Guide to the Rice Family Papers

Processed by Phil Brigandi.
Special Collections and Archives
The UCI Libraries
P.O. Box 19557
University of California
Irvine, California 92623-9557
Phone: (949) 824-3947
Fax: (949) 824-2472
Email: spcoll@uci.edu
URL: http://www.lib.uci.edu/rrsc/speccoll.html
© 2004
The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Guide to the Rice Family Papers

Collection number: MS-R45

Special Collections and Archives

The UCI Libraries

University of California

Irvine, California

Contact Information

  • Special Collections and Archives
  • The UCI Libraries
  • P.O. Box 19557
  • University of California
  • Irvine, California 92623-9557
  • Phone: (949) 824-3947
  • Fax: (949) 824-2472
  • Email: spcoll@uci.edu
  • URL: http://www.lib.uci.edu/rrsc/speccoll.html
Processed by:
Phil Brigandi
Date Completed:
2001
Encoded by:
Andre Ambrus
© 2004 The Regents of the University of California. All rights reserved.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Rice Family papers,
Date (inclusive): 1812-1972,
Date (bulk): bulk 1875-1919
Collection number: MS-R45
Creator: Rice family
Extent: 4.8 linear feet (9 boxes and 4 oversize folders)
Repository: University of California, Irvine. Library. Special Collections and Archives.
Irvine, California 92623-9557
Abstract: This collection comprises materials from the James S. and Cora Rice family of Tustin, California, and other relatives, including Harvey M. Rice, father of James and an Ohio author and legislator; Nettie Rice, sister of James and the first wife of James Irvine I; and the family of J.H. Martin of Carson Valley, Nevada. It also includes material from the Polish-born Shakespearean actress Helena Modjeska who had a summer home in the Santa Ana Mountains of Orange County. The collection includes correspondence, documents, ephemera, newspaper clippings, and photographs.
Language: English.

Administrative Information

Access

Collection open for research.

Publication Rights

Property rights reside with the University of California. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and their heirs. For permissions to reproduce or to publish, please contact the Head of Special Collections and University Archives.

Preferred Citation

Rice Family papers. MS-R45. Special Collections and Archives, The UC Irvine Libraries, Irvine, California. Date accessed.
For the benefit of current and future researchers, please cite any additional information about sources consulted in this collection, including permanent URLs, item or folder descriptions, and box/folder locations.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Harvey M. Rice, 1966

Processing Information

Processed by Phil Brigandi, 2001.

