Woman of the Century/Vinnie Ream Hoxie
HOXIE, Mrs. Vinnie Ream, sculptor, born in Madison, Wis., 23rd September, 1847. Her father, Robert L. Ream, was register of deeds in Madison at the time of her birth. Her mother was of Scotch descent, and her name was Lavinia McDonald. When fifteen years of age, Vinnie, in two hours, modeled a medallion of an Indian chief so cleverly as at once to attract the attention of Thaddeus Stevens, Hon. John Wentworth and other members of Congress, who insisted upon her studying art. In six months she had modeled such striking likenesses of Reverdy Johnson, Frank P. Blair, General Grant, Parson Brownlow, Senator Voorhees, Gen. Albert Pike and Senator Sherman, that she was taken to President Lincoln, who sat to her for his likeness. When he was assassinated, six months later. Congress gave her a commission to make a life size statue of Abraham Lincoln, which stands in marble in the United States Capitol. She received fifteen-thousand dollars for that work. After finishing the model, she took it to Italy to be transferred to marble, and lived in Rome three years with her parents. There she made many ideal works, and among them a statue of "Miriam," a copy of which she sold to Mrs. Lamer, of Philadelphia, for three-thousand dollars. Her "Indian Girl " was put in bronze and sold, and Vinnie also made another marble bust of Lincoln, for Cornell University, and a bust in marble of Mayor Powell, of Brooklyn, N. Y., which now stands in the city hall of that city. She made a likeness of Mr. Rice, of Maine, in marble, and also put into marble the two fair daughters of Mr. Clark. Congress then appropriated twenty-five-thousand dollars for a bronze statue of Admiral Farragut, and, competing with William Story, Ward, Launt Thompson and many distinguished sculptors, Vinnie Ream won the order. While in Paris, Gustave Doré gave Vinnie a painting by his own hand, inscribed: "Offered to Miss Vinnie Ream, on the part of her affectionate colleague, Gustave Doré." Spurgeon sat in his Tabernacle to her for his likeness, and in Munich, Kaulbach, the great painter, sat to her. In Rome Cardinal Antonelli sat to her for his likeness, and presented her three stone cameos, set in pearls, one very' large and exquisitely beautiful, representing the head of Christ On the inside of the frame was a beautiful inscription to the artist. Liszt sat to Miss Vinnie for his medallion, and gave her many handsome souvenirs. Returning to the United States, her statue of Lincoln was unveiled in the rotunda of the Capitol with many imposing ceremonies, Senator Cullom, of Illinois, and Senator VINNIE REAM HOXIE. Carpenter, of Wisconsin, being the speakers. When Miss Vinnie received the order for the statue of Farragut she worked on the model in the ordnance building of the navy yard, and that statue was cast from the metal of the propeller of the Hartford, his flag-ship. Before the model was finished, she was introduced to Lieutenant Hoxie, a young engineer officer, by General Sherman, and they became engaged and married with the warm approval of General Sherman and Mrs. Farragut. General Sherman gave the bride away, and the wedding was one of the most imposing ever seen in Washington. Lieutenant Hoxie built for them- selves a most artistic home on Karragut Square, and hopes to spend his declining years there, when the distant day of his retirement comes. When the statue of Farragut was unveiled, Senator Voorhees, President Garfield and Horace Maynard spoke. Captain Hoxie is now stationed in the engineering first of Willets Point, New York harbor. Mrs. Hoxie, at the earnest request of her husband, now models only for love, and not for money. She has many such works on hand, and will have several on exhibition in the World's Pair. She devotes a great deal of time to music.