Woman of the Century/Martha Elizabeth Hotchkiss Whitten
WHITTEN, Mrs. Martha Elizabeth Hotchkiss, author, born near Austin, Texas, 3rd October. 1842. She is the daughter of Hon. William S. and Hannah B. Hotchkiss. She entered school when she was five years old and was educated principally in the Collegiate Female Institute in Austin. At the age of fourteen years she was sent to McKenzie College. She began to write verses at the age of eleven, and at twelve and thirteen she contributed to the press. The death of her mother, before she was ten years old, saddened her life and gave to all her early poems an undertone of sorrow. Soon after entering McKenzie College she wrote her poem "Do They Miss Me at Home?" She was married when quite young, widowed at twenty-four, and left without money or home and with but little knowledge of business. She resorted to teaching as a means of support for herself and fatherless boys, and made a grand success of it, and soon gained not only a competency, but secured a comfortable home and other property. She has written on a variety of subjects and displays great versatility in her poems, historical, descriptive, memorial and joyous. Her poems were collected in 1886 in book-form under the title of "Texas Garlands," and have won appreciation in the literary world and success financially. She has written many poems since the publication of her book. She read a poem before a Chautauqua audience on Poet's Day, 23rd July, 1888, and one written by request, and read in Tuscola, Ill., 4th July, 1889, to a large audience. She is now engaged on her "Sketch- Book," which will contain both prose and poetry, letters of travel and fiction. She has been twice married and has reared a large family. Her home is in Austin.