Biography

The Rice family was an important ranching family in Orange County and figured prominently in the growth and development of Tustin. The family is especially noteworthy for its connections to the James Irvine family and to the actress Helena Modjeska.
Harvey M. Rice (1800-1891) was born in Massachusetts and settled in Cleveland, Ohio in 1824, when the community was still a small, frontier town. He worked as a teacher, a newspaper editor, and later as an attorney. In his retirement, he wrote historical sketches and travel pieces, including Life from the Pacific Slope, or First Impressions, which documents an 1869 overland journey to California. He served as an Ohio legislator in the 1830s and as a State Senator in the 1850s. He was noted for having written Ohio's original "common school" law in 1851, a bill later copied by other states. Harvey was honored in later years for his pioneering work in public education, and a statue honoring him was erected in Cleveland in 1899.
Harvey and his wife Maria's daughter, Henrietta Maria (Nettie) Rice (1841-1874), was the first wife of James Irvine I (1827-1886), the founder of the famous Irvine Ranch in Orange County, California. She was the mother of James Irvine II (1867-1947), who was responsible for much of the development of the ranch in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Harvey and Maria Rice's son, James S. Rice (1846-1930), worked in the furniture business in Cleveland with one of his older brothers for 11 years before coming to Southern California in January 1877. His first California venture was raising stock on the Irvine Ranch in partnership with his brother-in-law, James Irvine I. After approximately one year he bought land near Tustin, where he planted oranges. Later he bought 50 acres on First Street, near Tustin, which he planted in grapes. During the Southern California real estate boom of the late 1880s he subdivided and sold much of his ranch, but for many years he retained a 12-acre parcel for oranges. At various times he was also engaged in growing walnuts, celery, and sugar beets in Orange County, and was involved in the early development of Laguna Beach. In 1872, while still in Ohio, James married Coralinn (Cora) Barlow (1850-1919). Cora was a noted singer and actress, and James was well regarded for his musical talents, whistling, and imitations. They often performed for benefits and social events in Orange County and became close friends of the country's most noted actress of the day, Polish-born Helena Modjeska, who also lived in Orange County. Cora's brother, Charles Barlow, settled in the Bakersfield area, where he went on to serve as the local Congressman.
James and Cora Rice had four children: James W., Merrill, Harvey, and Percy F. James W. (ca. 1874-ca.1950) followed in his father's footsteps both as a rancher and as a musician. In approximately 1905 he acquired his own ranch on 17th Street in Tustin. In 1908 he married Reubel Martin (b. 1883), the daughter of Nevada pioneers, who had been educated at Mills College in Oakland. James W. and Reubel had two children, James W. Rice, Jr. and Harvey M. Rice (1913-1974). Reubel Rice's father, J. Henry Martin, had settled in the Carson Valley in Nevada in the 1860s. He was a farmer and a teamster, and he engaged in various business activities in Carson City and in the mining camps of western Nevada and eastern California, including Bodie, California. By the 1880s Martin was active in politics and served as State Senator, representing Douglas County in the late 1890s. He married Katie F. Child, whose family seems to have settled in Nevada in the 1850s.
Merrill (ca.1876-ca.1919) inherited some of his parents' musical talents but seems to have become estranged from his family. Harvey (1879-1900) was considered a promising young man, but he died at the age of 21 due to consumption. Percy F. (1882-1950) became an inventor and patented several devices, including improvements for printing presses, radio tuners, and automotive transmissions. He lived in Orange County for most of his life.

Chronology

1824 Harvey M. Rice settles in Cleveland, Ohio.
1851 Harvey M. Rice drafts Ohio's common school law.
1866 Nettie Rice marries James Irvine I.
1866 James S. Rice enters the furniture business in Cleveland in partnership with his older brother.
1870 Harvey M. Rice publishes Letters from the Pacific Slope, describing his first visit to California in 1869.
1872 James S. Rice marries Coralinn (Cora) Barlow.
1874 James S. Rice makes his first visit to California.
1877 James S. and Cora Rice move to Southern California; after living briefly on the Irvine Ranch, they settle in Tustin.
1887 James S. Rice subdivides his property and places it on the market as Rice's Addition to Tustin.
1888 J.H. Martin runs for the Nevada State Senate.
1896 Harvey Rice loses an arm in a shooting accident.
1896 J.H. Martin is elected to the Nevada State Senate to represent Douglas County.
1899 Reubel Martin enrolls at Mills College.
1899 A statue in honor of Harvey M. Rice is unveiled in Cleveland.
1903 Percy Rice invents an automated paper feeder for printing presses, his first important invention.
1920 James S. Martin serves as Chairman of the Orange County Democratic Central Committee.

Scope and Content of Collection

This collection comprises materials from the James S. and Cora Rice family of Tustin, California, and other relatives, including Harvey M. Rice, father of James and an Ohio author and legislator; Nettie Rice, sister of James and the first wife of James Irvine I; and the family of J.H. Martin of Carson Valley, Nevada. It also includes material from the Polish-born Shakespearean actress Helena Modjeska who had a summer home in the Santa Ana Mountains of Orange County. The collection includes correspondence, documents, ephemera, newspaper clippings, and photographs.

Arrangement

This collection is organized into four series.
  • Series 1. Rice family material, 1812-1972. 2.4 linear ft.
  • Series 2. Helena Modjeska material, 1879-1970. 0.2 linear ft.
  • Series 3. Martin family material, 1822-1907. 0.5 linear ft.
  • Series 4. Photographs, 1854-1961. 1.7 linear ft.

