Scope and Content
Organization and Arrangement
Title: Powell Family Papers,
Date (inclusive): 1836-1961
Collection number: 230
Extent: 38 boxes (19 linear ft.)
4 oversize boxes
University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Department of Special Collections.
Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
Abstract: George Harold Powell (1872-1922) was born in Ghent, New York. The U.S. Department of Agriculture sent him to California in
1904 to study citrus fruits rotting in transit. In 1896, he married Gertrude Eliza Clark (1870-1957). They had three sons,
Harold Clark Powell (1900-1938), George Townsend Powell (1901-1955), and Lawrence Clark Powell (1906- ), who became the Librarian
of the UCLA Library, Director of the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, and dean of the School of Library Service at
UCLA. The collection consists of correspondence, diaries, journals, manuscripts, memorabilia, books, scrapbooks, and printed
materials related to the Powell family. The bulk is made up of the papers and correspondence of George Harold Powell, horticulturist
and general manager of the California Fruit Exchange (1912-22) and his wife, Gertrude Clark Powell.
Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library, Department
of Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.
Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library, Department of 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.
Restrictions on Access
COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.
Additional Physical Form Available
A copy of the original version of this online finding aid is available at the UCLA Department of Special Collections for in-house
consultation and may be obtained for a fee. Please contact:
- Public Services Division
- UCLA Library, Department of Special Collections
- Room A1713, Charles E. Young Research Library
- Box 951575
- Los Angeles, CA 90095-1575
- Telephone: 310/825-4988 (10:00 a.m. - 4:45 p.m., Pacific
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Provenance/Source of Acquisition
Gift of Lawrence Clark Powell, 1965.
[Identification of item], Powell Family Papers (Collection 230). Department of Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research
Library, University of California, Los Angeles.
UCLA Catalog Record ID
George Harold Powell was born in 1872 in Ghent, New York, on February 8, 1872; BS (1895) and MS (1896), Agriculture, Cornell;
pomologist, Bureau of Plant Industry, Washington, D.C., 1901-1911; U.S. Department of Agriculture sent him to California in
1904 to study citrus fruits rotting in transit; general manager, California Fruit Exchange (today known as Sunkist Growers),
1912; married Gertrude Eliza Clark (1870-1957) on July 1, 1896; they had three sons, Harold Clark Powell (1900-1938), George
Townsend Powell (1901-1955), and Lawrence Clark Powell (1906- ), who became the Librarian of the UCLA Library, Director of
the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library, and dean of the School of Library Service at UCLA; George Harold Powell died of
a heart attack on Feb. 18, 1922 in Pasadena, California.
The Powell Family Papers consist predominately of the correspondence and papers of George Harold Powell (1872-1922) and Gertrude
Clark Powell (1870-1957). George Harold Powell was born to George Townsend Powell (1843-1927) and Marcia Alger Chace Powell
(1845-1932) at Ghent, New York, on February 8, 1872. His father was one of the leading horticulturalists of New York State
and was noted especially for his apples. Both of his parents were Quakers. His grandparents were Townsend and Catherine Macy
Powell. George Harold Powell attended public schools and the Union Free High School in Chatham, New York. He also attended
Cornell University where obtained a B.S. and M.S. in agriculture in 1895 and 1896 respectively.
In 1896 Powell was appointed Horticulturalist at the Experiment Station of Delaware Agricultural College in Dover. September
1901 found him in Washington, D.C., as assistant pomologist in the Bureau of Plant Industry, U.S. Department of Agriculture,
studying problems of cold storage in connection with the apple industry. He was appointed pomologist in charge of fruit storage
and transportation investigations in 1904. The Department of Agriculture sent George Powell to California in the same year
at the request of the California orange growers for an investigation of the rotting of citrus fruits in transit. At that time
he met Ethan Allen Chase (1832-1921), a pioneer in the citrus industry at Riverside. He made a trip to Europe in 1908 to study
the fruit industry there. In 1909 he was appointed assistant chief of the Bureau of Plant Industry and in 1911 he was made
acting chief but resigned to accept the position of secretary and manager of the California Citurs Protective Leaque. After
another trip to Europe, he was appointed General Manager of the California Fruit Growers Exchange, now known as Sunkist Growers,
in September 1912.
George Harold Powell's most influential work,
Cooperation in Agriculture, was published in 1913. It soon became the standard work on this subject. Mr. Powell was one of the chief exponents of cooperation
in marketing agricultural produce. When the United States entered World War I, he was called to Washington to take charge
of the Perishable Food Division of the U.S. Food Administration. There he worked with Herbert Hoover (1874-1964) who was the
head of the U.S. Food Administration. In recognition of his outstanding service, George Harold Powell was awarded the Cross
of Chevalier of the Order of the Crown by King Albert of Belgium.
In 1919 Powell returned to his position at the California Fruit Growers Exchange. In January 1922 he served as chairman of
the committee on marketing farm products at the National Agriculture Conference called by President Harding. He also delivered
a notable address on Fundamentals of Cooperative Marketing. While attending a dinner at the Hotel Maryland in Pasadena on
February 18, 1922, George Harold Powell died of a heart attack. A public memorial was held at the Morosco Theatre in Los Angeles
at which Herbert Hoover, then Secretary of Commerce, delivered the principal address. On April 25, 1923 the Memorial Tablet
of the Late George Harold Powell was presented to the U.S. Department of Agriculture by the former members of the Division
of Perishable Foods of the U.S. Food Administration.
