer of the Declaration
of Independence, and her husband was a great-grandson of Benjamin
Harrison, the father of Benjamin the signer. Their life of pastoral
beauty closed with Mr. Harrison's death. His widow was at the height of
her loveliness, and when she went once more into the world she evoked
the most unstinted and genuine admiration. Mrs. Nellie Custis Lewis,
who was expending on her motherless grandchildren all the solicitude
that her grandmother, Martha Washington, had lavished upon her when
she was similarly bereaved, expressed the desire that her son-in-law
should woo Mrs. Harrison. So truly did she admire the qualities of
her character, as well as her great personal beauty, that she was the
only woman she had ever seen, she said, whom she would welcome as her
daughter's successor, and willingly see placed over her grandchildren.
She never had an opportunity to extend that magnanimous, however
cordial, greeting, for the youthful Mrs. Harrison, after six years of
widowhood, bestowed her hand upon Colonel Thomas Harding Ellis, of
Richmond. He had been secretary of the American legation at Mexico, and
was subsequently for nearly fourteen years president of the James River
and Kanawha Canal Company, his administration covering the period of
the war, when the canal was the most important line of improvement in
the State for supplying with agricultural produce the city of Richmond
and the army of Northern Virginia.

They visited Washington shortly after their marriage, where they were
guests of Mr. John Y. Mason. Mr. Mason presented them to President and
Mrs. Polk, whose courtesies to them added much to the pleasure of the
Washington chapter of their honeymoon days.

Mrs. Ellis's mother had stood at the bedside of her uncle William
Henry Harrison when, in the presence of his cabinet, he uttered those
memorable last words, "I desire the principles of the Constitution to
be maintained."

The union of Colonel and Mrs. Ellis terminated with the death of Mrs.
Ellis in July, 1897, followed, in a few months, by that of her husband.
For nearly fifty years had they traversed life's highlands and lowlands
together, closest companions, tenderest of lovers, she possessing all
the strength not incompatible with the finest and gentlest traits of
female character, and retaining to the last all the delicacy of her
wonderful beauty, and he the embodiment of chivalry, the highest type
of a Virginia gentleman of the old _régime_.

[Illustration: Sally Chevalier

(Mrs. Abram Warwick)

By Thomas Sully]



JESSIE BENTON

(MRS. JOHN C. FRÉMONT)


In the year 1868 the city of St. Louis erected a monument to the memory
of one of her most distinguished citizens, Thomas Hart Benton. Of the
forty thousand people who thronged the park on that May afternoon
set aside for its unveiling, but one was of the great man's blood,
the daughter most closely associated with the accomplishment of his
loftiest conception, that dream of Western empire for his country.
Accompanied by her husband, General John C. Frémont, she had accepted
the invitation to unveil the statue. As she pulled the cord that
loosened its wrappings, and the school children of the city threw their
offerings of roses at the feet of him who had befriended their fathers,
the huzzas of the vast multitude filled the fragrant air. The outgoing
train to San Francisco halted to salute with flags and whistles as the
bronze hand, pointing to the west, came into view, and the words graven
on the pedestal: "There is the East. There lies the road to India." To
General Frémont, quietly and reverently occupying a place of honor on
the platform, it was one of those supreme moments when the landmarks
of memory, those events that give color to our lives, stand forth to
the exclusion even of that which is at the moment passing before the
eye. Neither the vivas of the people nor the flowers of their children
thrilled him as did the salute of that outbound train, that thing of
strength and power and speed, bearing its message of progress and
civilization.

He knew every mile of its route. He, the pathfinder, by his indomitable
energy had traversed the virgin snows of its mountain ways, had
penetrated the mysteries of its wild valleys, and by his valor had
given to his country its golden terminus. And there, between the effigy
of the one in the radiance of the spring sunshine and the living man,
stood the woman still radiant with that high type of beauty that
emanates from the soul, the link, she has said of herself, between
the conception and the execution of the great scheme of Western
aggrandizement. Cradled among great ideas, she had grown up to be an
inspiration to the man with the prowess and daring necessary to give
them life and form. Some men, such as Abraham Lincoln, have been great
in spite of their wives, while to others, as to Frémont, through their
wives have come not only the opportunity for greatness, but with them
that identity of purpose that in itself is a fortification against all
adverse circumstances.

The story of Jessie Benton Frémont's life is closely allied with that
of the acquisition and development of the vast territory west of St.
Louis, which even in her young womanhood was the outpost of habitation.
Beyond its confines stretched that wonderland of her childhood, whence
came the trappers and hunters with their wild tales of adventure, and
whither she was destined to follow one day the princely pied piper of
her girlhood. The seed of the thought which bore its first fruit when
Frémont raised our flag on Wind River Mountain, thirteen thousand feet
above the Gulf of Mexico, was sown in the mind of her father when,
in 1812, he followed Andrew Jackson from Nashville to New Orleans
to defend the Mississippi. In the stirring life on its broad bosom,
together with a first realization of the extent of our domain, he
recognized the possibilities of our future expansion and greatness.
He had already been admitted to the bar of Tennessee and was a member
of the Legislature of that State. With the idea, however, that the
government of the United States should extend its protecting arm over
the great western wilderness, in which it evinced no interest and
whence it anticipated no benefit, he moved, in his thirtieth year, to
its border-land.

Its people recognized his friendly attitude, and when Missouri rose
to the dignity of a representation on the floor of the United States
Senate, Benton was the first man to whom she delegated that honor.
There, for over thirty years, with a limited following, he fought
aggressively foot by foot for the development of the West. He often
wearied his hearers, who had but little sympathy with projects that to
the remote Eastern mind seemed preposterous. It was not infrequently a
signal, when Benton mounted his hobby, for his fellow-Senators to take
up their letter-writing and for the galleries to be deserted. It made
little difference to them if England's hand were outstretched and her
fingers daily tightening their clutch upon our northwestern territory.
The mouth of the Columbia River was about of as much consequence to the
welfare of the United States, in the estimation of the people on the
Atlantic seaboard, as are the canals on the planet Mars.

Commercial relations with Asia and ports on the Pacific, however
Utopian they may have seemed to others with less of a grasp on the
world's history than his scholarly mind possessed, were to Benton
vital questions, for which he fought with that vigor of utterance that
provoked John Randolph into saying that his family motto, "Factus non
verbis," should be "Factus et verbis."

He was a powerful man, with a forcible way of speaking, which he
retained to the end of his life. When he was stumping his State in
the summer of 1856, being already in his seventieth year, he was
cautiously viewed one morning through the crack of an open door by
two anti-Bentonites. He was standing at the moment and speaking in a
vigorous way that appalled his surreptitious visitors. "Good God,"
ejaculated one, "we shall have to fight him these twenty years!"

He was a striking figure, with heavy black hair and side whiskers,
and during all the years that he was in the Senate, like some of his
illustrious successors, he never changed the style of his dress. His
vehemence was expended in public. In his family life he was as gentle
as he was devoted.

Jessie, the second of his four daughters, and the subject of this
sketch, was born at the home of her maternal grandfather, Colonel
James McDowell, near Lexington, Virginia. She grew up partly in the
picturesque atmosphere of St. Louis, then almost wholly a French
settlement, and partly in Washington, where Benton's home was
considered one of the most interesting in the city, owing to the
cultivated wife and daughters who gave it character and individuality.
Intermingled with her school-days she had her little day of belleship,
during which the two most notable events were a dinner at the White
House, given by President Van Buren for his young son, and the wedding
of Baron Bodisco, the Russian minister, at which she appeared as first
bridesmaid. The bride, Miss Williams, was one of her school-mates, and
a girl of sixteen, while the bridegroom was over sixty. The details
of the ceremony, however, were all harmoniously arranged by him, and
included eight bridesmaids between the ages of thirteen and sixteen,
and eight groomsmen of his own period of life. With one of the most
distinguished, James Buchanan,--then in the United States Senate, and
but recently returned from the Russian mission,--walked Jessie Benton,
fourteen years of age, and in her first long dress. Judged by his last
will, this Russian January seems to have been an unselfish husband, for
he therein expressed the wish that his still young wife should marry
again and be as happy herself as she had made him.

The Van Buren dinner was a more or less memorable event, though the
White House was familiar ground to Jessie Benton. During Jackson's
administration she used frequently to go there with her father, for the
old soldier-President was notably a lover of children. He liked to run
his long fingers through her soft curls, while he talked with his old
friend Benton, unwittingly giving the curls many a twist as he warmed
to his subject, all of which the little girl bore heroically, finding
ample recompense in her father's praise, which was sure to follow the
ordeal.

She went to school both in St. Louis and Washington, in the former
city principally for the sake of learning French by association with
children to whom it was the mother-tongue. She spent two years at Miss
English's boarding-school, in Georgetown, where she was not regarded as
a diligent student. Many hours stolen from the class-rooms were not,
perhaps, altogether unprofitably spent up a mulberry-tree listening to
the fascinating accounts of a midshipman's life, as told by one of his
cousins, and hanging hungrily upon every word, as if it in a measure
foretold her own eventful career.

At home her mental training was continuous, and without conscious, or
at least arduous, effort on her part. Each of Benton's daughters had
her place at his library table, and there, stimulated by his studious
habits, she acquired readily her portion of that vast fund of knowledge
which he had gleaned first from his father's library of unusual
excellence and later from his contact with men and measures of his day.

Of the measures there were many afoot when Benton's daughters were
young, whose stupendous proportions we are scarcely able to gauge,
knowing them only in the perfection of their full realization. Benton
was the sympathetic friend of all progress, and beneath the steady glow
of his astral lamp or the soft flicker of their mother's candles, in
the nights before the advent of gas, his daughters, sewing each her
fine seam, listened to the unfolding of the minds of the men who have
developed America. They learned also those lessons of inexhaustible
patience that must go hand in hand with every great undertaking and of
the frequent subordination of the individual to the things his own mind
has conceived.

Thither came Morse with that sublime faith in his conception of
telegraphy that made him insensible or at least indifferent to the
ridicule of Congress, where a member suggested, when he at length
obtained his twenty-five thousand dollars for an experimental line
to Baltimore, that a second appropriation should be made for an
experimental line to the moon.

An overland emigrant route, the surveys for a railroad to the Pacific,
and the Panama Railroad, Stevens coming to them directly from Central
America and going later to the Isthmus, were some of the vast projects
with whose details they were early familiarized. Later, when Jessie
Benton, as Mrs. Frémont, crossed the Isthmus herself and was detained
there by the fever, she saw Stevens every day, he coming, as he said,
"to take his chill with her." He died in Panama, as he predicted that
he would, one of the heroes in the vanguard of progress.

Into Benton's home quite naturally there drifted, in the year 1840, a
young lieutenant of the corps of topographical engineers, fresh from
the survey of the upper Mississippi. The son of a French father and a
Virginia mother, John C. Frémont was born in South Carolina, in the
year 1813. He was graduated, when he was seventeen years old, from
Charleston College, where he remained to study civil engineering and
teach mathematics. He was so unusually talented that Poinsett, the
Secretary of War, recommended his services to Nicollet when the latter
was about to undertake the survey of the Upper Mississippi. The two
years in the field were followed by two years spent in Washington
in preparing the scientific result of the expedition, during which
period Benton became interested more perhaps in the work than in the
individuality of the young officer, whose genius was later to open to
us the western gates of our republic.

Accompanying Benton's eldest daughter to a concert at Miss English's
school, Frémont for the first time met Jessie Benton. She produced on
his mind at once "the effect that a rose of rare color or a beautiful
picture would have done." She was but sixteen years old at the time,
in the first bloom of girlish beauty, and her bright mind exhilarated
by the pleasure of seeing her sister, poured itself forth in language
as sparkling as it was natural. "Her beauty," he wrote later, in
describing that first impression of her, "had come far enough down
from English ancestry to be now in her that American kind which is
made up largely of mind expressed in the face, but it still showed its
Saxon descent. At that time of awakening mind, the qualities that made
hers could only be seen in flitting shadows across the face or in the
expression of incipient thought or unused and untried feeling."

Coming home for the Easter holidays, she found that the young
lieutenant had become identified with her father's "Oregon work." He
was an almost daily visitor at her home, and in his constant meetings
with her in its unreserved atmosphere he found confirmation of the
first impression he had formed of her. "There are features," he wrote
later, "that convey to us a soul so white that they impress with
instant pleasure, and of this kind were hers. Her qualities were all
womanly, and education had curiously preserved the down of a modesty
which was innate. There had been no experience of life to brush away
the bloom."

Before the holidays were over this impression of her had penetrated
Frémont's entire being, and he loved her no less profoundly than he
admired her, rendering her an absolute devotion that knew no subsequent
diminution. "Insensibly and imperceptibly," he said, "there came a glow
into my heart which changed the current and color of daily life, and
gave a beauty to common things."

That April day in 1841, when, a month after it had witnessed his
inauguration, a mourning nation assembled to pay its last tribute
to William Henry Harrison, a gray and gloomy day without, Frémont
has recorded as the "red letter day" of his life. The government had
leased quarters near the Capitol for the use of Nicollet, where the
work on the map of the Mississippi's sources was going forward. From
the windows of one of the rooms Senator Benton and his family were
invited to view the funeral procession as it wound down Capitol Hill.
Frémont, on leave of absence for the day, was the host of the occasion.
Notwithstanding his best uniform, in which he looked very handsome, he
personally tended the cheery log-fire, that gave a touch of cosiness
to the big office, which he had, moreover, with somewhat reckless
extravagance for a man on a lieutenant's salary, decorated with plants
and cut flowers. From a daintily set table he served, with captivating
grace, coffee and ices. Though the nation mourned, two hearts, at
least, of all who looked upon the solemn pageant of that day were in
gala attire.

The next day, though he discreetly sent Mrs. Benton the plants and
flowers that had done decorative duty in his office, it availed him
nothing in her wise eyes. Jessie was too young, and, besides, she
did not wish her to marry an army man; the life was too unsettled.
Mrs. Poinsett, the wife of the Secretary of War, was taken into her
confidence, and, as a result, Frémont was ordered off to survey the Des
Moines River. Jessie, moreover, as a further diversion, was taken to
the wedding of one of her Virginia cousins, which meant in those days
weeks of festivity.

It was but another case, however, of the best laid plans that "gang
aglee," for in the autumn both Frémont and Jessie Benton were back in
Washington, and on the 19th of October she was courageous enough, in
defiance of both father and mother, whom she not only loved but truly
revered, to become Frémont's wife. She married too young, she says
herself, ever to have been a belle in the usual acceptation of that
term, yet so gifted has she been with those qualities that evoke the
chivalry of man that but few American women have had a better right to
that title. Though her life has been one of much exposure, she herself
has at all times been singularly sheltered.

The year following his marriage, Frémont applied to the Secretary of
War for permission to explore the far West and penetrate the Rockies.
The plan was supported by Benton, who believed that by making surveys
the government would be giving at least a semblance of protection
to its Western possessions. Congress gave its sanction, and in May,
1842, with a handful of venturesome spirits gathered on the Missouri
frontier, Frémont went forth to the exploration of the southern pass.
It was the first of numerous similar expeditions, his scientific
reports of which--going into astronomy, botany, mineralogy, geology,
and geography--were translated into many tongues, and gave their author
world-wide fame.

During his absences, which were always of uncertain duration, his wife
sometimes remained in her parents' home. Her father sent for her one
morning, when she had been married about a year, and, pointing out
her old place at his library table, he said, "I want you to resume
your place there; you are too young to fritter away your life without
some useful pursuit." So she dropped back quite naturally into her old
habits of study, as if her honeymoon days had been but another form of
vacation.

She frequently accompanied Frémont, however, as far as St. Louis,
waiting there for his return, or going out again to meet him after a
fixed time. He was once eight months overdue, during which period of
awful silence and suspense she had a supper-table set for him every
night with all the comforts and luxuries of that civilization to which
he had been so long a stranger. He came at length, in the dead of the
night, and, rather than disturb a household, he went to a hotel, and
for the first time in eighteen months slept in a bed.

With whatever misgivings she may have seen him set out for a field
where he would encounter certainly many dangers, and possibly even
death, she never, even when the opportunity came, of which many a
weaker woman would have availed herself, endeavored to withhold him
from his purpose. He would sometimes, after having covered many miles
of his route, come back to her for another good-by, overtaking his
party again by hard riding or pressing forward while they were resting.

In the summer of 1843, while he was still on the frontier gathering
together men and animals for his second expedition, his recall to
Washington was ordered, to explain there why, making a scientific
expedition under the protection of the government, he had armed his
men with the howitzer. The order, however, never reached him, for he
had already left St. Louis, where it fell into the hands of his wife.
Though she still labored under the depression of their recent parting,
she yet, with all the spirit which the emergency demanded, sent him a
swift messenger, bidding him hurry off and rest and fatten his animals
at Bent's Ford, stating that there was sufficient reason for the haste
which could not then be given.

When he was quite beyond the reach of recall, for it was before the
days of telegraphy, she wrote to the colonel of the Topographical
Bureau, and confessed what she had done, at the same time giving
ample reason for her action. To have obeyed the order, she explained,
would have meant the ruin of the expedition. Together with the time
it would have required to settle the party before he could leave
it, the length of the trip to Washington, and the inevitable delays
there, the early grass would be past its best, and the animals thus
would be thrown underfed into the mountains for the winter. She then
replied to the charge made against Frémont in the order of his recall.
The expedition must cross the country of the Blackfeet and other
unfriendly tribes of Indians, with no reverence whatever for the cause
of science, but with a very wholesome regard for any rights that were
backed up with a howitzer. Her father, who was absent from St. Louis
at the time, endorsed her action, and wrote to Washington, assuming
the responsibility for it, saying he would call for a court-martial
on the point charged against Frémont. Nothing further was heard of
it, however, and the precious time, that meant so much more to the
scientific mind of the explorer than to his government, to which all
seasons are the same, was saved.

From an historical point of view this was the most important of all
Frémont's expeditions. With the French territory which we had acquired
by the Louisiana purchase we inherited also France's old feud with
England, the underlying cause of which was the control of the markets
in the East. When we took up the cudgels, their conflict, so far as
the Western hemisphere was involved, had narrowed down to the ultimate
possession of that portion of Mexico's territory which included the
harbor of San Francisco. England had already made her survey of the
ground, and her eye coveted that matchless port. She was the power we
confronted in California when our war with Mexico ushered in the moment
for decisive action. Two courageous, intensely American men, however,
held the situation in their grasp,--in the Senate, at the climax of
his powers, Benton, who had ever had a jealous eye upon England's
encroachments on our boundary; in the field, Frémont, with all the
gallantry and spirit that final coup demanded.

The British admiral, moving with more deliberation than the American
colonel, with characteristic love of sport and appreciation of success,
gracefully accepted his defeat, and tendered his felicitations to the
intrepid rival, whose flag he found already floating above the coveted
territory.

Frémont, after his gallant conquest, became the victim of a quarrel
between two officers commanding the United States forces in that
vicinity, and was brought back a prisoner over the territory
he had acquired for his country. During the ninety days of his
trial by court-martial, which stripped him of his commission as
lieutenant-colonel of mounted riflemen, inspired by a lofty enthusiasm,
his nights were devoted to writing the history of the expedition.

Though he was reinstated by the President, he returned his commission,
and in 1848 took out a private expedition, opening the route from the
Mississippi to San Francisco. His mountaineers flocked to him, ready
to follow wherever he should lead. He had that faith in himself and in
his purpose that evoked a corresponding confidence in them, and his
presence was light and warmth and refreshment to their daring spirit.
When it became necessary at times to divide the party, those who were
not with him suffered sorely. The memorable winter of 1848, however,
was one of hardships for all, travelling days and weeks within sight of
eternal snows. Frémont wrote to his wife during a brief respite from
that agonizing period, when his men were starving and freezing and
wandering off in despair to lie down alone and die: "We shall yet enjoy
quiet and happiness together; these are nearly one and the same to me
now. I make frequent pleasant pictures of the happy home we are to
have, and oftenest and among the pleasantest of all I see our library
with its bright fire in the rainy, stormy days, and the large windows
looking out upon the sea in the bright weather. I have it all planned
in my mind."

Mrs. Frémont was, meanwhile, making ready for the long journey towards
the land of this picture-home. It was the first break from the real
home, her father's, where she had passed the greater part of the eight
years of her married life, five of which her husband had spent in the
field. She started in March, 1849, going by way of the Isthmus, where
the man selected by Mr. Aspinwall for her guide had many misgivings
about undertaking the charge. He had a wife, who had prophesied that,
coming from Washington, Mrs. Frémont would be "a fine lady" and would
make him no end of trouble, especially concerning the scant attire of
the Indians.

In the sunshine of her presence, however, his misgivings melted
away. She was not a "fine lady" at all, he said, that bugbear of his
unconventional mind, but a slender woman with a head so level and a
heart so stout as to render all the more forcible the appeal of her
delicate body.

She was stricken with the fever, and ill for many weeks in Panama,
where she was surrounded with that warmth of friendship and sympathy
which she ever seemed to attract. In addition to many substantial
evidences of genuine interest in her recovery, one resident of the city
vowed in that event to supply the hospital with limes for a year.

Gold was discovered in California in 1848. When Mrs. Frémont arrived
in San Francisco the people were in that first frenzy of excitement
that disturbed temporarily the whole aspect of their daily existence.
The population of the towns was flocking to the mines, and the
comparatively few who remained at home had many novel problems to
face. The art of cooking without eggs and butter had to be acquired,
for there were neither chickens nor cows, though one woman had as many
as thirty-seven satin dresses, "and no two off the same piece," she
averred.

A little Eastern bride, whom San Francisco society, consisting of
sixteen ladies, turned out in a body to welcome, set up her first
household belongings in a modest frame structure two stories in height,
that had been put up at a cost, out of all proportion to its intrinsic
value, of ninety thousand dollars.

Yet nothing was so valuable as time, and though it was estimated to be
worth fifty dollars a minute, there were busy men who paid Mrs. Frémont
the compliment of frequent day-time visits.

With every personal inducement to favor slave labor in the new
territory, both Frémont and his wife were among its most strenuous
opposers. Not only did they pay their first house-maid two hundred and
forty dollars a month with perquisites, which included the housing of
her husband and children, yet even with a disposition to retain her at
that neat figure, they found themselves obliged to do without her truly
valuable assistance when Mrs. Frémont refused the loan of her gowns as
patterns for the wardrobe she was having constructed at the hands of
a Chinese modiste. There were, moreover, on the lands that Frémont
owned, rich gold deposits, which could be most profitably operated by
slave labor.

When the convention to draft the constitution under which California
should come into the Union met at Monterey, where Frémont had
established himself, his home became the head-quarters for the
anti-slavery party. Its neatness, the smoothness of its internal
workings, and the evident contentment of his wife formed a text for
the friends of free soil, and many an incredulous opponent was brought
to behold, and, seeing, went away believing in the possibility of
domestic happiness without slaves. Mrs. Frémont had, to be sure, a
preference for underclothing that had been ironed, and she might have
wished also that the two Indian men who presided in her kitchen and
pantry had not been gifted with such facilities for terminating both
the ornamental and useful career of her china and glassware. Yet these
small clouds in no way overshadowed her domestic horizon. Her prejudice
to slavery she inherited from both parents, belonging, as she said,
"to the aristocracy of emancipation," or to that class of people who,
owning slaves, quietly gave them their freedom at infinite sacrifice
to themselves, as opposed to the abolitionists of the North, who, with
nothing to lose and much to gain, clamored noisily for that freedom.

Frémont was the hero of the hour, and could have been governor of the
new State or one of its first Senators. He chose the latter, however,
though it took him away from those material interests which California
then held for him. Going into the Union as a free State, it would need
in Congress a defence such as no man could give it with greater loyalty
than Frémont.

There is an anecdote told and applied indiscriminately to various
political heroes, most frequently, perhaps, to Lincoln, to whom,
therefore, it may possibly appertain, demonstrating delicately his
deference for the marital tie. On the night of his election to some
office, and while he was being inundated with the congratulations
of the friends who had assisted in the achievement of his triumph,
he further captivated their fancy by remembering his wife. "Well,
gentlemen," he said, quietly, "this is very nice, but there is a little
woman around the corner who will be interested in hearing this news,
and if you will just excuse me, I think I'll step around and tell her."

One woman interested in the balloting of the delegates at San José
for California's first Senators was not so conveniently situated. She
was at Monterey, and as a season of heavy rains was on, there was but
little prospect that her keen desire to know the result would find
immediate gratification. Before just such a merry blazing fire as his
imagination had once conjured up as a central feature of their library
sat Frémont's wife, her fingers for the first time fashioning a dress
for herself on the trustworthy outlines of one that had been ripped
up for the purpose. Her little daughter had been put to bed, and her
companions for the evening were the Australian woman who had replaced
her two Indian servitors, and whose accustomed fingers plied the
needle with a more rapid stroke than her own, and the woman's baby,
playing on the bear-skin rug near the fire. Besides the voice of the
woman and an occasional chirrup from the baby, she heard nothing but
the storm without, till the door opened and a man, dripping with rain,
stood on the threshold and asked, in consideration of his sorry plight,
if he might enter.

It was Frémont. He had torn himself away from his idolizing followers
and ridden out into the darkness and storm to tell his wife, seventy
miles away, that he had been elected to the United States Senate.
Though it was late in the night when he reached Monterey, he was in the
saddle again before dawn and on his way back to San José, making in all
a ride of one hundred and forty miles.

The home-bound steamer, sailing from San Francisco on the 1st of
January, 1850, carried, among others, the first two Senators from the
new State, Frémont and Givin. At Mazatlan a British man-of-war fired a
salute in honor of these two distinguished passengers.

They landed in New York the last of March, and from the long mirror
into which she looked, in her hotel bedroom, there gazed back at Mrs.
Frémont a comely young woman clad in a riding habit that had been
abbreviated to a convenient walking length, a pair of black satin
slippers, a leghorn hat tied down with a China crêpe scarf, and a
Scotch plaid shawl that had borne the brunt of her year's outing,--in a
word, the wife of a United States Senator from the golden West.

On another morning of the early spring two years later, such were
the contrasts which the events of her life produced, she stood in the
throne-room of Buckingham Palace, awaiting presentation to the Queen of
England. To the British eyes that looked upon her she was a graceful,
distinguished woman, sharing in the renown of her husband, the American
explorer, and a recent medallist of the Royal Geographical Society,
whose honors are only conferred upon those whose expeditions are taken
out at personal cost and sacrifice. In the faultless details of her
court dress she was a gratification to the most critical taste. Its
exquisite design, shading in color from the faint pink that touches
the outer edge of a rose petal to the deeper tone it assumes near the
heart, with clusters of the fair flower itself giving it an almost
fragrant emphasis and bringing out the delicate beauty of her fine
face, seemed a part of herself, so gracefully did she wear it, carrying
its sweep of train with a queenliness that was of her nature.

