Grave 349

George F. Betts, of African descent, was born in 1852 in Wilmington, New Hanover County, North Carolina, most likely into slavery, to George and Polly Merrick Betts, natives of Wilmington.

For nearly 50 years he was employed as the Head Waiter at Young’s Hotel at 20 Court Street, corner of Court Square in Boston. In that role he became one of the wealthiest men of color in the city.  Youngs Hotel was located in the center of industry and politics in Downtown Boston.  Mr. Betts was known to have a genial disposition and was a friend to 100s.   Industry and carful living marked his life and through the friendship of leading businessmen he made many good investments of his money. 

On Thanksgiving Day, 1909, a pleasant surprise party greeted royal George Betts. Twenty-one prominent men, who had long been guests of the hotel, called him to room 15 and through Colonel E. R. McPherson, presented him a gold watch suitably inscribed.

George Betts resided at 53 Wrentham Street off of Dorchester Avenue in Ashmont.  He died on September 10, 1914 at the age of 62.

The inscription on his stone reads: / George F. Betts / 1852-1914 /Erected to his Memory/

By the Employees of / Young’s Hotel /

The text in this account is based on an article in the Dorchester Beacon of September 19, 1914:

George F. Betts

Grave 349

Section: Maple Lot Extension

See Wikipedia Youngs Hotel