Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Partial transcript of Boston Female Asylum, Board of Managers: Proceedings and Annual Reports  - 1888
January 31, 1888
Mrs. Maxwell the aunt of Mary Jennet Hiscock, made application for her niece. Her references being excellent, it was Voted That her request be granted.
Mrs. Somes wrote to say that she wished to returned Elizabeth Hiscock as she was not suited to the place. As Mrs. Rich saw no objection, it was Voted To receive Elizabeth again into the Asylum.
Miss Storer reported that the papers had been signed for Mary Moan's admission to the Incurables and that she was probably there now.
February 28, 1888
Mrs. Berth of Lowell applied for a girl. Her request was refused on the ground that we did not wish to put out a girl in a city so large as Lowell.
Mrs. Holbrook of Randolph applied for a girl but too late for the application to be investigated. It was Voted That the committee of the month should place a child with Mrs. Holbrook, if it should prove a suitable place.
A Mrs. Norton made application for the admission of two children belonging to a woman living with her, whose husband had deserted her. The younger was only two years old, and two young for admission. The case having been found a good one, it was Voted That Martha Helena Mackenzie be admitted to the Asylum.
Mrs. Thompson applied for the admission of [a] child four years old. There was some doubt whether the Church of the Messiah would not take care of it. It was therefore Voted That the child be admitted if the committee approve.
The person where Lillie Beck boarded having died of pneumonia suddenly it was Voted That Lillie Beck should be returned to the Asylum.
Valentines had been sent to the children by the Shawmut Avenue Universalist Church.
March 27, 1888
Mr. Judson E. Hall of Elliott's, Conn. applied for a girl. His references proved good, and he liked Lizzie Hiscock. It was Voted that Ann Elizabeth Hiscock be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Hall.
Application for a young girl, under age was made by Mr. & Mrs. Columbus Holbrook of Randolph. They wished a young girl, in order to begin her education at an earlier age than that at which our girls are usually bound out. They had seen Grace Johnson, a friendless child and were much pleased with her. The recommendations were excellent and Mrs. Clarke had been to Randolph, to see the place, and the persons. It was therefore Voted That Grace Eleanor Johnson be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Holbrook.
The mother of Minnie Hudson had applied for her, to live with her in the family in which she was at service. There was also a letter from Mrs. Stevens with whom Mrs. Hudson lived giving her assent to the plan. As Mrs. Hudson was only known to the Managers of the Asylum as an incapable woman, it did not seem that any one would be really responsible for Minnie. It was therefore Voted That the committee of the month make further inquiries, and report at the next meeting.
Mr. & Mrs. Phineas Buckley of Whitinsville applied for a girl. Their references were good but as none of the managers had seen them it was Voted That the application be referred to the committee for the month.
As Nellie Allen would be fourteen years of age on the sixth of April, it was Voted That Ellen Allen be bound to the house from that date, and that in consequence of her backwardness at school, that she shall be permitted to continue for the present.
April 24, 1888
Ellen Allan did not wish to be bound to the house, and her brother had offered to take her, but it did not seem a good place. It was Voted that the vote binding Ellen Allan to the house be cancelled, and that the committee of the month investigate the brother's application.
The committee had seen Mr. & Mrs. Buckley of Whitinsville, who desired Carrie Johnston. As she was barely twelve years of age, the committee could not promise that they should take her, and they had taken Pauline Buettner. But after a fortnights' experience, Pauline's father had proved so troublesome that they declined to keep her, and still desired Carrie Johnston. It was Voted that Caroline Johnston be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Buckley of Whitinsville, & Pauline be returned to the Asylum.
The case of Minnie Hudson had been investigated. Mrs. Stevens had been heard from but did not promise to be responsible. Mrs. Sturtevant had been to the Asylum, and strongly urged the sending of Minnie to her mother. Voted That Minnie go to her mother if Mrs. Stevens will be responsible for her without signing indentures.
Application from Mrs. Scott of Malden for a girl. Voted That this application be declined, as it seemed that Mrs. Scott was much from home.
Mrs. Sonk had applied for the admission of a third child, of three years of age, now in the Marcella St. Home. Voted That this application be left to the next committee.
Lily Beck had gone to Mr. & Mrs. Smith of Woodstock, N.H., which seemed a good place for her, but were she was very homesick.