On the 17th of June, 1856, Frémont was unanimously nominated for the
Presidency by the National Republican Convention at Philadelphia.
He was the first choice of the Free Soil, which became, later, the
Republican party, and he was also, probably, the only man of whom
Lincoln, the first successful candidate of that party, was ever
jealous. Fearing a military rival, and recognizing in Frémont the
qualities that gave him a natural supremacy among men, he kept him in
the background. He foresaw correctly. The military hero came, but he
came in the person of the man to whom opportunity had been a fairy
godmother.

Though he polled the vote of all the Northern States but five, the time
was not ripe for a Republican President when Frémont was a candidate
for that high honor. The men, like Benton, who still led the political
thought of that day, and who knew every aspect of the country,
realizing the peril that lay in countenancing sectionalism, could not
give their support to a candidate who stood upon a sectional platform.

Whatever were his hopes or his disappointment, his wife shared them.
His accepting the nomination from so radical a party had meant the
breaking up of many friendships for her, which in itself was a genuine
grief to a woman of her temperament. The anguish she endured during
the first months of the war between the North and the South, which she
spent in St. Louis among familiar faces, whom the circumstances of her
position as the wife of a Northern general had estranged from her, left
its record in her beautiful hair, which, from a warm brown, became
quite white within a few weeks. No matter with what heroism we endure,
we sometimes bear all the rest of our lives the scars which our courage
has cost us.

She has never outgrown, however, her early attachment to the South,
to which she is united by many ties of blood. During the famine there
that followed the war she applied to Congress for relief, which
was immediately granted, with a ship to carry all the supplies the
Freedman's Bureau could furnish. With warm and tender sympathies she
has always taken up any cause that appealed to her with an enthusiasm
that communicated itself to others. Relating to Mrs. Dix one evening
the case of one of Lieutenant Frémont's men, who had been disabled by
being wounded in both legs, and to whom Congress had refused a pension
on the ground that he had not been regularly enlisted at the time the
wound was inflicted, she did not observe that a man who was calling
upon Senator Dix was attentively listening to all the graphic details
of her story. It was Preston King, of New York, and at that time
chairman of the Committee on Appropriations. He took Senator Dix to
the door with him when he left, and bade him tell her to write out the
story as she had just told it and send it to him, and he would see that
the man got his pension; and he did.

With what tender gratitude and reverence the man himself, Alexis Ayot,
a Canadian by birth, came to thank her!

"I cannot kneel to thank you," he said, balancing himself upon his
crutches, "Je n'ai plus de jambes; but you are my Sainte Madonne, et je
vous fais ma prière."

During her early California days she extended her generous young hand
to a youthful compositor who was working on the _Golden Era_. He dined
with her every Sunday, and she gave him not only that recognition and
encouragement that were in themselves a stimulus to his talent and
ambition, but she used her influence to obtain for him salaried offices
that lifted him above anxiety concerning his material condition,
and gave him the leisure necessary to the best development of his
genius. His name is Bret Harte, and so entirely did he recognize his
indebtedness to her that he once wrote to her: "If I were to be cast
away on a desert island, I should expect a savage to come forward with
a three-cornered note from you to tell me that at your request I had
been appointed governor of the island at a salary of two thousand four
hundred dollars."

She has both the versatility and adaptiveness that are characteristic
of the genuine American woman, and which have enabled her to make
almost as many friends in foreign lands as she has throughout her
own country. The Count de la Garde, a cousin of Eugene and Hortense
Beauharnais, whom she knew in Paris, and who left her at his death a
valuable collection of souvenirs of the Bonaparte family, said of her
that she was the only American woman he had ever known. He had known
others of her countrywomen, but they were but imitations of English or
French women, while in her he felt the originality and individuality of
another people.

As a scientist and explorer, Frémont's reputation had gone forth to the
countries of Europe, from many of which he received enviable honors and
decorations. He and his wife were presented at the courts of England,
France, and Denmark, attending at Copenhagen the wedding-festivities
of the Crown Prince and his Swedish bride. As one of her friends
has cleverly said of Mrs. Frémont, "she has entertained and been
entertained through not only the gamut but the chromatic scale of
society."

After the war, while her younger children were still growing up, and
during her husband's lifetime, she lived for some years in New York,
on a picturesque old property on the Hudson that still bore its Indian
name, Pocaho. Now, however, she lives again in the State that once gave
her health, wealth, and honors, near the great sea, away from which she
feels that she is never fully alive.

Her life has been full of changes and events, to all of which her alert
intelligence and quick sympathies have made her keenly susceptible, and
which wrung from her recently a plaintive, "We are tired, my heart and
I." That was all, for one who knew every phase of her life has already
borne testimony to that "sweet and happy and forbearing temper which
has remained proof against the wearing of time."



SALLIE WARD

(MRS. GEORGE F. DOWNS)


One of those extraordinary women which the world from time to time
produces, who rise to eminence solely through the force of their own
personality, was born in America as the nineteenth century was rounding
out its first quarter. Known all her life throughout the entire
country, she was one of the most conspicuous figures in the life of the
South and Southwest, and was the object of a sentiment that fell but
little short of worship among the people of the state of Kentucky, to
which she belonged.

James Lane Allen who has studied his people from every stand-point,
draws the typical Kentucky woman for us as "a refinement of the English
blonde, with greater delicacy of form, feature, and color."

"A beautiful Kentucky woman," he says, "is apt to be exceedingly
beautiful. Her voice is almost uniformly low and soft, her hands and
feet delicately formed, her skin quite pure and beautiful in tint and
shading, her eyes blue or brown, her hair nut-brown or golden; to all
which is added a certain unapproachable refinement."

Of such a class, Sallie Ward, with her blue eyes full of twinkling
humor and rather far apart, lending to her round face an expression
of candor, which was further borne out by her somewhat large though
finely shaped mouth disclosing handsome teeth in her happy tendency
to frequent smiling, her brown hair, and a skin faultless in tint and
texture, has been the most noted representative. A radiant woman,
instinct with sparkling life from the crown of her beautiful head to
the tips of her slender feet, spoiled, wilful, lovely, and loving, it
is probable that but few people will ever truly estimate her character.

She was the daughter of Robert J. Ward, a man of considerable wealth
and of that distinction of manner and bearing which is commonly
designated as of the old school. Like many another gifted young
Kentuckian, similarly placed in life, he began his career with
political aspirations, and before he had reached his thirtieth year
he had been elected Speaker of the State Assembly. His own private
concerns, however, gradually absorbing his time and interest, drew him
away from his youthful ambitions. He married the heiress of a large
fortune, Miss Flournoy, of Georgetown, Kentucky, the descendant of an
old Huguenot family, to whose fame her immediate ancestors had further
contributed by the gallant part they had taken in the war of the
American Revolution.

Sallie Ward, one of the eldest of a large family of children, was
born on her grandfather's estate in Scott County. She went to
boarding-school in Philadelphia, the reputation of whose educational
institutions in the first half of the century surpassed those of any
other city in the country. At even an earlier period, an entry in the
journal of Charles Carroll of Carrollton, one of the most enlightened
men of his age, shows in what high estimation they were held, from the
fact that he mentions no other, though the praise in this instance is
rather of a negative order. He records in 1816 that he has sent his
little granddaughter, Mary Harper, to a school in Poitiers under the
care of Mr. Gallatin, then our minister to France, "where she will
be more piously educated than in the very best boarding-school in
Philadelphia."

There were some good students, no doubt, to uphold the reputation
of well-established schools, though it was before the influence of
Hannah Adams, the pioneer of a broader education for women, had been
widely felt, and before that delicate balance between the mental and
physical being of a girl student had ever been disturbed by over-study.
With that "little learning," that was not "a dangerous thing" from
the point of view of the women of that day, there were many with a
mental sprightliness that was far more exhilarating than all their
deep draughts from the Pierian spring had rendered a few such women as
Hannah Adams. A disappointed man who once made a stage-coach journey
with her related that she only opened her lips to enumerate the pieces
of baggage with which she was encumbered, lest in her descent she
should, in the preoccupation of her mind, leave behind her either her
"great box, little box, or bandbox."

[Illustration: Sallie Ward

(Mrs. George F. Downs)

From a miniature]

Sallie Ward, in deference perhaps to the prejudices of her French
origin, was sent to a school presided over by a woman of that
nationality. She enlivened its atmosphere of conventional elegance by
many startling ebullitions of her undisciplined young spirits, such as
appearing unannounced in male attire at wholly inappropriate moments.
Then, as everybody disappeared with more haste than dignity, her own
uncontrollable laughter would reveal the truth of the situation. Some
one would exclaim, "Sallie Ward!" and the others would troop back to
admire her, for, if a little effeminate, she made, nevertheless, a very
captivating youth, and no school-mistress could ever look into her
beaming face and find it in her heart to be harsh to her.

Her own mother attempted once when she was a very little child to
punish her for some misdemeanor, but Sallie, divining her purpose,
dropped quickly on her knees and raised her little hands in
supplication. There seemed at that moment something so seraphic in
her childish beauty that her mother afterwards admitted that her good
intentions were involuntarily thwarted. Though the rod was always
spared, she grew up to be none the less lovable, though a woman of the
world in all things rather than a woman of the spirit,--the logical
result of her environment.

A subtle quality that goes forth from some personalities, commanding
instant attention and reverence, went forth from Sallie Ward, evoking
everywhere admiration and love. She realized the power herself, and it
enabled her to do everything with an indefinable grace proceeding from
an absolute self-confidence. That which would have seemed daring coming
from another woman was approved and applauded in Sallie Ward. She
possessed a knowledge of horses that is more or less common among the
women of Kentucky, and rode with a dash and skill which the women of no
other State have ever surpassed. She sometimes capriciously utilized
this accomplishment to test a man's devotion, doing apparently without
premeditation some daring feat and discovering thereby the extent to
which he would follow her, for every man was at least worth measuring
weapons with, though in the process she unwittingly, no doubt,
despoiled many a less dazzling woman. She was, however, only exercising
what she conceived to be the prerogative of every woman. While riding
in Louisville one day she came upon the market-house, which ran for
some distance through the centre of the street. Instead of going around
it, she impulsively dashed through it without in any degree slackening
her speed. The man who was with her unhesitatingly followed, and was
rewarded, as he drew up beside her on emerging from the far end of the
structure, with an arch smile and "Now, sir, you'll have a pretty fine
to pay, twenty-five dollars apiece, for that little stretch." When he
went the next day, however, to pay the penalty for the pretty caprice,
he found that the obligation had already been quietly discharged by
Miss Ward herself.

She had innumerable lovers and suitors all her life, and never, even
in its closing years, entered any assemblage, small or great, private
or public, that her name did not pass from mouth to mouth till all
were aware of her presence. She was the glorious heroine of many a shy
girl's first ball, while the forlorn little maid whom it purported to
introduce to the social world clung timidly to the wall, with admiring
eyes, however paradoxical it may seem, upon the radiant being who
with apparent unconsciousness was carrying off all the honors of the
occasion. The remarkable popularity of Sallie Ward has been compared to
that of a feudal princess in her hereditary domain. It was confined to
no class, but entered into all grades of society, parents in all walks
of life naming their children after her, and children in turn naming
their pets after her. Many a product of the far-famed stock-farms of
the blue-grass State was likewise honored with a name that came to be a
synonyme for all excellence. "It is a perfect Sallie Ward," or, "I've
a regular Sallie Ward," was the proud boast of many a man who owned
anything whatsoever that he esteemed of superlative quality.

A mother once putting her little girl to bed related to her as a
lullaby the story of the creation of the world, pointing out its
beauties and blessings as they came from the hand of God.

"He made the sun that shines in the day," said the mother, "and the
moon and the stars that we see in the night, and all the flowers that
beautify the world, and the birds that gladden it with their sweet
song."

"And mother, don't forget," interrupted the child. "He made Sallie
Ward, too."

When the governor of Kentucky, at the outbreak of the Mexican War,
was called upon to furnish a regiment of infantry, both the Louisville
Legion and the Louisville Guard, among whose officers and men were
enrolled many names of which the State was justly proud, volunteered
for service. Sallie Ward was selected to present the flags to both
companies, and the enthusiasm of the people, when on the bright May
morning of their departure the Legion passed in review before her
home, testified to the concurrence of the entire city in the choice.
There was a prolonged shout of rapture from the throng of spectators
as many eyes dim with weeping beheld the already familiar form of
Sallie Ward standing beneath the silken folds of her country's flag.
Their cheers redoubled as she presented it to the standard-bearer, and
they continued to ring in her ears as she waved her own farewell to
the embryo heroes, many of whom carried away that last picture of her
standing in the sunshine of that bright morning to be an inspiration in
a darker hour. She drove to Portland to present the flag to the Guards,
who embarked from that point. As they marched by the open carriage in
which she sat at the conclusion of the ceremony of the presentation,
every man saluted her, and she afterwards declared that it was the
proudest moment in a life of many triumphs.

Her father's wealth not only enabled him to maintain one of the most
elaborate establishments in Louisville, but in the summer to transport
his numerous family, accompanied by men- and maid-servants, in
travelling-carriages to the White Sulphur Springs, where his daughters
were successively belles. A portion of each winter, including the
season of the Mardi Gras, was spent in New Orleans, for though the
facilities for travelling that exist to-day were not known at that
time, a man blessed with the worldly goods that Mr. Ward possessed
could not only permit his family to make frequent journeys, but to make
them also under most comfortable and agreeable circumstances.

In this way the fame of Sallie Ward was well established at the South
when, before she had reached her twentieth year, she married Bigelow
Lawrence, of Boston, and entered upon her brief career at the North.
The man who thus won her from many Southern rivals was many years her
senior, and it was to a woman of her temperament a most unfortunate
alliance. He was the son of the Hon. Abbott Lawrence, who had been our
minister to England, and was himself a man of wealth and distinction
and an exquisite gentleman of the severe Boston school, whose ethics
were wholly at variance with that spirit of liberality which was all
Sallie Ward had hitherto known. Developed in an atmosphere of almost
passionate admiration, love and appreciation had become as necessary
to her being as light and air. Transplanted in the very effulgence
of her bloom to a frigid temperature of critical and unsympathetic
surroundings, all her spontaneous grace congealed into acts of
deliberate effrontery. Bewildered by a chill she had never before felt,
too young and inexperienced in the ways of the world beyond those of
her own genial climate, where she had been a law unto herself, to
realize aught of the value of mutual concessions, she struck blindly
against the cold conventionality in which she felt herself encaged. It
was a strange and almost cruel fate that put her in the bosom of the
Lawrence family, and occasioned as much suffering to her Southern heart
as to their Northern sensibilities.

At a ball given in Boston about the time Mrs. Bloomer was seeking to
introduce her reform in woman's dress, and while the subject was being
widely discussed. Sallie Ward, then the wife of Bigelow Lawrence,
appeared in a costume designed on the Bloomer pattern. Socially
conservative Boston was agog, and Lawrence achieved through his wife an
unenviable notoriety. Another of her proclivities wrought additional
sensation and consequently further havoc in his social status.
Notwithstanding the natural beauty of her complexion, it was whispered
even in Louisville that she sought with more or less artistic skill to
further embellish it. One day when the artifice was unusually apparent,
as she passed a group of laboring men, one exclaimed, audibly, "By God,
painted!" Nothing daunted and without changing color, the story runs,
she said, quietly, "Yes, painted by God," and passed on.

Her mother, realizing the unhappy condition of her life with Mr.
Lawrence, took her home, and within a year she applied to the
Legislature of Kentucky for a divorce, which was granted on the ground
of incompatibility of temper. She took her maiden name and lived for
several years in retirement.

Her first reappearance in that world of gayety and social emulation
which was her natural element was at a ball given in Louisville, and
where at midnight, though everybody knew she was in the house, she
had not yet made her appearance. Shortly after twelve o'clock the
music suddenly ceased; in an instant silence fell upon the ball-room;
some one whispered "Sallie Ward," and every one pressed towards the
stairway. She was, indeed, a vision of radiant loveliness that held
every man and woman spellbound as she descended its winding length.
She was enveloped in white tulle, which seemed to float about her
like a cloud, a jewelled pin catching the meshes of a filmy veil and
holding it imprisoned in her brown hair. One arm covered with jewelled
bracelets was extended, the hand resting in that of the man who had the
honor of leading her. So light and floating was the effect she produced
that the tips of her white slippers seemed scarcely to touch the steps.

She was at all times supreme and irresistible without resorting to
extraordinary effects, which she frequently did, for she was not
lacking in that vanity which is "the cordial drop," said John Adams,
"that makes the bitter cup of life go down," though an existence filled
with so many sweets as was hers could have needed no such stimulus.

At a fancy-dress ball given in her honor at Lexington, she created an
unparalleled sensation by changing her costume four times in the course
of the evening, reaching the climax as an houri.

Her second marriage was to Dr. Hunt, of New Orleans, where she was
already well known. The city, with its contingent of wealthy Spanish
and French planters, contained many homes whose palatial splendors
exceeded those of the most pretentious establishments of other
localities. The new home in which Sallie Ward came to preside was on
a scale of magnificence that fully gratified her luxurious tastes and
love of the beautiful. Its rich adornment of tapestries, statuary, and
Parisian furnishings, its marble court, with its glistening fountains
and wealth of tropical bloom, formed an exquisite background for her
artistic individuality and prodigal temperament. Its hospitalities were
munificent and the legend of the magnificence of its dinner-parties,
during which the orchestra from the French opera filled the court-yard
and dining-room with its melodies, was the marvel of a people
accustomed to entertaining with all the luxurious accompaniments
of a most artistic civilization; and into all of whose forms of a
ceremonious existence there entered a perfect harmony that was a second
nature to them.

The years of her residence in New Orleans represent the most brilliant
period of Sallie Ward's life, when her surroundings, combined with her
natural gifts, gave her easily that leading position which she filled
so graciously and with so much happiness to herself. Her only child,
Mr. John Hunt, of New York, was born of this marriage.

After her husband's death she returned to Louisville, and there for
some years devoted herself to rearing and educating her son. She was
subsequently twice married, the first time, after nearly fifteen years
of widowhood, to Mr. Vene P. Armstrong, and the second time to Mr.
George F. Downs, both of Kentucky. She retained till the end of her
life, which closed in the summer of 1898, all her remarkable powers of
attraction.

Surrounded always with the pomp and vanity of life, and deeply imbued
with the maxims of a worldly philosophy, she yet preserved intact an
unselfish heart that not only prompted her to many deeds of noble
philanthropy, but to countless little acts of kindness graciously
performed that beautified lives less fortunate than her own. With her
quick bright mind and gift for clever repartee, she sent many a ripple
of irresistible drollery over the current of the life that encircled
her, and sped many a shaft of stinging wit into the armor of a hollow
conventionality. "How lovely of you to say that! but then you always
say such sweet things of everybody," was the meaningless flattery in
the response of a woman to whom she had spoken in heartfelt praise of
another woman. "Did you ever hear, madam," retorted Mrs. Downs, "that I
had said anything sweet of you?"

She never could have attracted and held the universal homage that was
undoubtedly hers had there not radiated from her a power quite beyond
that bestowed by the material possessions of the world,--the potency
of a vivid and lovable personality. Had she been a man, she would have
been capable of such acts of gallantry and daring as characterized
"mad" Anthony Wayne or General Custer. As she was a woman, with her
field restricted to the social world, from whose stand-point she must
necessarily, therefore, be judged, her singular genius was productive
of many extraordinary achievements, through all of which there was a
very audible appeal for the love that never failed her, but which was
given to her in such measure as perhaps to no other woman ever born in
America.



HARRIET LANE

(MRS. HENRY ELLIOTT JOHNSTON)


Of the men who have filled the Presidential chair of the United States,
about none as about James Buchanan has romance hung that halo which in
his case tends but to throw into bolder relief the substantial side
of his character. Men of more dash, of more picturesque individuality
have filled that high office than was he who rose to it through the
gradations of a long legislative career.

When he entered Congress, though he was but twenty-nine years old,
the chapter of sentiment had already closed for him, and it was never
reopened during a long life, the greater part of which was passed in
the gaze of a scrutinizing public. This fact alone is sufficient to
render him unique in the estimation of a people who have a primitive
love for the story where all ends happily.

There was nothing in Buchanan's appearance nor in his attitude towards
life in general that suggested the tragic episode of his youth. It
is only in retrospect that we realize the glamour it cast over his
subsequent years. Nature reacts through various channels, and in him
she sought her outlet in an unabating mental activity. He was a student
all his life.

To the world he was a man of somewhat grave appearance, a typical
anglo-saxon, immaculate in his dress, conservative in his speech,
and yet with a grace and dignity of manner that added much to the
distinction with which he represented his country at the court of
Russia in 1832, and again twenty-one years later at the court of St.
James.

His attitude towards women was that of chivalric regard, and the
close relationship he bore to one of the most beautiful women of her
period, being both her uncle and guardian, displays one of the most
interesting sides of his character. Much of the charm that attaches to
the history of the more conspicuous years of his public career emanates
from Harriet Lane. No woman has ever presided in the White House who
roused so universal an interest, unless it was Mrs. Cleveland, as did
Buchanan's niece.

Her countrymen honored her in every conceivable way, and her name was a
household word. Vessels of war and of peace bore it to foreign shores.
Clubs, streets, houses, and even articles of dress were named after her.

There was a majestic isolation about both Harriet Lane and James
Buchanan. Death had stripped them both,--Buchanan in his youth of
the woman who might have rounded out his life, and Harriet Lane, one
by one, of mother, father, sister, and brothers. She came into the
White House bearing the burden of personal loss in the recent death of
her only sister. As she came out of it the travail of coming war had
already cast its shadow upon the nation.

Yet, socially, the White House was never so brilliant as it was during
the administration of Buchanan. "The White House," said Jefferson
Davis, referring later to his last days in Washington, "under the
administration of Buchanan approached more nearly to my idea of a
republican court than the President's house had ever done before, or
since the days of Washington."

A picture that the people seemed never to tire of looking upon was
of the grave bachelor-President with his beautiful niece beside him
doing the honors of the nation. She was at the climax of her glorious
womanhood during the period she passed in the White House. Contact with
the world, together with her recent touch of sorrow, had worn away the
angles of her youthful exuberance. She had attained a golden maturity,
and with a perfection of physical development she united a dignity
and a confidence in herself restful to behold. "Every motion," Mary
Clemmer wrote of her at that time, "was instinct with life, health, and
intelligence. Her head and features were cast in noble mould, and her
form, which at rest had something of the massive majesty of a marble
pillar, in motion was instinct alike with power and grace."

She had a warmth of coloring that further bore out the idea of abundant
health. Her hair was of a golden-brown hue, and worn always with that
absolute simplicity which best became her well-shaped head. Her eyes
were of a deep violet and her mouth was faultlessly beautiful, with its
full red lips and upward curve.

She was as discreet, said one of her admiring critics, as she was
beautiful, and her uncle's confidence in her was without bounds.
Even as a little child, when falling far short in many respects of
his somewhat austere ideals of propriety, she had inspired in him a
reverence for her absolute truthfulness. "She never told a lie," he
once said, in speaking of her childhood; "she had a soul above deceit
or fraud. She was too proud for it."

She came into Buchanan's life like a breath of wind from the
mountain-side, fresh, sweet, and wild. Buchanan was distraught. His
bachelor habitat was in confusion. He was a man of theories and ideals.
This bit of youthful life that had elected to invade the quiet of his
days was a being of impulse, however generous, of exuberant health and
spirits. A sense of his superiority, however, penetrating her youthful
intelligence, gave him that influence over her that was productive of
such satisfactory results as she grew to womanhood.

[Illustration: Harriet Lane

(Mrs. Henry Elliott Johnston)

From photograph by Julius Ulke]

Through her father, Elliot Lane, whose family had emigrated to Virginia
during the war of the American Revolution, she was of English descent.
From the north of Ireland, about the same time, also had come her
maternal grandfather, James Buchanan. He married Elizabeth Spear, the
daughter of a farmer, and settled in Franklin County, Pennsylvania,
then and for some years later central ground and the great highway
between the East and the West. James Buchanan, afterwards President of
his country, and Jane, the mother of Harriet Lane, were the first
two children born of this marriage.

Harriet Lane, the youngest of four children, became an orphan in
her tenth year. She attached herself voluntarily to her already
distinguished uncle, who was at the time in the United States Senate,
having but recently returned from Russia, where he had negotiated our
first commercial treaty with that country.

Somewhat abashed though duly touched by the honor conferred upon him
by his ardent little kinswoman, he undertook the novel responsibility
of her upbringing with such misgivings as he had never been conscious
of when accepting the various high honors bestowed upon him by his
country. She quitted the home in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania, where she
was born, and her uncle's home, Wheatland, became thenceforth hers. It
was a roomy old brick house with ample grounds, on East King Street, in
Lancaster, one of the old colonial towns of Pennsylvania.

It has been said, in no matter how many places we may live, there
is only one that is home to us. Wheatland was that to Harriet Lane,
though she was destined to see much of the world and to spend years
at a time away from its tranquil seclusion. Its improvement and
adornment were ever matters of keen interest to her. There she first
attracted an admiration which gradually extended over her own country
and England, for the fame of Harriet Lane was international. There
she had possession of her uncle, it being their custom to spend their
mornings together, usually in reading the newspapers, she incidentally
absorbing his statesmanlike view of the political questions of the day.

Buchanan frequently entertained at Wheatland both his political friends
and those he had made through his diplomatic relations. His niece was
a truly bewitching hostess on these occasions, to which there often
attached much that was brilliant.

The first attempt at training after she passed under her uncle's care
was not a happy one in the estimation of his young ward. Being obliged
to go to Washington for the session of Congress, he closed his home at
Lancaster and transferred his _ménage_ to the capital, for Buchanan
always set up his household gods wherever he tarried for any length
of time, his housekeeper, Miss Hetty Parker, who served him in that
capacity for forty years, going with him from place to place. Harriet
was left in Lancaster, in the home of some venerable spinsters of her
uncle's acquaintance, who had pronounced ideas on the moral gait to be
maintained by the rising generation. From her own accounts, given in
letters to her uncle, she seems to have been frequently disciplined
by means of her healthy young appetite. There were melodramatic
occasions when she went without sugar in her tea, and was compelled
to practise various similar mortifications of the flesh for which
no small girl has a natural bent. After she was removed from these
uncongenial surroundings she lived for some time in dread of an adverse
circumstance that might return her to them. Her uncle, on whom neither
the pathos nor the humor of the situation was lost, more than once
suggested quizzically in his letters to her that she might like to go
back to the old ladies.

When they were separated he wrote to her every day, at first from
conscientious motives of the duty he owed to her, and later because of
the pleasure he derived from this frequent interchange of thought and
sympathy. When she was twelve years old he sent her with her sister,
Mary, to boarding-school at Charlestown, West Virginia.

"Had Mary written to me that you were a good girl and had behaved
yourself entirely well, I should have visited you during the Christmas
holidays," he said, in the course of a letter written to her shortly
after her initiation into boarding-school life.

