Restrictions on Access
Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
Scope and Content Note
Title: Kathleen Goddard Jones Correspondence,
Date (inclusive): 1918-2002
Date (bulk): 1926-1932
Collection number: MS 173
Goddard Jones, Kathleen, 1907-2001
6 Hollinger Boxes (2.79 Linear Feet)
Special Collections, Robert E. Kennedy Library
California Polytechnic State University
San Luis Obispo, California 93407
Abstract: Papers of environmental activist Kathleen Goddard Jones, including correspondence, photographs, a manuscript, and newspaper
clippings, primarily relating to her years as a student and in her first marriage.
Restrictions on Access
Collection is open to qualified researchers by appointment only. For more information on access policies and to obtain a copy
of the Researcher Registration form, please visit the Special Collections Access page.
Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
In order to reproduce, publish, broadcast, exhibit, and/or quote from this material, researchers must submit a written request
and obtain formal permission from Special Collections, Cal Poly, as the owner of the physical collection.
Photocopying of material is permitted at staff discretion and provided on a fee basis. Photocopies are not to be used for
any purpose other than for private study, scholarship, or research. Special Collections staff reserves the right to limit
photocopying and deny access or reproduction in cases when, in the opinion of staff, the original materials would be harmed.
Kathleen Goddard Jones Correspondence, Special Collections, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
n.d.: no date
n.p.: no publisher
YMCA: Young Men's Christian Association
Kathleen Goddard was born to Willis and Nellie Goddard on July 2, 1907. Shortly after her birth the family moved from Sacramento
to Santa Barbara, where her father served as secretary of the Young Men's Christian Association. Her love of nature began
on hikes with her family into the surrounding countryside and grew with her participation in Campfire Girls. "At the age of
twelve I began to really hike," she recalled, "to go to the higher peaks and to learn to sleep outdoors and to cook outdoors,
and to find that this was something that was important to me...and has continued to be one of the most important facets of
my whole life: a kinship with the earth, a spiritual refreshment from moving easily along trails and over the contours of
During the summer of 1926, after a year spent attending Santa Barbara State Teacher's College, Goddard Jones traveled to Europe.
Upon her return, she enrolled as an English major at Mills College in Oakland. While at Mills Goddard Jones became friends
with Cedric Wright, a music professor at Mills, who introduced her to Ansel Adams and the Sierra Club.
Goddard Jones left Mills at the end of her junior year to marry Ali Shirazi Parvaz. Between 1929 and 1932 they lived in Washington,
D.C. and New York City, working with the Persian Legislation to fund and execute the first "America-Persia Goodwill Flight."
Although the flight was eventually abandoned after a failed landing and limited funding, eventually the couple would travel
to India, Burma, and Iran, where they lived for several years.
Upon return to the United States, Goddard Jones worked in radio at NBC for several years before divorcing Shirazi and returning
to California. In 1945 she married Duncan P. Jackson and they adopted several children.
In 1949 Goddard Jones joined the Sierra Club, primarily so she could go on their annual trip to the High Sierra with her old
mentor, Cedric Wright. It was on this two-week hike that many important relationships were formed with national leaders of
the Sierra Club, including David Brower. Goddard helped found the Santa Barbara group of the Angeles Chapter of the Sierra
Club, which became the Los Padres Chapter of the Sierra Club in February 1952. She served as chair for several years, and
in 1956 became a delegate to the national Sierra Club Council, which she eventually chaired from 1956-1957.
Goddard moved to Paso Robles, where she once again helped form a new local Sierra Club group as part of the Santa Barbara
Chapter. The Santa Lucia Group first met on November 9, 1961; the first outing was a hike in early 1962 through the Nipomo
Dunes, near Oso Flaco Lake. The trip became a permanent annual outing, which Goddard Jones led from 1962 to 1995. In October
of 1968 the San Luis Obispo County members attained chapter status for the Santa Lucia group.
Goddard Jones' most important efforts led to the preservation of the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes. "I want everyone to know what
a lovely place we have out here on the mesa," she said. "It is a wealth of beauty, and all of it is free."
Goddard Jones' growing environmental activism led to a split with her conservative husband and the Jacksons divorced in August
1966. On August 21, 1971 she married Gaylord Jefferson Jones, who shared her love of the dunes and the outdoors.
In the early 1960s she saw a newspaper article announcing that utility company Pacific Gas & Electric had acquired dune land
for a nuclear power plant. The article sparked Goddard Jones' campaign of 13 years to have the nuclear power plant relocated
elsewhere and the dunes preserved. In 1974 PG&E sold 857 acres of dune land to the state for a park and sought another location
for the nuclear power plant.
