This collection contains records of the Pioneer Society of San Diego County, including documents related to administration,
finances, membership, accessions, and events. It also contains original correspondence to and from members of the Society.
The Pioneer Society of San Diego County was organized on May 31, 1895, and was originally called “The Ladies’ Pioneer Society
of San Diego.” One of its purposes, as stated in the Bylaws, was “to collect, record, and preserve the history of the State
of California, and more especially the history and traditions of the City and County of San Diego, and incidents connected
therewith.” Mrs. Flora Kimball and Hattie Phillips were the first president and secretary, respectively. Membership was limited
to those persons who came to California before January 1, 1880, with extension of privileges to their descendants and to others
who had shown an interest in the objects of the society. Originally all members were women, but in 1905 men were given honorary
memberships. Honorary members included such figures as General John J. Pershing, Winifred Davidson, and John F. Forward. A
1908 letter from John G. Capron states that the symbol of the society was an evergreen sprig. The society held one open meeting
and several closed meetings per year that featured talks on local history by a variety of guests, introduced people important
in politics and society, and presented local music talents as well as entertainment and refreshments.