In 1845 Buchanan became Secretary of State under President Polk. "My
labors are great," he wrote to Harriet, shortly after entering upon
the duties of his new office, "but they do not '_way_' me down, as
you write the word. Now I would say '_weigh_,' but doctors may differ
on this point." Further on in the same letter he continues thus:
"Your friends, Mrs. Bancroft [wife of the Secretary of War] and the
Pleasantons often inquire for you. They have given you somewhat of a
name here, and Mrs. Polk and Miss Rucker, her niece, have several times
urged me to permit you to come and pass some time with them. I have
been as deaf as the adder to their request, knowing, to use a word of
your grandmother, that you are too 'outsetting' already. There is a
time for all things under the sun, as the wise man says, and your time
will yet come." Again, he sends love from Miss Hetty, his housekeeper,
and a message to the effect that she would be glad to see Harriet in
Washington. "I fear she might be twice glad," added Buchanan, "once on
your arrival and still more so on your departure."

It was Buchanan's custom to spend his summers or a portion of them at
Bedford Springs, taking his nieces with him. To the younger it has ever
been a place of happy memories. There, when she was still quite a young
girl, she met the man, then also full of all the enthusiasm of youth,
to whom, after exacting a prolonged devotion, she finally surrendered
herself.

In one of her uncle's letters written to her in the summer of 1846
he tells her he will not be able to go to Bedford before the 10th of
August, "when the season will be over and it will be too late for Mary
to enact the character of belle; and you," he continued, "are quite too
young to make the attempt."

He placed her, the autumn of that year, in the Visitation Convent,
in Georgetown, whence she was graduated three years later with much
distinction. She passed one Sunday in every month during these three
years at her uncle's home on F Street, there catching her first glimpse
of that world of which she was later to form a part. Her uncle was
still Secretary of State, and his home was frequented by the most
illustrious men who made up the public life of that day. There Harriet,
looking upon herself as a full-fledged young lady, spent the first
winter after her liberation from school duties. The following year,
however, she passed quietly among her relatives in Pennsylvania, which
was more in accord with her uncle's wishes, for she was still very
young. The decision to do so was entirely voluntary on her part, which
pleased Buchanan greatly, for he realized fully what a fascination
the gay life of the capital held for a young girl in her high social
position. He wrote her a letter full of praise for controlling what
he knew to be her inclination and remaining at home. "This act of
self-restraint has raised you in my estimation," he wrote, and then
went on to relate frankly how gay the city was, and concluded by
assuring her that Mr. John Sullivan, an Irish gentleman famous for his
dinners, would be inconsolable when he learned that she was not to be
there that winter.

It is supposed that no American woman ever had more offers of marriage
than Harriet Lane, and it is evident, from a letter written her by
her uncle about this time, that suitors had already begun to present
themselves. "I wish now to give you a caution," he wrote: "never allow
your affections to become interested, or engage yourself to any person,
without my previous advice. You ought never to marry any person who is
not able to afford you a decent and immediate support. In my experience
I have witnessed the long years of patient misery and dependence which
fine women have endured from rushing precipitately into matrimonial
connections without sufficient reflection. Look ahead and consider the
future, and act wisely in this particular."

With the incoming of Taylor's administration Buchanan retired to
Wheatland, spending the ensuing four years there with occasional
sallies to Washington and his summers as usual at Bedford Springs.

Harriet Lane was already a belle of far more than local repute when
in 1852, her uncle having been appointed minister to England, she
accompanied him thither.

Through the effect she produced in a strange land Buchanan probably
for the first time fully realized how unusually beautiful she was. So
favorable was the impression she made upon the queen that on state
occasions she was assigned to places usually given only to the wives
of ambassadors and ministers. She was well known throughout England,
and on the day that Oxford University conferred the degree of Doctor of
Civil Laws upon her uncle and Alfred Tennyson its ancient walls rang
with the cheers that went up from its hundreds of students who rose _en
masse_ to greet the entrance of Harriet Lane.

"She was a most distinguished young person," said one of her countrymen
recently, growing enthusiastic over the recollection of the impression
she created, "whom more than one Englishman would have given his head
to marry."

Her beauty was not less appreciated by the artistic eye of the French
people, and Mr. James Edward MacFarland, who was secretary of the
American legation at the time of her visit to the family of Mr. John
Y. Mason, then our minister to France, was full of anecdotes of the
_naïveté_ with which the people in the streets of Paris were wont to
express their admiration.

Shortly after her return to America the loss of her only sister, Mrs.
George W. Baker, who died in California, sent Harriet Lane into deep
mourning. While the country was filled with stories of her beauty and
the impression it had created in foreign capitals she was passing
her days in the grateful quiet of Wheatland. Her uncle's nomination
to the Presidency but added to her fame, the campaign, election, and
inauguration bringing her gradually into that eminent position she
was so admirably fitted to fill. At the ball attending the inaugural
ceremonies at Washington she made her first reappearance in public,
clad, as best became her noble form, in the simplicity of a white
dress, flower trimmed, and with a necklace of pearls.

In those days, before social functions had attained the proportions
that now characterize them, they reflected in the White House, as
elsewhere, more of the individuality of the host and hostess than is
now possible. Many details that are now consigned to secretaries and
stewards then appertained to the master and mistress of the house.
Harriet Lane and her cousin James Buchanan Henry, who acted as private
secretary to his uncle, invariably arranged the seating of the guests
at state dinners, an onerous task now performed by an under-secretary
of the Executive Mansion, who, besides being familiar with the rules
of official precedence, must also know something of the social
relationship each guest bears to his possible neighbor. She made no
mistakes, for she had been trained to her position as had none of her
predecessors, unless we except the wives of the two Adamses.

In 1860, when the Prince of Wales visited England's North American
possessions, on President Buchanan's suggestion and invitation, he
extended his travels so as to include at least a portion of the United
States. The memory of his sojourn among us still lives in many of the
cities and towns whose territory had once formed part of the kingdom
of his ancestors. The five days he spent in Washington were passed
in the White House. A guest of the nation at the capital is usually
assigned to a suite of rooms in one of the hotels of the city. Between
Buchanan and the Prince of Wales, however, owing to the former's recent
residence at the court of St. James, there existed more of a personal
feeling than is usual between the President and state guests.

In all the festivities by which the Executive Mansion did honor to his
presence the unerring hand and faultless taste of Harriet Lane were
evident.

One memorable day of his visit was spent at Mount Vernon. The revenue
cutter "Harriet Lane" was selected to take the distinguished little
party, consisting of the President, Miss Lane, the Prince, his suite,
and the British Minister down the river. The simplicity of George
Washington's home and the picturesque beauty of its situation were
themes of interesting study to the Englishmen. At his tomb they
reverently bared their heads, and near it the Prince planted a tree in
remembrance of the day.

After he left Washington he wrote to the President expressing his
appreciation of the hospitality he had received, and sending him his
portrait painted by Sir John Watson Gordon, with a set of engravings of
the Royal family for Miss Lane, to whom now also belong the portrait
and the letter, together with one written by the queen. It echoes the
gratification already expressed by her son concerning the kindliness of
his reception among the American people, and shows in what high regard
she personally held both the President and his niece.

Buchanan's administration was the last of the old _régime_, a period
in which there had been that unity of purpose that had fostered the
nation, that wise forbearance that had preserved it, and withal much
of illustrious oratory and brilliant debate. But the parting of the
ways had come. A day of action was at hand. Buchanan, oppressed with a
sense of his impotency to avert a crisis that was inevitable, retired
to Wheatland, and Lincoln, full of high purposes and many misgivings,
stepped into the pathway of destiny. Upon the one public life instantly
relaxed its hold, while about the other it threw its myriad feverish
tendrils, clutching him hourly closer to itself till the long watches
of that fatal April night, during which its imperious tenure was
loosened by death.

With Buchanan, Harriet Lane also passed from the horizon of public
life, spending with him at Wheatland those historic four years that
followed her days in the White House. There, in January, 1866, she
was married to Henry Elliott Johnston, of Baltimore. The ceremony was
performed by her uncle, the Rev. Edward Y. Buchanan, of the Episcopal
Church.

Her honeymoon she passed in Cuba and her married life in Baltimore, in
whose social doings she took a prominent part. At her uncle's death, in
1868, she inherited Wheatland, where for a number of years she passed
her summers. In 1892 she bought a home in Washington, where she now
spends the greater part of her time.

Much has been given her of life's joys and triumphs, and much, too, of
its sorrows. Death has repeatedly crossed the threshold of her home,
robbing her, one by one, of her heart's treasures: in 1881 the elder of
her two sons, James Buchanan Johnston, a boy of brilliant promise, then
in his fourteenth year; in 1882 her second son, Henry Elliott Johnston;
and two years later her husband. Surrounded not only by life's
comforts, but its elegancies, by friends of her own and a succeeding
generation, there is yet about Harriet Lane Johnston to-day much of
that same majestic isolation that marked her youth.



ADÈLE CUTTS

(MRS. ROBERT WILLIAMS)


During the four years that Franklin Pierce presided over the nation so
many beautiful women came prominently before the public at the capital
that his was called the "beauty administration." Many were the wives
and daughters of men in high official position, but the fame of none
exceeded that of the daughter of James Madison Cutts, who held the
office of Second Controller of the Treasury.

Born within a stone's throw of the White House, all her young days
centred about it, and how near she came to living there as the wife
of a President we may gauge by how near Stephen A. Douglas came to
possessing that office. Adèle Cutts flourished in that truly golden
era before material wealth became a necessary adjunct to a woman's
popularity, when men were distinguished by a greater spirit of
gallantry and disinterestedness, and in the days before a belle's
powers at a watering-place were rated by the number or size of the
trunks she took with her; in a word, in the days when the woman herself
was pre-eminent and the accident of worldly possessions secondary.

It was recently said of a wealthy American girl, who, though she has
generously expended much of her large fortune in the endowment of
seats of learning and similar public benefactions, has yet in herself
none of that magnetism that would entitle her to enrollment among the
great belles of her country, "Yes, she is a great belle this summer.
She brought thirty trunks, and she dresses six times a day." At the
same resort forty years ago, Adèle Cutts, remarkable for the simplicity
of her toilettes even among a generation that had no conception
whatever of the elaborate costuming of women which marks the close of
the century, was the most renowned of its belles.

While she derived in the preliminary stages of her social career
some prestige from her connection with two of the most illustrious
families not only of Virginia but of the entire country,--Washington
and Madison,--she attained while yet a very young woman a pre-eminence
by reason of her beauty, the distinction of her bearing, and a genuine
loveliness of character, which reflected as much honor upon the
somewhat remote relationship as it had bestowed upon her. She was born
in the home of her grandfather, Richard Cutts, who, in the days when
Maine was part of Massachusetts, had for twelve years represented in
the Congress of the United States that district which at this end of
the century was for so long a period associated with the name of Thomas
B. Reed.

In 1804 Richard Cutts married Anna Payne, the youngest sister of the
famous Dolly Payne, who some years before had become the wife of James
Madison. Still another sister had married George Steptoe Washington,
the nephew of our first President. It was of her sister Anna's family
that Mistress Dolly wrote her lines adapted from John Gilpin's ride:

       "My sister Cutts and Cutts and I and Cutts's children three
        Will fill the coach, so you must ride on horseback after we."

The home Cutts built for his bride, and where his children and
grandchildren were born, was in those early days one of the pretentious
houses of the capital. It overlooked Lafayette Square, and its
beautiful garden, where Addie Cutts played as a little girl, skirted
along H street to the end of the block. Cutts was a widower when his
son James Madison married Miss Ellen O'Neale, of Maryland, and took her
to "Montpelier" to spend their honeymoon days with his aunt and uncle,
whose namesake he was. On their return to Washington his bride became
the mistress of her father-in-law's home, where in the following year,
1835, Adèle Cutts was born.

In the guise of a little flower-girl she made her first formal
appearance at the White House when she was but seven years old, at a
children's fancy ball given there in 1842 during the administration of
President Tyler.

She was for the most part educated at Madame Burr's school, in the city
in which she was born. Her wonderful grace of manner, however, was
not the result of education; it was the manifestation of a character
beautiful by nature and developed amid happy surroundings. An only
daughter, she was the close companion of her beautiful and brilliant
mother, besides spending much of her time until her fifteenth year with
her great-aunt Madison, whose genius had sown the first seeds of social
life in the barren wastes of the national capital and drawn together
the scattered elements of its subsequent levees and dinner-parties.
After the death of Madison, finding herself unable to support the
solitude of her life at "Montpelier," which had been theretofore most
complete and happy, she returned to Washington and took up her home in
the Cutts house, which now belonged to her and which bears her name to
this day, though it has had many other distinguished occupants. Richard
Cutts had mortgaged it to Madison, and dying before he had repaid him,
the house passed into the possession of Mrs. Madison. There she held a
court as brilliant as any ever presided over by an American woman, and
Adèle Cutts was early familiarized with the greatness of a generation
that was already passing away. Webster, Clay, Calhoun, as well as every
President of the United States whose term of office fell during her
residence in Washington, paid her the tribute of frequent visits, and
felt honored by his privilege to do so.

[Illustration: Adèle Cutts

(Mrs. Robert Williams)

From portrait by George Peter A. Healy]

At the time of her death her great-niece was fourteen years old, and
already possessed a beauty of the purest Greek type, whose stateliness
increased as she advanced towards womanhood. The faultless outline of
her profile, the shapeliness of her head, her large, dark eyes, her
chestnut hair that showed glints of a golden hue in the sunshine, the
creamy tone of her skin, the perfect proportion and development of
her tall figure, all combined to make the rare beauty of a personality
whose charm was augmented twofold by her own unconsciousness of its
rich possessions.

Like many girls of southern proclivities, she spent her summers at that
famous old resort that has witnessed the rising and going down of so
many social stars, the White Sulphur Springs. There, dressed always
in white, with a white kerchief in the mornings folded across her
bosom and showing her fair throat, there was about her a freshness and
simplicity that suggested her descent from the Quaker Paynes.

The spirit of gallantry has no age limit in the South, and she, like
many another girl in the blossom of her youth, received the homage of
men of all periods of life. The beautiful Imogene Penn, afterwards Mrs.
James Lyons, of Richmond, and whose belleship days were contemporaneous
with those of Adèle Cutts, encountered the irrepressible Richmond wag,
Tom August, one morning as she was returning from the springhouse
between two devotees, one of whom was the unsuspected possessor of
forty-five, while the other concealed about his person as many as fifty
summers. "I thought, Miss Imogene," said August, bowing profoundly to
the trio and availing himself of a wit's privilege, "that you were just
eighteen, but I see you are between forty-five and fifty."

Some Virginia beaux, who were young then, have treasured up and
still relate an anecdote of the manner in which one of Adèle Cutts's
elderly admirers lost the only opportunity she ever gave him to
propose to her. He came from New Orleans, and was blessed with many
good things, including sons and daughters older than Miss Cutts. At a
fancy-dress ball she appeared completely disguised in the character
of a housekeeper, having borrowed the entire costume, including the
cap, apron, and bunch of keys at her side, from the housekeeper of
the hotel. Before any one had had an opportunity to speculate on her
identity, discovering her old admirer among the spectators of the gay
and bewildering scene, she approached demurely and asked him if he did
not need a housekeeper. He parried the question somewhat playfully, and
ended by answering in the negative. She dropped him a courtesy with a
grace no housekeeper could emulate, peeping at him with laughing eyes
over her mask, and disappeared in the throng of the ball-room.

At a White House reception, early in the winter of 1856, she met
Stephen A. Douglas, who was then prominent as a Presidential
possibility; he was also one of the Illinois Senators, and his ringing
speeches had won him a national fame equal to the intensity of his
local popularity. His able defence of Andrew Jackson on the floor of
the Senate so gratified and touched the old President that he preserved
a copy of the speech, laying it aside as an inheritance for those who
should come after him, and endorsing it as a defence of himself and
his administration. The one great fault of that administration, in his
own estimation, was none of those for which popular opinion of his
day condemned him, but that he had not hanged Calhoun. "Douglas,"
writes one of his biographers, "had wonderfully magnetic powers, and
usually carried his audience with him." It is small wonder, then, that
at the end of a few months of ardent and eloquent debate, with an
audience consisting of one young girl, that he should have carried her
completely with him.

He was a widower with two sons when he met Adèle Cutts, and, like many
a less fortunate man, he was instantly impressed with her absolute
loveliness. He would go to her direct from the Senate chamber while
the whole city was ringing with the fame of his speeches, which she
not infrequently heard from a place in the gallery, and throw all his
irresistible eloquence into his courtship of her.

In the Democratic Convention of the summer of 1856 Douglas and Buchanan
were rival candidates for the Presidential nomination. Pierce, also,
though there had been some doubt in the minds of his own townsmen about
his making a successful President at all, was seeking the nomination
for a second term. "Frank Pierce is all very well up here where he
knows everybody and everybody knows Frank Pierce," said a New Hampshire
sage during the summer preceding Pierce's election, "but when it comes
to spreading him out over the whole country, I'm afraid he'll be mighty
thin in some places." The thinness had evidently been apparent, for
while he had the high honor of coming in almost unanimously, as Senator
Benton said, he went out with as great a unanimity.

When it became evident that the nomination was not for Douglas, so
intensely was he beloved by the people of the West, and particularly by
those of his own State, that many a sturdy, hard-featured delegate from
that section, to all appearances the embodiment of stoicism, put down
his head and wept like a little heart-broken child.

On the 20th of November, a few weeks after the election of Buchanan,
he was married to Adèle Cutts, and it has been said that, of the many
beautiful women who witnessed the incoming of Buchanan's administration
at his inaugural ball, Douglas's wife was the most beautiful.

Already known to the South and the East, her fame now spread westward,
and when it was rumored that Douglas would take her to Chicago, where
he had maintained a legal residence for some years, the people of the
town made ready to receive her with the enthusiasm which she inspired
in them then primarily as the young wife of Stephen A. Douglas. She
made her first appearance among them at St. Mary's Church, where many
people who had never been in a Catholic church before were found in the
congregation that Sunday morning, and far more than the usual external
contingent waited patiently on the sidewalk to see her as she came out.
When she appeared with her husband at the celebration held on the State
line between Illinois and Wisconsin, in honor of the union of the two
railroad companies between Chicago and Milwaukee, she was hailed with
uproarious cheers. There was that in her very presence which seemed to
completely satisfy every man's ideal of all womanly perfection.

It was in the year of the great contest for the Legislature between
Lincoln and Douglas that the people of the West came to know her,
however, as she was already known at the East, and to love her with
that same loyalty and devotion. Her home in Chicago was always in
hotels, sometimes at the Tremont House and again at the Lake View.
Many of the men who have made Chicago the queen city she is to-day
were then young. Among them were professional men and men full of
commercial enterprise, all brainy and ambitious, and a fair number of
them Democrats and followers of Douglas. These gathered about her in
her parlors or under the trees in the garden overlooking the lake, and
though she never entered into any political discussion, the very fact
that Douglas possessed such a wife inspired them with renewed ardor
for his cause. In her gentle graciousness, infinite tact, and entire
unconsciousness of the admiration she everywhere aroused, they felt the
full force of her high breeding.

Lincoln and Douglas are so conspicuously identified as political
enemies, that few people realize that personally they were friends.
Not unfrequently they travelled a whole day together only to take
the platform that night against each other and to pommel each other,
figuratively, out of recognition. Douglas was adroit, however, and
Lincoln once said of him that it was difficult to get the best of him
in any debate, because his power of bewildering his audience was so
great that they never knew when he was worsted. During the summer
in which their political enmity first achieved so much prominence,
Douglas's wife went with him through the State winning favor for
him in all eyes, even including those of the "ablest whig rascal in
all Springfield, Abe Lincoln." He liked to sit beside her as they
journeyed from place to place and pour some funny story into her
attentive ears, or, perhaps, divining the tender sympathy of her true
woman's soul, tell her some incident of his early days, touching off
its sorrowful details with a bit of homely philosophy or a stroke of
his inexhaustible humor; and as the train pulled into some expectant
town, and the two opponents were greeted by factions whose enmity was
real, he would say, "Here, Douglas, take your woman," and so they would
part to meet again as foes. As the final victory was with Douglas,
he and his wife made that tour of the Southern States that was much
in the nature of a triumphal procession, and was a forerunner of his
Presidential campaign which shortly followed.

His real home was in Washington, where as a Senator he spent the
greater portion of each year. There he built a commodious house, with a
ball-room, by no means a frequent adjunct at that time, which witnessed
much generous hospitality in those difficult days preceding secession,
when a woman like Mrs. Douglas could best hold warring elements in
abeyance.

The result of the campaign of the summer of 1860, in which Lincoln and
Douglas again confronted each other, this time for the higher prize of
the Presidency, precipitated that crisis which at length brought these
two life-long opponents together in defence of the Union. The whole aim
of Douglas's life had been for the Presidency. He had accomplished all
else he had ever set his heart upon, and he was so absolutely the idol
of the people that it had not seemed possible to him he should fail
here. He swallowed the bitterness of his disappointment heroically,
however, and was a generous and even a graceful friend to Lincoln.

It is related that, when Lincoln rose to read his inaugural address,
he hesitated a moment, uncertain as to what disposition to make of his
hat; it was a new, high silk hat, too elegant an acquisition to the
mind of one reared in the more than frugal atmosphere of Lincoln's home
to be intrusted to the pine boards of the flag-draped stand in front
of him. Douglas, divining the mental process of which Lincoln himself,
in the embarrassment of the moment, was scarcely conscious, stepped
forward and relieved him of the hat, holding it for him till the
conclusion of the address.

During the early days of the conflict between the North and the South,
which he had patriotically done his utmost to avert, he aided Lincoln
with able counsel, pointing out to him among other things the necessity
of securing Fortress Monroe and cautioning him against bringing the
troops through Baltimore, prophesying that bloodshed that did occur.
But before the conflict had assumed those proportions which it did
later in the same year, on the 3d of June, 1861, Douglas's life
closed. His last hours were spent in Chicago among the people he had
so ably represented. There, with his wife beside him, and her mother
and brother, James Madison Cutts, who was his private secretary, near
by, and with his keen, dark eyes upon her face, as if he would forever
fix upon his spirit its beautiful lineaments, and his hand in hers, his
mind retaining all its strength and clearness till the end, he uttered
his last memorable words. She had asked him if he had any message to
send to his sons, and he replied, "Tell them to obey the laws of the
land and to support the Constitution of the United States."

Generous even to the point of recklessness, he died poor. Subscriptions
were immediately begun among his friends towards a fund for his widow.
She declined, however, to receive it, and begged that the sum thus
raised be devoted to the erection of a monument to Douglas's memory.

She returned to Washington and lived quietly for some years in the
first home of her married life, taking no part in the social world
whose magnet she had been for so many seasons. But she was not
forgotten; and when she again, after four years of seclusion, resumed
her place in its midst, her reappearance brought up innumerable
memories of her earlier days, of her conquest of the "Little Giant,"
and of her queenly part in his political campaigns.

She was the guest of honor at a dinner given in the early winter of
1865, just as the war drew to its close, by Miss Harris, whose name
lives in history in a very different connection: she was sitting
beside Lincoln in his box at the theatre on the night he was shot.
Among the guests bidden to meet Mrs. Douglas was Captain, afterwards
General, Robert Williams, one of the handsomest and most gallant
officers of the army, and a member of a well-established family of
Culpeper County, Virginia. Mrs. Douglas was already known to him
by fame, and suspecting her to be possessed of all the caprices of
a spoiled beauty, he had no desire whatever to meet her, though he
accepted Miss Harris's invitation for the sake of the pleasure he would
otherwise derive from her hospitality. After he had been presented
to Mrs. Douglas, however, whatever enjoyment he had anticipated from
meeting others there passed from his mind. Combined with a gentle
dignity, there was about her all the sweet simplicity of a young girl,
and nothing that ever so remotely suggested any consciousness of a
fame that was as wide as her country. He followed her with all the
earnestness with which he had meant to avoid her, and in January, 1866,
she again became a bride.

The chronicle of the most magnificent ball ever given, not only in
Washington, but probably in the country, and which occurred shortly
after her marriage to General Williams, hands her name and that of
Kate Chase Sprague down to fame as the two most beautiful women who
participated in the brilliant event. It was given by the French
minister, Count de Moutholon, by order of his Emperor, in honor of the
officers of the French fleet then anchored at Annapolis.

She gradually, however, abdicated her social queenship for a crown she
wore with no less grace, that of a most noble motherhood.

Wedded to an army man, her life led her from post to post, and the
greater part of her days from that time was spent in the West.

The little life of the only child of her first marriage covered but a
few months. The six children of her second marriage, however, are all
living and grown to manhood and womanhood, two of her sons being in the
military service of their country.

The last few years of her life were passed in Washington, where her
husband held the office of Adjutant-General until his retirement from
the service. There her eldest daughter was married, in January, 1899,
to Lieutenant John Bryson Patton, and there also, on the 26th of the
same month, her own life terminated. Time had touched her lightly, as
if he would not rob her of a loveliness that had been as much a charm
to women as to men. Asked once the secret of her youthful appearance,
she blushed like a girl and confessed that she was happy, and that
therein must lie the solution.

It is difficult to analyze the qualities of that power of fascination
which some women have exercised over the world. They are as varied as
the individuality of the women to whom they have been intrusted. In
Adèle Cutts, however, they seem to have emanated from a singular beauty
of soul, a species of primal innocence that proclaimed itself at once
to the sense of every beholder and preserved her alike from any touch
of vanity or worldliness.

To those who knew her she seemed little changed as the years rolled
on, because to her classic beauty of form was added an indestructible
quality which was a beauty of the spirit.



EMILIE SCHAUMBURG

(MRS. HUGHES-HALLETT)


Every Philadelphia girl who has hoped to be a belle during this last
quarter of the century, and even many who have been without social
aspirations, have been brought up on traditions of Emilie Schaumburg.

Yet so eminent was the place she held in the old city whose standard of
belleship had been fixed far back in the colonial days of America, that
no one has ever succeeded her.

Accustomed through long generations to women of wit, beauty, and
a certain unapproachable taste in matters of personal adornment,
Philadelphia has developed a critical instinct which is not easily
satisfied.

"The ladies of Philadelphia," wrote Miss Rebecca Franks over a century
ago, "have more cleverness in the turn of an eye than those of New York
have in their whole composition. With what ease have I seen a Chew, a
Penn, an Oswald, or an Allen, and a thousand others, entertain a large
circle of both sexes; the conversation, without the aid of cards,
never flagging nor seeming in the least strained or stupid. Here, in
New York, you enter the room with a formal set courtesy, and, after
the how-dos, things are finished; all is dead calm till the cards
are introduced, when you see pleasure dancing in the eyes of all the
matrons, and they seem to gain new life."

It is but just to state that this fair critic of New York's social
status belonged to Philadelphia, where, though her wit was rather of a
satirical turn, she was noted as a lady possessed of "every human and
divine advantage." She was the youngest of the three daughters of David
Franks, one of whom became the wife of Oliver de Lancey, another of
Andrew Hamilton, of "Woodlands," one of the famous suburban estates of
the city, while Rebecca, "high in toryism and eccentricity," after an
unusually brilliant belleship, bestowed her hand on Lieutenant-General
Sir Henry Johnston, and went to live in England.

