Guide to the William L. Paul papers

Processed by Hollie Johnson, 2011.

Processing of this collection was funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and administered by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR), Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives program.
Special Collections & Archives
The UCR Libraries
P.O. Box 5900
University of California
Riverside, California 92517-5900
Phone: 951-827-3233
Fax: 951-827-4673
Email: specialcollections@ucr.edu
URL: http://library.ucr.edu/?view=collections/spcol
©2011
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.


Descriptive Summary

Title: William L. Paul papers
Date (inclusive): 1912-1961, undated
Date (bulk): 1913-1936
Collection Number: 065
Creator: Paul, William L., 1866-1935.
Extent: 1.5 linear feet (3 document boxes)
Repository: Rivera Library. Special Collections Department.
Riverside, CA 92517-5900
Abstract: The William L. Paul papers contain correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other material regarding William L. Paul, a pioneer date grower in Coachella Valley, California from 1909-1935. Topics include the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, Paul's personal date business, and the exhibition and promotion of Coachella Valley, California dates. Records document the administration and industry activities of the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, Paul's professional work and involvement with the Southern California date growing community, and aspects of the commercial date industry in the United States, primarily Southern California.
Languages: The collection is in English.

Access

This collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & Archives. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Head of Special Collections & Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Regents of the University of California 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.

Preferred Citation

[identification of item]. The William L. Paul papers, collection 065 University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & Archives, University of California, Riverside.

Acquisition Information

This collection was acquired as a gift in 1981.

Processing History

Processed by Hollie Johnson, 2011.
Processing of the William L. Paul papers was generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and administered by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). The University of California, Riverside was awarded a Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives grant from 2010-2012, "Uncovering California's Environmental Collections," in collaboration with eight additional special collections and archival repositories throughout the state and the California Digital Library (CDL). Grant objectives included processing of over 33 hidden collections related to the state's environment and environmental history. The collections document an array of important sub-topics such as irrigation, mining, forestry, agriculture, industry, land use, activism, and research. Together they form a multifaceted picture of the natural world and the way it was probed, altered, exploited and protected in California over the twentieth century. Finding aids are made available through the Online Archive of California (OAC).

Biography

William L. Paul was born in Andover, Massachusetts in 1866. He purchased 160 acres of land in Coachella Valley, California in 1902 and moved his family there in 1909. Paul built a ranch on his land with the goal of starting a business growing date palm trees and harvesting the dates as a commercial crop. The first date trees in the Coachella Valley were planted in the late 1890s, but did not thrive. In 1904, the United States Department of Agriculture set up a date experiment station in Mecca, California to study dates as a commercial crop, invigorating the date growing industry.
In 1913, Paul was instrumental in organizing local date growers into a professional association called the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, serving as the organization's first president. One of the primary functions of the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association was to procure new date off shoots from North Africa for association members, and Paul worked tirelessly at this task. He was responsible for coordinating efforts to import more than 14,000 off shoots to the Coachella Valley between 1913 and 1915.
In 1915, Paul represented the County of Riverside and the California date industry at the World's Fair in San Francisco, where he exhibited California dates and date products. In addition to promoting the date industry at exhibitions, Paul went on a six-month publicity tour in 1916, delivering lectures across the eastern United States about the nutritional value of dates and the Coachella Valley date industry. In 1933, he again represented Coachella Valley, exhibiting dates and date products at the Chicago World's Fair. Paul spent the remainder of his life working at his date ranch and growing his business. His daughter, Nina Paul Shumway, continued to operate the date farm after William L. Paul died in Indio, California in April 1935.

Chronology

1866: William L. Paul was born in Andover, Massachusetts.
1902: Paul purchased 160 acres of land in Coachella Valley, California.
1909: Paul and his family moved to the Coachella Valley and built a ranch on the land he purchased in 1902.
1913: Paul organized local date growers into a professional organization called the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association.
1913: Paul served as the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association's first president.
1913-1915: Paul led efforts to procure more than 14,000 date tree off shoots from North Africa and import them to the Coachella Valley.
1915: Paul managed the Riverside County date exhibits.
1916: Paul spent six months traveling on the east coast of the United States lecturing about the nutritional value of dates and promoting the Coachella Valley Date industry.
1933: Paul exhibited Coachella Valley dates and date products at the Chicago World's Fair.
1935: Paul died in Indio, California in April 1935.

Collection Scope and Content Summary

The William L. Paul papers contain correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other material regarding William L. Paul, a pioneer date grower in Coachella Valley, California from 1909-1935. Topics include the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, Paul's personal date business, and the exhibition and promotion of Coachella Valley, California dates. Records document the administration and industry activities of the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, Paul's professional work and involvement with the Southern California date growing community, and aspects of the commercial date industry in the United States, primarily Southern California.

Collection Arrangement

This collection is arranged into the following three series:
  • Series 1. Coachella Valley Date Growers Association, 1913-1961, undated.
  • Series 2. Professional papers, 1912-1938, undated.
  • Series 3. Date industry, 1913-1951, undated.

Indexing Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

Subjects

Coachella Valley (Calif.).
Coachella Valley Date Growers Association.
Date palm.
Dates (fruit).
Paul, William L., 1866-1935.
Riverside County (Calif.).
Uncovering California's Environmental Collections Project.

