Mrs. E. G. Greene, the W.C.T.U., and kindergartens in Santa Cruz, 1885-1899

 

Introduction

 

The Woman’s Christian Temperance Union is one of those astounding organizations which from time to time in American history has quickly gathered huge number of members and swept across the country, making itself known, heard, and even feared almost everywhere.  Beginning in 1874 in Chautauqua, New York, the ladies of the W.C.T.U. were fighting the use of liquor as far away as California by 1879.  They did not accomplish this without strong leaders, most notably their second president and most potent organizer, Frances Willard.  There were many others as well.  One was Mary J. Greene, that is, Mrs. E. G., Greene, who combined her national activities as a pioneer in the promotion of kindergartens in the United States with her dynamic local presence in Santa Cruz.  The present essay is not the complete history of her life, but is, rather, the story of an extraordinary woman in Santa Cruz.

 

Origins in Vermont

 

Mary J. Wright was born in Poultney, Vermont in 1841.  Her father, William, had been born in Scotland; her mother, Jerusha, was born in Vermont. (1)  About 1843 William Wright and his family moved from Poultney in southern Vermont to St. Albans in the northern part of the state. Mary J. received a classical education in Castleton Seminary [in southern Vermont] and taught high  school in St. Albans.  In 1865 she married Edward. G. Greene in St. Albans. They had two children, both of whom died in infancy. (2)

 

Edward was born in 1834 in St. Albans of parents also born in Vermont. (3)  The “G” in his name stood for Griswold, (4) although this name appears in no document discovered in the preparation of the present article.  He referred to himself as E. G. in all the documents and articles used to prepare this article except property deeds, in which he expanded the E. to Edward.

 

Greenes were plentiful in St. Albans around 1880.  E. G’s grandfather, Job Greene, and his grandfather’s brother, Nathan Greene, had settled there in 1786.  Both had many children, including Job’s son Orrin, E. G’s father. (5)  Although Edward G. was the oldest of Orrin’s 11 children, his widowed mother was still alive in 1892. (6) The mother, Phebe Clark Greene, (7) was living with another of her children in St. Albans in 1880. (8))

 

In 1865 E. G. Greene and S. C. Greene opened a stove, range, furnace, and miscellanies store in St. Albans.  In 1884, however, an A. W. Clark. replaced E. G. Greene (9)  As time went on E. G. Greene also dealt in real estate in the U. S. West (not California at that time).  From 1870 to 1882 he was a St. Albans Selectman, in 1878 he was elected to the Vermont Legislature, and in 1884 he was elected to the Vermont State Senate. (10)

 

For the first twenty years of their marriage Mr. and Mrs. E. G. Greene continued to live in St. Albans.  According to the 1880 U. S. Census, Edward G. Greene, age 45, born in Vermont, parents born in Vermont, stove dealer, was living in a residential hotel in St. Albans, Vermont.  Jane Greene, age 39, born in Vermont, her father born in Scotland, her mother born in Vermont, no occupation, was listed at the same address and next to Edward G. Greene.  Both are listed as “single.”  The hand-written Census enumeration clearly gives the name as “Jane;”  the checkmarks in the marital staus column clearly indicate that the two are single.  Nevertheless, their proximity in the hotel, their ages, the origins of them and their parents, and the entrepreneurial character of Edward leave no reason to doubt that they are the Mr. and Mrs. E. G. Greene of this essay.

 

Mrs. Greene became a prominent member of the W.C.T.U. while she was still in Vermont.  She was the State Secretary for four years and then the State President for four more years.  While in Vermont she wrote the book, Pathfinders for the organization and work of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. (11)

 

In addition to being a strong organizational person for the W.C.T.U., Mrs. Greene also enriched it with her deep interest in the American kindergarten movement.  The notion of the kindergarten as a place where teaching methods were adapted to children rather than children adapted to the traditional teaching methods had been championed by Friedrich Froebel in Germany in the 1830s.  The first American kindergarten was established in 1856 in Wisconsin.  Its language was German.  The first English language kindergarten in the U. S. was founded in 1860 in Boston by the outstanding educator and transcendentalist Elizabeth Peabody.