Related Material

Additional material on Helena Modjeska may be found in the Helena Modjeska Collection (MS-R37).

Collection Contents

 

Series 1. Rice family material, 1812-1972

Physical Description: 2.4 linear ft.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains material from the Rice family, primarily James S. and Cora Rice and their children, and documents their activities in Orange County. Some of these items relate to the Irvine family. Materials consist primarily of clippings, ephemera, and documents along with a small amount of correspondence. Included among the James S. and Cora Rice ephemera are several posters announcing upcoming theatrical events in Orange County from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, along with an advertising brochure from the sale of the subdivision of the Rice Ranch in Tustin during the real estate boom of 1887. The folder of Tustin material includes a complete 1886 title report on a number of lots in downtown Tustin, a portion of which were owned by James. The Harvey Rice folder includes information on his activities in Ohio and the statue raised in his honor in 1899. The Percy Rice folder contains information on several of his inventions.
Box 1 : 1

Irvine family, clippings, correspondence, ephemera, ca.1870-1953

Box 1 : 2 - 2, 8 : 7-10

Rice family

Box 2

Artifacts

Box 2

Two stereoscope viewers, ca. 1890

Box 2

Opera glasses recovered after the San Francisco fire by Stella Preble, 1906

Box 8 : 7-10

Books belonging to Rice family members, 1863-1916.

Physical Description: 12 items in 4 folders.

Scope and Content Note

Includes cookbooks, primers, lesson and advice books.
Box 1 : 2

Calling cards, 1878-1881 and undated.

Scope and Content Note

Some may be from Martin family materials in Series 3.
Box 1 : 3

Ephemera, printed, 1883-1923 and undated.

Scope and Content Note

Includes a series of Niagara Falls postcards, business advertisements, and a brochure for Peralta Hall seminary for young ladies (Berkeley, Calif.).
Box FB-28 : 9

Brochure, "Last blazes on the Oregon Trail," 1907

Box FB-28 : 9

Sheet music and advertisement, "Pacoima," 1923

Box FB-28 : 9

Tourist motor map of California, undated

Box 1 : 4

Orange County clippings and ephemera, 1910-1928 and undated

Box 1 : 5

Political ephemera, 1880-1936 and undated

Box 1 : 6

Santa Ana clippings, 1926 and undated

Box FB-31 : 5

Scrapbook pages of clippings on Rice family members, undated

Box 1 : 7

Theatrical material, 1886-1926 and undated

Box 1 : 8

Tustin clippings and documents, 1886-1965 and undated.

Scope and Content Note

Includes 1886 title abstract for property in Tustin.
Box 1 : 9

Rice, Harvey. Documents, correspondence, clippings, and ephemera, 1812-1899 and undated

Box 1 : 10-12

Rice, James S. and Cora

Box 1 : 10

Clippings, 1912-1972 and undated

Box 1 : 11

Documents and correspondence, 1878-1929 and undated

Box FB-28 : 10

House plans, ca. 1887

Box 1 : 12

Ephemera, 1868-1927 and undated

Box 9 OS : 1-2

Portrait paintings of the father and mother of Cora (Mrs. James S.) Rice, undated.

Physical Description: 2 folders.
Box 1 : 13

Rice, James W.

Box 1 : 13

Correspondence, 1888-1919 and undated

Box FB-31 : 4

Sheet music for Bergeuse logusta for violin and piano by James W. Rice, 1906

Box 1 : 14

Rice, James W. and Reubel family. Documents and ephemera, 1901-1943 and undated

Box 1 : 15

Rice, Percy. Documents, correspondence, and clippings, 1925-1953

Box 1 : 16

Rice, Sarah P. Will, 1924

Box 1 : 17

Rice, Walter Percival. Biographical brochure and ephemera, 1929

 

Series 2. Helena Modjeska material, 1879-1970

Physical Description: 0.2 linear ft.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series comprises material collected by the Rice family about their friend, Helena Modjeska. It includes a number of letters from Modjeska and several theatrical programs. It also includes information on her home, "Arden," in Modjeska Canyon in the Santa Ana Mountains, both during Modjeska's occupancy and following her death when the home was being operated as a commercial resort. It also contains a small amount of material from Modjeska's husband, Count Charles Bozenta, and her son, Ralph Modjeska.
Box 3 : 1-7

Modjeska, Helena

Box 3 : 1-4

Correspondence

Box 3 : 1-2

To James S. and Cora Rice, 1890-1908 and undated.

