good as well as great, Mrs. Otis
has held a place in society unrivalled in her own city or State.
While many of her sex would have used the advantages of her position for selfish advancement and social distinction merely, she, with a large-heartedness and wide-spread benevolence, has made her power felt in public as well as private acts of charity, her outgoing sympathies ever on the alert for the oppressed and unfortunate, of her own sex especially.
Where fortune frowned, she has held out her hand, smiled and encouraged.
Public-spirited to a proverb, she has ever been ready to give aid to any enterprise for the benefit of the needy, setting aside her own convenience and the calls of social position, while she devoted time and labor to its accomplishment.
‘The Blind Asylum Fair,’ ‘The Sailor's Snug Harbor,’ ‘The Washington Equestrian Statue,’ are among the public works that bear witness to her labors.
To the perseverance of Mrs. Otis
we are indebted for the crowning contribution for the purchase of Washington
The last gift to the treasury was from the proceeds of the Mount Vernon Ball
, at the Boston Theatre
, March 4, 1859, that originated in her exertions.
The sum realized was about ten thousand dollars.
It was also chiefly to the untiring efforts of Mrs. Otis
, which commenced about 1850, that the birthday of Washington
was made by law a holiday in Massachusetts
, on which occasion it has been her custom, with a gracious hospitality, to open her house for a public reception of her friends, the accomplished hostess inspiring those who thronged about her with the patriotism for which she has been distinguished.
At the commencement of the late civil war, Mrs. Otis
, consistently with the previous acts of her life, laid aside all selfish and social interests, and resolved to devote her time, labor, and influence to the interests of her country.
Government of Boston
was offered, by the liberality of William Evans
, a hotel called the Evans House
, as a place of deposit for goods and money for American soldiers, sailors, and their families.
was invited by the city authorities to take charge of the enterprise, and carry out her own plans for its