Of the Chews referred to in her letter from New York, so sparkling was
the conversation which Harriet could maintain, that Washington, when he
was sitting for his portrait to Stuart, liked to have her in the room
that his face might wear its most agreeable expression, such as her wit
always induced. She married the son of Charles Carroll of Carrollton,
the young Charles Carroll who was at one time suspected of having a
tender interest in Nellie Custis, Washington's step-granddaughter.
Her sister Margaret, who was one of the beauties who made the great
feast of the Mischianza so famous, also married a son of Maryland,
Colonel John Eager Howard, a patriot and a hero. Passing through her
room one evening he heard her relating to her children the pathetic
story of Major André, who had been her knight in the tournament of the
Mischianza.

"Don't believe a word of it, children," he interrupted, as their young
hearts swelled with pity at her graphic and romantic recital; "he was
an infernal spy."

Ann Willing, who married William Bingham in her seventeenth year, was
another woman who helped to establish the standard of female beauty
and excellence in Philadelphia. "She is coming quite into fashion
here," John Adams's daughter wrote of her from London, "and is very
much admired. The hair-dresser who dresses us on court days inquired of
mamma whether she knew the lady so much talked of here from America,
Mrs. Bingham. He had heard of her from a lady who had seen her at Lord
Duncan's."

London society, and especially that of the court circle, was not
very favorably disposed towards Americans in the year 1786, and the
subsequent graciousness of their reception they doubtless owed largely
to the impression created by the beauty and character of such a woman
as Mrs. Bingham, who was one of the first to seek a presentation at
the court of George III. after our separation from the mother-country.
Her striking beauty of face and form, her easy deportment, that had
all the pride and grace of high breeding, the intelligence of her
countenance, and the entire affability of her attitude disarmed every
feeling of unfriendliness and converted every one, said Mrs. Adams,
into admiration.

The unfortunate Margaret Shippen, as gifted as she was beautiful,
deprived by her husband's treason before she was twenty years old of
the shelter of her home and the protection of her family, the Executive
Council of Pennsylvania bidding her to leave the State and not return
till the close of the war, and Sarah, the daughter of Benjamin Franklin
and wife of Richard Bache, and the embodiment of Republican principles,
which caused her to insist that there was "no rank in America but rank
mutton," are two noted examples of that diversity which gave flavor to
the social life of a city that has tempted the pens of both native and
foreign critics.

Philadelphia was one of the first of the Northern cities to admit
women to the pit of its theatres, and visitors from quiet Boston and
commercial New York at one time condemned its social tone as fast,
because its young men gave wine-suppers, and because it danced to the
music of a full colored orchestra, known as Johnson's Band, while other
cities were performing their more or less graceful gyrations to the
tunes furnished by one or two musicians.

The Quaker town had made a brilliant social record before many of
the cities of America had so much as laid one stone upon another. By
comparison it is old. It has its elements of newness, like all bodies
that grow and progress, but they are not readily assimilated by that
little coterie that long ago laid the foundation of its establishment
in the southeastern section of the city. It is from the predominance
of this conservative social principle in Philadelphia that people
unfamiliar with its life have derived the erroneous impression that its
general progress and development have been correspondingly deliberate.

To hold such a position as Emilie Schaumburg held in Philadelphia
implies the possession of such personal qualities and such gifts as
would be an open door to the most exclusive society of the world.

She was well born, coming of ancestry distinguished both in their
native land and in that of their adoption. Her grandfather, Colonel
Bartholomew Schaumburg, belonged to one of the oldest families in
Germany. He was a godson and ward of the Landgrave Frederick William,
with whom he was closely connected. When still quite a youth, the
Landgrave made him an aide-de-camp to Count Donop, who commanded the
Hessian subsidies furnished by Germany to England to aid her in the war
with the American colonies.

Schaumburg was sent with despatches to Donop, who, however, had been
killed before the arrival of his young aide-de-camp. Learning for the
first time of the righteousness of the American cause, he gallantly
offered his services to the commander-in-chief of the American forces.
He fought valiantly all through the war, and at its close accepted a
commission in the standing army organized by the new government. At
the Cotton Centennial held at New Orleans in 1884, his commissions
signed by Washington were exhibited and were objects of much interest.
He took part in many of the early Indian wars, and was appointed
quartermaster-general in the war of 1812.

[Illustration: Emilie Schaumburg

(Mrs. Hughes-Hallett)

From portrait by Waugh]

His home was at New Orleans. His eldest daughter, at the time of
General Lafayette's visit to that city, was one of the twelve young
girls selected on account of their beauty from its most distinguished
families to crown America's friend. She lived to an advanced age,
surviving her eleven companions of that memorable occasion and
retaining much of her beauty till the close of her life.

The site of the city of Cincinnati was indirectly chosen by Colonel
Schaumburg when he selected the spot where it later sprung up for
the establishment of a fort, which he called, in honor of his first
American friend, Fort Washington.

He was an accomplished artillerist, and under his direction was
cast the first cannon made in the United States. While stationed in
Carlisle, Pennsylvania, upon military duty, he met the lady whom he
afterwards married, and who had not long previously arrived in America,
whither she had come with her parents to trace a recent acquisition of
land.

She was a lineal descendant of the principal Indian chief, Secaneh,
of the Lenape tribe, who signed the treaty of 1683 with William Penn,
selling him the large tract of land on which Philadelphia is built.

The Princess Susahena, the daughter of Secaneh, had been married to
Thomas Holme McFarlane, a nephew of Thomas Holme, who was the first
Surveyor-General of Pennsylvania. Three years after their marriage they
sailed for Dublin, but ocean voyages in those days were trials to the
stoutest constitutions, and the poor princess died before reaching the
other side.

Her child, a daughter, lived, and it was the great-granddaughter of
this child who became the wife of Colonel Schaumburg, so that Emilie
Schaumburg is the seventh generation in lineal descent from the
aboriginal princess, and attained her remarkable social queenship on
the native heath of her royal ancestors.

Mrs. Henry D. Gilpin, who had known Colonel Schaumburg's family
intimately and had spent much time with them in their Southern
home, frequently spoke of the great beauty of Emilie Schaumburg's
grandmother, and of the resemblance Emilie bore to her. She had the
fresh Irish complexion and violet eyes, together with suggestions of
the Indian type of her ancestry in the tall, lithe figure, delicately
aquiline features, and black hair, which almost swept the ground.

They were a strikingly handsome couple, for Colonel Schaumburg was as
magnificent in appearance as he was conspicuous in courage. He was
several inches over six feet in height, and clung all his life to
powdered hair and lace ruffles, those outward signs of the aristocrat;
yet he adopted republican principles, dropped his title, and besought
his children to be satisfied with the record he should leave them of
services rendered his adopted country.

He had declined the overtures made him by his family in Germany, from
whom he had become estranged owing to the course he had pursued in
espousing the American cause. He had no desire to return and resume his
career there.

When his granddaughter, however, visited Germany she was received
with marked consideration by the Princess of Schaumburg-Lippe, who was
reigning at the time.

True to his principles, Colonel Schaumburg opposed the formation of
the Society of the Cincinnati, refusing to become a member of it, and
arguing that it had for its object the inauguration of an aristocracy,
and was in direct opposition to the very principles for which they had
fought.

His son followed in his footsteps in selecting a military career. He
was graduated from the National Military Academy in 1833, and entered
the cavalry. He was a gallant officer, generous and impetuous, and as
magnificent in physique as his father.

He lost his commission through a technicality which the War Department
turned to his disadvantage, and fought all his life for reinstatement,
being upheld by President Jackson and a majority of the United States
Senate.

He had imbibed his father's ideas, and would never use the "von" in his
name because his father had dropped it. When his daughter wished to
resume it, however, he gave his consent and approval.

Major Schaumburg married a daughter of Stephen Page, originally of Page
County, Virginia, and later of Eden Park, a beautiful country-seat,
near Philadelphia, where his children were born. Miss Page, who became
Mrs. Schaumburg, was a woman of much beauty and many accomplishments,
which she transmitted to her daughter.

Emilie von Schaumburg grew up in the home of her uncle, Colonel James
Page, with whom her name is ever identified. Though he was a man of
social and political prominence, his greatest distinction, in the eyes
of his fellow-citizens, arose from his relationship to her.

When this new fame dawned upon him, he had been for nearly fifty years
a well-known and popular figure in the life of the city. His military
record had been made in his youth during the war of 1812. He had
been Postmaster and Collector of the Port of Philadelphia, a leader
in Councils, County Treasurer in an era when politics had gone hand
in hand with principle and patriotism. He was a Jacksonian Democrat,
and had come to be looked upon as the grand old man of his party, who
by birth and breeding could adorn a ball at Madam Rush's or make an
after-dinner speech with as ready a grace as he could march at the head
of the State Fencibles.

In no capacity, however, did he attract that peculiar interest that
pursued him whenever he appeared in public with his niece. On winter
afternoons, at a time when that season was rather longer in the Middle
States than it is at the close of the century, and when the waters of
the rivers used to remain fast frozen for many days they frequently
appeared among the skaters, of whom, in his youth, Colonel Page had
been one of the celebrities. He found new enthusiasm in the graceful
sport, however, from the admiration he read in all faces whenever he
went upon the ice with his niece.

They formed a picture that many paused to look upon, while others, who
knew nothing of the intricacies of the accomplishment, gathered on
the river-bank solely for the pleasure of watching them as they took
those wonderfully long, sweeping curves of the "outer edge," the lithe
figure of the girl seeming to float like a bird on the wing, while the
splendid poise of the handsome, vigorous old man was as erect, as easy,
and as firm as in his youth. He always held that the highest art in
skating was in perfecting, to an almost incredible degree, the delicate
balance of the body on the outer edge of the skate, and so broadening
and lengthening the curves, which are ever, according to Hogarth, the
lines of beauty. The result justified the theory, and he found an apt
pupil in his niece, whose skating, like her dancing, was the very
poetry of motion.

The beauty of some women admits of a diversity of opinion. Emilie
von Schaumburg's did not. It was absolute, and the effect was
instantaneous. A head of classic mould, with its rich adornment of
lustrous black hair, proudly poised upon a throat and shoulders
of perfect form; an oval face, lighted with a fine vivacity and
captivating smile; great hazel eyes with dark brows and sweeping
lashes; delicate, regular features, and a complexion which no art could
imitate in its transparent fairness and brilliancy; a figure, tall and
svelt, all undulating lines and willowy grace; a regal carriage, and,
above all, an air of high-bred elegance and distinction; such, in her
early girlhood, was Emilie von Schaumburg, whom the Prince of Wales
declared the most beautiful woman he had seen in America.

It was on that famous night when the visit of His Royal Highness to
the Academy of Music brought thither one of the most distinguished
audiences ever assembled in Philadelphia. She was dressed with girlish
simplicity in white, her only ornament being a small chain of golden
sequins, which bound the rich masses of her hair and defined her
shapely head, yet such was the subtle power of her presence, that
from the moment she entered that crowded assembly, with its tier upon
tier of brilliantly arrayed women, she became the focus of all eyes,
dividing the attention of the Prince of Wales and the audience with
Patti, who was pouring out her soul in matchless melody upon the stage.

One night, a few years ago, during a performance of Madame Bernhardt,
in Philadelphia, a woman occupying one of the boxes, and carrying
herself with that fine spirit that had been the glory of a previous
generation, was recognized as Emilie Schaumburg, for so she still is,
and forever will be known, among the people of her own city and country.

The discovery flew from mouth to mouth, and many who had never before
seen her, as well as those who looked upon her for the first time after
many years, and recalled that memorable night at the Academy of Music,
bent upon her a gaze of unmistakable admiration.

Her education was principally directed by Hon. Henry Gilpin, who was
the Attorney-General of Van Buren's administration, and a most finished
scholar.

To the many advantages she enjoyed in having access to his library she
subsequently added a thorough knowledge of several modern languages,
for her intellectual endowments were in no degree inferior to her
physical gifts. Though she had a fine artistic sense and an almost
incredible facility in the acquirement of knowledge, she yet early
recognized the necessity of serious study and intelligent application.

In this recognition and the ability to comply with its requirements,
perhaps, more than in any other thing, lies the vast difference between
the mere butterfly of society and the woman who leaves the impress of
her individuality upon the life in which she moves.

Emilie Schaumburg never attempted a thing for which she had no special
talent, but, having once undertaken a study, she pursued it with
enthusiasm, following its every detail to the limit of her capacity.
To an admirer, who once exclaimed, "Is there anything in the world
you cannot do, and do brilliantly?" she replied, "Yes: I was a dismal
failure at both sewing and arithmetic."

Her voice, in speaking as in singing, lent itself to every delicate
inflection. She would delight, when still a very young child, to
imitate. Each new song she caught with an unerring ear, the florid
passages, roulades, and trills flowing as easily and naturally from
the childish throat as from that of a bird. This marvellously flexible
quality of voice she has never lost. In speaking of her musical
education, she once said to a friend,--

"I have had to study phrasing and style and expression, with sostenuto,
crescendo, diminuendo, and various other artistic effects, but the
drudgery of exercises was spared me, thanks to my fairy godmother."

She has always retained her habits of study, and even during her first
brilliant season in Paris she found time to take lessons from Madame
La Grange and also from the celebrated teacher Delle Sédié. Later,
however, at Nice, she studied more consecutively with Maestro Gelli,
who recognized the unusual order of her talents and wrote several
beautiful _morceaux_ expressly for her.

Her beauty and accomplishments were the open sesame to the exclusive
circles of the villa society at Nice, and among the many distinguished
people whom she delighted with her rare gifts was the late lamented
Duke of Albany. Like most of the royal family of England, he was an
accomplished critic and an ardent lover of music. He was enthusiastic
in his praise of Miss von Schaumburg's singing, and when she again met
him, a year or two later, at a court-ball at Buckingham Palace, his
greeting proved that he had not forgotten the impression it had made
upon him. His first words were, "And how is the beautiful voice?"

Before she left Philadelphia her histrionic talents had perhaps made
her more widely known than any other of her many accomplishments.
During the war for the Union, when the stage was the means of raising
many dollars for the benefit of the wounded and suffering soldiers, she
was foremost among the bright and spirited society women who devoted
their talents to the cause.

Her dramatic success was due neither to her beauty nor to her personal
charm, though her expressive features, her voice, and her perfect
grace and ease were undoubtedly powerful adjuncts. Her triumphs were
legitimate, and were the result of careful study, artistic finish, and
unusual histrionic ability. That she possessed, in an extraordinary
degree, the power of getting out of herself and into her parts was
evidenced by the tribute contained in the criticism of some friends who
went to see her in "Masks and Faces." They had gone, they said, solely
to see Miss Schaumburg, whom, however, they soon forgot, their interest
becoming absorbed in the brilliant, fascinating, impulsive Peg.

Yet Emilie Schaumburg was a very young girl when she stepped upon the
amateur stage of the Seventeenth-Street Drawing-Room, and had never
had a lesson in declamation nor a suggestion from any one to help her
in the study of her parts. To be able to forget one's identity, and to
make one's audience forget it, is, after all, the acme of high art in
acting, or, rather, it is the touch of genius which is above art, since
it cannot be taught.

As Peg Woffington in "Masks and Faces," and as the Countess in the
"Ladies' Battle," she carried conservative and critical audiences by
storm. Ristori, who was present at one of the performances, expressed
unqualified admiration at the high order of Miss Schaumburg's talent,
for both _rôles_ are considered tests to trained actresses.

She scored another success in the little operetta, "Les Noces de
Jeannette," which she sang and acted in French, and in which the _pièce
de résistance_ is the great _air du rossignol_. There are many people
in Philadelphia to-day who yet recall the brilliancy and daring of
those _tours de forces_ between the voice and the flute, each one in
turn taking up the refrain and soaring higher and higher in imitation
of the nightingale; yet there was never a harsh or strained note in
her perfect voice, but all as liquid, pure, and full-throated as the
warbling of the veritable bird.

Another of the gifts she possessed was for versification. She brought
it into frequent and graceful play, but only for the enjoyment of those
who were admitted to the privilege of an intimate friendship with her.

It is little wonder that Emilie von Schaumburg should have made an
impress upon the city of her nativity which has remained proof against
time and absence. No woman ever won a more spontaneous admiration than
fell to her lot. She never appeared upon the streets that she was not
surrounded and followed by both men and women, who, frequently without
knowing her, came simply to look upon her beauty and glory in her
possession.

She married, in England, Colonel Hughes-Hallett, of the Royal
Artillery, and member of Parliament for Rochester. She resides now
during the greater part of the year at Dinard, in France, where she
built, some years ago, the beautiful château of Montplaisir.

Still a strikingly handsome and distinguished woman, she gathers about
her the aristocracy of both France and England as well as the most
eminent and charming of her compatriots. She entertains during each
season with that same graciousness of hospitality with which she once
presided in her uncle's home in Philadelphia.

She recently added a ball-room to Montplaisir which she inaugurated by
a series of concerts and balls, among the picturesque features of the
latter being minuets, gavottes, and a cotillon.

Gowned in a white and silver brocade Watteau, with panniers, over a
pink satin petticoat trimmed with flounces of old lace, headed with
wreaths of roses of a deeper pink, her powdered hair crowned with
a black Gainsborough hat with black, white, and pink plumes, Mrs.
Hughes-Hallett took part in one of the stately gavottes, making a
beautiful picture against the delicate blue background and Louis Quinze
decorations of her artistic ball-room.

A life filled with adulation, that would have been the undoing of a
less wise woman, has in no way impaired her charm of character. Her
fine mental poise, her exquisite humor, together with the generosity
and sweetness of her nature, have preserved her from that calamitous
sense of satiety that has overtaken many a man and many a woman who
have lost their balance completely in an altitude of admiration much
below that in which Emilie von Schaumburg has passed her life.



KATE CHASE

(MRS. WILLIAM SPRAGUE)


There was a name in America a little more than a generation ago that
possessed a power amounting almost to enchantment, the name of Kate
Chase, a woman who holds a unique place in both the political and
social history of this century. The story of her life, between the high
lights of its early days and the shadows in which it closed, presents
a peculiar succession of superlatives. There stands forth, however,
through all its changes, one unvarying dominant feature which must
strike us at once, whether we approach it in the spirit of a student
or actuated merely by a passing curiosity: her absolute devotion to
her father. Through our knowledge of him, therefore, we may, in a
measure, penetrate those mists in which she is enveloped by the divided
opinion of a public, some of whom loved and idealized her as a social
divinity, while others hated and maligned her as an opposing political
force. Thus may we reach some just valuation of a character that with
its man's virility and woman's delicacy was in itself singularly
enigmatical, of its incentives and ideals, and, indirectly, therefore,
of the failure and disappointments which have left their indelible
stamp upon the life of Kate Chase.

In her father, profoundly cultured and endowed with inexhaustible
intellectual resources, she found the complete realization of her
most exalted conception. She well knew the tenderness of the heart,
the sensitiveness of the nature, he carried beneath that superb
exterior of majestic and unapproachable dignity. She lived in close
communion with the man, the angry rebuke of whose eye, says one of
his biographers, no transgressor could support. She was the central
feature of his remarkable home. Upon both of his daughters he expended
a tenderness of devotion of which those who lived beyond the sphere
of a personal acquaintance with him had no conception. Yet there have
been inconspicuous women whom he might have fathered with more ultimate
happiness to themselves than the remarkable daughter who is the
subject of this sketch. Though he was a great man, winning justifiable
distinction in every branch of the government of his country, he was
yet not competent to cope with the problems which the life of such a
woman as Kate Chase was continually presenting. In her presence alone,
in the proud carriage of her regal head, there was that singular
power that, while it drew forth the love and admiration that are the
expression of a generous nature, likewise provoked in those of a baser
order a hideous envy and hatred that assailed her even as a young girl.
With his benignant belief in the universal goodness of mankind, Chase
was singularly deficient in that knowledge of human nature which should
have enabled him to throw about her that sort of aggressive protection
which she peculiarly required.

There is one little incident in his life that throws light upon his
own character, and upon the principle he pursued in directing his
daughter. He was a man of the most delicate tastes and with a high
appreciation of all the niceties of life. When he took the platform as
an abolitionist, he was rotten-egged. Removing as much as possible of
the offensive effusion with his handkerchief, he continued with what he
was saying. He made no modification in his statements, nor did he close
the window through which the unsavory missiles had made their entrance.
As far as possible he ignored the occurrence.

The scandal-monger he treated with the same silent scorn, continuing
the tenor of his life as if he had not been made aware of his
existence. But while he, a courageous man, might walk fearlessly amid
the storm of the angry nation that impeached Andrew Johnson, and,
regardless of its threats, discharge the duties of his high office with
that calmness that distinguished all the acts of his judicial career
and adds to the glory of his name in the eyes of a later generation,
his daughter, though no less courageous, was yet "too slight a thing"
to defy the gossips of even one Western town. "Ah! little woman,"
she once said, laying her hand on the shoulder of one of her loyal
friends to whom sorrow had come, "you, at least, have never made the
mistake that I made. I never cared for the opinion or good-will of
people. I ran my head against a stone wall. It did not hurt the wall
but it has hurt the head." This is perhaps the nearest approach to
self-justification she ever made for having essayed, with a man's
independence, to live that most circumscribed life of a conspicuously
beautiful woman.

Losing her own mother when she was scarcely beyond her infancy, and her
step-mother before she had reached womanhood, and realizing early that
she was treated in all things as his equal in years and understanding
by the man whose superiority among his fellow-men she conceived to
be beyond question, that spirit of self-reliance that is the natural
outcome of all positive characters was intensified in her to an
abnormal degree. While it gave her the fundamental qualifications of
that leadership which she maintained with unparalleled brilliancy, it
likewise, through lack of direction, developed that imperious tendency
that proved so fatal to her own happiness.

She was the first child of Chase's marriage to his second wife,
Eliza Ann Smith, and was named by her mother after his first wife,
Katherine Garniss, for whom she had had a tender friendship and sincere
admiration.

Of her birth, which occurred on the 13th of August, 1840, her father's
journal contains the following record, a characteristic statement of
the event from a God-fearing man whose knowledge, not only of children,
but of the human family in general, was largely drawn from "judicious
treatises."

"I went apart, and kneeling down prayed God to support and comfort my
dear wife, to preserve the life of the child, and save both from sin. I
endeavored to give up the child and all into His hands. After a while
I went into the room. The birth had taken place at 2 A.M. on the 13th.
After I had seen my wife and child, I went into the library and read a
few pages in Eber's book on children, a judicious treatise. At last I
became tired, and, though it was now day, lay down and slept awhile.
The babe is pronounced pretty. I think it quite otherwise. It is,
however, well formed, and I am thankful. May God give the child a good
understanding that she may know and keep his commandments."

Of the early age at which Chase elected to test that understanding, his
journal also furnishes an evidence. An entry therein, under date of
November 24, 1845, about two months after her mother's death, shows the
dawn of that remarkable intellectual intercourse which he maintained
with his daughter till the end of his life. "This day," it reads, "has
been marked by no extraordinary event. Rose, as usual of late, before
sunrise; breakfasted with sister Alice and little Kate. Read Scriptures
(Job) to little Kate, who listened and seemed to be pleased, probably
with the solemn rhythm, for she certainly can understand very little;
then prayed with her; then to town in omnibus, unshaven for want of
time."

Within that same year he also recorded in his journal that he was
teaching "dear little Kate to read verses in the Bible and listening to
her recite poems."

Thus early, without any particular system probably, but wholly
delightfully and under a most patient and winning master, begun the
training of one of the most astute and brilliant minds with which a
woman was ever gifted. She was keen and clever rather than profound,
and her quick intelligence caught and assimilated the fruit of her
father's years of study. Without having his absorbing love of books,
she yet read much and forgot nothing. Chase used to say that in the
miscellaneous reading of his boyhood, it was the pleasure he derived
from a stray law-book that determined his choice of career. He pursued
his profession with the ardor of real love, and his daughter imbibed
from him a substantial knowledge of its technicalities. He used to go
over his cases with her very much at first in the spirit in which he
had read Job to her, later because he delighted in her understanding,
and finally because she had become genuinely helpful to him.

Well ordered and simple was the atmosphere of the home in which she
grew up. As was his custom from the time he established his own home
till the end of his life, Chase called his household together at the
beginning of every day to ask the blessing and protection of God. There
were times, as seen from his journal, when little Kate seems to have
been his only companion, yet the duty was never omitted.

She walked with him often to his office or to court in the morning,
both in Ohio and after they had removed to Washington, talking
sometimes of the things which interested her, but more frequently of
those which engrossed him, for it was his life and his ambitions that
gave color to both of their existences. He had taught her early his
favorite games, chess and backgammon, which she often played with him
in the quiet evenings they spent together, or, if it were out of
doors, croquet or some simple childish game, for she was part of the
relaxation of his lighter hours as she was the repository of all the
confidences and hopes of his public career.

His third marriage, in 1846, to Sarah Ludlow identified him with one
of the prominent families of Cincinnati; Israel Ludlow, his wife's
grandfather, having been one of the founders of the city. Chase,
himself, though an Eastern man, born in Cornish, New Hampshire, whence
he had migrated on coming of age, was now one of the prominent figures
of Cincinnati, a busy, prosperous lawyer, with excellent political
prospects, which met their first realization when, in 1849, he was
elected to the United States Senate. When he came, six years later,
into the governorship of his State he was again a widower, and Kate,
though less than fifteen years of age, took her place at the head of
his home.

Accustomed since the dawn of memory to the most considerate attentions
from the most kingly of men, she already carried herself with that
noble grace that made her presence felt in every assemblage above that
of all others, no matter how simply she clothed herself nor how quietly
she deported herself.

[Illustration: Kate Chase

(Mrs. William Sprague)

From photograph by Julius Ulke]

Chase was the first of Ohio's governors to take up his official
residence at Columbus. There, for a year, Kate went as a day pupil to
Mr. Heyl's seminary, and later studied in the same institution music
and languages, having for the latter an unusual gift. She spoke French
faultlessly, especially after her long residence abroad, which came
later in her life. Her German, while it was fluent, had always a
suggestion of a foreign accent that in her seemed rather pleasing than
otherwise. Her native tongue she wielded with rare perfection, and no
one who has heard Kate Chase talk will ever forget the magic of her
voice, the life her graphic and discriminating language breathed into
every thought to which she gave utterance, while her wonderful eyes
expressed, even betrayed, every emotion. An old man who served the
Chase family for years in the capacity of coachman once paid a tribute
to the delicacy and power of her verbal delineations which many a man
of more enlightened intelligence more gracefully, perhaps, but not more
aptly acknowledged. He said he knew no greater pleasure than to take
Miss Kate off in the carriage with a book in her lap, and, without
opening it, for her to tell him every word that it contained from
beginning to end.