 

Receiving her training for the organization of kindergartens in New York, (12) Mrs. Greene became the W.C.T.U.’s first National Superintendent of Kindergarten Work in 1884, when its Department of Kindergarten Work was instituted. (13)  At that time kindergartens were not part of the public school system, but were run privately or by organizations such as churches, much as preschools are at present.  Thus the W.C.T.U., which paid great attention to the education of youth, was a logical provider of information about organizing kindergartens and of education for kindergarten teachers.  Mrs. Greene’s article, “The Kindergarten and the Sunday School,” illustrates the first function and her article, “Essential education for Women” illustrates the second.  (See Appendix for the text of the articles.)

 

 

Move to Santa Cruz

 

In 1885, the very year following her assumption of the national office, Mrs. Greene, although retaining her responsibilities, moved all the way across the continent:  “The address of Mrs. E. G. Greene, National Superintendent of Kindergarten Work, is for the present, Santa Cruz, California.” (14)

 

It is not clear that the Greenes particularly wanted to come to Santa Cruz to live.  They were drawn there by the circumstance of the death of Allan Wright, William Wright’s brother and Mary J.’s uncle.

 

Allan Gilmore Wright, born in Scotland, settled in Santa Cruz in 1853.  His wife, Rosaline Strong Wright, born in Vermont, died childless in 1858 in Santa Cruz. (15)  Alan was an early property owner on the near west side of Santa Cruz, having 39.147 acres on Mission Street. (16)  The house he started to build on the property in 1870 was located between present Rigg and Laurel Streets. (17)

 

In June, 1885 Allan Wright died in Santa Cruz. (18)  He was an unusual man, who in 1864 had applied for a patent on an improvement on farm cultivators. (19) Dubbed “Crazy Wright” because of his eccentricities, he left the unfinished house and “twenty [sic] acres” of land on Mission street with a $1,700 mortgage to M. A. Meder.  He had a living sister in Canada and a living brother [William] in Vermont. (20)  Since Allan did not have children his brother and sister and numerous nieces and nephews had claims to the property.  In a complex series of deeds, which was not completed until 1887, the ownership of 28.8 acres of land owned by Allan, between Mission and King Streets, from Laurel Avenue east, was transferred to Mr. E. G. Greene. (21)

 

Both Greenes, Mary J.’s father, William, one of her sisters (Elizabeth or Frances), and her grandniece, Frances Matilda, daughter of her aunt in Canada, moved to Santa Cruz.  They then lived in the house Allan had begun to build years earlier [at 347 Mission Street] and was now enlarged and completed with notably high quality workmanship.  Mr. E. G. had an office on the first floor and Mrs. E. G  had a “a pleasant little study” on the second floor. (22)  The house was later “occupied” by Joseph Enright, son of an early Santa Cruz immigrant Enright.  It was torn down “A dozen years ago.” (23)

 

 

Mrs. E. G. Greene’s W.C.T.U. activities in Santa Cruz

 

Visiting Santa Cruz in 1883, Frances Willard herself organized the Santa Cruz Union. (24) Mrs. Greene arrived only two years later and she quickly established herself as a resource person and a leader for the W.C.T.U. in Santa Cruz, Monterey, and San Benito Counties, a role which she retained for many years. (25)

 

The following chronology of Mrs. Greene’s W.C.T.U. talks, trips, and articles has been assembled from firsthand sources, local and national.  Clearly it represents only a sample of this busy lady’s agenda. 

 

1886

In April the W.C.T.U. weekly newspaper, The Union Signal, printed an article about Mrs. E. G. Greene’s class for kindergarten teachers.  At the first meeting she spoke about educational methods in various cultures.  In the main she followed the recently published History of Pedagogy of Gabriel Compayré, translated by W. H. Payne. The second class consisted of a quiz on the readings of the first, with such questions as, “Give a brief account of French pedagogy,” “Mention distinctive features of Hindoo system,” What place in the education of the individual did Plato give to the soul? “What did Charlemagne give to education?” and “Give history of the founding of the Kindergarten by Froebel.” (text in appendix)

 

In September it was reported that “Mrs. E. G. Greene, of this place, spoke at Chico on the evening of the 19th, on the topic, ‘Shall our children be free?’ under the auspices of the W.C.T.U.” (26)

 

1887

In March, upon her return from the East, where she was “honored with large and appreciative audiences,” Mrs. E. G. Greene was to speak at the W.C.T.U. meeting of March 17. (27)