Physical Description: 2 folders.
Box 3 : 3

Miscellaneous outgoing, undated

Box 3 : 4

From Julia Marlowe to Helena Modjeska, undated

Box 3 : 5

Home, "Arden," brochures, ca. 1910

Box 3 : 6

Poems about Modjeska by James S. Rice and anonymous author, 1893-1899 and undated

Box 3 : 7

Programs and articles, 1879-1970 and undated

Box 3 : 8

Bozenta, Count Charles, correspondence, 1880-1892

 

Series 3. Martin family material, 1822-1907

Physical Description: 0.5 linear ft.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series contains material from the family of J.H. and Katie (Child) Martin, parents of Reubel Rice, wife of James W. Rice. It consists primarily of J.H.'s business correspondence from the 1870s and 1880s documenting some of his activities in western Nevada and eastern California. It also contains a journal written by a Martin ancestor, Sarah Hinman, a teacher in Vermont in the mid-1860s, and a few documents from J.H.'s father, Reuben Martin. Additional material from Reubel following her marriage into the Rice family may be found in Series 1.
Box 3 : 9

Hinman, Sarah, journal, 1864-1865

Box 3 : 10-23

Martin, J.H.

Box 3 : 10-18

Correspondence, incoming

Box 3 : 10

General, 1875-1885 and undated

Box 3 : 11

Blanchard, Henry C. (Bodie, Calif.), 1880-1881

Box 3 : 12

Boone, Harvey (Bodie, Calif.), 1879

Box 3 : 13

Huntington, Hopkins & Co. (Sacramento, Calif.), 1881

Box 3 : 14

Ogg, Con (Bodie, Calif.), 1879-1880

Box 3 : 15

Reynolds, E., 1880 and undated

Box 3 : 16

Robson, William (Lundy, Calif.), 1883

Box 3 : 17

Smart, J.C., 1879

Box 3 : 18

Smith Bros. (Teals Marsh, Nev.), 1881

Box 3 : 19

Correspondence, miscellaneous incoming, 1863-1882

Box 3 : 20

Correspondence, outgoing, 1866

Box 3 : 21

Deeds, 1873-1907

Box 3 : 22

Documents and ephemera, 1877-1918 and undated

Box 3 : 23

Invoices and receipts, 1876-1890 and undated

Box 4 : 1-6

Martin, Katie F. (Child)

Box 4 : 1

Child family genealogical notes, undated

Box 4 : 2-4

Correspondence, incoming

Box 4 : 2

General, 1865-1877 and undated

Box 4 : 3

Haskins, W.L.G. (Tustin, Calif.), 1901-1906

Box 4 : 4

Woman's suffrage, 1898

Box 4 : 5

Documents, ephemera, and clippings, 1905-1916 and undated

Box 4 : 6

Scrapbook, 1868-1905

Box 4 : 7

Martin Rice, Reubel, school papers and report cards, 1892-1901 and undated

Box 4 : 8

Martin, Reuben, documents, 1822-1866

 

Series 4. Photographs, 1854-1961

Physical Description: 1.7 linear ft.

Series Scope and Content Summary

This series comprises photographs from all of the various branches of the Rice family. Numerous portraits and snapshots depict family members, including two portraits of Nettie Rice Irvine, the wife of James Irvine I. Photographs in this series depict the Rice family home and ranch; communities in Orange County such as Tustin and Newport Beach; and portraits and photographs of Helena Modjeska and her home in the Santa Ana Mountains.
Box 4 : 9

Irvine, Nettie Rice (Mrs. James), 1867 and undated.