The positive element of her character had already manifested itself
by the time she was sixteen years old. She was, at about that period,
out of compliment to her father, elected to the secretaryship of a
charitable organization of women, all of whom were many years her
senior. During the course of one of the meetings, a physician, of
whose services the body had availed itself, and who had given offence
to some of its members, was made the object of an abuse as senseless
as it was verbose. The spirit of opposition was more timorous in the
feminine organization of that day than it is in those that have been
the outgrowths of later years, and Kate Chase, alone, had the courage
to rise in defence of the absent doctor. Appealing to the chair to
silence the undignified outburst, she won on the spot an ill-will
that followed her long after those who cherished it had forgotten its
original cause. But her young life was full of a sweet homage, and
such a graceful tribute as was conveyed in the knowledge that one of
the ex-governors of the State had named the most beautiful rose in his
famous garden after her, easily atoned for the ill-will of a few people
which seemed, after all, but a ripple on the ever-broadening surface of
her life.

The growing strength of the Republican party, which had been ushered
into existence in her father's law offices in Cincinnati, under the
inspiration of Dr. Gamaliel Baily, revealed possibilities to a man of
Chase's ambition and ability that haunted him thenceforth till the
end of his life. Kate knew intimately the strong men who formed the
nucleus of that great party. She knew its aims and purposes, and was
in possession of its secret history contained in her father's letters
and journals and in her own memory of its inception and progress. Yet
nothing ever wrung them from her, though she was frequently approached
by magazine editors with offers that would have been a temptation even
to those in less need.

Her father's ambition became the absorbing object of her life,
developing in her, before she had reached her twentieth year, a
scientific knowledge of politics that no woman, and few men, have ever
surpassed. "I know your bright mind," once wrote Roscoe Conkling, in
submitting to her a political problem, "will solve this quicker than
mine." It has been said that many details of the campaign of 1884,
against Blaine, who was Conkling's political enemy, were planned at
Edgewood.

To an intellect naturally endowed with many masculine qualities, she
added a woman's quicker wit and greater powers of divination and an
overmastering love for the father in whose interest she exercised every
faculty of her gifted mind.

When the first convention of the Republican party met at Chicago, in
1860, to nominate a president, Chase was a prominent candidate for that
honor. His daughter accompanied him to Chicago, and thence for the
first time her name went forth over the land. His confidence in her,
his reliance upon her, treating her in all respects more as if she were
a son than a daughter, her youth, and the purely feminine quality of
her beauty rendered her unique and conspicuous.

The choice of the new party fell upon Abraham Lincoln, and Seward,
who supported him and opposed Chase's pretensions, received later the
recognition of his services when he was tendered the first place in
Lincoln's cabinet. Chase was, however, elected for the second time to
the United States Senate, where he took his seat March 4, 1861. Two
days later he had resigned and gone into Lincoln's cabinet as Secretary
of the Treasury. His home was thus transferred to Washington, where,
going later on the Supreme Bench, he passed the balance of his days,
neither he nor his children ever returning to Ohio. Chase was even
laid to rest in Washington, and slept over thirteen years in beautiful
Oak Hill. In the fall of 1886, however, his daughter had him removed to
Ohio, that he might rest finally in the State that had been his home
and that was associated with his early fame. There, a few months ago,
she was laid by his side.

At the capital of the nation Kate Chase attained a social prestige
never before enjoyed by so young a woman, and a political power which
no woman before or since her day has ever possessed. Men of such
eminence and distinction paid her the court of an homage so absolute
that it would be difficult to estimate how much of her father's
prominence was owing to her. Radiant as she was in her youth and
beauty, the most lovable side of her character ever discovered itself
in her tender, worshipping affection for him.

In September, 1860, some months before Chase left Ohio, there was
unveiled at Cleveland, on the shores of the Lake to which his valor
brought fame, a statue of Commodore Perry, many of the States sending
deputations to do honor to his memory. At the head of Rhode Island's
troops, in the military parade which opened the ceremonies of the day,
rode the governor of that State, his alert young figure impressing
itself upon all the spectators of the scene. That night, during the
ball at the Kennard House which closed the event of the day, Colonel
Richard Parsons presented him to Kate Chase. She was twenty years
old at the time, and her slender young figure already possessed that
beautiful symmetry that later found such unqualified favor in the
eyes of Worth, that great modern connoisseur of the proportions of the
female figure, drawing from him such commendation as he never accorded
to any other woman. In a ball-gown showing the faultless contour of her
neck and throat, and the exquisite poise of her lovely head, she was
the revelation of a perfection which the human form rarely attains.
Hazel eyes, auburn hair, and the marvellous whiteness of skin that
usually accompanies this combination, a full, low, broad brow, mobile
lips, a small, round chin, and a nose whose suggestion of an upward
tilt added its own peculiar touch of piquancy to a face that was
altogether charming rather than classically beautiful,--thus to the
eye was Kate Chase, whose fame then superseded that of every woman in
Ohio, and was shortly to surpass that of every woman of her generation
in America. That she should hold the interested attention of not only
one but several men for hours at a time was no unusual spectacle to
the people among whom her belleship days had dawned early. Governor
Sprague's devotion to her, however, on the night that he first met her,
because he was a distinguished stranger and a man of prominence in his
own State, and because there seemed, perhaps, in the entire situation
many of the elements of romance, became at once a subject of interested
comment.

The outbreak of the war took him to Washington. Still governor of his
State, he had raised a regiment and equipped it at his own expense, for
he was a man of immense wealth. His generosity, his patriotism, and
his valor at Bull Run, together with his youth and the success of his
political career, appealed to the enthusiasm of his countrymen. The
news not only that he was to marry, but to marry a woman so universally
idolized as was Kate Chase, heightened the effect his achievements had
already produced upon the mind of the public. With a delicate sort of
beauty and a somewhat clerical appearance that belied his reputation
for military prowess, he had at the moment a fame quite equal to that
of his bride. Their marriage, which took place at Washington on the
12th of November, 1863, was the social event of that turbulent period.
All the details of the ceremony and of the reception which followed it,
and which were planned by her, were on a scale of magnificence worthy
of the woman whose advent into Washington had marked a new epoch in its
social history.

She was the inspiration of the wedding-march composed for the occasion
and played by the Marine Band. Under circumstances when a plain woman
is an interesting figure, of what moment was not the appearance of
one who could not, even on ordinary occasions, enter a church without
her presence being in some mysterious way heralded to its remotest
recesses so that every head involuntarily turned towards her! To those
who beheld her on that day she was the beautiful realization of the
ideal bride, and the life opening before her promised every possible
happiness. The ceremony was witnessed by many men and women whose names
were then household words when the eyes of the whole nation, watching
the direction of the war, were fixed on Washington.

The first days of their married life were spent in Rhode Island, where
Mr. Sprague built for his bride the beautiful home that was worthy of
her lofty conceptions of a magnificent existence, Canonchet. It was one
of the first of the palatial homes of that period, and of which this
country now possesses so many, and the cost of its construction was
unprecedented in the annals of a people incredibly rich in all life's
comforts, but with their luxuriant tendencies for the most part still
latent.

From the governorship of his State Sprague went into the United States
Senate, and Kate Chase appeared in Washington as the wife of the
youngest member of that body. The elegance of the new home there over
which she presided, her husband's wealth and prominence, her maturer
beauty, and the dignity with which she carried a matron's honors, all
tended to bring her before the popular imagination in a more enchanting
light than even the glories of her girlhood had done.

The birth of her first child, a son, was a matter of national interest,
and the press of the day contained lengthy accounts of the dawn of
the little life for which fate held in store so forlorn and tragic an
ending. His christening robe was as elaborately described as if it had
been that of a royal infant, and the figures of the handsome settlement
made upon him were widely published.

Chase, however, still loomed the central figure of his daughter's
life, for he continued to confide in her and take counsel with her
in all that concerned him personally, as well as those measures
that hand his name down as that of the greatest Secretary who ever
presided in the Treasury Department. He was the intellectual power of
Lincoln's cabinet, and though he contributed much to the success of his
administration, there was small sympathy between the men personally,
and being overruled by the President in some of the details of his
department, Chase, in 1864, resigned his position as a member of the
cabinet. Donn Piatt, who was one of the many young Ohioans to whom he
was a shining example and a high ideal, said of Chase, that though
he came in direct and intimate contact with Lincoln for three years,
he never appreciated nor understood the man who could clear the
heavy atmosphere of a cabinet meeting, called to consider some such
stupendous proposition as the emancipation proclamation, by a hearty
laugh, induced by the reading of a chapter from Artemus Ward. Lincoln,
however, with his keen knowledge of human nature, discerned Chase's
character more readily, and justly estimating the judicial qualities
of his superior mind, he sent his nomination as Chief Justice of
the United States to the Senate. It was immediately and unanimously
confirmed by that body, and on the 6th of December, 1864, Chase,
already a great man, entered upon the duties of that office, to which,
with one exception, no name has given greater renown.

On February 24, 1868, the House of Representatives passed a resolution
to impeach the President of the United States. During his trial, which
terminated on May 26 of the same year, the country passed through a
storm of violent political passion. Above the roar of an angry people
and the threats which assailed him daily from all sections of the
country, rose the august presence of the great Chief Justice, hearing
but not heeding, feeling but not fearing their sting. Throughout the
country there was no name more frequently heard during those days
than that of Chase, and in Washington the President himself was not a
more prominent figure. He followed his usual custom of walking to the
court in the mornings, being frequently accompanied by the daughter
who had so often been his companion in days when there had rested upon
him no such burden as the grave question then in hand imposed. She
forms one of the bright spots in the memory of that dark period, and
he often lifted his eyes during the sessions of the court to refresh
them with a glimpse of her face, in whose luminous sympathy there was
inspiration. She sat in the gallery of the court chamber every day,
surrounded always by men whose names go down in history among those of
the foremost of their period and country,--Garfield, Conkling, Sherman,
Carl Schurz, with Grant, the military idol of the hour, and Greeley, of
editorial eminence.

The chief-justiceship of his country is generally supposed to fill the
measure of a man's political aspirations. Upon Chase, however, the
honors of his office imposed no such quietus, and in 1868 he again
came forward for the Presidential nomination. As a Democrat, who had
left his party only on the slavery question, he offered himself as
a candidate for the nomination of that party. During the convention,
which met in New York, Mrs. Sprague, more ably with her maturer mind
and greater resources at her command than she had possessed in 1860,
endeavored to bring about the realization of that dream of his whole
public life. She was the first, however, to recognize the fact that
the only platform on which he could secure the nomination asked more
than he could honorably grant. Chase, watching the convention from a
distance, confirmed her judgment.

Our history furnishes the names of three men whose ungratified ambition
for the Presidency robbed them of their motive in life. Chase, however,
survived his disappointment longer than either Webster or Blaine. He
was, by nature, profoundly religious, and he endeavored to support
with Christian heroism a blow whose crushing force undermined his very
vitality. In 1870 he suffered a physical collapse, from which, however,
stimulated by his remarkable will-power, he rallied so far as to be
able to resume his duties on the Supreme Bench.

On March 23, 1871, the younger of his daughters, the child of his
third marriage, was married to William Sprague Hoyt, of New York, a
cousin of her sister's husband. Her wedding fastened another brilliant
memory upon her father's Washington home at Sixth and E Streets. In
the drawing-room, to which she had already brought so much fame,
Kate Chase again stood beside her father, and their presence on
that day constitutes to many people still living at the capital a
memory-picture which, with all deference to the bride, yet supersedes
all others of that eventful day. He was a magnificent man, over six
feet in height, fair as a Saxon in coloring, with a fine head, clearly
defined and well-made features, and a noble beauty of countenance;
and she, robed in blue velvet of a turquoise tone, that brought out
the glorious red-gold of her hair and the hazel of her eyes, with
an Elizabethan collar rolling high about her patrician neck, tall,
slender, and full of willowy grace. Perhaps the picture abides because
it was the last before the falling of those lengthening shadows whence
neither ever emerged.

On the 4th of March, 1873, Chase administered the oath of office to
President Grant, and in May of the same year he occupied his chair as
Chief Justice for the last time. A few days before the last on which he
had felt able to go to court, his daughters and his grandchildren, whom
he was accustomed to have much with him, being away from him, a sudden
sense of loneliness, a yearning for some loving human presence, seems
to have overpowered him, for he wrote to a young relative in New York
that he was going to her to be for a while with her and her children.
The day after he arrived, however, he went forth quietly and perhaps
suddenly on that lonely voyage whence neither love nor the glow of
any human presence may withhold us when it comes to be our turn. His
body was sent back to Washington, where it arrived on Sunday morning,
the 11th of May. There, clad in the awful dignity of death, he lay a
day and a night within the bar of the court his living presence had
rendered so illustrious. A simple wreath of white rosebuds, not more
spotless than the life of him they crowned, was the last offering of
the daughter to whom his death, so far as the world knew, brought her
first sorrow.

She had, however, already come to the turn in her short road of
happiness, and had confronted not alone the spectre of disillusion,
which in itself would have been formidable enough to a woman of her
temperament, but a substantial form of unhappiness that neither her
pride nor a brave spirit that never quailed before it could long
conceal. Her life has been so probed, so bared to the scrutiny of the
world, that but little of its sorrow can be left to conjecture. That
in one of her own deficiencies lay undoubtedly the cause of much of
her unhappiness, while it served to render others less culpable, in no
degree lessened the force of the misery it entailed upon her.

A knowledge of the proper value of money, abnormally developed in many,
was totally lacking in Kate Chase. It appealed to her simply as a means
of gratifying the needs and wishes of the moment, never as something
to be hoarded for the satisfying of those of a future time. History
contains the names of many men and women otherwise illustrious but born
apparently with the same defect. The great wealth which came to her
through her marriage she expended lavishly, not alone upon herself,
but upon all whose happiness it was thus in her power to augment, for
such princely natures are rarely selfish. She gave, all her life,
frequently with a generosity wholly out of proportion to her means.
Sprague probably did not realize her munificent tendencies till after
the shrinkage in his fortune caused by the financial panic of the early
seventies. They then became the cause of those fatal misunderstandings
whence sprung later conditions of insupportable wretchedness. A divorce
was granted her by the courts of New York, with permission to resume
her maiden name, of which she availed herself some years later, when
Sprague married again.

With her three daughters she retired to "Edgewood," a suburban home on
the hills two miles north of Washington, which had come to her from
her father and which is closely identified with the last years of both
their lives. The house, an ample unadorned brick structure, stands on
the brow of a hill overlooking the river, the city, and other hills
in its vicinity. From her father she had also inherited an income
somewhat smaller than might have been anticipated, for, although he had
piloted the nation through the financial difficulties of the war, his
personal finances were not flourishing. She found a legal adviser in
a friend of her father's who had been a frequent visitor at Edgewood
during Chase's lifetime, attracted thither both by his admiration for
Chase and by the pleasure of that intercourse with his gifted daughter
which he shared in common with many men of brilliant minds, few of
whom ever came in contact with her without succumbing to a species of
intellectual infatuation. With all the feminine graces that attract,
however, she had many of a man's characteristics, and was capable of
maintaining their intercourse at all times on an intellectual footing.
The idle gossip of people who had no conception of the true loftiness
of her soul, magnified by those who still felt and feared her political
power, cast its blight upon her life. Silently scorning a world that so
cruelly misinterpreted her, she voluntarily abandoned her place in its
midst.

She took her children to Europe and there educated them, remaining
as long as her resources would permit. When they were exhausted she
came home. Edgewood gave her a sorry welcome. Everywhere, within and
without, it showed signs of long neglect. Yet such as it was, it was
home and full of memories of her father, whose portrait still hung in
its broad hallway, and whose marble bust still adorned its library.
There, too, were his beloved books that he had craved in his youth
when he had turned from nature, which became, however, the tender
solace of his ailing years, when he liked to be alone with her and his
own thoughts, while he took long tramps over the hills. There, during
the last three years of his life, he had pursued conscientiously that
tranquil existence which he realized could alone prolong his days. To
his daughter it was all that remained, and even it was slipping from
her grasp. The men of her father's generation were gone, and she was
as a stranger in the land that had once resounded with the echo of her
name.

Edgewood was advertised for public sale. Something of its history
crept into the press of the country. It struck a chord of memory
and appealed to a class of men who had the means of gratifying their
sympathies, men of a younger generation, but who venerated the memory
of Chase and gave substantial proof of their veneration when they saved
his home for the daughter he had so idolized.

She never evinced any desire to resume her place in that life in which
she had once been a motive power.

Among those who knew her best she had loyal friends who loved and
admired her to the end. Her servants had always worshipped her, and
her own children frequently lost themselves in the spell her presence
wrought.

Her eldest daughter went upon the stage, but married shortly after her
_début_ and abandoned whatever hopes she may have had of a histrionic
career.

It was a singular fate that the last days in the life of a woman
whose youth had scarcely known a moment's exemption from the pursuit
of an admiring world should have been passed almost exclusively in
the society of the gentle daughter, whom she ever lovingly called her
little Kitty.

Two loyal canine friends followed in her footsteps to the last,
studying all her movements with a vigilance that was not without its
measure of flattery, and receiving from her a degree of consideration
that she never failed to show to those of lowly condition in whom
she recognized merit not always visible to a more conventional eye.
Often the only sound about the lonely house that greeted an occasional
visitor, was the friendly thump of the collie's tail against the porch
floor, the shrill tone of inquiry in Chiffon's bark, or the melancholy
wail of a violin. When Edgewood was finally closed and abandoned after
Kate Chase's death, new homes were found for her two dog friends: for
the collie, at Brookland, a suburb of Washington, and for the terrier,
in the city itself. A few days later both had disappeared, and a boy
who had occasion to go to Edgewood found them on the porch of the
deserted house. It had been a long tramp for them, especially for the
little terrier, which had had to thread its way across the city. Buoyed
up with hope, they had arrived from their opposite directions only to
realize that a life which at least had been happy for them, had come to
its end.

With that rare courage with which she had borne all the other ills of
her life, Kate Chase endured uncomplainingly the physical sufferings
which its closing days brought to her, endeavoring at first to put them
from her and with an aching body to go on heroically with her daily
life as she had often done with an aching heart. She surrendered only
a few days before the end, realizing then the unusual gravity of her
condition, and in the small hours of the morning of the 31st of July,
1899, with her three daughters beside her, she at length closed her
tired eyes tranquilly and without fear, to open them never again upon
a world that had long since forgotten the once-cherished name of Kate
Chase.

For the last few hours yet to be passed beneath the roof of Edgewood,
they laid her in the room wherein her life had centred in both its glad
and sad days,--her father's library. Its windows overlooked in the
foreground the garden in which she had spent of late so many lonely
hours, and in the distance, lying beneath the spell of a summer's day,
the beautiful city, where regnant woman never held greater sway than
she in whose quiet face there was now no trace either of the triumphs
or the weariness of her life, but the contentment of grateful rest.



MATTIE OULD

(MRS. OLIVER SCHOOLCRAFT)


In the vicinity of one of Richmond's fashionable schools there was
often seen on winter afternoons, in the late sixties, a group of young
girls, who possessed far more than the usual attractiveness that
belongs ever to health and youth. Two, at least, Lizzie Cabell and
Mary Triplett, were singularly beautiful. The third, a tall, slender
girl, with a trim figure, dark skin and hair, and eyes perhaps downcast
as she stepped lightly along listening to her companions, a stranger
would scarcely have observed. If, perchance, however, as they paused
on a street corner for a last word before separating, the downcast
eyes were lifted, there gazed from out their soft depths a spirit that
transformed the entire face. They were truly the windows of a soul,
looking out upon the world with a frankness that was irresistible,
and with a certain caressing fondness for life that begot a kindred
glow in all it looked upon. In her sweet voice there was the same tone
of caress as it gave a parting utterance to some flashing thought
to which, likely as not, she paid the tribute of that honest smile,
whose witchery still lingers in many minds. As she continued her walk
homeward many lifted hats greeted her passing, many eyes followed her,
and her name was murmured among many groups, for, young as she was,
Mattie Ould was already wandering in the pathway of a fame that was to
make her later the idol of the people of the South.

Before she was beyond the tutelage of her old mammy the piquancy of her
wit had established her title to popularity. It had, moreover, much
of that audacity that had characterized the wit of another Virginia
belle, Ann Carmichael, of Fredericksburg, who flourished fifty years
earlier in the century. Conventionality was a term with which Mattie
Ould had no concern. She was a genius, and with a spontaneity that was
overwhelming she dared to give utterance to every sparkling thought
that crossed her mind. She was a very small girl when she made that
bright sally which connects her name with that of her father's friend,
General Young.

A famous _raconteur_ and _bon vivant_, and revelling in her gift for
repartee, her father frequently had her brought forward as a little
child to grace his stag dinners, seating her in the centre of the
table, whence she sent forth such sallies of wit as captivated many a
veteran dinner-giver and guest.

One evening, when she had kept up her amusing prattle until a later
hour than usual, she went up to General Young, who was seated near her
father, and stood beside him, resting her head against his shoulder.
"Come, come," called her father, "it's time mammy was hunting you up,
little sleepy head. General Young can't get on very well with you
there." "No, no," insisted Mattie, dreading a summons of that autocrat,
in whose presence there could be neither pleading nor protest; "don't
send for mammy. I'm not sleepy. I was just trying an old head on young
shoulders." She was quoted through all grades of Richmond life, and
long before she had grown to womanhood a frequent question on many lips
was, "Have you heard what Mattie Ould said?" Then every one listened to
her latest _bon mot_, which was repeated till the whole city had heard
and laughed. With a dash and _esprit_ that were peculiarly her own, she
had many masculine traits, an independence and a _camaraderie_ that
were irresistible.

[Illustration: Mattie Ould

(Mrs. Oliver Schoolcraft)

From photograph by George S. Cook]

With the magnetism of her gifts she would have been known to fame
even had her family been of less prominence. Well placed, however, as
she was in life, her brilliancy illumined a vast horizon. Her father,
Judge Robert Ould, always held a distinguished position, both in the
District of Columbia, where he was born, and in Richmond, whither he
removed at the outbreak of the war. Besides being thrown in intimate
contact with the prominent citizens of both places, he was frequently
called upon to extend his hospitality to eminent strangers who came
to him with letters of introduction. His home during part of his
residence in Washington was in the quaint old building opposite the
Treasury Department, now Riggs Bank. There President Buchanan was
his guest for several days after he quitted the White House. No
extraordinary preparations, however, were made for the entertainment
of the ex-President in a household where distinguished guests were a
frequent occurrence. A loose rod in the stair-carpet was secured on the
suggestion of Mrs. Ould's mother, lest Mr. Buchanan, not accustomed
to the circumnavigation that it had imposed upon the family, should
fall and break his leg, in which event they would have him three weeks
instead of three days.

Judge Ould came prominently before the public as the district attorney
at the time of the prosecution of General Daniel Sickles for the
killing of Barton Key, Sickles being defended by Edwin M. Stanton, who
became more widely known later as Lincoln's Secretary of War.

Ould's prominence was rather augmented after the outbreak of the war
and his removal to Richmond, where he was made commissioner of the
Confederate government for the exchange of prisoners. He had married a
celebrated Virginia beauty, Miss Sarah Turpin, and had four children,
all of whom, with one noted exception, are still living. His wife,
after having been long an invalid, died before his family was grown,
and he, some years later, married Mrs. Handy, of Baltimore, the mother
of the beautiful May Handy, one of Richmond's belles of the present day.

Mattie Ould was born in the District of Columbia, which she left in
her childhood for the home with which her fame is associated. She
returned, however, to spend the last two years of her school life in
the Visitation Convent, Georgetown. Though known to all Richmond from
her childhood, her renown throughout the South dates from her first
appearance at the White Sulphur Springs, which in her day, before
the advent of the Northern pleasure-seeker, still possessed all the
distinctive features of a Southern watering-place. Though it was
already a long-established resort, to the magic which her presence
shed about it during the seasons that she spent there it owes much of
its wide fame to-day. All the details of the war were then yet vivid
memories, and there many a battle was fought over again in graphic
words by men whose bravery and gallantry in action have never been
surpassed. Many of them had been distinguished officers in the army of
the Confederacy,--Joe Johnston, of Virginia; Wade Hampton, of South
Carolina; Gordon, of Georgia; Beauregard, of Louisiana; Butler, Gary,
the gallant Pickett, of Gettysburg fame; and Hood, of Alabama, then
lifting himself about on his crutches. It was such men as these who
stamped their striking individuality upon the life of the Southern
watering-places at that period, and among whom, keenly appreciating
the wit, ardently loving the beauty, and reverencing the goodness of a
woman beyond all things, Mattie Ould came to be the greatest belle the
South has had since the war.

[Illustration: Lizzie Cabell

(Mrs. Albert Ritchie)]

While she was ever superlatively attractive to men, she was yet a
generous friend to women, and frequently avenged the slights to which
she saw some plain woman subjected, for, besides the scintillating
qualities that made her a popular idol she had many noble traits
that commended her to a more profound and lasting admiration.

The toast which is more celebrated than any of her other equally clever
utterances was offered at a supper at the Springs, given in honor of
herself and another famous Richmond belle, Mary Triplett, the late Mrs.
Philip Haxall. Miss Triplett had been asked to propose a toast and had
declined. Mattie Ould, however, rose without hesitation, lifted her
glass, inclined her graceful head towards Miss Triplett, and in her
clear musical voice, said, "Here's to beauty, grace, and wit, which
united make a Triplett." There was, indeed, a peculiar enchantment
about all she did and said that seemed never to have belonged to any
one else. Her dancing infused a new charm into the atmosphere of a
ball-room, and as a horsewoman she possessed a skill and grace that few
could rival.

Her horse once ran away with her in Richmond, just as the groom mounted
her and before she had put her foot in the stirrup. It dashed off at
top speed, running several squares through the residence district of
the city, and then turned into a business street, where it rushed madly
into a hack. The hackman, however, had seen it coming, and realizing
that he could not get out of its way, he stood up, and throwing his
arm around the rider's waist, he lifted her from the saddle as the
horse crashed into the hack, partly demolishing it, and fell. A great
crowd witnessed the rescue, and cheered lustily for the courageous
old hackman. When Mattie Ould was recognized, however, the enthusiasm
assumed a more substantial form, and the hands of many men went
generously into their pockets. He was never forgotten, and as long as
Mattie Ould lived she provided for him and his family, some of the many
who had loved her keeping up the good work after she was gone.

Though she was the object of the ardent devotion of many men, she did
not marry until she had passed her twenty-fifth year. It was rumored
that she was engaged to a friend of her father's, a man many years her
senior, and the indignation with which her father received the news
of her marriage to Oliver Schoolcraft substantiated in many minds the
report of the former engagement.

Her marriage occurred at the end of the summer of 1876, which she
had spent with her grandmother at the White Sulphur Springs. Thither
Schoolcraft, one of the wealthiest of the younger set of men who
adorned Richmond life, had followed her, taking with him his own
valuable horses and traps, with which adjuncts he was ever at her
disposal. They drove over to Salem one day, and were quietly married
there that evening, at the home of Mr. and Mrs. John A. McCall; one
of Miss Ould's brothers and several of her friends witnessing the
ceremony. As no preparation had been made for her marriage, she wore,
instead of the conventional white satin, a simple gown of white
organdy, set off with bands of black velvet.

