Finding Aid for Susanna Bryant Dakin's A Scotch paisano: Hugo Reid's life in California (1832-1852), 1939

Cataloged by Citlali Sosa-Riddell, with assistance from Laurel McPhee; machine-readable finding aid created by Caroline Cubé.
UCLA Library Special Collections
UCLA Library Special Collections staff
Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
Box 951575
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
© 2009
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Susanna Bryant Dakin's A Scotch paisano: Hugo Reid's life in California (1832-1852)
Date (inclusive): 1939
Collection number: 170/202
Creator: Dakin, Susanna Bryant.
Extent: 335 leaves: paper; 28.5 x 22.5 cm.
Abstract: Hugo Reid was nicknamed the Scotch Paisano during his days as a Scottish settler in Mexican Southern California. He was born in 1810 and he settled in the San Gabriel area in the 1820s, became a Mexican citizen, married a native California Indian, and was a leader in his community. This biography of Hugo Reid is divided into two sections. The first part of the book describes the major points in Reid's life. The second part of the book consists of reprints of Reid's letters to the major newspaper, the Los Angeles Star. Printed in 1852, these letters concern the welfare of the Southern California Native American population.
Language: Finding aid is written in English.
Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

Provenance/Source of Acquisition

Gift of author.

Processing Note

Cataloged by Citlali Sosa-Riddell, with assistance from Laurel McPhee, in the Center For Primary Research and Training (CFPRT).

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Susanna Bryant Dakin's A Scotch paisano: Hugo Reid's life in California (1832-1852) (Collection 170/202). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

UCLA Catalog Record ID

UCLA Catalog Record ID: 4230403 


Susanna Bryant Dakin (born Susanna Bryant in 1905) was the daughter of Dr. Ernest Bryant and Sue Bixby. Her maternal grandfather was John W. Bixby, former owner of Rancho Los Alamitos. Dakin attended the elite Marlborough School in Los Angeles, and went on to study at Vassar College, graduating in 1925. She married Richard Y. Dakin in 1930, and raised a family of five children. Dakin had an active interest in writing and Southern California history. Her first book, entitled A Scotch Paisano : the Story of Hugo Reid in 1939, was published by the University of California Press in 1939. Dakin was active in Scripps College, the Pasadena Arts Museum, the Pasadena Chapter of the Red Cross, the Santa Ana Botanical Garden, and other southern California institutions. She died in a plane crash in Mexico in 1966.

Scope and Content

Hugo Reid (1811-1852) left Scotland at the age of eighteen and settled in California in 1832. He married a woman of the Gabrielino tribe and became a rancher near the San Gabriel mission near Los Angeles. This biography of Hugo Reid has two parts. The first part is a general narrative about his life, including his marriage, participation in the Mexican War, mining activities, and attendance at the Constitutional Convention at Monterey. The second part of the manuscript contains copies of twenty-two letters Reid and his wife, Victoria, wrote the to the Los Angeles Star. Reid's fortunes had faltered with United States seizure of California, and he may have written the letters in hope of being named a federal Indian agent. They focus on the Native American tribes of Los Angeles County and the history of the San Fernando and San Gabriel missions. These letters were published in 1852 under the title The Indians of Los Angeles County : Hugo Reid's letters of 1852 (an edited version of the letters was also reprinted in 1962, by the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles). The manuscript is arranged into ten titled chapters, with a separate appendix for the letters. Includes an index and bibliographical references.

Indexing Terms

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


Reid, Hugo, 1809-1872.
Reid, Hugo, Mrs.
Mission San Gabriel Arcangel (San Gabriel, Calif.)
Gabrielino Indians.
Gabrielino language.
Native Americans--California.

Genres and Forms of Material


Related Material

Twa Tribes: Scots Among the Native Americans: Hugo Reid, Alexander Ross and Charles McKenzie Edinburgh : NMS Enterprises Limited, c2003. Tom Bryan E184.S3 B79 2003(SRLF)
Bound Manuscripts Collection (Collection 170)  . Available at UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

Container List


ff.1-221: Chapters 1-10


ff. 222-227: Appendix and introduction to the letters of Hugo Reid


ff. 228-229: Lodges


ff. 230-233: Language


ff. 234-235: Government, laws, and punishment


ff. 236-237: Religion and creed


ff. 238-239: Food and raiment


ff. 240-241: Marriages


ff. 242-243: Births and burials


ff. 244-245: Medicine and diseases


ff. 246-248: Customs


ff. 249-250: Customs (continued)


ff. 251: Traffic and utensils


ff. 252-253: Sports and games


ff. 254-256: Tradition


ff. 257-258: Tradition and fable


ff. 259-268: Legend


ff. 269-270: First arrival of the Spaniards


ff. 271-274: Conversion


ff. 275-277: First missionary proceedings


ff. 278-282: New era in Mission affairs


ff. 283-287: Better times


ff. 288-290: Decay of the Mission


ff. 291-293: Finis


ff. 294-323: Notes


ff. 324-326: Bibliography