Elizabeth <I>Hyslop</I> Sumner

Elizabeth Hyslop Sumner

Death 27 Dec 1810 (aged 53)
Burial Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA
Plot Tomb 180
Memorial ID 21752491 · View Source
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Elizabeth Sumner, wife of Governor Sumner
was born on the 5th of August 1757. She was
the only daughter of William Hyslop, Esq., then
of Boston, and afterward of Brookline, and was
a woman of great intelligence, of a remarkably
amiable character, and of attractive personal
beauty. From her mother she inherited one
sixth of the Noddle's Island estate in fee, and
subsequently became possessed of one sixth
more of the fee of the same property from her
aunt, Mrs. Chauncy. The particulars of her
life and character need not be minutely de-
tailed, for although those virtues which adorn
female character were most beautifully ex-
emplified in her, yet there were no remarkable
incidents in her honored life which demand the
especial notice of the biographer.
She was first betrothed to the Rev. John Hunt,
colleague of the Rev. John Bacon, pastor of
the Old South church in Boston; but this re-
lation was broken off by his death, from
pulmonary consumption, on the 20th December
1775. On the 30th of September, 1779, she was
married to Increase Sumner, then a member of
the legislature from Roxbury. It is an interesting
fact, that she always perserved her friendly con-
nectiion with the family of the Rev. Mr. Hunt;
and his sister, who married Samuel Henshaw,
Esq., of North Hampton, was through her life
her most intimate friend. As the wife of the chief
magistrate of the commonwealth, she distinguished
herself by her dignified presence, and by the ease,
grace, and entire propriety with which she fulfilled
every duty, at home or abroad, and no one could
more acceptably have filled the station of a governor's
lady than she. Highly esteemed and respected abroad,
loved and honored at home, she was a noble example
of the valued friend and acquaintance, and the Christian
wife and mother. Numerous instances come to mind
in which her kindness and benevolence were mani-
She gave to Cuff, her servant and the son of a slave,
£ 100, which the writer expended in building him
a house on "Tommy's Rocks," where it is still
standing, she also enjoined upon the author to give
£ 300 to the Female Asylum, envincing in this, as
in other instances, a thoughtful consideration for
worthy objects of charity.
Mrs. Sumner continued to live in the mansion
house in Roxbury until 1806, when she removed to
a hired house on Bowdoin street, Boston. She
subsequently purchased a house in Beacon
street, at the corner of Spruce street, where Peter
Parker Esq., now lives, and here she resided with
her family, until her death, which took place on
the 28th December, 1810. Two motives induced
her to move into the city. One was that her son
had entered into the practice of law there, and
it would be much more pleasant, as well as more
convenient, to live in Boston, where the small
family could be kept together. The other was
that the estate of fourteen acres opposite the
house in Roxbury, and since called the Dudley
land, together with another on the Tremont road
of like quantity, which her father had ordered to
be purchased and given to her husband and to
herself, in joint-tenancy, and which of course,
became her own upon Gov. Sumner's death, was
recovered of her in a lawsuit by the tenant in tail,
Joseph Dudley. His entry into the land opposite
her mansion-house, the cutting down of the
trees which her husband had assiduously cul-
tivated, the opening of public streets through
it, and the dividing it into house lots, so des-
troyed the beauty of the place, that it was a strong
motive to induce her to quit the estate, and sell
the mansion-house in which she had lived all her
married life.

History of East Boston
with Biographical Sketches
by William H. Sumner A. M.
Published by William H. Piper & Co.
Boston - 1868


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  • Maintained by: Sandra Lennox
  • Originally Created by: The Guardian
  • Added: 24 Sep 2007
  • Find a Grave Memorial 21752491
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Elizabeth Hyslop Sumner (5 Aug 1757–27 Dec 1810), Find a Grave Memorial no. 21752491, citing Granary Burying Ground, Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA ; Maintained by Sandra Lennox (contributor 47383634) .