Physical Description: 2 prints.
Box 4 : 10 - 5

Martin family

Box 4 : 10

In Nevada, 1874 and undated.

Physical Description: 8 prints.
Box 4 : 11

People, 1854-1911 and undated.

Physical Description: 27 prints.
Box 5

Martin Rice, Reubel. Album, ca.1900-1910.

Scope and Content Note

Primarily photographs of Mills College and Carson City area; includes cyanotype prints.
Box 4 : 12-14

Modjeska, Helena

Box 4 : 12

Actors who appeared with Modjeska, 1907 and undated.

Physical Description: 4 prints.
Box 4 : 13

Home, "Arden," ca. 1888-1902 and undated.

Physical Description: 6 prints.
Box 4 : 14

Portraits, 1890-1905 and undated.

Physical Description: 16 prints.

Scope and Content Note

Primarily Modjeska in stage roles and Count Bozenta.
Box 6 : 1

Modjeska, Ralph, 1892-1916 and undated.

Physical Description: 3 prints.
Box 5, 6 : 2-5

Rice family

Box 6 : 2

In California, 1906 and undated.

Physical Description: 13 prints.

Scope and Content Note

Includes photographs of the Mt. Lowe railway and San Francisco after the earthquake.
Box 6 : 3

In Ohio, undated.

Physical Description: 4 prints.
Box 6 : 4

In Orange County, 1891-1933 and undated.

Physical Description: 16 prints.
Box 6 : 5

People, 1920-1961 and undated.

Physical Description: 68 prints.
Box 5

Framed portraits, ca. 1930-1960.

Physical Description: 5 items.
Box 6 : 6-7

Rice, Cora

Box 6 : 6

Portraits, 1911-1919 and undated.

Physical Description: 35 prints.
Box 6 : 7

Stage roles, 1886-1900 and undated.

Physical Description: 7 prints.
Box 6 : 8

Rice, Harvey, 1898 and undated.

Physical Description: 12 prints.
Box 6 : 9

Rice, Harvey and Maria, undated.

Physical Description: 7 prints, including 1 ambrotype and 1 tintype.
Box 7 : 1

Rice, James S., 1870-1921 and undated.

Physical Description: 42 prints.
Box 5, 7 : 2-5

Rice, James S. and Cora

Box 5

Album, ca.1900.

Scope and Content Note

Primarily photographs of the Rice Ranch in Tustin.
Box 5

Cartes-de-visite album of family portraits, ca.1870-1880

Box 7 : 2

Friends, Orange County, 1896-1921 and undated.

Physical Description: 11 prints.
Box 7 : 3

Boyd, Dr. J. P., undated.

Physical Description: 3 prints.
Box 7 : 4

Home, Tustin, 1887-1918 and undated.

Physical Description: 38 prints.
Box 7 : 5

Sons, 1885-1910 and undated.

Physical Description: 6 prints.
Box 7 : 6

Rice, James W. family, 1892-1912 and undated.

Physical Description: 20 prints.
Box 7 : 7

Rice, Merrill, 1897 and undated.

Physical Description: 9 prints.

Scope and Content Note

Includes photographs of his "wave motor" prototype and its trial at Laguna Beach.
Box 7 : 8 - 8 : 1

Rice, Percy

Box 8 : 1

Album, 1912-1942 and undated.

Scope and Content Note

Primarily ranching photographs and photographs of some of Percy Rice's inventions.
Box 7 : 8

Photographs, ca. 1898-1929 and undated.

Physical Description: 14 prints
 

Stereographs

Box 8 : 2

Bridge collapse, Ohio(?), ca.1880.

Physical Description: 8 cards.
Box 8 : 3

California, ca.1880.

Physical Description: 2 cards.
Box 8 : 4

Chicago fire, 1871.

Physical Description: 9 cards.
Box 8 : 5

Niagara Falls, ca.1880.

Physical Description: 5 cards.
Box 8 : 6

United States and England, ca.1880.

Physical Description: 6 cards.