Of this decision,
Sunset magazine contributor Matthew Jaffe wrote, "PG&E's eventual decision to build its plant in a little-known spot farther north,
Diablo Canyon, led to criticism of Jones by both environmentalists (who opposed all nuclear power plants) and locals (who
were angry about the loss of tax revenue and building contracts). But the process of saving the dunes had begun."
In 1983 the Regional Oral History Office at UC Berkeley interviewed Goddard Jones for their Sierra Club Oral History Series.
Goddard Jones remained active on behalf of the Dunes until her death on October 2, 2001.
Ann Van Tyne, interview with Kathleen Goddard Jones, "Defender of California's Nipomo Dunes, Steadfast Sierra Club Volunteer."
Sierra Club Nationwide II, 1984 http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/ROHO/collections/subjectarea/natres/sierraclub.html
Matthew Jaffe, "California's Ultimate Sea of Sand—Nipomo Dunes."
Sunset October 1992 http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1216/is_n4_v189/ai_12884195
Nancy Loe, "Biographical Note." Kathleen Goddard Jones Papers Finding Aid, Special Collections, California Polytechnic State
University, San Luis Obispo, 2007: 9-10.
Sue Hagen, "A Guided Tour: Black Lake Canyon: The Mesa Fairyland."
Five Cities Times-Press-Recorder [Arroyo Grande, Calif.] 16 June 1978
"Statement of Kathleen Jackson before California Public Utilities Commission on February 17, 1967, San Luis Obispo." Box 16,
Folder 7, Kathleen Goddard Jones Papers, Special Collections, California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo
Scope and Content Note
The Kathleen Goddard Jones Correspondence, 1918-2002, contains the personal papers of environmental activist Kathleen Goddard
Jones of Arroyo Grade, California.
The majority of the collection is comprised of correspondence written by Kathleen Goddard Jones to her parents during her
years at college and during her first marriage. The letters, which doubled for Goddard Jones as her personal diary, provide
a detailed recounting of her life at Mills and on the East Coast at the height of the Great Depression. Enclosed with her
correspondence Goddard Jones often included the correspondence of friends and family or pamphlets and brochures from places
she traveled. When possible these additional items are included in the item description.
The collection also includes an assortment of photographs compiled by researchers and family that illustrate her life, from
student to environmental activist. The correspondence complements the Kathleen Goddard Jones Papers, 1933-2001, providing
an introduction and background to the later environmental work Goddard Jones performed along the Central Coast.
In order to retain historical context, in the collection Kathleen Goddard Jones can be found under the following surnames:
Kathleen Shirazi Parvaz
Kathleen Goddard Jones
Before arriving at Cal Poly, the collection was arranged in chronological order. During this process, the photographs were
separated from the original correspondence. Where possible, the provenance, or original organization, of the papers has been
preserved. However, in order to simplify access to the collection for researchers, some materials in specific formats and
topics were reorganized and refoldered to more accurately reflect their contents.
The Kathleen Goddard Jones Correspondence is divided into 7 series:
Series 1. Pre-Collegiate Correspondence, 1921-1926, including Mother's Day cards and correspondence from her trip to Europe;
Series 2. Mills College Correspondence, 1927-1929;
Series 3. Correspondence as Mrs. Kathleen Shirazi, 1929-1932, including programs, pamphlets, and travel ephemera;
Series 4. Kathleen Goddard Shirazi Manuscript "Passage to Persia," 1934, typescript for a short story about the Shirazis time
Series 5. Correspondence to Goddard Family, 1918-1929, correspondence from friends of the Goddard family;
Series 6. Photographs, 1927-2001;
Series 7. Clippings, 2001-2002
The Kathleen Goddard Jones Correspondence is housed in 6 Hollinger containers, with Series 2. Mills College Correspondence
and Series 3 Correspondence as Mrs. Kathleen Shirazi containing the most extensive and unique portions of the collection.
The 86,000-word 618-page manuscript in Series 5 recounts her experiences in Persia in the mid-1930s, while the clippings in
Series 7 are on the subjects of her passing and a biography on Goddard Jones published in 2001.
The National Endowment for the Humanities has generously funded the arrangement and description of this collection, along
with matching funds from California Polytechnic State University.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
Environmental protection--California--San Luis Obispo County--Citizen participation
Goddard Jones, Kathleen
International House (New York, N.Y.)
New History Society
Sierra Club--Santa Lucia Chapter
Wright, Cedric, 1889-1959
Genre and Forms of Materials
California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
Kathleen Goddard Jones Papers, 1933-2001 (MS 119)
University of California, Berkeley.
Cedric Wright Papers, 1900-1958 (BANC MSS 77/124 c)