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Katherine D. Jones Collection, 1910-1940
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Access Points
  • Biography
  • Scope and Contents Note
  • Related Collections

  • Descriptive Summary

    Collection Title: Katherine D. Jones Collection,
    Date (inclusive): 1910-1940
    Collection number: 1998-10
    Creator: Jones, Katherine D.
    Extent: 7 boxes, 2 half boxes, 2 card file boxes
    Repository: Environmental Design Archives.
    University of California, Berkeley.
    Berkeley, California.
    Abstract: The collection consists primarily of materials Jones used for her teaching and research.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests for permission to publish, reproduce, or quote from materials in the collection should be discussed with the Curator.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Katherine D. Jones Collection, (1998-10), Environmental Design Archives. University of California, Berkeley. Berkeley, California.

    Acquisition Information

    The collection was acquired in 1998.

    Access Points

    Botany--Study and teaching--California--Berkeley.
    Climbing plants.
    Blake Garden (Berkeley Calif.)
    University of California, Berkeley--Dept. of Landscape Architecture.


    Katherine D. Jones (1860-1940)
    Katherine D. Jones, the fourth of seven children, was born in Berlin Wisconsin in 1860. Her father became a Congregationalist minister following his arrival in the U.S. from Wales. Between 1876 and 1880 while living in Nebraska, Jones taught during the summers and attended school in the winters. She moved to Calaveras County (California) in 1880, where she taught in public schools and saved her money to attend the University of Nebraska. Unfortunately her mother took ill and she returned to California moving with her family to Vallejo. She conducted a school of her own, then taught in public schools for six years.
    Jones assisted her younger brother Guernsey with his tuition at the University of California, Berkeley, occasionally visiting him and attending Joseph LeConte's lectures on zoology. This renewed her desire to return to college and she entered UC Berkeley to study biology and botany graduating in 1896. After graduating, she taught biology and music in Hayward but illness caused her to give up her position. She returned to UC Berkeley, assisting in botany and zoology classes, becoming an administrative aid, and keeping records for the Botany Department. This work under J. Burtt Davy and H.M. Hall influenced her career and aroused her interest in exotic plants.
    Mr. A.V. Stubenrauch, who managed seven experimental Stations of the Bureau of Plant Industry for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, enlisted her aid in his work on Acacias leading to her to develop an expertise in this area. In 1910 Professor E.B. Babcock called upon Jones as the best qualified person to assist with gathering seeds for distribution to schools under the Agricultural Education program, which led an academic appointment in this program. When John Gregg arrived in Berkeley to establish the Department of Landscape Gardening in 1913, he found Jones' wide knowledge of exotic flora of great value. She taught a course on plant materials with Mr. R.T. Stevens until his departure in 1917, and continued to teach the classes herself. She taught field work and took students outdoors to learn the names of trees and shrubs. At Harvard, students were told that if they had passed her work satisfactorily, no further examination would be required for entrance to the Plant Material classes there.
    Jones became an authority on Acacias, and wrote the entry in Baily's Encyclopedia in 1914. She continued her writing into the 1930s with contributions to National Horticultural Magazine. The California Horticultural Society and California Garden Clubs honored her and she is considered one of the notable women of California for her advancement of the botanical and landscape side of horticulture.

    Laurie, Michael, "75 Years of Landscape Architecture at Berkeley," 1988.
    Symmes, Mabel. "Madrono." April, 1946 Vol 8, #6.

    Scope and Contents Note

    The Katherine D. Jones collection consists of primarily of materials Jones used for her teaching and research. It includes correspondence, field notes, course materials, lists of plants, papers on botanical subjects by Jones and others (including Harry Shepherd), pamphlets on flowers and vines, and articles on plant ecology. The bulk of the collection consists of notebooks centered on garden subjects, field trips, site visits, and plant research. It is difficult to distinguish her teaching notes from her research notes as it appears that in many cases they were thoroughly integrated. The integrity of the notebooks was maintained during refoldering and the the folder titles were taken from the notebooks. The distinction between trips and visits was hers. It may be that trips were taken with students and visits to locations throughout California were taken for her research. Arranged by subject and location, they contain detailed notes on the horticulture of particular sites, sometimes including course material, clippings, plant lists, interviews, and photographs.
    Her notes for visits to Santa Barbara include discussions she had with Lockwood de Forest. Subjects include files on English gardens and U.S. colonial gardens, Golden Gate Park, the Panama Pacific International Exposition (1915), the Golden Gate International Exposition (1939), and the Blake/Symmes Garden in Kensington CA. The collection also includes photographs, plant cards, and extensive research files on vines.

    Related Collections

    Title: Harry Shepherd Collection
    Identifier/Call Number: 1998-11
    Contributing Institution: Environmental Design Archives, University of California, Berkeley