Scope and Content
Pratt, Jean Noack
Title: Pratt Family Papers
3.2 linear feet; 66 Gelatin dry plates glass negatives, 6 Albumen prints, and 5 negatives
Abstract: The Pratt Family Papers spans the years 1825-1950. It contains historical correspondence and diaries related to the early
settlement of the San Joaquin Valley.
Physical location: Researchers should contact Special Collections to request collections, as many are stored offsite.
University of California, Davis. Library. Dept. of Special Collections.
Davis, California 95616-5292
Collection number: D-369
Language of Material: Collection materials inEnglish andGerman.
Jean Noack Pratt (1916-2008), lived in Dixon, California. Her collection chronicles the lives of her ancestors, who were pioneers
of California's San Joaquin Valley. Pratt wrote three genealogical books,
The Noack-Haussler Story and
A Van Fossen Family Genealogy.
Pratt's great-grandparents, Ernest Wagener (1811-1893) and Henrietta Eichoff (1824-1869) were emigrants from Germany. They
were among the early settlers of San Joaquin Valley, ultimately settling on the Stanislaus River near Mariposa, California.
The family ran the Zinc House stage coach stop which was located near Stockton on the French Camp Road. Their daughter, Louisa
Christina Wagener (1853-1931), wrote a diary, which is the only known first-hand account of life at a stage coach stop in
the San Joaquin Valley.
Alfred Noack (1848-1922) married Louisa Christina Wagener. Noack worked in the threshing business.
Walter Pratt (1880-1949) was the son of Alfred and Louisa. He was an inventor and machinist, working for many farm equipment
companies such as Braden Manufacturing Company, the Sage-Noack Gas Traction Company, Best Tractor Company, and Caterpillar
Scope and Content
The Pratt Family Papers spans the years 1811-1950. It contains historical correspondence and diaries related to the early
settlement of the San Joaquin Valley. In addition, the collection includes Pratt's draft notes and tapes used in the development
of her three books. There are many historical photographs of the family and of farm machinery. Also included in the collection
are a wooden die cast mold of the word
Caterpillar, and a forty-five-star flag said to have flown over the Zinc House stage coach stop.
Arrangement of the Collection
The collection is arranged in 5 series, Family diaries 1825-1886, Correspondence and business papers of Walter G. Noack, 1912-1939,
Jean Noack Pratt's Genealogical materials 1872-1977, Images 1888-1950, and Realia
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Pratt, Jean Noack--Archives
German Americans-California-San Joaquin Valley-Biography
Agricultural Machinery industry-History
Immigrants-California-San Joaquin Valley-Biography
San Joaquin Valley (Calif.)-Biography
Tractor Motors Company
Braden Manufacturing Co.
Collection is open for research.
Patricia C. Inouye processed this collection and created and encoded this finding aid.
Gift of Jean Noack Pratt 2001, 2003
[Identification of item], Pratt Family papers, D-369, Department of Special Collections, General Library, University of California,
Copyright is protected by the copyright law, chapter 17, of the U.S. Code. All requests for permission to publish or quote
from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections. Permission for publication is given on behalf
of the Department of Special Collections, General Library, University of California, Davis as the owner of the physical items
and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.