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Guide to the Mission Valley Nursery Records MS 57
MS 57  
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Box-folder 1:1

Administrative records, 1919 June 16-1937 August 1 and undated

Includes:

Business card
Nurseryman licenses
Letter from the Nurseryman Association
Horticultural census
Box-folder 1:2

Daily accounts (diary), 1907 January 1-1908 January 14

Scope and Content

This is a pocket-sized daily account diary maintained by Ernest Benard. Entries focus on items sold at the nursery, stock received, accounts paid, errands run, jobs completed, and notations on the weather. Entries regarding sales include the customer’s name, their city or neighborhood, and the plants purchased. Entries occasionally mention more personal activities, including family outings and parties.

Entries of interest:

January 2, 1907: Miss Ellen Scripps of La Jolla appears here and throughout.
January 3, 1907: Beginning here, Kate Sessions buys cut flowers every several days throughout the year. Additionally Mr. A.G. Spaulding appears here and throughout.
January 6, 1907: The Isis Theatre Estate appears here and throughout.
January 7, 1907: Folsom Brothers appear here and throughout.
January 9, 1907: Coronado Beach Co. appears here and throughout.
January 21, 1907: Lyman Gage of Point Loma appears here and throughout.
February 4, 1907: Pt. Loma Homestead appears here and throughout.
February 8, 1907: George W. Marston appears here and throughout.
March 23, 1907: Sisters of Saint Joseph Sanitarium appear here and throughout.
June 3, 1907: Parks of San Diego appear here and throughout.
August 15, 1907: “Maman and children went to spend 1 week Coronado Tent City.”
October 17, 1907: “Start to work on petition protesting against the Establishment of pest house at Jones Ranch. “
Box-folder 1:3

Daily accounts (diary) (copy 1 of 2), 1907 January 1-June 30

Box-folder 1:4

Daily accounts (diary) (copy 2 of 2), 1907 July 1-1908 January 14

Box-folder 2

Daily accounts (ledger), 1917 January 1-1925 March 8

Scope and Content

This is a daily account ledger kept in the same format as the daily account diary. Two sheets at the front of the book list total sales by month for 1917-1924. Entries include the customer’s name, their city or address, and the plants purchased. Frequent customers include W.H. Sallmon, Kate Sessions, Dr. Woodside, J. Morley for Balboa Park, the Scripps family, the Point Loma Homestead, and multiple city governments in San Diego County. Entries may also note errands, stock received, or accounts paid (including wages paid to Angelo Stassis). Some entries highlight activities of a more personal nature, including outings with family and friends, birthdays and anniversaries, or comments on local and national politics.

Entries of interest:

March 3, 1917: Parks of San Diego.
March 16, 1917: Sisters of St. Joseph Sanitarium.
April 6, 1917: “United States severe political relations with Germany – look like declaration of war.”
June 1, 1917: “Rosa Benard and Peter A. Becker were married at 12 noon by Judge Lewis in Superior Court Room No. 2 Court House. They went to Los Angeles to spend few days.”
June 9, 1917: “I went to the Expo. To protest against removing J. Morley from Park [?] a large gathering in his favor. Apparently successful.”
November 27, 1917: “Vote for Municipal Ordinance ‘Bone Dry.’ Defeated by only 260 votes majority, 21000 votes cast.”
November 9, 1918: “Peter A. Becker mobilized into the army to embark for Kelly Field nr San Antonio, Texas.”
November 11, 1918: "'Armistice.' Stopping activities between The Allies troops in [conflict?] with Germany… Jubilation in San Diego. Parade during Day. Peter had not to go to Kelly Field until further notice. Rosa Jubilant."
March 6, 1919: Mrs. Davidson with the Library.
March 24, 1919: Mrs. E. Fletcher at 810 Ash Street.
May 8, 1919: The head cook of the Hotel Del Coronado orders 9 dozen artichokes.
June 30, 1919: “General Prohibition to be in force July 1st. Went to town. ‘Very lively time in the night.’”
September 19, 1919: “President W. Wilson visited San Diego. 3:30 pm to 11. Fine Reception at the stadium, over 50,000 San Diegans listened to his address on the ‘League of Nations.’”
October 1919: Details a long order for the City of Coronado, divided by sections. (Page 164)
December 2, 1919: “Every Body feasting. 71 boats & Men of War in the Harbor including the New Zealand English. 27,000 tons. The Harbor busy, illuminating at night, magnificent display of Electric fireworks in the Bay.”
January 27-February 3, 1920: Maman, Lily, and E.B confined to bed with influenza. Entry details costs of physician, nurse, and help with chickens. During this week the nursery is quarantined: no sales, no delivery.
March 7, 1920: Mr. Benbough at Sheridan Ave.
April 19, 1920: “Reception given to Lily and Frank Colt in the Evening at midnight. Surprised the above by bringing Judge Lewis to marry them at the House.” Lily and Frank marry more formally the next day and then move to Barker City, Oregon.
February 1, 1921: Mr. Henry Schumann Heink in Grossmont.
May 7, 1921: “Received Telegram from Baker Oregon. Lily has a 8 lb Son – Allan Benard Colt at St. Elizabeth Hospital, Baker Oregon.”
Pages 294-296 contain a detailed list of stock bought from various companies for the start of 1922.
May 1, 1923: “First Cross Country airplane T. 2. from NY to SD. 2600 miles. 27 hours. (no stop).”
August 24, 1923: Ernest and Margaretha travel to Oregon to visit Lily, leaving Rosa and Peter in charge of the nursery. They return November 11.
February 18, 1924: “Surprised party on my 65th Birthday. Good time.”
December 23, 1924: An itemized bid for a job at Glenn Abbey Memorial Park.
Box-folder 1:5

Receipts and invoices (some in French), 1892 April 4-1901 May 12

Box-folder 1:6

Receipts and invoices, 1901 June 1-1915 October 2

Box-folder 1:7

Projects: Point Loma Homestead, 1900 June 5-1903 September 18

Includes:

Correspondence with Lyman Gage and Katherine Tingley
Receipts to pay haulers
Box-folder 1:8

Projects: Park Improvement Committee, 1903 August 18-1906 January 15

Includes:

Correspondence from the Committee and George Marston, as well as plant orders and contract agreements.
Box-folder 1:9

Projects: A. H. Sweet Residence, 1914 June 27

Includes:

Photocopies of landscaping plans
Box-folder 1:10

Merchandise, 1895-1946 and undated

Includes:

Brochures and lists of available plant varieties from the Mission Valley Nursery, Exotic Nurseries, the California Nursery Company, and wholesaler J. Adams.
Box-folder 1:11

Benard family papers, 1917 June 9-1947 November 26 and undated

Includes:

Personal letter, June 9, 1917 (in French, translation attached)
Obituary for Margaretha Benard
Two photos sent by Ernest’s family in France