George Harold Clark married Gertrude Eliza Clark on July 1, 1896 in the Friends Meeting House at Collins, New York. Gertrude
Clark Powell was born at Cornwall-on-Hudson, New York, on October 18, 1870. She was the eldest of three children borne to
Quaker parents, William Henry Clark (1844-1913), a Buffalo lawyer, and Mary Lawrence Haines Clark (1844-1896). Her grandparents
were Phebe Lawrence Haines (1819-1892) and Jesse Hartley Haines (1814-1902). Gertrude Clark Powell attended high school in
Buffalo and went on to Cornell University. She graduated in the Class of 1895 with her
husband. She was a member of Alpha Phi and Phi Beta Kappa.
Gertrude Clark Powell and George Harold Powell's first son, Harold Clark Powell (1900-1938), was born in Newmark, Delaware,
on February 16, 1900. With his father and grandfather, Harold Clark Powell represented three generations of leading horticulturalists.
He received his education from Michigan State College, East Lansing, and the University of California. After working in the
fruit industry in California, he received an appointment as Professor of Horticulture at the Transvaal University College,
University of South Africa in Pretoria. In five years he had acquired such a reputation that the Empire Marketing Board asked
him to visit the colonies and to report on their citrus potentialities. The standard textbook in the Union of South Africa
on citrus was his
The Culture of the Orange and Allied Fruits. At the time of his accidental death in 1938, practically every citrus expert in the Union was trained by him and the whole
field staff of the Citrus Exchange had been very much influenced by him.
Gertrude Clark and George Harold Powell's second son, George Townsend Powell (1901-1955) was born in Washington, D.C. The
third son, Lawrence Clark Powell (1906-) was also born in Washington. Lawrence Clark Powell entered the library profession.
In 1944 he was appointed Head Librarian at the UCLA Library and Director of the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library. In
1960 he became Dean of the School of Library Service at UCLA. He relinquished the title of University Librarian in June 1961,
but continued as the Director of the Clark Library. Additional information about Lawrence Clark Powell's contributions to
the UCLA Library and the library profession can be found in the Records of the Office of the Librarian, B 18, Series 9, and
in other entries under Powell, Lawrence Clark, in the Numbered Collections Catalog as well as in the Lawrence Clark Powell
Papers, Collection Number 229.
The papers of other families related to the George Harold Powell family are also included in the Powell Family Papers. For
an understanding of the relationships of the various members of these families, the family trees by Marian Clark Cooch and
Lawrence Clark Powell will provide the basic information. Briefly, however, the Lawrence and the Haines families are related
to the Clark family which joined the Powell family when Gertrude Clark Powell married George Harold Powell. These families
have a long Quaker tradition. It is, therefore, fitting that the family copy of George Fox's
Journal, printed and sold by Sowle in 1694, should be in this collection. The collection also includes some correspondence from and
material about Elizabeth Powell Bond (1841-1926), Dean of Swarthmore College. One of the outstanding features of these papers
is the many photographs of members of the family and other persons. There are several autographed photographs of Herbert Hoover
as well as a photographic album of the members of the U.S. Food Administration, Division of Perishable Foods, 1917-1919. Also
of note are the journals and diaries of Gertrude Clark Powell covering the years from 1893 to 1957.
Also included in the Powell Family Papers are the papers of Harold Haines Clark (1878-1964), the brother of Gertrude Clark
Powell. He was very close to the George Harold Powell family, especially after the death of Mr. Powell. He was associated
with the Link Belt Company for thirty years and became the Manager of its Pacific Coast Division.
The Powell Family Papers were given to the UCLA Department of Special Collections as a continuing gift of Dean Lawrence Clark
Powell in 1955. The gift is to be concluded in 1964 with the papers of Harold Haines Clark.
Scope and Content
Collection consists of correspondence, diaries, journals, manuscripts, memorabilia, books, scrapbooks, and printed materials
related to the Powell family. The bulk is made up of the papers and correspondence of George Harold Powell, horticulturist
and general manager of the California Fruit Exchange (1912-22) and his wife, Gertrude Clark Powell. Also includes the papers
of Harold Haines Clark, brother of Gertrude Clark Powell, who was associated with the Link Belt Company. The papers of the
Lawrence and Haines families are related to the Clark family and these family papers include a copy of George Fox's Journal
(1694) and some material about and from Elizabeth Powell Bond, dean of Swarthmore College. Also autographed photographs of
Herbert Hoover and a photo album of the members of the U.S. Food Administration, Division of Perishable Foods, 1917-19.
Organization and Arrangement
Arranged in the following series:
- Correspondence of George Harold Powell.
- Correspondence of Gertrude Clark Powell.
- Papers of George Harold Powell.
- Papers of Gertrude Clark Powell.
- Papers of Harold Clark Powell.
- Papers of the Powell-Lawrence-Haines-Clark families.
- Papers of the Powell family.
- Papers of the Clark family.
- Papers of the Haines family.
- Papers of the Lawrence family.
- Papers of Marian Lawrence Clark Cooch.
- Papers of Harold Haines Clark.
- George Harold Powell and Powell family scrapbooks, diaries, and photographs.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Powell, George Harold--Archives.
Powell, Gertrude Eliza Clark, 1870-1957--Archives.
Powell, Harold Clark, 1900-1938--Archives.
Bond, Elizabeth Powell, 1841-1926--Archives.
Fox, George, 1624-1691--
Journal or historical account of the life, travels, sufferings...
Clark, Harold Haines, 1878-1964--Archives.
Hoover, Herbert, 1874-1964--Photographs.
California Fruit Growers Exchange.
Horticulturists--California, Southern--Archival resources.