Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Dorothy Deming Wheeler Scrapbooks
MS 246  
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (57.05 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms
  • Related Material

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Dorothy Deming Wheeler scrapbooks
    Dates: 1919-1964
    Collection number: MS 246
    Creator: Wheeler, Dorothy Deming
    Collection Size: 9 flats
    Repository: University of California, Santa Cruz. University Library. Special Collections and Archives
    Santa Cruz, California 95064
    Abstract: This collection includes scrapbooks, horse lineage charts, and ephemera relating to Wheeler's activities as women's polo champion, horse breeder, and promoter for the sport of polo in Santa Cruz. Much of the material covers Pogonip Polo Club, Santa Cruz, Wheeler's "Windy Hill Farm" and Santa Cruz County polo activities. Also included are two albums of photographs of the Wheeler's early married life in Alaska as a sled dog breeder and racer in one of the pre-coursers to the Iditarod race.
    Physical location: Stored in Special Collections & Archives
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English


    Collection open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Property rights for this collection reside with the University of California. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. The publication or use of any work protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use for research or educational purposes requires written permission from the copyright owner. Responsibility for obtaining permissions, and for any use rests exclusively with the user. For more information on copyright or to order a reproduction, please visit
    Title: Special Collections and Archives Duplication & Reproduction Policy

    Preferred Citation

    Dorothy Deming Wheeler scrapbooks. MS 246. Special Collections and Archives, University Library, University of California, Santa Cruz.

    Acquisition Information

    Gift of Mrs. E. Forbes Wilson [Dorothy Demming Wheeler]


    Dorothy S. Deming was born in Santa Cruz, California in 1896 to Henry Seth & Josephine N. Deming. She married her cousin, Deming Wheeler at her family's Cliff St. home in Santa Cruz on August 28, 1916.
    Deming Wheeler was born in Brattleboro, Vermont on August 22, 1876 and died on March 31, 1946 in Santa Cruz, CA. He was well known in the field of sports and considered an authority on blooded horses, especially polo ponies. He wrote a number of articles on the subject of breeding and raising fine horse stock and was invited to become a member of the Jockey Club of New York because of his knowledge. He was also a big game hunter and explorer.
    For the first three winters of their married life, Dorothy and Deming lived in a one room cabin in Alaska hunting, breeding and training Alaskan huskies (sled dogs). There Dorothy learned to race dog teams cross country and win. She was the first white woman to drive a dog sled from Fairbanks to Nome and back, a 1000 mile journey in an Alaskan winter of 50 degrees below zero.
    Dorothy and Deming came back to Santa Cruz where they purchased land and built Windy Hill Farm located at the top of Spring Street in Santa Cruz. They stocked the farm with various kinds of livestock and bred and trained fine polo ponies. They also promoted the sport of polo and participated in the establishment of the Santa Cruz Pogonip Polo Club.
    They kept Pogonip's prices low and extended the sport to women and children. Dorothy promoted her coed polo matches, which were controversial elsewhere. When the men's National Polo Association rejected a women's association, Dorothy established the first coed United States Polo Association, serving as its president for many years. She even led the women's polo team to the Pacific Coast Circuit Championships several years in a row. The club closed during World War II, and Pogonip was used to train a women's mounted corps for the Red Cross. Wheeler gave riding therapy to patients in the naval hospital that took over the Casa del Rey.
    After Deming Wheeler died in 1946, Dorothy married attorney, E. Forbes Wilson. The Pognoip Club reopened in 1948, but its equestrian days were over. Bicycle polo took its place, while the club expanded its social activities to include tennis, skeet, bridge, dances, weddings and fashion shows.
    Dorothy Deming Wheeler Wilson died in Santa Cruz on March 22, 1975.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    This collection includes photo albums of the Wheeler's early married life in Alaska, breeding and racing sled dogs as well as scrapbooks, horse lineage charts, and ephemera relating to Wheeler's activities as women's polo champion, horse breeder, and promoter for the sport of polo. The scrapbooks cover the Pogonip Polo Club in Santa Cruz, "Windy Hill Farm" and Santa Cruz County polo activities.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Wheeler, Dorothy Deming--Archives
    Windy Hill Farm
    Pogonip Club
    Santa Cruz County (Calif.)--History

    Related Material

    Pogonip Polo Club, GV1011.6.C3P64 1951 Pogonip: jewel of Santa Cruz, by Joan Gilbert Martin & Collen McInerney-Meagher, Otter B. Books, c.2007