Ann Johnson's watch and chain still remained in the safety-box of the Asylum, and Miss Paine desired that something should be done with it. It was therefore Voted That this watch and chain be sold, and the money used to purchase a clock for the Managers' room.
May 29, 1888
Mrs. Sonk's third child had been admitted.
Mrs. Hanison, a woman well recommended had applied for the admission of two little girls of nine and seven, but had not been a second time. It was Voted That if Mrs. Hanison applied again her children be admitted.
Mr. & Mrs. Willard Smith of Lunenburg, Mass., had applied for a girl, and had given references, but as these references were very indefinite, it was Voted That this application be refused.
Mr. & Mrs. Foster of South Framingham had applied for a girl, but as the only reference obtained was to Mr. Foster's disadvantage it was Voted that this application be refused.
A verbal promise had been received from Mrs. Stevens that she would look after Minnie Hudson, and also it was desired that she should remain here until the autumn. It was Voted That the Secretary write to Mrs. Stevens that the Asylum will keep Minnie till the autumn and then if she will write saying she will be responsible for her, her mother can take her.
Mrs. Sharon of North Woodstock had applied for a girl for a friend in that town. Voted That this application be left to the committee of the month with full powers.
A letter had been received from Mr. Buckley, saying that Caroline Johnston had behaved so badly that they could not keep her and requesting that Pauline Buettner be returned to them. It was Voted That Caroline Johnston be returned and that Mr. & Mrs. Buckley be told that they can have no other girl. It was also Voted That Caroline be punished as the committee shall agree with Mrs. Rich, and that if Mrs. Damon still wants a girl to look after her little child during the summer, that Carrie be sent there, with the promise of returning to the Asylum in the autumn, if she behaves well.
Miss Paine had had a long talk with Mr. Buettner, who had promised not to interfere with Pauline in any future place.
Miss Paine reported that Mrs. Sharon had found another place at North Woodstock for Lily Beck, as the former did not prove a suitable one.
Miss Brown reported that Elmina Bowden had, after having been dismissed from her place, wandered about for nearly three days & nights in the woods, and no one knew what had become of her. She had been found by the constable of Wellesley, and taken to the Refuge in Boston, where she will remain for some time.
The children having been invited to the house of their music-teacher, Mr. Johnson of Winchester, and having enjoyed their excursion extremely, it was Voted That the thanks of the Asylum be presented to Mr. Johnson for his kindness to the children.
June 26, 1888
Mrs. Sharon's application had been answered by sending Nellie Allan to Mr. & Mrs. Marcus M. Hall, from whom excellent accounts had been heard. Mrs. Rich went to N. Woodstock with her, and also invited Lily Beck, and Ida Brenton, of whom she heard very good account, and who seemed to be very happy.
Application had been received from Mrs. C. L. Exford of Williamstown, Mass for a girl. The committee had written to Mrs. Exford, describing a girl, and giving our rules. Mrs. Exford had replied, sending us the named of three references and expressing her satisfaction with our conditions. It was therefore Voted That if the references prove satisfactory, Alice Nichols be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Exford.
Eva Peyton an orphan had been brought to the Asylum, by her grandmother & Rev. Mr. Briller of Warren St. Chapel. Her mother had been formerly heard of, as a person of not very good character. The child, eight years old, had been running round the streets at night, and the grandmother could not restrain her. The committee had admitted her, as the case seemed urgent, and it was Voted That the action of the committee be confirmed.
Mrs. Miekle of Charlestown, had applied for the admission of a niece, whose mother was dead, and whose father was worthless. No time there had been for investigation and it was Voted That the application be referred to the committee of the month with full powers.
Laura Martin & Lottie Hovenden had been invited to pay a visit of a fortnight to Mrs. Rich's daughter in Laconia. Mary Leach had received an invitation from Mrs. Keith of Brockton to stay a fortnight with her. Mrs. Case of Weston offered to pay the board of Clara Svenson for four weeks at the Misses Rutter's in Weston, and the latter had also given Clara an invitation for a week. Voted That all these invitations be accepted with thanks.
It appeared that Laura Martin's foot was in a very bad condition, and it was Voted That Mrs. Rich take Laura to the Mass. Gen. Hospital for advice.