Genres and Forms of Materials

Clippings (information artifacts).
Correspondence.
Financial records.
Photographs.
Publications.


Collection Contents

 

Series 1. Coachella Valley Date Growers Association. 1913-1961, undated.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains correspondence, clippings, publications, and other material regarding the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association. The bulk of the correspondence is addressed to William L. Paul. Documents and correspondence regarding a formal complaint filed by the Association against the lead scientists and supervisors of the U. S Department of Agriculture Date Experiment Station in Indio, California, are also included.

Series Arrangement

This series is arranged sequentially according to box and folder number.
Box 1, Folder 1

Invoices, money orders and other financial records from the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association. 1913-1915, undated.

Box 1, Folder 2

Publications and announcements from the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association regarding the association's dissatisfaction with the performance of the Federal Bureau of Plant Industry. 1916-1925, undated.

Box 1, Folder 3

Clippings about the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association. 1922,1961, undated.

Box 1, Folder 4

Correspondence to and from members of the Coachella Valley Date Growers Association. Correspondents include William L. Paul, the first president of the association, and Walter Swingle, a crop physiologist from the Federal Bureau of Plant Industry. 1913-1926, undated.

Box 1, Folder 5

Photographs depicting a date exhibit and the association's first importation of young date palms from Africa. 1913, undated.

 

Series 2. Professional papers. 1912-1938, undated.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other material related to William L. Paul's professional life as a date grower in Coachella Valley, California. The material documents Paul's many involvements with the date industry, including the sale of date products, date trees, and land for date farms.

Series Arrangement

This series is arranged sequentially according to box and folder number.
Box 1, Folder 6

Photographs of William L. Paul's date farm. undated.

Box 1, Folder 7

Manuscripts and notes regarding the promotion of dates and William L. Paul's date growing business. 1913-1916, undated.

Box 1, Folder 8

Correspondence and typescripts regarding the appraised values of date farm land and date trees. 1916-1928, undated.

Box 1, Folder 9

Financial statements, receipts, and correspondence from William L. Paul's date business. 1909-1936, undated.

Box 1, Folder 10

Correspondence and receipts from the charities that William L. Paul supported through donations of his products. Includes thank you notes from childrens' homes and hospitals. 1931-1932, undated.

Box 1, Folder 11

Correspondence from William L. Paul's date business. 1912-1915, undated.

Box 1, Folder 12

Correspondence and purchase orders for date trees. 1913-1916, undated.

Box 2, Folder 1

Correspondence and purchase orders for dates. 1918-1931.

Box 2, Folder 2

Publications and price lists from William L. Paul's date business. 1932-1938, undated.

Box 2, Folder 3

Correspondence between customers and William L. Paul regarding dates and his date business. Includes a thank you note from Amelia Earhart. 1913-1938.

Box 2, Folder 4

Calendar, ribbon (award), and certificate belonging to William L. Paul. 1916-1931, undated.

Box 2, Folder 5

Clippings about William L. Paul and his date business. 1923, 1933, undated.

Box 2, Folder 6

Agendas, correspondence, and other material from Riverside County, California. 1913-1916.

Box 2, Folder 7

Clippings and correspondence about Southern Pacific Railroad. 1917, undated.

Box 2, Folder 8

Clippings about Helen Randu, a dietician and public speaker. 1934, undated.

Map-Case A2, Folder 3

Map from the Southern Pacific Railroad Company depicting railroad lines and parcels of land available for sale in Southern California. 1914.

Map-Case A2, Folder 3

Map of Coachella Valley, California produced by the France Investment Company of Los Angeles, California. 1914.

 

Series 3. Date industry. 1913-1951, undated.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other material regarding the Date (fruit) industry. The bulk of the material focuses on the Coachella Valley Date industry in Southern California, with select items documenting Date culture in Florida and the Middle East. Material pertaining to the United States Department of Agriculture's activities in the Coachella Valley are also included.

Series Arrangement

This series is arranged sequentially according to box and folder number.
Box 2, Folder 9

Publications about the date industry, including date farm pamphlets and date growing newsletters. 1916-1951, undated.

Box 2, Folder 10

Correspondence and receipts from the date exhibit at the Southern California Panama Exposition. 1913-1916, undated.

Box 2, Folder 11

Correspondence, publications, and other material regarding the United States Department of Agriculture and the date industry. Includes documents from an official complaint filed against the Department of Agriculture by Coachella Valley date growers. 1915-1935, undated.

Box 2, Folder 12

Correspondence and other material regarding land management in Coachella Valley, California. 1913-1916, undated.

Box 2, Folder 13

Correspondence and publications from the James H. Northrop date farm in Indio, California. 1915, undated.

Box 2, Folder 14

Correspondence and publications from the Palm Development Company in Pensacola, Florida. 1915-1916.

Box 2, Folder 15

Photographs of date trees, date farms, and date exhibits . undated.

Box 3, Folder 1

Clippings regarding the date industry. Includes stories about the history of the Coachella Valley date culture written by Nina Paul Shumway, William L. Paul's daughter. 1917-1958, undated.

Box 3, Folder 2

Scrapbook about the date industry (part 1 of 2). Includes clippings, photographs, correspondence, and other material. 1914-1917, undated.

Box 3, Folder 3

Scrapbook about the date industry (part 2 of 2). Includes clippings, photographs, correspondence, and other material. 1914-1921, undated.