 

Mrs. Greene was not reelected at the end of her term as President of the Santa Cruz Union in September because she was going for ”a few months visit to the East.”  As she relinquished the presidency, it was noted that “from her long experience in the work she was peculiarly qualified and ever ready to give us words of encouragement sympathy or instruction as she saw our need of them.” (28)

 

1888

Mrs. Greene’s article,“Essential Education for Women,” appeared in the May issue of the national publication The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents.  In it she argued that women are eminently suited by nature to teach with the methods of Froebel. Furthermore, “This century will place the early education of the child where it belongs, and woman will take her place as the acknowledged educator.”  “Hence no effort should be spared to bring the knowledge of the Kindergarten to young women; it belongs to them, it is their heritage; their profession.” (text in appendix)

 

In June it was reported that“Mrs. E. G. Greene, National Superintendent of Kindergarten Department of the W.C.T.U., and author of “Golden Keys” (elsewhere noticed)[see below], is having a delightful time with Miss Cora L. Stockham ‘of ours’ visiting the Kindergartens of the East. They are cordially welcomed and receive every courtesy.  By invitation of Mrs. McBride, Secretary of the International Woman’s Press Asssociation, they attended the New England Woman’s Press Club, May 15th, at Boston.  Mrs. A. E. Whittaker read a very instructiv [sic] paper on  “Oportunities of Women in Journalism.”  An interesting discussion followed.  Mrs. Ormiston Chant, of England, gave a bit of her American experience in her usual charming manner.  Mrs. Greene was invited to present her department of work, and Miss Stockham to talk of THE KINDERGARTEN. [Miss Stockham was its editor.] The interest shown was truly gratifying.” (29)

 

In the same month of June Mrs. E. G. Greene’s book, Golden Keys, was published.  An article in the The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents tells about the book:

 

“TEMPERANCE KINDERGARTEN: Mrs. E. G. Greene, Santa Cruz, California, is superintendent of this department of W.C.T.U. work.  Its aims are to bring to the mothers a knowledge of the Froebel method of instruction, and to interest them in its use in the home; also to establish kindergarten schools and to introduce temperance instruction wherever this system is used.  In addition to these methods, efforts will be made to interest young ladies to prepare thmselves to become teachers in Kindergarten schools.  Mrs. Greene has just issued a Manual of Hints and Helps, entitled GOLDEN KEYS.  It is intended for all who work for children, for all who are interested in young women and for all mothers.” (30)

 

In October The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents printed another article by Mrs. Greene, “The Kindergarten and the Sunday School.”  Briefly, in the words of the article, “The Sunday-school relates itself to the child more tenderly, takes it more lovingly by the hand, draws it more closely to the heart, and holds it nearer and dearer, than any institution outside of the home.”  Therefore, she argued, “The Sunday-school holds the golden opportunity for the spiritual culture of the child, which there brings to the teacher its best self, seeking nourishment.”  She also observed that “The threefold nature of the child must be trained into equipoise.  The health of the body, the vigor of the intellect, the spontaneity of the soul must together govern the conduct.”  This training, however, “is the work of the Kindergarten.”  And so, the Kindergarten “looks hopefully toward the Sunday-school, as a co-worker in this complete education.” (text in appendix.)

 

1891

Mrs. Greene’s article, “The School of Methods,” a lengthy account of a three-week summer school for teachers in San Jose, appeared in the Daily Surf in July.  In addition to lectures and symposia, the teachers were given field trips to the Lick Astronomical Observatory and to Stanford University.  (text in appendix)

 

1892

The brief history of the W.C.T.U. in Santa Cruz County in E. S. Harrison’s 1892 book, History of Santa Cruz County, California, pages 208-209, was written by Mrs. E. G. Greene herself.

 

Mrs. E. G. Greene resigned as National Kindergarten Superintendent. (31)  There were six W.C.T.U. National Superintendents of Kindergarten Work after Mrs. E. G. Greene, and by 1924 this department no longer existed. (32) From the time when Mrs. Greene began kindergarten work for the W.C.T.U. the American concept of kindergarten evolved into its being a function of the public school system rather than of private schools.