Mrs. Guething could not let her room to the Asylum after July 1.
A very unfavorable report had been received from Lavinia Crockett, and she will have to be removed from her place.
The children had been on a picnic to Downer's Landing, which they had enjoyed in spite of rather unfavorable weather.
July 31, 1888
It was reported that Lavinia Crockett was to remain with Mrs. Perry, who had decided to give her further trial.
The child - Susie Baker - applied for last month by Mrs. Mieckle had been admitted, and proved to be a nice little girl.
The references from Mrs. Charles L. Exford did not prove satisfactory, she being an invalid, so the committee had not sent Alice Nichols.
Application for a girl had been received from Mrs. C. E. Grant, Concord, Mass. It was Voted That this application be referred to the committee of the month with full powers.
Mrs. C. P. St. Claire of Meredith Village, N.H. had applied for a girl. But as it seemed that she had two sons not much older than any girl we could send, it was Voted That the application of Mrs. St. Claire be refused.
Minnie Hudson's mother wanted her the first of August, and Mrs. Stevens having given the required written promise to look after her, it was Voted That Minnie Hudson go to her mother.
Mrs. E. C. Willard of Ayer Junction had applied for a girl, the day before. It was Voted That this application be referred to the committee of the month with full powers.
Laura Martin's foot had been operated upon, and she was recovering.
A room had been found for girls returned to the asylum, with Mrs. Baner(?), 74 Kendall St.
August 28, 1888
Mabel and Sarah Stone had come to the asylum; but the older girl Mabel seemed stunted in her growth, and the younger sister said she had had fits. It was therefore Voted That Miss Brown write to Miss Wiggins, who applied to put the children into the Asylum, and say that if the child should prove unhealthy or incapable, she will be returned at the expiration of three months.
Mrs. Julia Vaughn applied for the admission of her niece, Edith Turner. Her mother had gone to Texas, had not been heard from for three years, and was supposed to be death. Her father belonged to a circus company, and had done nothing for the child for some years. It was Voted That Edith Turner be admitted.
Mrs. Jackson applied for the admission of her child, nearly five years of age. The mother is an invalid, and the father a very bad man in the insane hospital. Mrs. Jackson's references were excellent, and it was Voted That Mary Norton Jackson be admitted.
The references in the case of Mr. & Mrs. E. C. Willard of Ayer, who had applied for a girl late last month, not having proved satisfactory, the committee had written to them, declining to send a girl.
The application of Mrs. Charles Grant of Concord was a girl was also referred to the committee. They had found the place desirable in many respects, but as a hired boy was employed by the family it was Voted That this application be refused.
Mr. & Mrs. D. C. Bridsell, of Hartford, Connecticut had applied through Mrs. J. W. Andrews for a girl. Mrs. Andrews, being well known as concerned in works of active benevolence in Dr. Hale's church, her recommendation seemed a very good one, and the other references being favorable it was Voted That Alice Nichols be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Bridsell.
Lizzie Hiscock had been returned from her place, as the woman to whom she was bound had taken a great dislike to her. Mrs. Sears, her guardian, had seen Rev. W. H. Forbes, of Lee, N.H., and his wife, and had liked their appearance. Their recommendations were also good, and Mrs. Sears thought it best to send Lizzie there.
Mr. & Mrs. William Stewart, of Avon, Mass. had seen Grace Johnson, at Randolph, and were desirous of obtaining a girl as young for adoption. They had seen the children of the Asylum, and their choice had fallen on May Cogswell an almost friendless child. Mr. & Mrs. Stewart were highly recommended by the persons who had taken Grace Johnson, and they also sent other references. It seemed important that some one of the Managers should see the place, and Mrs. Arthur Lyman offered to do so, upon which it was Voted That May Cogswell go to Mr. & Mrs. Stewart, if the place seemed to Mrs. Lyman, a good one.
