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Joseph Pomeroy Widney Papers: Finding Aid
mssWidney papers  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Joseph Pomeroy Widney Papers
    Dates (inclusive): 1880-1937
    Bulk dates: 1392-1937
    Collection Number: mssWidney papers
    Creator: Widney, J. P. (Joseph Pomeroy), 1841-1938.
    Extent: 42 items in 1 oversize box.
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2129
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains 32 manuscripts of Los Angeles physician and writer Joseph P. Widney (1841-1939), chiefly consisting of chapter drafts from Widney’s book, The Three Americas: Their Racial Past (ca. 1930s), as well as a few pieces of ephemera and photographs.
    Language: English.


    Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item]. Joseph Pomeroy Widney Papers, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.


    On permanent deposit from the Los Angeles County Medical Association, 1992. In 1992, the Los Angeles County Medical Association put several collections on permanent deposit here at the Huntington Library.

    Biographical Note

    Joseph Pomeroy Widney (1841-1938) was an American physician. He served, briefly after he graduated from college, in the Civil War for the Union and sailed to California after he was discharged for frail health. He travelled all throughout the state and was especially interested in the Spanish and Mexican populations.
    Widney went back to school in 1865 and earned his medical degree in 1866 from Toland Medical College. He moved to Los Angeles in 1868, where he began his medical career. Widney was the second president of the University of Southern California, a founding dean of that university’s medical school, and a founder of the Los Angeles County Medical Association. In 1935 he published his book The Three Americas: Their Racial Past. He helped establish the journal Southern California Practitioner, speculated in land in Los Angeles and was a prolific writer.

    Scope and Content

    The collection contains 32 manuscripts by Dr. Joseph P. Widney (1841-1939). The bulk of the manuscripts are chapter drafts from Widney’s book, The Three Americas: Their Racial Past. These manuscripts are arranged in chapter order. The text describes migration to North and South America, their racial makeup, and asserts that the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa form a federation based upon their common Anglo-Saxon ancestry. There are two manuscripts from Widney’s book, The Genesis and Evolution of Islam and Judeo-Christianity, also in the Rare Books Department. The remaining manuscripts include a poem by Widney and excerpts from a speech. The collection also includes 10 items of ephemera: five photographs of Widney and five photographs of a bust of his likeness installed in the Auditorium Room of the Los Angeles County Medical Association building in 1937.


    Manuscripts arranged in chronological order, followed by photographs.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  


    Widney, J. P. (Joseph Pomeroy), 1841-1938.
    Ethnology -- America.
    Physicians -- California -- History -- 19th century -- Sources.
    Physicians -- California -- History -- 20th century -- Sources.


    Manuscripts -- California -- 20th century.

    Additional Contributors

    Los Angeles County Medical Association, former owner.