May 14, 1851 North Adams Berkshire County Massachusetts, USA
Sep. 25, 1938 Pittsfield Berkshire County Massachusetts, USA
Excerpts from a newspaper account published in The Berkshire Evening Eagle, Pittsfield, Berkshire County, Massachusetts, Monday, September 26, 1938:
Miss Anna L. Dawes Passes, Funeral To Be Tomorrow: Simple Services Planned for Leader in Pittsfield's Literary and Cultural Life:
Funeral services for Miss Anna Laurens Dawes, 87, who died at The White Tree Inn yesterday morning at 2, will be attended at the First Church of Christ, Congregational, 27 Park Place, tomorrow afternoon at 2... Nearest surviving relatives of Miss Dawes is her sister-in-law, Mrs. Chester Mitchell Dawes, formerly of Chicago, now a patient in Doctors' Hospital, New York, and several cousins. They are Mrs. James D. Williams of New York City; Dr. Spencer Lyman Dawes of Kingston, N.Y.; Mrs. Alfred N. Briggs of Cambridge, Roscoe D., William A., Miss Alice H. and Miss Elizabeth S. Kingman of Pittsfield; Miss Clementina Nahmer of Bradford, N.H.; Mrs. Helen Andrews Strong of Albany and Mrs. Mary Dawes Warner of Winchester. Death came to Miss Dawes, author, leader in the community's literary and cultural life for close to half a century, following an illness of several months. She had made her home at the White Tree Inn, Wendell Ave., since 1935. Before that she had lived for many years on Appleton Avenue. On June 8, for the last time, she presided at the meeting of the Wednesday Morning Club which she established and which had been the center of her interest and devotion in all the after years.... Miss Dawes was born in North Adams, May 14, 1851, ten years prior to the outbreak of the Civil War. Her parents were Henry Laurens Dawes and Electa (Sanderson) Dawes. At the time of her birth, her father, who was later to distinguish himself in Congress and the United States Senate, was serving in the Massachusetts Legislature from Pittsfield where he moved from North Adams. Her father was a member of the law firm of Pingree, Dawes and Burke, with offices on Bank Row. The family residence was located on the east side of Elm Street, a short distance from the intersection with East Street, where a bronze tablet now marks the spot. When Miss Dawes was 6 years old her father was first elected to congress as a Republican from Berkshire District (1857). His Washington career was to continue in an unbroken line down to 1892, a service of 35 years as Congressman and Unites States Senator and during much of it the life of his public-minded and journalistically inclined daughter was linked closely with her father. As a child in Washington attending a White House reception with her parents, she was picked up by President Lincoln and given a kiss. Her father at the time was a member of the important Ways and Means Committee, of which he became chairman in 1871, and was close to the Civil War President by virtue of steering through financial legislation for the successful prosecution of the war. At the age of 20 years, in 1871, Miss Dawes became the Washington correspondent of the Springfield Republican, the Boston Congregationalist and the Christian Union. She continued to write professionally from Washington until 1883... Miss Dawes never lost her flair for writing. Innumerable articles came from her pen even after she ceased to be actively identified with the writing profession. Her papers invariably were models of fact and expressive style. She wrote for clubs and newspaper letter columns... Her life really was the life of her father during the Washington years and the Senator was fond of referring to her as his "right hand". She served as his private secretary and handled much of his correspondence. Through her Washington connections and her great political interest Miss Dawes knew many Presidents. As a child she met Lincoln and Buchanan. In 1869 she had the honor of being escorted to dinner at the White House by President Grant. The next four Republican presidents - Hayes, Garfield, Arthur and Harrison - were close friends of her father and she knew them well. Less frequently she came in contact with Cleveland, McKinley and Theodore Roosevelt... While Miss Dawes' pervading interest was her devotion to her distinguished father, she helped to found in 1879 in Pittsfield, 13 years before Senator Dawes retired from public life, the Wednesday Morning Club whose fortunes were almost as dear to her heart. She was elected to serve as the first president and occupied that office since... The Wednesday Morning Club has the dual purpose of hearing and discussing papers prepared by the membership and listening to addresses by outside prominent speakers on public affairs, international relations, and the arts and sciences.