Charlotte Saunders Cushman, an American actress, born in Boston, Mass., July 23, 1816. In consequence of the bankruptcy of her father she was called upon at the age of 12 to contribute to the family support. Possessing a fine voice and much musical taste, she had already acquired some local reputation as a vocalist, when she was engaged to sing in a concert with Mrs. Wood, who declared her voice to be the finest contralto she had ever heard, and advised her to cultivate it for the stage; and she made her debut at the Tremont theatre, Boston, April 18, 1835. An engagement was then procured for her to sing in English opera at New Orleans; but scarcely had she arrived there when her voice failed under the effect of a sudden change of climate and of an unwise attempt to convert it into an available soprano. She then resolved to become an actress, and studied the part of Lady Macbeth, in which she made her appearance with complete success. She returned to New York and accepted a three years' engagement at the Bowery theatre; but after performing a week she was prostrated by fever, and during her illness the theatre, and with it her entire theatrical wardrobe, was destroyed by fire.

After an interval of several months she accepted an engagement as stock actress in the Park theatre, and for three years appeared in a great variety of parts. During this period she assisted her younger sister to make her debut on the stage, and afterward appeared with her for several seasons at Philadelphia and New York. To obtain prominent female characters for her, Miss Oushman was accustomed to take the chief male parts in the plays in which her sister appeared. She afterward undertook the direction of one of the Philadelphia theatres, which she retained until invited by Mr. Mac-ready in 1844 to accompany him on a tour in the northern states, in the course of which she undertook the higher range of tragic parts with great success. In 1845 she went to England, and made her first appearance at the Princess's theatre, as Bianca in Milman's tragedy of "Fazio." Her reception was enthusiastic, and for 84 nights she appeared in a variety of characters,-including Lady Macbeth, Julia in "The Hunchback," Mrs. Haller, Beatrice, Lady Teazle, Rosalind, and Juliana in " The Honeymoon." Her sister having joined her, they acted together for several years at the Hay-market theatre and in the chief provincial towns of Great Britain. In 1849 she revisited the United States, and, in addition to her ordinary characters, assumed that of Meg Merrilies, in the play of "Guy Mannering," a striking personation, which she may be said to have created.

After another tour in England she returned to America, and having accumulated a fortune, took a formal leave of the American stage. She subsequently acted a round of engagements in England, and appeared again in the United States in 1857 and 1858, after which she returned to Rome, where she had previously resided. Some years later she returned to America and took up her residence near Boston. In 1871 she again appeared upon the stage in New York. - Her sister Susan, born in 1822, became an actress after an unfortunate early marriage with a Mr. Merriman, and attained considerable popularity in such parts as Ophelia, Juliet (which she acted to her sister's Romeo for upward of 200 nights in England), Olivia, etc. She was married in March, 1848, to Dr. James S. Muspratt, professor of chemistry in Liverpool, where she died May 10, 1859.