[Illustration: Mary Triplett

(Mrs. Philip Haxall)

From photograph by Roseti]

She was never more bewitchingly lovely than she was that night, and
so impressed herself indelibly on the minds of all who gathered about
her, some of whom were but little children. Being asked to sing in
the course of the evening, she complied with her usual graciousness,
for part of the charm of her manner lay not only in her readiness to
contribute to the pleasure of others, but in the absolute enjoyment she
evinced in so doing. She made her own selection, and sang the little
song that was then in favor with her, "Under the Daisies." It was
singularly prophetic, for just as the daisies of another spring were
putting forth their bloom the sweet voice, whose vibrations had rung so
many glad echoes from the world, lapsed forever into silence.

Schoolcraft took her to Richmond the day following their marriage,
where her father insisted upon having the ceremony performed again,
owing to some technicality of the law to the effect that a marriage
license should be obtained at the usual place of residence of the
bride. Though the spirit of comradeship had existed to an unusual
degree between this father and daughter, he never forgave her until it
was too late for that forgiveness to be any comfort to her.

She lived, after her marriage, in an elegant suite of rooms, built over
Schoolcraft's handsomely equipped stables. When some one twitted her
about the peculiar location of her new abode, she replied, with her
unfailing readiness, that she was not the first person who had lived in
a stable, and quoted a precedent that no Christian could gainsay.

One morning, in the spring following her marriage, Richmond was
appalled by the report which, in the course of a few hours had spread
over the entire city, that Mattie Ould was dying. The world was so
full of her and all she did and said, that it was not credible that her
beguiling presence was passing from it. A silent depression and a sense
of personal loss settled upon the people in every walk of life.

Richmond had never beheld such a sight as Mattie Ould's funeral. Old
St. Paul's Church and the Square opposite were thronged, the streets
all along the route to the cemetery were lined, and even the hills of
beautiful Hollywood were black with people. The entire population of
the city was there, many, who were too poor to ride, walking, for she
had brightened all their lives, and she belonged to them all.

She lies all through the spring and summer beneath a bed of daisies,
and near her sleeps the infant whose life closed her own. In the
memory of the people of the South she is yet a living presence, whose
words, wise and droll, are repeated, ever with a keen relish for their
pungency, for she touched all things with that true wit which is

       "Nature to advantage dressed,
          What oft before was thought,
        But ne'er so well expressed."



JENNIE JEROME

(LADY RANDOLPH CHURCHILL)


To-day, when there are so many American women adorning high places
and filling more or less leading _rôles_ in British society, it is
difficult to realize that only a little more than a quarter of a
century ago there was a strong movement afoot, among certain leaders
of that society, to exclude their fair transatlantic cousins from
London drawing-rooms. As to the oft-recurring Anglo-American marriage,
while there are yet many people who look askance upon any sort of an
international alliance, that prejudice that frowned so ominously upon
it some years ago has wonderfully abated on both sides of the water.
The Queen herself recently confessed that she had regarded it at one
time as rather a hazardous experiment, but realizing that, with her
broad education and elastic temperament, the American girl adapts
herself to a new environment with a facility which would scarcely be
possible to the less flexible English girl, Her Majesty's apprehensions
have been gradually allayed.

One of the first American women before whom these later-day barriers
of social prejudice gave way was Miss Jennie Jerome, of New York. As
the wife of Lord Randolph Churchill, and ably championed by his mother
the Duchess of Marlborough, she penetrated the innermost recesses of
British society, opening the way more than any other woman to the
position her countrywomen occupy there at the end of the century, and
holding herself a place second to that of no other American woman in
Europe.

The admiration she attracted as a young girl, the wonderful part she
played in the life of her husband and is at present playing in the
lives of her sons, the unusual influence she has undeniably exercised
in English politics, the intimate contact into which the events of
her life have from time to time thrown her with the crowned heads of
Europe,--the Czar of Russia, the Emperor of Germany, and the Queen of
England,--have all tended to give her a unique place in the history
of the latter days of the Victorian era. In England there is no woman
below the royal family whose name and personality are so generally
known as Lady Randolph Churchill's.

Her prominent identification with the Primrose League has carried
her fame into the colonies and into India. Many people in Russia
and Germany follow her career with keen interest, the press of both
countries bringing her frequently before the public, and even in
self-centred France the women of the aristocracy, in imitation of her
political achievements, have from time to time essayed to "jouer la
Lady Randolph Churchill."

She is the eldest of three daughters of the late Mr. Leonard Jerome,
and was born in Brooklyn, on the 9th of January, 1854. There and in New
York she passed her early childhood.

Her mother was a woman of independent fortune and her father an
enterprising and successful man of affairs. He was the founder, in New
York, of the Jockey Club, and his name figures conspicuously in the
annals of the turf of both England and America, he having been one
of its active patrons in the former country, whose racing system he
introduced into America.

His family migrated to Paris when his eldest daughter was in her
eleventh year, and there his children grew up and were educated. Miss
Jennie Jerome's artistic and musical gifts were carefully trained, and
she has been considered ever since she made her _entrée_ into English
society as one of its most accomplished pianists. Her name appears
frequently on the programmes of concerts given in behalf of charity,
and is always a powerful drawing card, for she plays with a clearness
and delicacy of touch rarely attained by an amateur.

France was at the height of its glories under the second empire when
the Jeromes took up their residence in Paris. The court, presided
over by one of the most beautiful women who ever wore a diadem, was
characterized by almost unprecedented magnificence. Paris then, as now,
led the world in all matters of personal adornment, and one feature
in that _régime_ of luxuriant display, inaugurated by the Empress, is
still felt to-day in every quarter of the globe where women make any
pretence of following fashions in dress. She never permitted any woman
to appear twice in her presence in the same gown. As a result, there
dates from her brief era of leadership an extravagance in woman's dress
that was before undreamed of, and which has had the effect of raising
the details of a toilet from a subordinate to a ruling position among
women in fashionable life, with a loss of much that gave a truer beauty
to existence under a system when the sparkle of a woman's mind was of
greater value than the flash of her jewels.

Mrs. Jerome, a woman of wealth and taste, easily acquired a position
of distinction in the fashionable life of the French capital at that
time. Her eldest daughter meanwhile grew up with a reputation for
great beauty, her fame increasing as the unusual gifts of her bright
mind unfolded themselves. She was one of that group of clever and
beautiful young girls with whom the Emperor and Empress from time to
time surrounded the little Prince Imperial, and she participated at
Compiègne in the memorable celebration of one of the few birthday
anniversaries which fate accorded him.

The Franco-Prussian war drove the Jeromes across the channel. They
tarried in England during the days that marked the fall of the
empire and the uprising of the Communards with their awful deeds of
devastation. The summer of 1873 they passed at Cowes.

Miss Jennie Jerome was then in her twentieth year, tall, slender, with
a thoughtful countenance denoting both talent and character in its
broad brow and square chin. Her mouth was grave and sweet, while her
great dark eyes, that are yet the most striking feature of her face,
her purple black hair, and her clear olive skin gave her a distinctive
place among the blonde daughters of England. Always a striking figure
in their midst, the contrast was perhaps never more marked than upon
the occasion of the marriage of Princess Louise of Wales to the Earl of
Fife, when the blonde type of the British women was so much in evidence
in the demi-toilettes commanded by the Queen, and when Lady Randolph
Churchill's brunette coloring was so well set off by her yellow satin
gown, with a diamond star twinkling above her brow against her black
hair.

Though the nomadic tendency of Americans frequently leads them abroad,
where they mingle for awhile in the life of various European capitals,
there were fewer American women at that time forming a permanent part
of foreign society, and one so gifted mentally and physically as was
Miss Jerome soon became a noted figure. She attracted everywhere the
most evident admiration, never impairing the effect her appearance
produced by the least manifestation of vanity.

To the Isle of Wight also that summer there betook himself a young
English nobleman, the second son of the sixth Duke of Marlborough.
But three years out of college, where he had not been distinguished
as a student, but rather for the irresistible attractiveness of his
personality and for the enjoyment he extracted from existence, there
was little in Lord Randolph Churchill's life in the summer of 1873
that foreshadowed the greatness he was destined to attain. Restless,
ambitious, full of energy, with no specific object upon which to expend
it, he hesitated between a diplomatic and a military career, and
meanwhile, since taking his degree in 1871, he had travelled over the
whole of Europe.

He was already an idol to his mother, towards whom he ever showed that
thoughtfulness that is the acme of gallantry. He had much of her dash
and spirit, and she entered sympathetically into all the events of his
life; he on his side never failing to report to her immediately, either
in person or by message, all his successes. When he met Jennie Jerome,
and for the first time the future assumed a tangible and very beautiful
form, he confided in his mother and at once solicited her interest in
the young American girl.

To Miss Jerome's mother, however, Lord Randolph Churchill, a younger
son, with no particularly bright prospects in life, did not appeal
as a desirable match. She returned to Paris with her daughters. Lord
Randolph followed, and there at the British Embassy, in January, 1874,
he was married to Miss Jerome.

[Illustration: Jennie Jerome

(Lady Randolph Churchill)

From photograph by Van der Weyde]

With an ambition and talent equal to his own, she entered completely
into his desire to make for himself a place of distinction in life. The
dissolution of Parliament early in the year of his marriage offered the
opportunity for a political career. He began at home, in the borough of
Woodstock, in which Blenheim Palace, where he had been born twenty-five
years before, is situated, and secured his election to a seat in the
House of Commons without being asked any questions as to his political
creed, which, it was taken for granted, was identical with that of his
family.

Like his wife's father, he took an active interest in matters
pertaining to the turf, owning several famous race-horses and capturing
during the course of his life some notable prizes. His first speech
in Parliament was to call the attention of the first Commissioner of
Public Works to the hard and dusty condition of Rotten Row, and to ask
that it be put in better shape, without delay, for both horses and
their riders.

During the first six almost silent years of his Parliamentary career,
while he was studying the men and measures he subsequently arraigned
with so much brilliancy, his young wife was adapting herself to the
social life of his country, whose events are as well established as
those of its political life. In a dutiful way which gives it a dignity
not possible in a country whose social usages admit of more caprice,
every one lives up to the well-appointed order in which, beginning with
the first drawing-room in the early spring, the various functions of
each season follow one another.

While there may be more refreshment and enthusiasm in the novelty which
American society admits of, it lacks that stability that emanates from
the very sameness with which one English year follows in the footsteps
of another, and that sense of ancient respectability which rises from
the consciousness of participating in the same pleasures from youth to
old age in which one's fathers similarly participated in their time.

Lady Randolph Churchill easily overcame the prejudices which existed
in the minds of some English women against all American women. Young
as she was, there was a commanding quality in her very presence which
vanquished that narrowness that harbors petty dislike on a basis of
nationality.

Both of her sisters married in England, one to Moreton Frewen and the
other to the only son of Sir John Leslie, Bart., of Glaslough Monaghan.

Her two sons were born, the first, Winston Spencer Churchill, on the
30th of November, 1874, and the younger, John Winston Churchill, in
February, 1880.

Between the duties of her home and those of a social nature, which her
position in the world entailed upon her, the first period of her life
in England passed. From 1880, however, dated the dramatic period of
Lord Randolph Churchill's career, in which his wife bore so conspicuous
a part. He rose to the leadership of that small section of the House
known as the "Fourth Party," which, coming forward as an evidence of
the vigor yet possessed by the Conservatives, succeeded in June, 1885,
in overthrowing the Gladstonian ministry. He was frequently compared to
Disraeli, and many people prophesied for him a similar career.

In 1883, in connection with Sir H. Drummond Wolf, Lord Randolph
Churchill founded, in the interests of the Conservative party, that
powerful organization, the Primrose League. In a membership to-day of
over one and a half million, with Knights, Dames, and Associates, Lady
Randolph Churchill stands number twelve upon its rolls. The kingdom and
empire of Great Britain are dotted with its Habitations.

With its development there began a new phase of Lady Churchill's life.
She became from that moment thoroughly an Englishwoman, identifying
herself closely with her husband's public life and interests, aiding
him not only with the popularity she had already attained, but with
the remarkable sagacity she displayed in reference to all political
questions. With the qualities that rendered her more charming as a
woman she combined those most valuable in a man. Ambitious, intrepid,
discreet, she was yet graceful, tactful, wise, and witty. She became
at once a force among the members of the League, and, besides being
much in demand at the social events at its various Habitations, she
endeavored continually to impress upon its members the influence each
might exercise in behalf of "that party which is pledged to support all
that is dear to England, Religion, Law, Order, and Unity of the Empire."

In her character of Dame of the Primrose League she has participated
in so many electioneering contests that she is almost as well known
in England as any man in public life. When her husband, in 1885,
attacked the seat held by Mr. John Bright for Birmingham, seconded by
the Duchess of Marlborough, she canvassed the constituency for him.
Never before had women gone thus among the workingmen of Birmingham,
entering the factories as well as their homes, and addressing them both
collectively and individually. Though they made much havoc in the ranks
of Radicalism and greatly diminished his votes, they did not succeed in
defeating "the tribune of the people."

Lady Churchill is a rousing speaker, and, with her great beauty and
magnetism, evoked immense enthusiasm, her carriage being frequently
surrounded and followed for some distance by cheering crowds. In South
Paddington her efforts told with better effect, Lord Churchill securing
the election in that district.

With the accession to office of Lord Salisbury's government, Lord
Churchill went into the Cabinet as Secretary of State for India,--the
real head of affairs of the far-away empire where the power is
represented by a governor-general. During his brief tenure of that
office his wife was decorated with the imperial order of the Crown of
India, which has so recently been bestowed upon another American woman
in the person of the present governor-general's wife.

Lord Churchill stood at this time at the very head of his party,
and when a few months after resigning the office as Secretary of
State for India he again went into the Cabinet as Chancellor of the
Exchequer and leader of the House of Commons, being at the time but
thirty-seven years of age, there seemed opening to him a future of
almost unprecedented brilliancy. More than ever was it said that he
was treading in the footsteps of Lord Beaconsfield, to whom he had
been so often compared, and the Prime Ministership seemed almost
within his reach. His name was on every tongue, and when he appeared
in public places accompanied by his wife, whose tall, slender figure
and clear-eyed, interested face were as well known as his own, he was
frequently greeted with outbursts of applause. When she drove in Hyde
Park her carriage was frequently followed, and she was pointed out with
the most enthusiastic admiration.

Not only in England, but accompanying her husband to Russia and
Germany, she excited in both of those countries a similar sentiment,
there being among the people an eager desire to see the beautiful
American who was so much admired by the court circles.

Attractive as she was under all circumstances, she never more admirably
reflected the fine qualities of her character than on that day when
her husband rose amidst the absolute silence of the House of Commons
to give his reasons for withdrawing from the Cabinet. Absorbed in
him, she followed intently his every word and gesture, though aware
beforehand of every syllable he would utter. With perfect self-control
she revealed nothing either of regret, disappointment, or any sentiment
upon which a guess at his plans for the future might be hazarded.

Socially her life ran in much the same channel. So great was her
beauty and so many were her talents that, though her husband gradually
withdrew from public life, she was continually in the public eye, being
constantly in demand to open fairs, distribute prizes, and take part in
concerts. In March, 1888, she went to Clydebank to christen the "City
of New York," at that time one of the most remarkable vessels that
had been built. During the following summer she opened an electrical
exhibit at Birmingham, and a few days later conferred the annual awards
at Malvern College, her husband accompanying her and making addresses
upon both occasions. About this time also she made her first appearance
as a _literata_ in an article on the social life of Russia, based on
the observations she had made while in St. Petersburg with her husband.
Well informed, keenly observant, clever, and witty, she entered the
lists without handicap, and her position to-day in the world of letters
is at least unique. The most costly quarterly in existence, now
entering upon its second year, is owned and edited by her.

In 1891, when he was but forty-two years old, Lord Randolph Churchill
came suddenly face to face with the beginning of the end of his
remarkable and crowded life. The utter physical collapse that followed,
terminating in death in January, 1895, threw light upon much that had
seemed inexplicable in the latter days of his public career.

Accompanied by his wife, he journeyed around the world in quest of the
health which he was destined never to find. They passed through New
York, Lady Churchill's first home, but made no stay, hastening across
the continent to San Francisco. In Egypt, realizing how futile had been
the long days and nights of travel and exile, he begged to be taken
home to pass there the last few hours that yet remained to him.

From all who saw them they evoked pity and admiration,--pity for the
man, stricken and doomed, in the very prime of his days and with
the highest place among the statesmen of his time almost within his
grasp, and admiration for the wife who, aglow with beauty, spirit, and
ambition, manifested for him during those months of tragic gloom, in
which his life closed, all the devotion and admiration which the most
successful moments of his life, when he stood on the very pinnacle of
fame, had called forth from her gratified heart.

The untimely disappearance from the world of a man whose magnetic
nature had made him a leader of men and an idol of all classes of
society appealed powerfully to public feeling. The tolling of the
funeral bell from St. George's, in Hanover Square, a little after noon
on the 24th of January, 1895, announced his death.

Though she took no part in the doings of the world for some time after
her husband's death, Lady Randolph Churchill did not drop from its
memory, nor is she in any degree less interesting to-day than she was
as the wife of an eminent statesman. Her musical gifts and tastes
gradually drew her from the seclusion of her early widowhood, and she
reappeared in public first at concerts and at the opera, still dressing
in black.

Her social graces and talents make her the genius of many
house-parties, where individual gifts and accomplishments show to
best advantage and are most in demand. In the tableaux and burlesque
given at Blenheim Palace in January, 1898, to raise money for the
Restoration Fund of St. Mary Magdalene's church at Woodstock, she
appeared as a lady journalist, portraying the character with a realism
that manifested an accurate knowledge of the original. She was also
a guest at Chatsworth House during a recent visit of the Prince and
Princess of Wales, taking part there in the private theatricals which
were part of the entertainment offered to their Royal Highnesses.

To her sons she is a congenial spirit, being interested in the things
that interest them, particularly in yachting, horses, and the various
racing events of each year. It is owing largely, no doubt, to her love
of an active out-of-door life that her figure yet retains much of the
slenderness and suppleness of young womanhood. She stands and walks
with all the grace of a girl, and is one of the most noted skaters in
England.

Not only into their recreations, but into the serious side of her sons'
lives, she enters with that earnestness which made her so inseparable a
part of her husband's life.

In the summer of 1899 the elder of her sons, Mr. Winston Churchill,
made his first effort for a seat in Parliament. Oldham, in Lancashire,
the scene of his endeavors, has two Parliamentary seats, which both
became vacant at the same time. Though they had been filled by
Conservatives, the result of the balloting in 1899 showed that the
cotton-spinners, who form a large class of the voters of the borough,
were tired of Conservative rule, for both Liberal candidates came in
with heavy majorities.

Towards the end of the campaign Lady Randolph Churchill went vigorously
and enthusiastically to her son's assistance. "The Liberal candidates
being married," she said, "have an advantage." Though she won him many
votes and greatly reduced the opposition, as she had done in the days
of the Birmingham contest, when her husband attacked Bright's seat, the
result was inevitable, and both mother and son accepted it with the
grace and spirit of thoroughbred woman- and manhood.

There is an anecdote frequently related of Lady Churchill's ready wit,
called forth by a situation which arose during the electioneering
campaign, in which she was taking an active interest, of Mr.
Burdett-Coutts, husband of the old Baroness Burdett-Coutts, who was
at the time over eighty years of age. An old voter upon whom Lady
Churchill called, and who seemed ready enough to cast his vote for Mr.
Burdett-Coutts, took occasion, however, to relate to her, with much
relish, the price which the beautiful Duchess of Devonshire had paid a
butcher for his vote in the days of the famous Pitt and Fox contest,
permitting him to kiss her lovely cheek. He concluded his narration
with a direct intimation that he would consider a similar reward as
fair payment for his own vote.

"Very well," replied Lady Churchill, smiling a gracious compliance, "I
will book your vote on those terms, but you must remember that I am
working for Mr. Burdett-Coutts, and I must, therefore, refer you for
payment to the Baroness."

In June, 1899, the first number of Lady Churchill's quarterly, the
_Anglo-Saxon Review_, which had been for several months the subject of
much conjecture and speculation, appeared.

       "Have you heard of the wonderful new magazine
        Lady Randolph's to edit with help from the Queen?
        It's a guinea a number--too little by half,
        For the crowned heads of Europe are all on the staff,"

ran the opening lines of perhaps the cleverest of the many verses and
paragraphs her new venture called forth.

Its contributions included papers from Lord Rosebery and Whitelaw Reid,
a poem from Swinburne, with stories from Henry James, Gilbert Parker,
and Sir Frank Sweetenham, and a drama from John Oliver Hobbes. Among
the illustrations were a picture of the Queen, as frontispiece, and a
reproduction of Gilbert Stewart's portrait of Washington. The binding
was in keeping with the contents, and was of dark-blue morocco, richly
tooled in gold, with the royal coat of arms in the centre, surmounted
by the crown of England, with supporters, a reproduction of a cover
designed in the seventeenth century by the court binder, Abraham
Bateman. It sold, as have the subsequent editions, for a guinea a
number, and was, as the enterprising editress said in her preface, a
volume "worthy to be taken up into that Valhalla of printed things, the
library."

At the outbreak of the war in the Transvaal in 1899 Lady Randolph
Churchill gave another evidence of her public spirit and enterprise
which identified her once again with her native country. As chairman of
the committee of the American hospital ship "Maine," she took an active
part in the direction and equipment of one of the finest ambulance
ships in the service. The ship itself was loaned by the Atlantic
Transport Company, and named in memory of the ill-fated American
battle-ship "Maine." The contributions for its equipment were made by
Americans on both sides of the ocean. Among the American women living
in England who actively interested themselves in the matter were Mrs.
Joseph Chamberlain, Mrs. Arthur Paget, Mrs. Bradley-Martin, and both of
Lady Randolph Churchill's sisters.

An appeal, issued on the 27th of October, for thirty thousand pounds
met with a speedy response, and in the course of a few weeks the
American hospital ship "Maine," flying the flag that was a gift from
the Queen, and with accommodations for two hundred sick or wounded
soldiers, carrying its corps of surgeons and nurses and Lady Randolph
Churchill herself, was on its way to Durban.

Though it was as the wife of Lord Randolph Churchill and through her
close identification with his interests that Lady Churchill first came
prominently before the world, it is undoubtedly her own personality
that has made for her the place she holds there to-day.

On the 28th of July, 1900, Lady Randolph Churchill became the wife of
Mr. George Cornwallis West. Though marriages of women to men many years
their junior are by no means rare in British society, the rumor of
this engagement, which had been afloat for quite a year, excited an
unusual amount of comment and criticism. The ceremony was performed
at St. Paul's Church, Knightsbridge, the Duke of Marlborough leading
Lady Churchill to the altar. Though widows of titled men in England
may upon entering into a second marriage retain the name and title
acquired through their former marriage, Lady Randolph Churchill settled
the much-discussed question as to whether she would retain hers by her
decision to be known as Mrs. George Cornwallis West.

Not yet in middle life, and with two sons to be launched upon their
careers, in which she has already foreshadowed what her part may be,
the world may still expect to hear much of her, for there is a bracing
and vigorous quality in her individuality that renders her interesting
and inspiring to many classes and many countries. She has been
frequently reproduced in the fiction of her era, more than one English
writer drawing his material continually from her life and character.

To what extent her beauty forms part of her magnetism is with many
people a debatable question. Though Long painted her as a typical
beauty, and Sargent's canvas of her that hangs in her own library
portrays an exquisite feminine loveliness, she leans perhaps too
much towards the masculine in mental poise and temperament to be an
adequate reflection of purely feminine beauty. A many-sided, strong,
self-sustained character, her outward form is an expression of her own
uncommon personality rather than a type of conventional beauty.



NELLIE HAZELTINE

(MRS. FREDERICK W. PARAMORE)


Among the members of the graduating class at Mary Institute, St. Louis,
in the year 1873, was a young girl who, in addition to the bright mind
and intellectual ambition she had already manifested, was endowed with
so extraordinary a physical beauty and so lovable a character that
much of the brilliancy of her life might even then have been foretold.
She was not yet seventeen years old, and was as absolutely unconscious
of the unusual loveliness of her person as she ever seemed to be even
after ten years of adulation.

Her figure had already attained a faultless contour, and in her simple
graduation gown of white French muslin, the flounces of its skirt
headed with wreaths of pink roses and green leaves, and its round
bodice offset with a bertha covered in the same design of roses and
leaves, she suggested all the fragrance and beauty of a flower. Her
red-gold hair seemed to reflect some of the sun's own glory, and with
the marvellous delicacy of her skin, the deep wine-color of her eyes,
and the classic perfection of her features, there can be little doubt
that she was, as she was so often said to be later, the most beautiful
woman ever born west of the Mississippi.

Among her school-mates Nellie Hazeltine had won that popularity that
was hers in after years to so remarkable an extent among all women. The
power she possessed of diffusing herself and all that pertained to her
among others precluded every thought of envy, and those with whom she
came in contact experienced rather a sense of personal gratification in
the contemplation of her gifts than any desire to despoil her of them
or of the admiration they attracted.

She was the only daughter of Captain William B. Hazeltine, a man who
had made a large fortune in the mercantile world, and she went from
school to further enhance the attractiveness of an already beautiful
home. There for several years she continued her studies, though it
was not unusual then for girls of her age to take up their position
in the social world immediately upon quitting school. As a result her
accomplishments were of a higher order than those commonly possessed
by the young women of her period. She was well read, she spoke French
with the same ease with which she spoke her mother tongue, and was a
musician of unusual ability. Such attributes soon gained for her a wide
reputation and a unique position in the society of her native city.

[Illustration: Nellie Hazeltine

(Mrs. Frederick W. Paramore)

From photograph by J. C. Strauss]

In the matter of its social complexion St. Louis has generally been
classed among the cities of the South. Besides the French, who formed
a large proportion of its early settlers, those who rose early to a
leading position were the families who had migrated there from Virginia
and Kentucky. They were slave-owners and landholders, and as such
gave a substantial character to the social foundations of the city.
The Anglo-Saxon gradually absorbed the French element, which, though
it disappeared from the political horizon, still formed a powerful
undercurrent in the lives of the people, harmonizing the forms of their
social intercourse and imparting a certain artistic value to their
existence generally, that gave St. Louis a distinctive place among
the growing and wealthy young cities in its vicinity. This, with the
character it took from the dominant race, which restrained it from
that tendency to display that was elsewhere more or less apparent, yet
which ever inculcated the sacred laws of hospitality, blended into a
delightful whole and gave to the city a charm that it has never lost.

Of such a civilization Nellie Hazeltine has unquestionably been the
fairest product. Yet no one was less conscious than she of the eminence
of her position or of the sensation her appearance invariably created.

Shortly after the beginning of her social career she went with her
father to Washington to attend a competitive drill of military
organizations from all sections of the country. While there she was
selected to present the colors to the company of which her father was
captain. Among the spectators of a scene which is always more or less
inspiring, was a man who, though already past middle-life, was yet not
proof against the witchery of such a singularly lovely presence as
Nellie Hazeltine's. From the moment she thus crossed his life, like
many another man of less prominence, Samuel J. Tilden followed her
career with an ardent and chivalrous admiration that increased as her
beautiful character developed and disclosed itself.

