See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

See page for author [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

These actresses, the most recognizable names on the Early American stage, played the leading roles in tragedies, dramas, and comedies at the major theatres in the theatrical centers of the United States.

They played such popular roles as Lady Macbeth, Belvidera in Venice Preserved, Euphrasia in The Grecian Daughter, Gertrude in Hamlet, Lady Randolph in Douglas, Mrs. Beverly in The Gamester, Calista in The Fair Penitent,and many others.

In comedies, too, they took leading roles, such as Lady Teazle in The School for Scandal, Lady Eleanor Irwin in Every One Has His Fault, and many others.

These women were among the highest paid members of the company. Their ranks included Charlotte Melmoth, Eliza Whitlock, Anne Brunton Merry, and Mrs. Morris.