 

1895

“Mrs. E. G. Greene, who has been lecturing in the northern part of the State for nearly a month, has returned to her home on Mission street.” (33)

 

Church and Civic Activities

 

Mary J. Greene had entirely too much energy to confine it to her role in the W.C.T.U.  While she lived in Santa Cruz she provided leadership in the Congregational Church and in civic affairs, as shown by the following chronology.  Once again the list is made from snippets of information, and, clearly, much could be added to it.

 

1887

Mrs. E. G. Greene was a member of the District Committee of District Six of the Improvement Society, the task of which was to work so that “Santa Cruz be freed from all blemishes and her natural beauty enhanced by all that art and industry can do.” (34)

 

1890

The Kindergarten on Mission Street charged a small fee and had a fund for those who were not able to pay.  It was preparing the operetta ‘Little Red Ridinghood.’  In a brief newspaper article mentioning the kindergarten and praising it Mrs. Greene asked the public to show greater interest in it. (35)

In December The Daily Surf printed Mrs. Greene’s “A School House on Every Hilltop,” an impassioned plea for people to attend a meeting on the importance of the public schools.  The meeting was to be held at the Congregational church, where Prof. Clark was to speak on “The Home, the School, and the Nation.” (text of article in appendix)

 

1891

In a public meeting the Santa Cruz Lecture Association was formed.  “Its purpose shall be to maintain a course of lectures and entertainments of an educational character.”  Among the approximately 20 persons signing the constitution were Mr. and Mrs. E. G. Greene.  Mrs. Greene was one of an ad hoc committee of three who drew up the constitution. (36)

 

Among the set of officers elected September, 1891 to succeed the previous, original, officers of the Santa Cruz Congregational Church’s Woman’s Home Missionary Society, Mrs. E. G. Greene was elected Secretary. (37)

 

1893

The Home Missionary Society and the Foreign Missionary Society of the Santa Cruz Congregational Church merged, and Mrs. E. G. Greene was elected President. (38)

 

1885-1899 Mr. E. G. Greene’s Activities

 

Although the present article is primarily about Mrs. E. G. Greene’s presence in Santa Cruz, her husband, Mr. E. G. was better known locally, and was, indeed, considered one of the prominent businessmen of the city.  News about him from contemporary sources provides some background and contrast for the news about his wife.  One type of information about him which is not available about Mary J. is the physical description provided by the Great Register, Santa Cruz County 1892: “Greene, Edward G. 5’10”, Fair, Blue eyes, light hair, born in Vermont, res: 347 Mission st, 6th precinct, SC.”

 

1887

Recently returned from a business trip of several months in New England, E. G. Greene was interviewed by the Surf concerning Santa Cruz’s future as a destination for eastern immigration.  He was enthusiastic about the potential of Santa Cruz, but he thought more publicity was needed. (39)

 

1891

E. G. Greene was one of the seven original directors of the newly incorporated Santa Cruz, Garfield Park, and Capitola Electric railway. (40)

 

As noted above, in a public meeting the Santa Cruz Lecture Association was formed.  Both Greenes were among the approximately 20 persons signing the constitution.  Mr. Greene  was among those representing “the commercial world.”  Mrs. Greene, however, was  one of the committee which  drew up the association’s constitution. (41)

 

1892

Elected to the City of Santa Cruz Common Council, Mr. E. G. Greene began his two-year term.  He was on the Council until 1894. (42)  When the Common Council had to vote on permitting electification of the Pacific Avenue horsecar line Greene abstained because he was a stockholder in this railroad. (43)

 

1894

In February Mr. E. G. Greene informed the Surf that March 3 would be “Vermont Day” at Santa Cruz’s Midwinter Fair.  Present were to be over one hundred Vermonters, as well as Governor Fuller and “Lieutenant-Governor Stranahan of St. Albans, an old friend of Mr. Greene.” (44)

 

1896-1898

E. G. Greene sold many of the lots he had carved out of the old Wright property and a property he had acquired between Mission and King Streets west of Laurel Street.  Two of the lots west of Laurel he sold to his wife. (45)

 

1897

In May the Daily Surf carried a front page glowing report on the prospect for success of the Junction Mine, a property near Grant’s Pass, Oregon, apparently containing 50 acres of gold bearing gravel, owned by E. G. Greene and D. Younglove of Santa Cruz.  Capital was to be needed to construct the water supply for the hydraulic extraction of the mineral. (46)

 

1898

In the November elections E. G. Greene was the Democratic & People’s Party candidate for County Treasurer.  On October 31 and November 4 and 7 the Daily Surf printed information about him as well as his campaign statement and its endorsement of him.  On November 9, the day after the election, the Surf carried the election returns: “REPUBLICANS MADE A CLEAN SWEEP.” None of Greene’s party won any office in this election, but the candidate who was the most severely trounced was Greene himself.