When he came before the country as the Democratic candidate for the
Presidency, and captured not only the nomination but the majority
vote of the people, when his name was on every tongue in America, and
everything that concerned him was of absorbing interest, the story
of his devotion to Nellie Hazeltine spread throughout the length and
breadth of the country.

From the moment it became known that Samuel J. Tilden had been elected
President of the United States, till Samuel J. Randall, Speaker of the
House of Representatives, cutting the tie vote of that body, redeemed
its pledge to abide by the decision of the Electoral Commission, which
declared Rutherford B. Hayes President of the United States, forms
one of the most thrilling periods in our political history. It was
but eleven years after the great civil struggle, and people living
to-day, when the sinews of the nation are again knitted, cannot easily
estimate the bitterness engendered by the campaign that fell during our
centennial year.

The contest reached nothing less than a sublime climax when Randall,
with nothing in his great form or his strong face to betray the
struggle it had cost him, stepped quietly down from the Speaker's
platform, and, taking his place on the floor of the House, uttered
amid its breathless silence that affirmative syllable upon which hung
national tranquillity.

Both men took the oath of office,--Tilden, the people's choice, in
the privacy of his own home in New York, and Hayes, twice, first, on
Saturday afternoon, the 3d of March, in the White House, overlapping
Grant's term of office by a few hours, that there might be no
intermission occasioned by inauguration-day falling on Sunday; and
again on Monday, the 5th of March, in the presence of the people.

A Presidential campaign that proceeds and terminates in the usual
way is sufficient to entail an enormous amount of publicity upon the
candidates. The campaign of '76, however, gave Tilden both a prominence
and a place in the affections of the people of his country that could
scarcely have been greater had he been permitted to fill the high
office to which they elected him.

His bachelorhood was an interesting feature of his personality, for
we had had at that time but one bachelor President. The sentimental
side of public opinion was satisfied, however, with the report that
he was soon to be married to Miss Hazeltine. On her part, though his
admiration for her was easily apparent, she never referred to his
having offered himself to her any more than she revealed the fact of
any other man ever having honored her with a similar proposal. Yet
it was known through men who could not easily disguise the sharpness
of their disappointment at her rejection of their suit that she was
continually the recipient of such offers.

Though she was already well known socially, in both St. Louis and New
York, her fame was established after the summers of 1876 and 1877 on a
vastly wider basis. During the latter season she made a tour of the
Eastern watering-places, and went for the first time to the Greenbrier
White Sulphur Springs, succeeding Mattie Ould in its social leadership
during the last days of the old _régime_, when it occupied the first
rank as a distinctively Southern resort.

There was no one who made any pretence of rivalling her, though fair
women from every section of the South still upheld the fame of the
old resort. She has been frequently compared to Mattie Ould, and the
history of their short lives furnishes several points of similarity.
Hers was a more faultless type of beauty than Mattie Ould's, however,
and she had a reserve and dignity that were in keeping with its high
order, whereas, Mattie Ould was distinguished by a flow of spirits and
a brilliancy of wit that captivated every fancy and carried all before
it. Both had the power to attract and hold the attention and admiration
of large circles of people, one by the overwhelming sparkle of her
words, the other by the magic of a lovely presence.

Nellie Hazeltine was at all times as charming in the society of her own
sex as she was among men; and women in every rank of life had for her a
tender attachment. Many a girl trying her uncertain young social wings
for the first time owed to her that subsequent enjoyment and happiness
which is called success. She was absolutely unselfish, and without
display used the remarkable power which her own fascinating personality
gave her to add to the happiness or improve the condition of others.

On the 2d of December, 1881, she was married to Mr. Frederick W.
Paramore, a young railroad man of St. Louis, and a son of Mr. J. W.
Paramore, who was president of the Texas and St. Louis Railroad.

Memories of her, like those of Mattie Ould, centre in the days of a
glorious girlhood. She was but twenty-seven years of age when she
passed out of life, a little more than two years after her marriage,
followed by an infant son whose existence had measured but a few days.
The entire city of St. Louis mourned her loss, and few people have been
laid to rest amid such evidences of a profound and universal grief as
followed her. Her grave in Bellefontaine, whither strangers visiting
St. Louis still frequently make a pilgrimage, was literally filled in
with flowers by the young women of the city, to whom her life had been
a beautiful example.

In the Museum of St. Louis, there hangs a portrait of her painted by
Carl Gutherz. It is a full-length figure dressed in white and standing
in her own drawing-room. Her abundant hair is arranged after the
peculiar fashion of the day, with a heavy fringe low on the forehead.
From beneath it, however, there looks down upon the beholder a face
reflecting something of both the heart and mind whence flowed the charm
of Nellie Hazeltine's personality, and of a beauty so ideal as to be
almost sufficient in itself to immortalize her among the women of her
country.



MARY VICTORIA LEITER

(BARONESS CURZON OF KEDLESTON)


For the second time within the century an American woman has risen to
viceregal honors. Mary Caton, the granddaughter of Charles Carroll of
Carrollton and the widow of Robert Patterson, of Baltimore, through her
marriage, in 1825, to the Marquis of Wellesley, who was at the time
Viceroy of Ireland, went to reign a queen in the country whence her
ancestors, more than a century before, had emigrated to America. In
Mary Victoria Leiter, whose life, to the people of a future generation,
will read much like romance, we again behold an American woman, who,
like the Marchioness of Wellesley at the time she became Vicereine of
Ireland, is still young and beautiful, filling a similar position in
India, with its four hundred millions of subjects.

The parallel between her life and that of Mary Caton, however,
goes no farther. Wellesley was already in possession of the
Governor-Generalship of Ireland when he married Mrs. Patterson. He
was, moreover, beyond the threescore mark in years, and he bore "his
blushing honors thick upon him," having already been Viceroy of India.
Curzon was but thirty-nine years old when the governor-generalship of
the latter mighty country, the shining mark of many a man's whole
career, was offered to him. His public life bore little more than "the
tender leaves of hope," though his writings on Eastern topics were
already accepted as highly authoritative. Lady Wellesley had but to
follow the leadership of a man of recognized ability and established
fame, while Lady Curzon walks side by side with the man who is making
that steep ascent which the British editorial mind has classified as
"Salisbury's most interesting experiment." It is, moreover, an open
secret that, far from shrinking from the new office, with the weight of
responsibility which it imposed, she encouraged her husband to accept
it.

While we are familiar with that phase of international marriage which
confers rank and title upon the daughters of our republic, no American
woman has ever played such a part in the British empire as has fallen
to the lot of Lady Curzon. From that day in the spring of 1895, when
she became the wife of the young Commoner, George Nathaniel Curzon, she
stepped into English history; the days of her American belleship became
a fragrant reminiscence. The qualities which had given them brilliancy,
however, continued to illuminate the broader horizon of her life in
England, and have become in her present exalted position the admiration
of her own country, whose interest in her is purely personal, and
the gratification of England, whose interest is political and much
farther-reaching.

To the vast majority of people, who have but a superficial knowledge
of Lady Curzon, her charm lies in the phases of that exterior life
which are visible to all and easily discerned from afar,--her youth,
her beauty, her wealth, the artistic perfection of her raiment, and the
glory and pageant of her present existence. These, however, are but
foot-lights to the real power of the woman rising beyond them.

As a girl in America she stood forth against the rich background
of her home as distinctly as she is silhouetted to-day against the
magnificence of the throne of India. It was not so much what she did
or said, though that was sometimes of an unusual order, that made
her the social power she was in America; it was rather what people
instinctively felt that she was. "What thou art," says Emerson,
defining that force we call character, "so roars and thunders above thy
head, I cannot hear thee speak." She was serious and earnest rather
than scintillating, with a reserve and dignity of manner tempered by a
sweetness that admitted no suggestion of austerity.

The grace with which she now meets every situation, the intelligent
interest she manifests in every theme with which she is approached,
are not matters of happy chance or accident. She has been carefully
equipped for her place in life. Studious and ambitious, she has known
little of frivolity or idleness. Every faculty and every gift with
which she was endowed have been conscientiously cultivated, so that,
like the wise virgins of the parable, she was found ready when the hour
came with a light that guides not only her own footsteps, but is seen
from afar.

[Illustration: Jennie Chamberlain

(Lady Naylor-Leyland)

From the painting by H. Schmiechen]

Though Lady Curzon's life has been largely cosmopolitan, the city of
Chicago, in which she was born and passed her first thirteen years,
has a more substantial claim upon her than any in which she has since
lived. She evidently reciprocates the feeling of the former city,
for it was to it that she recently addressed a plea in behalf of the
famine-stricken districts of India. It was there that her father, Mr.
Levi Z. Leiter, amassed his immense fortune, laying its foundation as a
partner in the dry-goods firm of Marshall Field & Co. There, also, her
brother, Joseph Leiter, still continues his remarkable position in the
stock market.

In the year 1881 Lady Curzon's family joined that ever-increasing
colony at Washington that is made up of wealth and leisure. It has
in recent years become a distinctive feature of the capital, its
members having built there some of the handsome homes that adorn the
city, and which they occupy usually for a few months each year. Their
social functions are attended with much magnificence, and they have
the _entrée_ to official society, and frequently to that exclusive
circle of aristocratic old families, many of whom have lived there in
unostentatious elegance ever since the nation transferred its capital
to the banks of the Potomac.

For a time Mary Leiter attended the school in Washington founded some
years ago by Madam Burr and subsequently conducted by her daughters.
She was a good student. Quiet in her manner, she emitted only
occasionally that sparkle of wit or fun that so often flashes from the
happy school girl of fourteen. She exercised, however, a fascination
to which both her teachers and companions were susceptible. Her beauty
of face, her pose and carriage, together with a sweet, girlish modesty
and a graciousness that was simple and unaffected, rendered her at all
times most attractive.

The greater part of Miss Leiter's education, however, was conducted at
home, under governesses, and her individual tastes and talents thus
developed. Travel, and a more or less prolonged residence abroad at
various times under most happy circumstances, cultivated her powers of
observation and developed in her that breadth of mental vision that at
an unusually early period not only removed the crudities of youth, but
gave her that poise and finish that made her so charming to men and
women of mature and brilliant intellect.

Comparatively little was heard of her family socially till after her
_début_, which occurred in the winter of 1888, and their present social
prominence in the United States is due to the remarkable impression
she everywhere created. As a new-comer she was viewed critically, for
she aimed always at the highest and best in the social castes of her
country. She was weighed in the balance with the daughters of better
known and longer established families of the East, and was found their
equal in beauty and breeding and frequently their peer in charm of
manner and intellect.

In Washington her father leased the home, on Dupont Circle, of the late
James G. Blaine, and there Miss Leiter spent the first years of her
young womanhood, during which such homage was paid her that she never
entered a drawing-room nor crossed a ball-room without attracting the
attention and gaze of every one. She planned and directed the numerous
social functions given there by her parents on a scale of magnificence
that was not easily approached, and she brought to the house a fame
such as it never derived from the occupancy of its distinguished owner
nor any of his family.

When her father built his own home, which is considered by many people
the most beautiful in Washington, her taste found a new field for
its display, both in the plan of its construction and in its final
decorations. It was minutely described in the press of the country,
particular emphasis being given to the apartments appropriated to Miss
Leiter's use, so undoubtedly was she the social genius of her family
and the figure who held the interest of the public.

A few years ago the favorable verdict of a man whom a recent historian
of New York society has designated its self-appointed dictator went far
towards establishing a woman's reputation for beauty or distinction on
a national footing. Mr. Ward McAllister undoubtedly wielded a singular
power and influence, and his unqualified admiration of Miss Leiter,
while it reflects to-day much credit upon his judgment, played at the
time a considerable part in the wide spread of her fame.

Her development was rapid and continuous, and she rose in the course
of a few years to a national prominence. It has been said of her that
she was not true to early friendships. "The law of nature is alteration
forevermore," and every mind that expands must outgrow the objects that
satisfied it at one period of its existence unless they are capable in
a degree of keeping pace with its progress. As a matter of fact, while
there was a graciousness in her manner towards all with whom she came
in contact, she formed but few close friendships, the natural reserve
of her temperament rendering it impossible for her to respond easily to
those intimacies which enter into the lives of so many girls.

During the second administration of President Cleveland there existed
between his young wife and Miss Leiter a degree of friendship that was
as flattering to one as it was to the other, for the Clevelands enjoyed
the reputation of choosing their friends for their personal charm.

During both of his terms of office Mr. Cleveland had a home in the
suburbs of Washington, where he and his family passed much time between
seasons, and where they frequently entertained the friends whom they
admitted more or less to their intimacy. There, during the spring of
the year in which she was married, Miss Leiter passed every Sunday
prior to that event, carrying away with her to another land a vivid
impression of one of the most admirable women who ever adorned public
life in America.

England was by no means an unknown country to Miss Leiter. She had been
accustomed from her early childhood to spending much time in Europe,
and a London season, which is the climax of many an American girl's
social ambition, was not a new experience to her. The season of 1894,
however, marked a turning-point in her life. Hon. Thomas F. Bayard,
who was our Ambassador at the Court of St. James at the time, had been
married not long before to Miss May Clymer, of Washington, a daughter
of Dr. Clymer, of the navy, and a granddaughter of Admiral Shubrick.
The Bayards had known Miss Leiter at home, and they undoubtedly
contributed much to the reception she everywhere met during that
season in England, for they themselves were much sought after, and the
distinction of their position gave prominence to her. They brought her
into contact with a class of men and women among whom her own highly
endowed mind found an inspiration on whose wings she rose in a short
time to a new fame.

Among those who paid her the tribute of a profound admiration was a
rising young secretary of the kingdom, a man of scholarly tastes and an
author of established reputation.

"I found," recently wrote Julian Ralph from India, "a sure key to the
viceroy's character in between the lines of a dozen speeches that
he made in January and February, 1899. Some of his qualities, more
especially his quick sympathy, humor, and the sentimental and romantic
inclination, are rather more American than English.... It is consoling
to us Americans to find that the man who has attracted so much beauty
and talent away from our country is himself the next thing to an
American."

When he met Miss Leiter, though he was but thirty-five years of age,
Mr. Curzon had been a member of Parliament, representing the district
of Southport, for eight years. He had already wealth and distinction,
and was the heir to the title of his father, who is the fourth Baron
Scarsdale. His ambition, moreover, was of that high order which found
in Miss Leiter a responsive attitude and a quickening sympathy. His
literary and political career--in a word, the position he had made for
himself through his own talents--was to her a matter of far deeper
interest than the eventual inheritance of his father's estate and
title. The reputation which his writings on the political questions in
the East had given him particularly attracted her admiration.

Replying four years later to the address of welcome delivered to him by
the city of Bombay, Lord Curzon expressed gratification at its kindly
tone both for himself and his wife, who, he said, came to India with
sympathies as warm as his own, and who looked forward with earnest
delight to a life of happy labor in the midst of its people.

[Illustration: Mattie Mitchell

(Duchesse de Rochefoucauld)

From photograph by C. M. Bell]

The interest which Miss Leiter's remarkable career had inspired
intensified with the announcement of her approaching marriage. Her home
was besieged by newspaper correspondents representing all sections of
the country, showing how widely she was known.

The 22d of April--the date selected for her wedding--was an ideal
spring day. At an early hour in the morning people began to gather
around St. John's Episcopal Church in Washington, where the ceremony
was to be performed at half-past eleven o'clock, with a hope of
catching a glimpse of the fair and famous bride. By eleven o'clock the
streets and sidewalks and Lafayette Square were solidly banked with
spectators, and it was with difficulty that a passage-way was kept
open for the carriages of those who had been invited to witness the
ceremony. Women cried out that they were being crushed, and others
fainted, yet the crowd continued to increase till the moment of the
bride's arrival.

St. John's Church, one of the oldest in Washington, is constructed
without a central aisle, so that bridal parties enter by one side aisle
and return by the other. Thither have wended their way many couples
that have passed into fame and history. At its altar, a little more
than six years before Miss Leiter pronounced her marriage vows, another
American girl, Miss Mary Endicott, of Massachusetts, whose father was
at the time Secretary of War, gave her hand to a distinguished son of
Great Britain, Hon. Joseph Chamberlain.

The ceremonies at both of these marriages were exquisitely simple.
Bishop Talbott, of Wyoming, officiated at that of Miss Leiter and
Mr. Curzon, assisted by Rev. Dr. Mackay Smith, the pastor of the
church. Lord Lamington acted as best man for Mr. Curzon, and Miss
Leiter was attended by her two sisters. She was singularly pale, and,
enveloped in the whiteness of her bridal veil and gown, the Easter
lilies that adorned the altar and chancel seemed not more fair than
she. Her slender figure looked its full height, which is the same as
her father's,--five feet seven inches. Her face, whose every feature
is indicative of character and perhaps too serious when in repose,
but wholly charming when lighted by a smile which expresses so much
intelligence and sympathy, bore evidence of the recollection of her
thoughts. It was, as it is to-day, a face of unusual beauty, oval in
shape, with dark-gray eyes, straight black brows, a sweet, sensitive
mouth, a prettily shaped nose, and a low forehead with fine black hair
brushed simply away from it and emphasizing its whiteness.

On her wedding-day she solved with her usual good sense a problem that
has confronted many brides since gloves first came to be considered a
requisite of their costume, as to how under such circumstances a ring
may be gracefully assumed. She entered and left the church with hands
uncovered and unadorned save by her engagement-ring with its superb
setting, a ruby and two diamonds, and the gold band which supplemented
it.

The ceremony was witnessed by Mrs. Cleveland, the Cabinet Ministers and
their families, the diplomatic corps, and a number of people of purely
social prominence from several cities in the United States and England.

For the reception which followed, the bride's beautiful home was
decorated entirely with peach-, cherry-, and apple-blossoms. She stood
beneath her own portrait, whose frame was suggestively outlined with
forget-me-nots, to receive the many who gathered about her with good
wishes and good-byes.

The first days of her honeymoon were spent at "Beauvoir," the suburban
Washington home of Mr. and Mrs. John R. McLean, who placed it at her
disposal for that period. There she entertained several times at
dinner, that Mr. Curzon might meet some of the people who give charm to
the society of the American capital.

The year of his marriage proved also an eventful one in the public life
of Mr. Curzon. He was made Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs
and Privy Councillor, and re-elected to his seat in Parliament, all
within that brief period.

Shortly after Mr. Curzon's return to England the fall of the Rosebery
cabinet necessitated a new Parliamentary election. His American
bride entered into the English political campaign of the summer of
1895 with an enthusiasm that was the delight of his constituents and
the admiration of his opponents. It was a first test of her power
in a field that called forth her best efforts, and as she became
conscious of her strength and of the possibility of being a force
in the political life of a great country, the highest attributes of
her nature unfolded themselves. Among a people who "make a romance
of marriage," an electioneering tour before the honeymoon had waned
roused an interest upon whose results no politician, however astute,
could reckon. Not only did Mrs. Curzon accompany her husband on the
occasions when he addressed the people of his borough, but, quite
independent of him, she drove through the Southport district of
Lancashire, seeing the wives of his constituents and even the electors
themselves, and manifesting an intelligent interest in the political
affairs of their country that, from a foreigner and a beautiful young
woman, conveyed a most delicate flattery and subtle gratification.

A Liberal paper, commenting on the election after the vote had been
cast, gallantly insisted that Curzon owed his success far more to the
winning smiles and irresistible charm of his American wife than he did
to his own speeches.

The following four years of Lady Curzon's life were spent in England
between a town house in London and her husband's country-seat,
Kedleston Hall, in Derbyshire. Two daughters were born to her within
that period, the first in 1896 and the younger in August, 1898, shortly
after Mr. Curzon's appointment to the Governor-Generalship of India.

Mrs. Curzon's parents visited her every summer, and her father bought
for her the London residence, Number One Carlton House Terrace, the
first in a row of twenty-two handsome houses with a colonnade of
marble pillars, overlooking St. James Park, one of the most exclusive
localities in London.

[Illustration: Mary Victoria Leiter

(Baroness Curzon of Kedleston)

From photograph by Miss Alice Hughes]

In close companionship and absolute sympathy with a statesman whose
life promised greatness, in the full enjoyment of a social existence
in which the grace and strength of her personality had already made
themselves felt, happily placed in all her relations to life, it
would have seemed, in consideration of the youth of both herself
and her husband, that for the time being at least their measure of
good fortune was well filled. In the summer of 1898, however, Mr.
Curzon was offered the greatest gift of the British government, the
Governor-Generalship of India. Until Mr. Balfour's authoritative
announcement of the fact in the House of Commons many people had
discredited the rumor on the ground that such an office had never been
offered to a Commoner.

In India, which Mr. Curzon had visited frequently and where he had
already become thoroughly known through his writings, the news of his
nomination was received with entire satisfaction. In London it excited
unusual interest.

In addition to more or less lengthy editorial comment, every journal
reviewed his strikingly brilliant career, and in enumerating his
unusual advantages through which he might hope for success in the
discharge of the duties of the high office he had accepted, his
American wife was ranked among the first. It was regarded as a happy
circumstance that such a woman should partake of the glories and
responsibilities of his position.

According to an old English statute, a man who is duly elected to the
House of Commons may not resign his seat. It may be vacated only by
death, expulsion, legal disqualifications, or by accepting an office
from the crown. As soon as Mr. Curzon was nominated to succeed Lord
Elgin, whose term as Governor-General of India still had several
months to run, in order to enable him to sever his connection with the
Parliament, he received from the queen the appointment of High Steward
and Bailiff of the Manor of Northstead.

The office, however, is merely honorary, and was retained only until
he was officially proclaimed governor-general. His seat in Parliament
at the election following his withdrawal was carried by the Liberal
candidate, the late Sir Herbert Naylor-Leyland, whose wife, another
beautiful American, Miss Jennie Chamberlain, of Cleveland, had played
much the same part in his campaign as Mrs. Curzon, under similar
circumstances, had taken in that of her husband.

During the month following Mr. Curzon's appointment to the
governor-generalship he was elevated to the peerage as Baron Curzon of
Kedleston. As the name in which he had made his reputation, he desired
to retain Curzon in his title.

The eldest son of Earl Howe being Viscount Curzon, however, he was
obliged to agree to two conditions imposed by Lord Howe,--first, to be
known now as Curzon of Kedleston, and, second, on succeeding to his
father's title, to drop Curzon Kedleston, which was never to be resumed
either by himself or his heirs.

A new life, quite unlike anything she had known, now opened before
Lady Curzon,--a life of real power over millions of subjects, a life
of significant ceremonial and regal pomp, in which this daughter of
a republic assumed with her husband the leading _rôle_. She entered
completely into its spirit, planning all the details of a sumptuous
existence which is so highly gratifying to an Eastern people and in
such perfect accord with its conceptions of power. India likes to see
the outward form of empire, and measures thereby its internal strength.

Lady Curzon was already familiar with the political and historical side
of the country whither fortune was leading her. For her acquaintance
with its social side, which more especially concerned her, she equipped
herself with that same faultless taste that had marked her career in
the society of her own country and England.

With the lavish hospitality she had in contemplation, she ordered,
several weeks before her departure from England, thousands of cards
of invitation for dinners, evening receptions, and garden-parties,
including menu cards and ball programmes. For all of these occasions
she provided herself with the appropriate habiliments whose exquisite
details, the art with which they were chosen, and the genius with which
they were worn, becoming identified with her personal beauty, acquired
shortly after her appearance in Calcutta a fame as wide as the empire.

Her last days in England foreshadowed the glories of her life in India.
At a ball given at Welbeck Abbey by the Duke and Duchess of Portland
in honor of the Duke and Duchess of Connaught, shortly before her
departure, Lady Curzon of Kedleston, whose grace had once given charm
to many an American ball-room, was among the few honored with a place
in the royal quadrille. While the Portlands do not entertain often,
they enjoy the reputation of having the most sumptuous social functions
that are witnessed anywhere in England. Their supper-tables glitter
with a gold service of great artistic and intrinsic value, and their
spacious picture-gallery makes a ball-room whose attractiveness is
seldom rivalled.

For several days Lord and Lady Curzon were guests at Welbeck, going
from there to Southport to make a farewell visit to Lord Curzon's
old Parliamentary district, in which Lady Curzon had won votes
and admiration in the first days of her residence in England. The
locomotive of the train in which they made the journey was decorated
with the royal standard and the stars-and-stripes, Lady Curzon's
nationality being, as it always is, thus gracefully remembered. The
streets of the town were similarly decorated, including, besides the
insignia of the two great Anglo-Saxon countries, the star of India.

It was a memorable day in Southport, whose population turned out _en
masse_ to welcome them, the city and county functionaries in their
official robes greeting them at the railroad station. As they drove
through the streets of the town, their coach drawn by four horses,
the bells of Christ Church peeled forth a joyous welcome, and pride
and admiration shone in every face that lined the route to the
art-gallery. There they held a public reception, Sir William Forwood
presiding and making a speech, in which he dwelt with gratification
upon the unqualified approval expressed by the nation at Lord Curzon's
appointment as Governor-General of India, and referred gallantly to the
charm which the young American vicereine would impart to the court.

On the 30th of December Lord and Lady Curzon landed at Bombay amid the
firing of a royal salute from the war-ships in port. The city welcomed
them with a display of much magnificence in its decorations and a
manifestation of genuine cordiality, presenting its address to that
effect in an elaborately wrought silver casket.

At the governor's house they were received by Lord and Lady Sandhurst,
Lord Sandhurst being Governor of Bombay, and ranking second in
authority to the governor-general.

It was here that Lord and Lady Curzon made their first social
appearance in India at a ball and reception given in their honor.
Beyond the fact that Lord Curzon's wife was an American, prior to that
night India knew but little of her. Happy and beautiful, with the added
brilliancy which appreciation and success impart to every woman, she
made instantly an impression of loveliness which in a few days had
spread over India and still prevails,--resting now, however, on a more
enduring basis.

The impression, in fact, created by both Lord and Lady Curzon at Bombay
paved the way to the enthusiasm with which they were received at
Calcutta a few days later.

The city was richly decorated, the American flag being everywhere
conspicuously displayed amid evidences of Oriental splendor. It has
been estimated that not less than one hundred thousand people witnessed
the magnificent spectacle of their reception at the palace.

The imposing width of the double terrace of steps that lead to the
main entrance was covered with a rich red carpet terminating in the
green sward of the lawn, where, in the magnificent uniform of the army
forming part of the military service of India, one hundred men of the
Calcutta Rifles and one hundred men of the First Gloucester Regiment,
in scarlet, with their band, stood attention.

At the foot of the steps the Life-Guard, in gorgeous red array,
consisting of one hundred and twenty Indians selected for their fine
size and physique, grouped itself. At the top, two colossal palms
lifted their noble branches, while the vine-clad balustrades added
another touch of color to the picturesque setting of the scene,
which was further enhanced by the presence of many native chiefs and
dignitaries in the splendor of their rich attire.

