Los Angeles Flower Festival Society Records

Finding aid prepared by Xiaofei Wang.
Manuscripts Department
The Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2203
Fax: (626) 449-5720
Email: manuscripts@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
© 2008
The Huntington Library. All rights reserved.


Descriptive Summary

Title: Los Angeles Flower Festival Society Records
Dates: 1885-1891
Collection Number: Consult repository.
Creator: Los Angeles Flower Festival Society.
Extent: 114 items
Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens Manuscripts Department
The Huntington Library
1151 Oxford Road
San Marino, California 91108
Phone: (626) 405-2203
Fax: (626) 449-5720
Email: manuscripts@huntington.org
URL: http://www.huntington.org
Abstract: The records include correspondence, festival and fair programs, newspaper clippings, photographs, a notebook, a list of donations, and other documents about the Flower Festival Society.
Language of Material: The records are in English.

Administration Information

Access

Collection is open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, please go to following web site .

Publication Rights

In order to quote from, publish, or reproduce any of the manuscripts or visual materials, researchers must obtain formal permission from the office of the Library Director. In most instances, permission is given by the Huntington as owner of the physical property rights only, and researchers must also obtain permission from the holder of the literary rights. In some instances, the Huntington owns the literary rights, as well as the physical property rights. Researchers may contact the appropriate curator for further information.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Los Angeles Flower Festival Society Records, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

Acquisition Information

The records were purchased from Dawson’s Book Shop, March 26, 1958.

Historical Note

The Flower Festival Society was a Los Angeles women’s association active in the late 19th century. In 1885, it was established to “give the protection and comfort of home life at a reasonable rate to working women, also to furnish situations to those seeking employment, and engage in such benevolent work as the Board may agree upon,” as the constitution of the Society stated. The Society's Advisory Board was composed of the presidents of several local non-governmental organizations such as the Los Angeles YMCA.
Mrs. R. M. Widney was the founding president and the only president of the Society. In 1889, the position of president was replaced by a three-member executive committee without Widney. Miss Mary E. McLellan served as the Financial Secretary when the Society was founded. Since 1885, each April the society would host a flower exhibition, which was named the “Flower Festival” from 1887. As one of the managers of the 1888 Flower Festival, McLellan was in charge of inviting important guests to the Festival’s opening ceremony. From 1889 to 1891, members of the Society also organized the Annual Chrysanthemum Fairs. While the first and the third Fair were held in October, the second Fair in 1890 commenced on October 29 and closed on November 7.

Scope and Content

The records contain 11 folders in 1 box. The largest folder has 43 items while three folders each have only 1 item. The inclusive dates are 1885-1891. The records include correspondence, festival and fair programs, newspaper clippings, photographs, a notebook, a list of donations, and other documents about the Flower Festival Society. The folders are arranged in chronological order. The items in each folder, whenever possible, are also arranged chronologically. The records provide a unique perspective to view California women’s history and leisure activities at the end of the nineteenth century. In addition, newspaper clippings about the Chrysanthemum Fair include some women’s favorable perceptions of Japanese and Chinese art and culture.
Subjects in the records include Arrowhead Springs (Calif.), Chinese Art objects, Chinese culture and civilization, Chrysanthemums – China, Chrysanthemums – Japan, Japanese Art objects, Los Angeles times, Southern Pacific Transportation Company, and the YMCA of the USA.

Indexing Terms

Corporate Names

Los Angeles Times (Firm)
Los Angeles Flower Festival Society -- Archives.
YMCA of the USA.
Southern Pacific Transportation Company.

Subjects

Art objects, Chinese.
Art objects, Japanese.
Chinese culture & civilization.
Chrysanthemums -- China.
Chrysanthemums -- Japan.
Clubs -- California -- Los Angeles -- Archives.
Clubs -- California -- Los Angeles -- History -- 19th century -- Sources.
Flower shows -- California -- Los Angeles.
Women -- Societies and clubs -- California -- Los Angeles.

Geographic Areas

Arrowhead Springs (Calif.)
Los Angeles (Calif.) -- History -- 19th century -- Sources.

Genre

Ephemera California Los Angeles 19th century.
Letters (correspondence) California Los Angeles 19th century.
Photographs California Los Angeles 19th century.
Programs California Los Angeles 19th century.
Reports California Los Angeles 19th century.


CONTAINER LIST

 

Flower Festival Society Rules. 3 items. 1885

 

Handwritten Speech. 1 item. after 1885

 

Correspondence. 4 items. 1886-1888

 

Simpson Tabernacle and Chrysanthemum Fair. 23 items. (1886-1895)

 

Letters to Mrs. R. M. Widney. 6 items. 1887-1888

 

Flower Festival Programs. 6 items. 1887-1890

 

Letters to Mary E. McLellan. 14 items. 1888

 

Notebook by Mrs. R. M. Widney. 1 item. 1888

 

Newspaper Clippings. 43 items. 1888-1891

 

Photographs of the First and Third Annual Chrysanthemum Fair. 12 items. 1889-1891

 

List of Donations. 1 item. undated