 

 

The Greenes and the Wrights depart from Santa Cruz

 

1892

Frances Matilda Wright of 347 Mission Street, age 15, born in Canada, died in February. (47)

 

1898

William Wright of 347 Mission Street, age 84, born in Scotland, died in April, 1898.  E. G. Greene paid for the burial. (48)

 

1899

“The tri-county-Santa Cruz, San Benito and Monterey-was obliged to elect a new president, Mrs. E. G. Greene, who had served them long and well, having removed to another county.” (49)

 

1903 Edward C. [sic] Greene, formerly of Santa Cruz, was residing in Palo Alto. (50)

 

1906

An advertisement for Mrs. E. G. Greene’s book Golden Keys in The Kindergarten Magazine and Pedagogical Digest, November, 1906 stated that Mrs. Greene’s address was St. Albans, Vermont.  I have not pursued records concerning Mrs. Greene’s last years and death.

 

1909

Edward Griswold Greene died. (51)

 

 

NOTES

 

1          Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County p. 359, where she is called Mary Jean.  In the U. S. Census of 1880 she was Jane, and in the deeds to property in Santa Cruz she was Mary J.  Much as I would like to refer to her in this article as Mary J. Greene to emphasize her independence from her husband, the consistency with which she was known as Mrs. E. G. Greene in Santa Cruz, in St. Albans, and wherever else she went counsel me as a rule to use Mrs. E. G. Greene.  That her mother was Jerusha Wright appears from the enumeration of the Wright family in the 1870 U. S. Census

 

2          Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County p. 359

 

3          Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County p. 358.  The IGI Individual Record gives the birth date as May 11, 1835.  Where there is discrepancy about the facts, with due respect to the genealogists who present information about Greene in the IGI Individual Record and in the website, shadesofthedeparted.com 2009, I follow Harrison’s History of Santa Cruz County because Harrison presumably took his information directly from Greene.  The confusion about the year and day of Greene’s birth evidently arises from the coincidence that in 1860 there were two young Edward Greenes in St. Albans, one born in 1834 and the other in 1835.  Both were clerks in (different) stores and both lived in the household of the store’s proprietor according to the 1860 U. S. Census.  Born in 1834 was “E. G. Greene,” and born in 1835 was “Edward Green.”) 

 

4          IGI Individual Record

 

5          Ebenez’r Allen, History of Franklin and Grand Isle Counties, Vermont.  Syracuse, N. Y.: 1891, p. 323

 

6          Harrison, loc. cit.

 

7          IGI Individual Record

 

8          U. S. Census, where her name is spelled Pheba

 

9          A Centennial History of St. Albans, Vermont, pagination unclear

 

10        Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County p. 358

 

11        Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County p. 359

 

12        ibid.

 

13        Gordon, Women Torchbearers, p. 298

 

14        Union Signal, Oct. 22, 1885

 

15        Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery records

 

16        Map: Santa Cruz Surveyed by Foreman & Wright 1866

 

17        Chase, Sidewalk Companion, p. 235

 

18        Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery records

 

19        “From notebook w/Hecox Tilden effects” in Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery file

 

20        S.C. Sentinel, June 19, 1885

 

21        Santa Cruz County Deeds, Book 48 Page 428, Book 49 Page 274, Book 53 Page 30; Book 57 Page 103

 

22        Daily Surf, August 8, 1889.  Unfortunately the writer of the Surf’s article thought that William was the brother who had died, and that Mrs. E. G.’s mother came with her, although the 1880 U.S. Census shows that her father was a widower at that time.

