Scope and Content
Kate began classes at Berkeley in the fall of this year. She continued to live with her family in Oakland during the first
half of the year; it is unclear if she moved to live near Berkeley when she started school or if she commuted from Oakland.
This daily diary, similar to the previous one, chronicles the weather, her activities, social events and visits, as well as
certain national and international events and school-related issues. There are much more frequent references to Kate’s interest
in science and horticulture, in addition to references to her membership in the Chapter Society and her volunteering at the
“Deaf, Dumb and Blind Institution” in Berkeley (now known as the California School for the Blind). Kate refers to several
childhood friends, including William Clayton (an old schoolmate) whose death in October of 1877 affected her deeply. Several
entries in December refer to the results of her first final exams at Berkeley.
Entries of interest:
January 19, 1877: “After lunch paid papa’s interest at bank and asked for situation (refused of course). Put $25.00 in Bank
for Frank, he now has $162.82. I felt as though I wanted some in Bank too.”
January 22, 1877: “Dreamed I was getting ready in a terrible hurry for the D.C.M. on a 2nd trip to S.I.” (ship name D. Colden
Murray; Sandwich Islands)
January 23, 1877: “Dreamed of being at the Islands and there meeting the owner of a hyacinth plantation in Iowa!”
January 28, 1877: “Looked through my own microscope.”
January 29, 1877: “Went to ranch in forenoon and evening to see about the milk bills – things going rather crooked.”
January 31, 1877: “Pleasant day, to ranch making out bills. Oakland with papa Florence came for gold fish. Went to ranch in
horse cars, first time I ever rode in them.”
February 2, 1877: “Heard – I was to be married.”
February 5, 1877: Went to the California Academy of Sciences with specimens, consults with botanist Justin P. Moore (again
February 24, 1877: Refers to missing the Chapter Society meeting (Possibly the Oakland Chapter of the International Society
for the Advancement of Art, Science and Literature, later called the Ebell Society).
March 9, 1877: “Eleven years today we came to Oakland to live on the Ranch – I now much prefer this side to the city.”
March 17, 1877: Attends opera “Around the World in 80 Days” at Wade’s Opera House. “A long play and I think anything but fine.
I realize there is more pleasure than that obtained of an evening at the theater.”
March 22, 1877: “To Angell Island with Jennie and Delia and their schoolmates. A delightful ride on McPherson. A beautiful
day at the Island – good luck butterflying. Visited Alcatraz and I saw canons and fort with balls etc. for the first time
in my life.”
March 30, 1877: “In the evening mother Florence and I went to hear Dio Lewis lecture on “Our Girls.” The first time I heard
him. Very much pleased – A good address to the Boys on Tobacco. I feel as though I wanted to know him.”
April 4, 1877: Goes to the “Deaf, Dumb and Blind Institution” (first mention).
April 7, 1877: “Lower Cal. is very dry – stock is selling very cheap and prospects of a hard season.”
April 9, 1877: “Stock struck the bedrock seemingly today—terrible condition of the market.”
April 19, 1877: “Jessie Clayton, Willie and Mrs. C. came at 11 A.M. Jessie surprised us much no one knowing she was coming.
Spent a very pleasant day.”
May 4, 1877: “I read 2 chapters in “Agassiz Method of Study” (sic). Very interesting.” (Methods of Study in Natural History
by Louis Agassiz)
May 8, 1877: “Mr. T. proposed finding me a situation as teacher in Russia.”
June 6, 1877: “Took a walk in the afternoon to the ridge back of camp, found a new species of fern. I only had three specimens
August 8–September 20, 1877: Several entries are faded to the point of being almost completely illegible. Aug. 8 entry seems
to refer to her acceptance into Berkeley.
October 10, 1877: “Will Clayton had his leg amputated, and got along nicely, though after the operation the Dr. came back
and took away blood etc. and sewed it completely and he suffered intensely.”
October 15, 19, 1877: Visits Will Clayton during his recovery.
October 22, 1877: “Mr. Treadwell loaned me a watch that tells how many miles one walks.”
October 26, 1877: Receives note saying that Will Clayton is dead.
October 27–November 7, 1877: Multiple entries mourning Will Clayton’s death.
November 7, 1877: “Tomorrow I will be twenty years old, it does not seem possible. I do not feel a day older than when I was
16. Altogether I think I have accomplished very little this past year.”
November 8, 1877: Her birthday, turns 20.
December 17, 1877: Finished her examinations at Berkeley.
December 19, 21, 1877: Returns to Berkeley for results of exams.
December 29, 1877: “Mrs. K. says Will Clayton was there, and he spoke to us. Wished us all a Happy New Year, said ‘Though
my hands you cannot see and my legs are hid as well yet I shall make myself known to you all, and be Willie Clayton still.’
These are not the exact words but the idea. A beautiful remark or rather address to us. Mrs. Kenney had my picture and Will’s
framed alike and hung on the wall.”
MEMORANDA: Cure for Rheumatism