Letters had been received from Mary Anderson, and from Mrs. Cory, her employer, of Saxton's River, Vermont, stating that Mary was ill, and had a hunch on her neck which at times gave her great pain, and affected her nerves. Two doctors had been consulted, but Mary had not improved, and Mrs. Cory thought she ought to have other advice. Miss Wilcox had been sent up for her by her guardian, Mrs. Clarke, and she had been brought to the Mass. Gen. Hos., where here neck had been operated upon. She is now in the convalescents home, and the physician thought she would be fit to go out tomorrow. It having been suggested that Mary may need a week or two more in the country, it was Voted That the matter be left to Mrs. Clarke with full powers. It was also Voted That if Mrs. Cory wants another girl now, Mrs. Rich and Mrs. Clarke shall decide upon the girl.
Mrs. Walker, Lizzie Goldthwaite's aunt, having bought a farm in the country again wished to take her. It was Voted That Mrs. Walker take Lizzie Goldthwaite with the distinct understanding that she is not to be returned to the Asylum.
Mrs. Melburne Beals of Annapolis, N.S. applied for her children, Maud and Minnie Corkum. As Mrs. Beals had been represented at the time of the admission of these children as an exceedingly bad woman, it was Voted That this request be refused.
Minnie Hudson went to her mother early in the month, and the afternoon before the meeting, a despairing letter had been received from Mrs. Stevens, who had promised to have the oversight of Minnie, saying that Mrs. Hudson had left her service, and taken Minnie with her. Mrs. Robbins offered to write to Mrs. Stevens, and ascertain if Minnie could be recovered, and it was Voted That if Minnie Hudson can be recovered, she shall be taken to Mrs. Bauer's and a place found for her.
Laura Martin and Lottie Horenden desire to go to evening school to learn book-keeping. Some of the Managers were much opposed to having them go out in the evening without some older person with them, and it was Voted That no girl under eighteen go out after dark, alone, or with a girl of near her own age, but that such girl or girls shall always be accompanied by some decidedly older person.
September 25, 1888
Minnie Hudson had gone to live with a Mrs. Webster, mother of a Mrs. Sturtevant, who was interested in Minnie, and as it seemed to be a good place, nothing further was done by the committee.
Mary Frances Cogswell had gone to Avon, as Mrs. Arthur Lyman had visited the place, and approved of it.
Letters had been received from Alice Nichols and Lizzie Hiscock. The former was very homesick, and the latter, happy and pleased with her new home.
Mary Jackson and Edith Turner had come to the Asylum.
Mr. Hervey had applied for the admission of Elizabeth Hunter, seven or eight years of age. Elizabeth is an illegitimate child, and the mother having married, the child is very badly treated by the step-father. Voted That Elizabeth Hunter be admitted.
Application for the admission of a soldier's child had been received. The father was in the National Soldiers' Home in Maine, and incurable, and the mother unable to support the child. Voted That this child be admitted, if the references prove satisfactory.
Grace Lowell's mother renewed her application for her child, through her present husband, who sent very good references, and promised to do well by the little girl. The mother now Mrs. Bowman had applied in March, 1887, and had been refused. No grounds of such refusal were recorded, but the impression seemed to prevail among the managers that she was not of sound mind. Miss Storer agreed to see Mrs. Bowman, and investigate the case and it was Voted That this application be left to the committee of the month with full powers.
A Mrs. Johnson had made application for the admission of two children, but too late in the month for the investigation of the case. Voted That this application be referred to the committee of the month.
Edith Gibson's sister, married, and living in New Bedford had applied for her. As this seemed to be a good and suitable arrangement, it was Voted That Edith Gibson go to her sister.
Mrs. Mansfield of Taunton applied for a girl. Her references did not seem sufficient, and it was Voted That the matter be referred to the committee of the month with full powers.
Pauline Buettner wrote a formal note, and desired to be bound to the house. As she is of rather a light and trifling nature, it was thought that a time of probation might steady here, and it was Voted That Pauline Buettner be put on probation for three months, with the promise of being bound to the house at the end of that time, if her conduct prove satisfactory.
Mary Anderson still continues in poor health, and is boarding at Mrs. Folsom's.
Mrs. Bullard reported that she had received a letter from Theresa Murray, and also from Mrs. Gould her employer. That from Theresa was read and contained a confession of having taken things which did not belong to her. Mrs. Gould wrote that she was to come to Boston early in October, and feared she should be obliged to being Theresa with her. Mrs. Bullard was advised to write to Mrs. Gould, and try to induce her to keep Theresa.
