Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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CRABTREE, Lotta, actress, born in New York City, 7 November, 1847. Her father, who kept a bookstore for many years in Nassau street, New York, went to California in 1851 and there engaged in gold-mining. His wife and daughter followed in 1854. Lotta made her first appearance on the stage in 1855 as a singer in an amateur performance at La Porte. At the age of eleven she played the part of Gertrude in the "Loan of a Lover" at Petaluma. The mother and daughter were members of a variety company that traveled through California in 1860. In 1864 Lotta appeared in New York City in spectacular plays at Niblo's Garden, and first gained a reputation in John Brougham's "Little Nell and the Marchioness." She soon became a favorite with the American public in eccentric comedy, playing rSles especially written for her. Her chief successes were as "Topsy," "Sam Willoughby," "Firefly." "Musette," "Zip," "Bob," "The Little Detective," and "Nitouche."
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