August 3: Elizabeth Jane Lenthall Stone (1892)

Almost two decades after she became a widow, Epiphany parishioner Elizabeth J. Stone gave the church $25,000 and a lot at 19th and G Streets, NW for the creation of a home for widows. Elizabeth was born in 1804 in the early days of the nation’s capital. She was the middle child of John and Jane Lenthall. Her father was an architect and worked on the original section of the U.S. Capitol. A construction accident caused his death when Elizabeth was just four years old. Almost eighty years later, she would memorialize her father by naming her philanthropic initiative, the Lenthall Home for Widows. Elizabeth’s husband was engraver William J. Stone. His 1823 engraving of the Declaration of Independence is the one familiar to most Americans. One of the couples’ children was Dr. Robert King Stone, President Lincoln’s family physician.

Elizabeth Stone lived to be 88 years old, in a time when life expectancy was almost half of that. She was the last surviving of the three Lenthall children, all of which had been connected with Epiphany. Her older sister, Mary, was the church’s first organist and Sunday school teacher. Elizabeth outlived her husband by 27 years and also outlived all four of her children. In her long life, Elizabeth saw at Epiphany the marriage of two of her grandchildren and the baptism of six of her great grandchildren. Following her death on August 3, 1892, Elizabeth’s earthly remains were placed in the family plot at Rock Creek Cemetery. She was remembered for her “unobtrusive piety, her boundless sympathy for the unfortunate and the sorrowful and her countless works of charity and mercy.”

< Previous     Next >

No comments yet

Add comment