Elizabeth Goldthwaite's aunt had not yet taken her from the Asylum.
The little children of Concord, Mass, had sent a barrel, and a bushel of apples to the Asylum; Mrs. Arthur Blake, and Mrs. Theodore Lyman had sent pears.
October 30, 1888 : Annual meeting
Rev. Dr. E. E. Hale...baptized four children, Mabel Frances Stone, Sarah Edgley Stone, Mary Norton Jackson, and Martha Helena Mackenzie.
The prizes were distributed by the First Directress as follows:
- To Maud Clark as the most deserving Girl $6.00
- Margaret R. McCormick as the best little Girl [$]5.00
- Laura H. Martin for Helpfulness [$]5.00
- Charlotte E. Hodenden for Helpfulness & general care [$]5.00
- Ada W. Black for Trustworthiness [$]5.00
- Annie Hanson for Faithfulness in Work [$]5.00
- Jessie Hampstead as a Willing Worker [$]5.00
- Margaret D. Curran as a Good Girl [$]5.00
- Maud S. Johnson for Obedience [$]5.00
The following girls were thought worthy of honorable mention:
- Katherine Rice for Industry & Faithfulness
- Mary Ellen Bradley for Excellence in Conduct
- Clara Svenson for Industry & good Conduct
- Bella Jane Reid for Good Conduct
- Lizzie McCormick for Improvement
- Katherine Davis as a Good Little Girl
- Maud Corkum for Helpfulness
- Annie LaBrie for Helpfulness
- Helena A. Gibson for Good Scholarship
Managers Meeting: October 1888
Miss Storer had been to see Mrs. Bowman, the mother of Grace Lowell, and saw no reason why she should not take her child. Grace had therefore gone to her mother.
Edith Gibson had also gone to her sister.
Elizabeth Hunter had come to the Asylum.
An application for a girl had been received from Mrs. Henry Wheeler of Concord, Mass, and the committee were instructed to investigate the case.
Mary King's eyes were reported to be still very unserviceable. She had been to Dr. Wadsworth with Laura Martin, who had not obtained sufficient information with regard to her treatment, how much she might use her eyes, etc. It was Voted That the inquiries in regard to Mary King's eyes be left to the committee of the month.
The aunt of Jennie Hiscock had taken her from the Asylum some months since. The aunt was now very ill, with what the physician supposed to be her last illness, and as the child could not be properly cared for, Mr. Maxwell applied to have her received again into the Asylum. Voted That this request be granted.
Mrs. Clarke reported that Mary Anderson was not much better, and a letter from Mrs. Cory her employer was read.
November 27, 1888
The report concerning Mary King's eyes was confirmed by Miss Storer, who had been to see Dr. Wadsworth. Mrs. Rich had been to the Blind Asylum to see if any of the special instruction there could be given to Mary here, and Mr. Anagnos had promises to come and see Mary.
Jennie Hiscock's aunt had returned her, and there would seem to have been some misrepresentation with regard to the aunt's illness, as the woman left Jennie here herself, and had been out spending the day.
Lizzie Goldthwaite had gone.
A Mrs. Davis of South Lee, N.H. had applied for a girl. As her references were excellent, and she did not want a girl of fourteen Voted That Margaret Delory be bound to Mr. & Mrs. Davis.
Mrs. R. D. Southwell of Reading applied for a girl, but as she had two little children it was Voted To refuse Mr. Southwell's application, as we had no girl sufficiently trustworthy to leave with little children.
Mrs. Howe a widow applied to put in two children of nine and five. There were now in the Nickerson Home, and she was in arrears with their board. She worked in a cloak-room, but the work was irregular, and she earned too little even when she could get work that she could not keep the children. Her reference showed her to be an honest woman and it was Voted That the children of Mrs. David P. Howe be admitted to the Asylum.
Mrs. Grover a widow applied for the admission of a little girl of nine. She had two children - could earn three dollars a week, and was going to try to pay the boy's board. Her references confirmed her statement, and further added that she was broken in health from hard work. It was Voted That Leela Maud Grover be admitted.
Mrs. O'Brien applied for the admission of her two children of five and four. Her husband was dead, and she had still another child younger than these little ones. A lady with whom she was at service before marriage gave so good an account of her, that it was Voted That the two children of Mrs. O'Brien be admitted.
