Lucretia Garfield Autograph Wife James Garfield First Lady United States In 1881 For Sale
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LUCRETIA GARFIELD AUTOGRAPH First Lady 1883 St Jude Child & HiN
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LUCRETIA GARFIELD AUTOGRAPH
ON ELEGANT STATIONERY CARD
Lucretia Rudolph Garfield (April 19, 1832 – March 14, 1918), wife of James A. Garfield, was First Lady of the United States in 1881. Born to Zeb Rudolph, a leading citizen of Hiram, Ohio, and devout member of the Disciples of Christ, she first met "Jim" Garfield when both attended a nearby school, and they renewed their friendship in 1851 as students at the Western Reserve Eclectic Institute, founded by the Disciples. But "Crete" did not attract his special attention until December 1853, when he began a rather cautious courtship, and they did not marry until November 11, 1858, when he was well launched on his career as a teacher. His service in the Union Army from 1861 to 1863 kept them apart; their first child, a daughter, died in 1863. But after his first winter in Washington as a freshman Representative, the family remained together. With a home in the capital as well as one in Mentor, Ohio, they enjoyed a happy domestic life. A two-year-old son died in 1876, but five children grew up healthy and promising. In May she fell gravely ill, apparently from malaria and nervous exhaustion. She was still a convalescent, at Elberon, a seaside resort in New Jersey, when her husband was shot by a Charles Guiteau on July 2 at a railway station in Washington. The President was actually planning to take a train north to New Jersey that same day in order to meet his wife, before continuing on to a function at his former college in Massachusetts. The First Lady hurriedly returned to Washington by special train -- "frail, fatigued, desperate," reported an eyewitness at the White House, "but firm and quiet and full of purpose to save." As her train raced south, it was speeding so fast that the engine broke a piston in Bowie, Maryland and nearly derailed. Mrs. Garfield was thrown from her seat, but not injured. After an anxious delay, she reached the White House and immediately went to her husband's bedside. During the three months that the President fought for his life, her grief and devotion won the respect and sympathy of the country. In September, after his death and funeral, the bereaved family went home to their farm in northern Ohio. For another 36 years she led a strictly private, but busy and comfortable life, active in preserving the records of her husband's career. She created a wing to the home that became a presidential library of his papers.
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Lucretia Garfield Autograph Wife James Garfield First Lady United States In 1881: $325