Eliza Monroe Hay

 EMH - editedEliza Monroe Hay (1786-1840), the eldest of the Monroe children, was born in Fredericksburg, Virginia. She married George Hay (1765-1830), a prominent Virginia attorney and jurist, in 1808.  They had one daughter, Hortensia.  Eliza was known to be a formidable presence and assisted her mother as hostess during Monroe’s second term in office. Following the death of her parents and husband, all within a year of each other, she moved to Paris and remained there until her death.

[It] is nothing with them but “my dear” and “my dear,” yet do not think I have ever heard them agree on one subject since here I am, and when together they are eternally talking. As for her oracular powers, I think I heard him tell her today at dinner 3 distinct times that she “talked too much and must talk less.”         Egbert Watson, 1828, on Eliza and George Hay