In the distance the cannon of Fort Williams boomed a mighty welcome
to the new powers as they drove under the great arch of the outer
gate surmounted by its massive lions. Beneath the limitless blue of
a tropical sky, with everywhere the luxuriant verdure of a tropical
landscape, this was the scene, reflecting both the power of England
and the magnificence and antiquity of the Orient, that greeted Lady
Curzon, who had opened her eyes on life thirty years before in a new
city of a new world thousands of miles away.

To the vast concourse of Europeans and Orientals who beheld Lord and
Lady Curzon as they mounted the steps and entered the palace they
conveyed a sense of entire satisfaction, so absolutely do they realize
in stature, bearing, and poise the conception of a noble sovereignty.
Lord Curzon is more than six feet in height and of proportionate
breadth, while his whole manner denotes the vigor of youth, mentally as
well as physically.

It is a strange coincidence, first, that the Government House at
Calcutta should have been built by the Marquis of Wellesley, who at
a later period, during his Governor-Generalship of Ireland, married,
as already stated, the beautiful Baltimorean, Mary Caton Patterson,
and, in the second place, that it should have been copied, with slight
modification, from Lord Curzon's ancestral home, Kedleston Hall. After
a visit to the latter place, Wellesley declared that if he ever had a
house to build he should take it for his model.

In 1799, during his term as Governor-General of India, it fell to his
lot to erect at Calcutta the viceregal palace known as Government
House, and he built it on a plan well in keeping with the dignity of
the great European power which rules over two-thirds of India.

The first two social events held at Government House after the
instalment of Lord Curzon as governor-general were the levee on the 7th
of January, 1899, which was attended by sixteen hundred gentlemen, and
the drawing-room on the 12th of the same month, at which Lady Curzon
wore her viceregal honors with irresistible graciousness. After the
presentations, which were made in the throne-room, Lord and Lady Curzon
standing in front of the magnificent gold throne upon a velvet-covered
dais, she went up into the ball-room, which occupies the entire third
floor of the central portion of the palace, and which is said to be
one of the handsomest in the world, and there mingled among her guests
with a grace as charming and unaffected as if she were again hostess in
either her American or her English home instead of the representative
of the Queen of England and Empress of India.

[Illustration: Miss May Handy

From photograph by James L. Breese]

When we consider her exalted position and her unusual personality, the
rapidity with which she has established herself in the affections of
the people all over the empire ceases to be a matter of wonderment. The
good judgment and tact of both the viceroy and his wife have prevented
them from falling into the grave error of some of their predecessors in
showing a preference for the European over the educated native element.
As a result, Lady Curzon's praises have been proclaimed by the latter
in the glowing language that is peculiar to them as frequently as they
have been by the former. Ram Sharma, an Indian poet, referred to her,
in the course of some lines of welcome addressed to Lord Curzon, as

       "A rose of roses bright,
        A vision of embodied light."

Another native scribe, when she received the decoration of the Imperial
Order of the Crown of India, declared her to be "like a diamond set in
gold, or the full moon in a clear autumnal sky."

Not only by her youth and beauty and her social graces, however, has
she endeared herself to the people of India. With a high appreciation
of the viceregal position and of the duty owing to their subjects under
all circumstances, Lord and Lady Curzon last winter made a tour of the
plague-stricken districts of the empire. Besides advising and making
intelligent suggestions to those who were working among the sufferers,
they in many cases personally provided for their care, and by unselfish
heroism bound the whole nation to them by ties of profound gratitude
and a tender personal affection, augmenting thereby India's loyalty to
the queen-empress.

The wives and families of India's viceroys have found a broad field for
the exercise of their benevolent tendencies, and not a few have left
here noble monuments to the memory of their days in the great black
empire. Eden Gardens is one, the beautiful public park adjoining the
grounds of the viceregal residence and the gift of Lord Auckland's
sisters to the city of Calcutta. The Dufferin Medical Mission is
another, inaugurated by Lady Dufferin during the governor-generalship
of her husband as a means of providing medical help for the women of
India.

A few weeks after her arrival in the empire Lady Curzon presided at a
meeting of the central committee of the Dufferin fund, and manifested
a keen interest in the noble charity.

It has within the last thirty years become customary for the entire
English government in India to spend the six hot months of the year
in Simla, the town in the Himalayan hills whose singular natural and
social topography have become familiar in late years to many English
readers through Kipling's Indian tales. The Foreign Office at London
recently expended a large sum of money in the erection of suitable
buildings there, including a new viceregal residence that is a vast
improvement over its predecessor, which was little more than a cottage.
It was perched on a precipitous crag, and Lady Dufferin used to compare
it to the ark balanced on Mount Ararat, adding that in the rainy season
she herself felt like Mrs. Noah.

The villa at Simla and the palaces at Calcutta and at Barrackpore on
the river near the capital constitute the trio of viceregal residences
in which the Curzons are passing the five years of their life in India.
None of them is a home in the meaning we give that word,--a place of
privacy and relaxation,--for each has its own degree of state and
formality. They live to-day in the glare of the world, with no more
seclusion than ever falls either to "the head that wears a crown" or
to those to whom it delegates its power. The state that encompasses
them does not conceal the personality of either, and both are full of
interest.

Marrying a man whose life promised so much, Mary Leiter has undoubtedly
been a factor in the early culmination of that promise. She is spoken
of throughout India with love and pride, and when Lord Curzon's
day comes to pass the government into other hands, it may be that
the empire will be placarded with signs, as it was, says a recent
historian, when Lord Ripon retired, bearing a legend similar to that
they bore then: "We want more Curzons!"



NEW YORK AS A SOCIAL CENTRE


The women who, both at home and abroad, are regarded as the leaders of
American society in these last days of the century are or have been,
almost without exception, at some time in their career identified with
New York. Though there is no city in the United States that fills the
central position which Paris holds in reference to all France, and
which London occupies, at least socially, in England, the geographical
position of New York, to a nation whose progressive spirit inspires it
with a keen interest in the doings of the entire world, has given it a
leading place, and to the commanding position it holds in the financial
life of the American people it undoubtedly owes much of its prominence
as a social centre.

[Illustration: Catherine Duer

(Mrs. Clarence Mackay)]

Those who at present constitute its ruling element, and who in the eyes
of the country at large form the unit of New York society, are, as a
rule, the possessors of enormous wealth. The elegance of their various
homes, the magnificence of their hospitalities, the luxurious state
in which they travel, all tend to give them an immense influence in a
young country where such a princely scale of existence was practically
unknown thirty-five years ago, and where there are many striving for
similar results.

Women born of this class, and who possess, in addition to the
advantages it bestows upon them, personal gifts of an unusual order,
have from the very outset of their social career a remarkable fame
and prestige. In some instances they come of families who have been
distinguished in the life of New York since the days when the homes of
the people who made up its one set were gathered about the battery and
lower end of the town, and when the division of its classes was the
natural one of condition, and not the arbitrary one which its abnormal
growth has entailed upon it in recent years.

New York's belles in the early century were for the most part native,
and anything so remote as the Pacific coast, whence comes one of its
belles of the present era, entered nobody's wildest dreams.

A Franklin flies his kite, a Fulton is born, a Morse flashes his
reverent thought fifty miles in the twinkling of an eye, and lo! the
ages in which man crept and groped have rolled from us. Distance has
lost the meaning it had a little more than a hundred years ago, when
Lady Kitty Duer was accounted one of the belles of New York; they come
now from every section of the country to add their charm to the life of
the metropolis.

Many of these beautiful women, moreover, are as celebrated in European
capitals as they are throughout America, and it is difficult to
estimate how much of our fame in the eyes of other nations we owe
to them. To stand forth, however, in their own country as beings
unusually gifted is quite as great a triumph to-day as it was more than
a hundred years ago.

"Your countrywoman, Mrs. Wolcott," said the minister from England,
admiring the beauty of the Connecticut statesman's wife, to an official
of the young government in the days when its capital was located in New
York, "would be admired even at St. James."

"Sir," replied the American, "she is admired even on Litchfield Hill."



INDEX


  A

  Adams, Hannah, 150

  Adams, John, 22

  Adams, John Quincy, 74

  Adams, Mrs. John, 14

  Alabama, story of, 105

  Albany, Duke of, 202

  Allen, James Lane, 148

  Alston, Joseph, 30, 38

  Alston, Mrs. Joseph. See Theodosia Burr

  American Graces, 62, 66

  Amory, William, 97

  André, Major, 191

  Ariosto, 116

  Armstrong, General, 50

  Armstrong, Vene P., 159

  Astor, Mrs., 111

  Atlantic Transport Company, 255

  August, Tom, 179

  Ayot, Alexis, 145


  B

  Bache, Mrs. Richard, 193

  Bache, Richard, 193

  Baily, Dr. Gamaliel, 214

  Baker, Mrs. George W., 171

  Baltimore, city of, 39

  Bard, Dr., 29

  Barney, Commodore, 44

  Barton, Dr. Benjamin, 87

  Barton, Mrs. Thomas Pennant. See Cora Livingston

  Barton, Thomas Pennant, 87

  Bateman, Abraham, 254

  Bayard, Hon. Thomas F., 271

  Beaconsfield, Lord, 248

  Beale, General, 88

  Beauregard, General, 234

  "Beauvoir," 275

  Bellefontaine Cemetery, 263

  Bentham, Jeremy, 19

  Benton, Jessie, 123

  Benton, Thomas Hart, 123, 125, 126

  Bernhardt, Sarah, 200

  Bingham, Mrs. William, 192

  Bingham, William, 192

  Bladensburg duel, 85

  Blaine, James G., 268

  Blenheim Palace, 244

  Blennerhassett, 34

  Bodisco, Baron, 127

  Bolin, Lieutenant-Governor, 92

  Bonaparte, Jerome, 28, 43, 44, 64

  Bonaparte, Jerome Napoleon, 53, 59

  Bonaparte, Louis Napoleon, 59

  Bonaparte, Madame Jerome, 39, 67.
    See Elizabeth Patterson

  Bonaparte, Napoleon, 42, 43, 48, 51, 55, 67

  Bonaparte, Pauline, 56, 58

  Bonsteller, Baron, 57

  Borghese, Princess. See Pauline Bonaparte

  Boston Library, 88

  Bourne, Sylvanus, 53

  Bradley-Martin, Mrs., 255

  Brant, Indian Chief, 29

  Brattle, Thomas, 92

  Bremer, Frederika, 108, 115

  Bright, Mr. John, 247

  British Society, 239

  Browning, Mrs., 114

  Buchanan, James, 161, 164, 167, 170, 174, 181, 232

  Burdett-Coutts, Baroness, 253

  Burdett-Coutts, Mr., 253

  Burns, Davy, 12

  Burns, Marcia, 11

  Burr, Aaron, 13, 15, 18, 19, 21, 22, 26, 32

  Burr, Madam, 267

  Burr, Rev. Aaron, 28

  Burr, Theodosia, 18, 48


  C

  Cabell, Lizzie, 230

  Calderon, Madame de la Barca, 101

  Calhoun, John C., 16

  Calhoun, Mrs. John C., 75

  Calverts, the, 14

  Camber, Miss, 103

  "Canonchet," 219

  Carlton House Terrace, 276

  Carmichael, Ann, 231

  Carroll, Charles, 41, 61, 63, 150, 191, 264

  Carroll, Daniel, 12, 14

  Carroll, John, 61

  Carroll, John, Archbishop, 46, 64

  Carroll, Kitty, 61

  Carroll, Mary, 61

  Carucci's, 86

  Caton, Elizabeth, 62, 68

  Caton, Emily, 62, 68

  Caton, Louisa, 62, 65, 68

  Caton, Mary, 62, 264

  Caton, Richard, 61, 62

  Caton Sisters, 61

  Chamberlain, Hon. Joseph, 273

  Chamberlain, Jennie, 278

  Chamberlain, Mrs. Joseph, 255

  Chase, Kate, 206

  Chase, Salmon P., 207-210, 212, 214, 215, 220, 223

  Chase, Samuel, 45

  Chatsworth House, 252

  Chevalier, Sally, 118, 119

  Chew, Harriet, 191

  Chew, Margaret, 191

  Churchill, Lady Randolph. See Jennie Jerome

  Churchill, Lord Randolph, 240, 244, 248, 250, 255

  Churchill, Winston, 252

  Cincinnati, site of, 195

  "City of New York," steamship, 250

  Clarke, James Freeman, 101

  Clay, Henry, 82, 108, 110

  Clemmer, Mary, 163

  Cleveland, Mrs., 162, 274

  Cleveland, President, 270

  Clinton, Governor De Witt, 73

  Clintons, the, 20

  Clymer, Dr., 271

  Clymer, Miss May, 271

  Columbia College, 15

  Conkling, Roscoe, 214

  Curzon, Baroness. See Mary Victoria Leiter

  Curzon, Lord, 264, 265, 272, 273, 275

  Custer, General, 160

  Custis, Nellie, 191

  Custis, widow, 12

  Cutts, Adèle, 175

  Cutts, James Madison, 175, 186

  Cutts, Richard, 176, 178


  D

  Dallas, Alexander J., 46

  Davezac, Major August, 83

  Davis, Jefferson, 163

  Decatur, Mrs., 84, 85

  Decatur Residence, 84

  De Staël, Madame, 57

  De Visme, Miss, 21

  De Visme, Mrs., 20

  Devonshire, Duchess of, 253

  Dix, Mrs., 145

  Dix, Senator, 135

  "Doughoregan," 62

  Douglas, Mrs. Stephen A. See Adèle Cutts

  Douglas, Stephen A., 175, 180, 182, 184

  Downs, George F., 159

  Downs, Mrs. George F. See Sallie Ward

  Duddington Manor, 14

  Duer, Lady Kitty, 289

  Dufferin, Lady, 285, 286

  Dufferin, Lord, 285

  Dufferin Medical Mission, 285

  Dundas, Hon. Mr., 57


  E

  Eaton, General John H., 75, 78

  Eaton, Mrs. John H. See Margaret O'Neill

  Eden Gardens, 285

  Eden Park, 197

  "Edgewood," 225, 226, 228

  Edwards, Jonathan, 28

  Electoral Commission, 260

  Elgin, Lord, 278

  Ellis, Colonel Thomas Harding, 121

  Ellis, Mrs. Thomas Harding. See Fanny Taylor

  Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 266

  Endicott, Miss Mary, 273

  England, Bishop, 66

  England, Queen of, 116, 239, 255, 278, 284

  English, Miss, school of, 130


  F

  Federal Street Theatre, 91

  Fife, Earl of, 243

  Fillmore, Millard, 116

  Five o'clock tea, 95

  Flournoy, Miss, 149

  Fox, Charles James, 253

  France, Emperor of, 116

  France, Prince Imperial of, 242

  Franklin, Benjamin, 193

  Franks, David, 191

  Franks, Miss Rebecca, 190

  Frémont, John C, 123, 130, 143

  Frémont, Mrs. John C. See Jessie Benton

  Frewen, Moreton, 246

  Fuller, Margaret, 93

  Fulton, Robert, 108, 289


  G

  Gallatin, Albert, 35

  Galt, William, 119

  Garde, de la, Count, 146

  Garniss, Katherine, 209

  Garrison, William Lloyd, 98

  Gary, General, 234

  Gilpin, Hon. Henry D., 200

  Gilpin, Mrs. Henry D., 196

  Gordon, General, 234

  Gordon, Sir John Watson, 173

  Gortschakoff, 57

  Government House, 283

  Grant, General, 223, 261

  Greeley, Horace, 221

  Green, Timothy, 36

  Greenmount Cemetery, 60

  Greenough, Horatio, 17

  Gutherz, Carl, 263


  H

  Hall, Captain Basil, 57

  Hamilton, Alexander, 13, 15, 20, 23, 32

  Hamilton, Andrew, 191

  Hampton, General Wade, 234

  Handy, May, 233

  Harper, Mary, 150

  Harris, Miss, 186, 187

  Harrison, Archibald Morgan, 120

  Harrison, Benjamin, 121

  Harrison, William Henry, 122, 131

  Harte, Bret, 146

  Haxall, Mrs. Philip, 235

  Hayes, Rutherford B., 260, 261

  Hayward, Mrs., seminary of, 72

  Hazeltine, Captain William B., 258

  Hazeltine, Nellie, 257

  Henry, James Buchanan, 171

  Hervey, Sir Felton Bathurst, 65

  Hobbes, John Oliver, 254

  Holme, Thomas, 195

  Holmes, Oliver Wendell, 63

  Hood, General, 234

  Hosack, Dr., 29

  Howard, Colonel John Eager, 45, 191

  Howe, Lord, 278

  Hoyt, William Sprague, 222

  Hughes-Hallett, Colonel, 204

  Hughes-Hallett, Mrs. See Emilie Schaumburg

  Hunt, Dr., 158

  Hunt, John, 158

  Huygens, 76

  Huygens, Mrs., 76


  I

  India, Viceroy of, 264

  Inglis, Fanny, 101

  Ireland, Governor-General of, 254

  Ireland, Vicereine of, 264

  Irving, Washington, 34, 108, 109


  J

  Jackson, Andrew, 16, 74, 82, 105, 125, 128

  James, Henry, 254

  Jefferson, Joseph, 111

  Jefferson, Thomas, 15, 18, 19, 34

  Jerome, Jennie, 239

  Jerome, Leonard, 241

  Jerome, Mrs. Leonard, 242

  Jockey Club, 241

  Johnson, Governor of Maryland, 12

  Johnson's Band, 193

  Johnston, General Joe, 234

  Johnston, Henry Elliott, 174

  Johnston, Mrs. Henry Elliott. See Harriet Lane

  Johnston, Sir Henry, 191

  Junot, General, 51

  Junot, Madame, 43, 51


  K

  Kedleston Hall, 283

  Key, Barton, 233

  King, Preston, 145

  Krudner, Baron, 76


  L

  Lafayette, General, 84, 106, 195

  La Grange, Madame, 202

  Lamartine, 104

  Lane, Elliot, 164

  Lane, Harriet, 161

  Lane, Mary, 167

  Lawrence, Bigelow, 155, 156

  Lawrence, Hon. Abbott, 155

  Le Camus, Alexander, 46, 54

  Leeds, Duke of, 68

  Leiter, Joseph, 267

  Leiter, Levi Z., 267

  Leiter, Mary Victoria, 264

  Le Vert, Dr. Claud, 110

  Le Vert, Dr. Henry S., 110

  Le Vert, Madame. See Octavia Walton

  Lewis, Mrs. Nellie Custis, 121

  Leyland, Naylor, Sir Herbert, 278

  Lincoln, Abraham, 124, 141, 143, 173, 183-185, 215, 220

  Livingston, Chancellor, 81

  Livingston, Cora, 80

  Livingston, Edward, 29, 81

  Livingston, Mrs. Edward, 16

  Livingston, Robert, 48, 50

  Livingstons, The, 20

  Louis Philippe, 28

  Louisville Guard, 154

  Louisville Legion, 154

  Lucas, Charles, 88

  Ludlow, Israel, 212

  Ludlow, Sarah, 212

  Lyons, Mrs. James, 179


  M

  MacFarland, James Edward, 170

  Mactavish, John, 68

  Madison, James, 35, 178

  Madison, Mrs. James, 35, 178

  "Maine," hospital ship, 255

  Malvern College, 250

  Marlborough, Duchess of, 240

  Marlborough, Duke of, 243, 247, 256

  Marshall, Emily, 90

  Marshall, John, 13, 33

  Marshall, Josiah, 91

  Marshall, Lieutenant Isaac, 92

  Martin, Luther, 13, 34

  Mary Institute, 257

  Mason, John Y., 122, 270

  McAllister, Ward, 269

  McCall, Mr. and Mrs. John A., 236

  McDowell, Colonel James, 127

  McFarlane, Thomas Holme, 195

  McLean, Mr. and Mrs. John R., 275

  Middleton, Arthur, 16

  Montgomery Place, 87

  "Montplaisir," 204, 205

  Moore, Tom, 15, 56

  Moreau, Madame, 81

  Morgan, Lady, 41, 56, 57

  Morgan, Sir Charles, 57

  Mornington, Earl of, 66

  Morse, S. F. B., 129, 289

  Mount Vernon, 172


  N

  New Orleans, society of, 83

  New York as a Social Centre, 288


  O

  Octagon House, 14

  O'Neale, Miss Ellen, 177

  O'Neill, Margaret, 69

  O'Neill, William, 70

  Otis, Harrison Gray, 94

  Otis, Mrs. Harrison Gray, 116

  Otis, Mrs. William Foster. See Emily Marshall

  Otis, William Foster, 100

  Ould, Mattie, 230, 262, 263

  Ould, Robert, 232


  P

  Page, Colonel James, 198

  Page, Miss, 197

  Page, Stephen, 197

  Page, Thomas Nelson, 120

  Paget, Mrs. Arthur, 255

  Paramore, Frederick W., 263

  Paramore, Mrs. Frederick W. See Nellie Hazeltine

  Paramore, J. W., 263

  Park, Dr., school of, 93

  Parker, Gilbert, 254

  Parker, Miss Hetty, 166, 168

  Parsons, Colonel Richard, 216

  Pascault, Miss Henrietta, 44

  Patterson, Elizabeth, 39, 64

  Patterson, Mrs. (Mary Caton), 264

  Patterson, Robert, 49, 64, 264

  Patterson, William, 40, 47, 48, 54, 64

  Patti, Adelina, 200

  Payne, Anna, 176

  Penal Laws, 88

  Penn, Imogene, 179

  Perry, Commodore, 216

  Piatt, Donn, 220

  Picket, General, 234

  Pierce, Franklin, 181

  Pinckney, Edward C., 71

  Pitt, William, 53, 253

  Poe, Edgar Allen, 71

  Polk, Mrs., 167

  Polk, President, 167

  Pope Pius, 52

  Portland, Duke and Duchess of, 279, 280

  Prevost, Colonel, 20

  Prevost, Mrs., 21

  Primrose League, 246, 247

  Princeton College, 28


  Q

  Quincy, Josiah, 80


  R

  Ralph, Julian, 271

  Randall, Samuel, 260

  Randolph, John, 15, 33, 74, 126

  Reed, Thomas B., 176

  Reid, Whitelaw, 254

  Republican Party, origin of, 143

  Review, Anglo-Saxon, 254

  Rewbell, General, 44, 45

  "Richmond Hill," 21, 29, 31, 32

  Ridgley, Charles, 63

  Rives, Alexander, 118

  Robinson, Miss Nancy, 63

  Rosebery Cabinet, 275

  Rosebery, Lord, 254

  Rucker, Miss, 167

  Rush, Madam, 111, 198

  Rush, Richard, 65

  Rutland, Duke of, 111


  S

  Salisbury, Lord, 248, 265

  Sampoyo, Duke de, 78

  Sandhurst, Lord and Lady, 281

  Sargent (artist), 256

  Scarsdale, Baron, 272

  Schaumburg, Colonel Bartholomew, 194

  Schaumburg, Emilie, 190

  Schaumburg-Lippe, Princess, 197

  Schoolcraft, Mrs. Oliver. See Mattie Ould

  Schoolcraft, Oliver, 236

  Schurz, Carl, 221

  Secaneh, Indian Chief, 195

  Shippen, Margaret, 192

  Shubrick, Admiral, 271

  Sickles, General Daniel, 233

  Slidell, Mr., 109

  Smalcalden, Princess of, 54

  Smith, Eliza Ann, 209

  Smith, General Samuel, 47

  Smith, Rev. Dr. Mackay, 273

  Spear, Dorcas, 41

  Spear, Elizabeth, 164

  Sprague, Governor William, 217

  Sprague, Kate Chase, 187

  Sprague, Mrs. William. See Kate Chase

  Stafford, Baron, 68

  Stanton, Edwin M., 233

  State Fencibles (Pennsylvania), 198

  Stewart, Gilbert, 254

  Sturgis, Russell, 93

  Sullivan, John, 169

  Susahena, Indian Princess, 195

  Sweetenham, Sir Frank, 254


  T

  Talbot, Bishop, 273

  Tallahassee, naming of, 106

  Talleyrand, 28, 57

  Tayloes, the, 14

  Taylor, Fanny, 118

  Tennyson, Alfred, 170

  Tilden, Samuel J., 259, 260

  Timberlake, John B., 73

  Timberlake, Virginia, 78

  Triplett, Mary, 230, 235

  Tureau, General, 48, 51

  Turpin, Miss Sarah, 233


  U

  Union Tavern (Georgetown), 70


  V

  Van Buren, Martin, 76, 77, 82, 127

  Vanderbilt, Cornelius, 108

  Van Ness, Ann, 16

  Van Ness, John Peter, 15

  Van Ness, Mrs. John Peter. See Marcia Burns

  Van Rensselaers, the, 20

  Vaughan, British Minister, 76

  Visitation Convent, 168

  Volney, 28, 29


  W

  Wales, Prince of, 172, 173, 199, 252

  Wales, Princess Louise of, 243

  Wales, Princess of, 252

  Walker, Miss Sally, 104

  Walton, George, 103, 106

  Walton, Octavia, 102

  Ward, Artemus, 220

  Ward, Robert J., 149

  Ward, Sallie, 148

  Warwick, Abram, 118

  Washington City Orphan Asylum, 17

  Washington, George, 11, 12, 22, 70

  Washington, George Steptoe, 176

  Washington, Martha, 121

  Waterman, Priscilla, 92

  Watson, Sally, 118

  Wayne, Anthony, 160

  Webster, Daniel, 13, 78, 82, 90

  Welbeck Abbey, 279, 280

  Wellesley, Lady, 264, 265

  Wellesley, Marquis of, 66, 264, 283

  Wellesley, Richard, 66

  Wellington, Duke of, 65, 67

  West, Mrs. George Cornwallis, 255.
    See Jennie Jerome

  Westphalia, King of, 54

  "Wheatland," 165, 173, 174

  White House, the, 162, 163

  Wilcox, Mary Donalson, 87

  William IV., 65, 67

  Williams, General Robert, 187

  Williams, Miss (Baroness Bodisco), 127

  Williams, Miss Susan Mary, 59

  Williams, Mrs. Robert. See Adèle Cutts

  Willing, Ann. See Mrs. William Bingham

  Willis, N. P., 98, 99

  Wolcott, Mrs., 290

  Wolf, Sir H. Drummond, 246

  Wollstonecraft, Mary, 24

  "Woodlands," 191

  Wortley, Lady Emeline Stuart, 107, 111

  Wurtemburg, King of, 54

  Wurtemburg, Prince of, 57

  Wurtemburg, Princess Catherine of, 54, 58


  Y

  Yorktown, Battle of, 103

  Young, General, 231



      *      *      *      *      *      *



Transcriber's note:

Punctuation, hyphenation, and spelling were made consistent when a
predominant preference was found in this book; otherwise they were not
changed.

Simple typographical errors were corrected.

Occasional unpaired quotation marks were retained.

Ambiguous hyphens at the ends of lines were retained.

The illustration on the Title page is the Publisher's logo; the
illustrations at the top of the Contents and List of Illustrations are
decorative.

Page 38: "she may not be stripped" was printed as "he", but was changed
here.

Page 76: "féted" was printed that way, with an acute accent.

Page 114: "aisles of the great church" was misprinted as "isles";
corrected here.





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