This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
Every patriot rejoices at the decided manner in which the purchase of Mount Vernon has been undertaken by the ladies of the Union. Those associated in the state of New York are doing their duty in a highly praiseworthy manner; and have forwarded us their circular, which it gives us particular pleasure to publish entire.
What has been determined on as to the future keeping of the place, it would be too early to state; but we hear it whispered that the services of George C. Thorburn, of Newark, N. J., have been solicited, and probably obtained, to fill the office of curator or superintendent. Whoever may be appointed to the position, we feel sure will receive the support of the public so long as he retains the sacred spot in good taste. It is to become the shrine of worshipping patriots for all ages; but in the meantime let every one remember that the ladies require assistance in the form of real money.
Appeal to the ladies of the State of New York for the purchase of Mount Vernon.
The " MOUNT VERNON LADIES' ASSOCIATION OF THE UNION" has been incorporated by the State of Virginia, and the necessary powers have been given to it, in its corporate capacity, to purchase and hold two hundred acres of the Mount Vernon Estate, including the Mansion and Tomb of Washington, the Garden, Grounds and Landing, on the Potomac River.
The sum to be raised for the purchase and future improvement of the property, is limited to five hundred thousand dollars.
A Constitution and By-Laws under this Charter have been adopted, by which the business of the Association is to be managed by a Council, composed of a Presiding Officer or Regent, and of Vice Regents, selected one from each State of the Union.
Miss Ann Pamela Cunningham, of South Carolina, who for many years has been engaged in this enterprise, and through whose zeal and energy the Charter was procured, and present funds collected, has been appointed to preside over the Council as Regent.
The Vice Regent for the State of New York is Miss Mary Morris Hamilton, of Westchester County.
"Any citizen of the United States, from whom the Regent, any of the Vice Regents, the Secretary, the Treasurer, or any Local Board or authorized agent, may, for that purpose, receive or recognize the receipt of the sum of one dollar, shall be a member of the Association ; and the payment of the further sum of one dollar, on or before the 22d of February, in any year, shall entitle a member to attend and vote at the annual meeting of the Association of that year.11
On the 6th of April last a contract, legally obligatory in all respects, was made with the proprietor of Mount Vernon, for the purchase of the two hundred acres desired, embracing the Home and Tomb of Washington, Buildings, Wharves, etc., for two hundred thousand dollars.
Eighteen thousand dollars were paid down in cash.
Fifty-seven thousand dollars are to be paid on or before January 1st, 1859, and the remainder in three equal annual instalments, on the 22d of February, 1860, 1861, 1862, with the privilege of paying the whole amount, due at any time, upon giving 30 days' notice.
It is the earnest hope of the Association that the purchase money will all be paid before the next anniversary of Washington's birth.
The Vice Regent of each State has been duly empowered to organize a Board, for collecting funds in the State represented by her. The following has been adopted for the State of New York, as a simple and practical method, and is now offered for the purpose of enabling every one, through its length and breadth, to unite in securing this national object, so long desired, and so dear to every American heart. What proportion of the whole sum is expected from our State cannot now be named, but it is confidently believed that, if necessary, the whole amount would be forthcoming.
The office of the Association in the City of New York is in the Cooper Institute, Astor Place. The Vice Regent will be assisted by a Standing Committee of ladies, by a large number of lady Managers, and by an Advisory Committee of gentlemen from different parts of the State.
The lady Managers will be appointed in each county, city, and large village, by the Vice Regent, or by a member of the Standing Committee, to collect subscriptions, and forward the amounts received to the person appointing them.
The funds collected (deducting necessary expenses) are to be deposited in the New York Life Insurance and Trust Company, until required for the payment of the purchase moneys of the property, to be drawn out only on the draft of the Vice Regent, countersigned by at least three of the Advisory Committee of gentlemen. The name and residence of each subscriber, from one dollar and upwards, will be recorded upon the register of names, to be preserved among the archives of the Association at Mount Vernon.
Regular meetings of the Committees for consultation and business will be held on the first Tuesday of each month, at 11 o'clock A. M., at the office in the City of New York. The office will be open daily, from 9 A. M. to 3 P. M. where subscriptions will be received in person or by letter, and any further information given.
All communications must be addressed by mail or city post, to "Ladies* Mount Vernon Association, City Post Office, Station D, New York".