Miss Landers had been to see Addie Anderson, Annie Kirby, and Alice Hanson. Of the two former she brought excellent accounts, but Alice Hanson is not doing well. Her mother is in constant correspondence with her, and exerts a very bad influence over her.
Mrs. Nichols had also been making trouble with Alice, in her place. Alice, in a fit of vexation had misrepresented her situation to her mother, and Mrs. N. had written Mrs. Birdsall a very impertinent letter. Alice's guardian Miss Brown, had written to the child, and had received a very good letter from her, acknowledging that she wrote when she was vexed, and confessing that she was not ill-treated. Miss Brown had also written to Mrs. Bridsall and to Mrs. Nichols requesting her not to interfere with Alice. It seemed best to the Managers that a personal investigation be made, and it was Voted That Mrs. Rich go to Hartford, and find out all she can about the place.
Mrs. Bullard reported that Theresa Murray was doing better, and that her thefts had consisted in the purloining of eatables.
Laura Martin and Lottie Hovenden wished to draw $5.00 each from their prize money, to pay for the hire of a type-writer two months. It was Voted That Miss Paine be authorized to pay these girls $5 each, for the above purpose.
A large Jacking case of nice wooden toys had been received from Mr. L. W. Brooks of Leominster, and three pieces of gingham from Mr. Harcourt Amory agent of the Mills.
December 26, 1888
Lizzie Goldthwaite had been returned, as her aunt had had a stroke of paralysis, and was unable to keep her.
The children of Mrs. Howe had come.
Mrs. Grover's child had been placed in another asylum.
Mrs. O'Brien's children had eczema in the head, and could not be admitted at present. Voted That the committee of the month find a suitable place, and that the Asylum board these children until they have recovered.
It was reported that circumstances had occurred which prevented the lady who had applied from taking Maggie Delory.
Mrs. Rich had been to see Alice Nichols. She reported that the place was a good one, but the treatment rather strict. Alice was not ill-treated, but considered as a servant.
A satisfactory account had been received of Mrs. Tulty, who applied last month for the admission of a child, but whose references could not be found, and it was Voted That Alice Eva Tulty be admitted.
Mrs. Pickering of Newington, who has had three girls, applied for a fourth. It was Voted That Mrs. Pickering be asked to try Theresa Murray, who is to be returned from her place.
Mrs. Nixon applied for the admission of a girl of nine. Mrs. Nixon is a seamstress, and lame, and her husband had deserted her. She also has an old mother to support. It was Voted That Mrs. Nixon's girl of nine be admitted.
Voted That if a suitable place offer for Marry Fennon, the committee of any month with the first Directress may allow her to go.
Mrs. Ritter of Dorchester applied for a girl. The references were excellent, and it was Voted That Miss Marianne Paine visit this place, and if she consider it suitable that Pauline Buettner be bound to Mrs. Ritter.
Mrs. D. W. Gerrish of Rochester applied for a girl. The place seemed a good one, and it was Voted That Maggie Fennon be offered to Mrs. Gerrish, but if she will not take her, then Maggie Bradley be bound to her without waiting for the next meeting.
Mrs. Lyman had had two letters from Mrs. Fairfield, who is very much troubled with Alice Hanson. Mrs. Lyman had seen Mrs. Masury, who had promised not to send Alice any more money, and not to interfere with her.
Mrs. Bullard reported that Mrs. Gould refused to keep Theresa Murray, giving an added report of impertinence.
Mrs. Sears had had a report from Lizzie Hiscock who was doing well.
Good reports had also been received from Grace Johnson, Mary Cogswell, and Ellen Allan. Miss Brown gave a good report of Lizzie Broad, who time is nearly up. Mrs. Clarke had had a long letter from Mrs. Cory about Mary Anderson, whom she represents as being still in a very poor state of health.
Girls free in 1888.
- Mary Moan - in the Home for Incurables Dorchester. Heart disease.
- Annie Leach - Learning dress-making
- Fanny Byers - Working with dress-maker
- Ida Brenton - Still at her place with Mrs. Darling, North Woodstock, and hoping to fit for a nurse.
- Marcena Aitken - Ran away from her place, and is living with a relative.