 

23        Undated clipping – with a photo - “From The Preston Sawyer Collection” in an unidentified newspaper in Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery file

 

24        Paul Tutwiler, Santa Cruz Spirituality. Santa Cruz: 4th ed., 2009, Chapter 5, “Particulars: Woman’s Christian Temperance Union”

 

25        Union Signal, Sep. 22, 1887 and June 1, 1899

 

26        Daily Surf, Sep. 20, 1886

 

27        Daily Surf, March 17, 1887

 

28        Union Signal, Sep 22, 1887

 

29        The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents, June, 1888

 

30        The Kinderegarten for Teachers and Parents, loc. cit.

 

31        Harrison, History of Santa Cruz County, p. 359

 

32        Gordon, Women Torchbearers, p. 298

 

33        Daily Surf, Sep. 11, 1895

 

34        Daily Surf, August 6, 1887

 

35        Daily Surf, March 31, 1890

 

36        Daily Surf, Aug. 28, 1891)

 

37        Witness, p. 95

 

38        Witness, p. 97

 

39        Daily Surf, August 20, 1887

 

40        McCaleb, Surf Sand & Streetcars, p. 39

 

41        Daily Surf, Aug. 28, 1891

 

42        www.santacruzpl.org/history/articles/325 2009

 

43        McCaleb, Surf Sand & Streetcars, p. 42

 

44        Daily Surf, Feb. 26, 1894

 

45        Santa Cruz County Deeds, Book 105, Page 72, Book 110 Page 186, Book 123 Page 232; Book 127 Pages 30 and 40

 

46        Daily Surf, May 19, 1887

 

47        Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery file

 

48        Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery file

 

49        Union Signal, June 1, 1899

 

50        McCaleb, Surf Sand & Streetcars, p. 112.  I have not been able to check this with documents of the period.

 

51        FamilySearch International Genealogical Index v5.0.  This source has no further details about the place or circumstances of his death.

 

 

BIBLIOGRAPHY

 

Ebenez’r Allen. History of Franklin and Grand Isle Counties, Vermont.  Syracuse, N. Y.: 1891.

 

A centennial history of St. Albans, Vermont. Published for the St. Albans Board of Trade, 1889; copy used is in www.archive.org 2009, scanned from a copy in the New York Public Library.

 

A Century of Christian Witness: History of First Congregational Church, Santa Cruz, California. Santa Cruz: Church Historical Committee, 1963.

 

Foreman & Wright, Surveyers.  “Santa Cruz Surveyed by Foreman and Wright 1866.”

 

Elizabeth Putnam Gordon. Women Torch-bearers: The Story of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. Evanston, Illinois, National Woman’s Christian Temperance Union Publishing House, 1924.

 

E. S. Harrison. History of Santa Cruz County, California. San Francisco: Pacific Press Publ. Co., 1892.

 

Great Register, Santa Cruz County 1892.

 

IGI Individual Record, FamilySearch International Genealogical Index v5.0.

 

Charles S. McCaleb. Surf Sand & Streetcars: A Mobile History of Santa Cruz, California. Santa Cruz: History Museum of Santa Cruz County, 1995.

 

Santa Cruz County Deeds.

 

Santa Cruz County Museum of Art & History Evergreen Cemetery records.

 

Santa Cruz Daily Surf

 

Santa Cruz Sentinel.

 

Paul Tutwiler, Santa Cruz Spirituality. Santa Cruz: 4th ed., 2009

 

The Union Signal: official journal of the WCTU. Evanston, Illinois: Signal Press.

 

United States Census Enumeration, St. Albans, Vermont, 1860, 1870, and 1880.

 

www.santacruzpl.org/history/articles 2009

 

 

APPENDIX.  BOOKS AND ARTICLES BY MRS. E. G. GREENE

 

Books

 

Pathfinders for the organization and work of the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. New York: National Temperance Society and Publication House, 1884, 184 pages.

 

Golden Keys, The Kindergarten out of School. Chicago: Woman’s Temperance Publication Association, 1888, 91 pages.

 

Articles (full texts)

 

SANTA CRUZ KINDERGARTEN CLASS

(From The Union Signal, April 8, 1886)

 

The Santa Cruz Union have organized a Kindergarten class.  At their first meeting a talk was given by the National Superintendent on work of class.

 

The lesson was on the doctrines and methods of educators in different nations.  Extracts were read from Payne’s History of Pedagogy (published by Heath & Co., Boston [in 1885]), and on the following [Ernst] Steiger’s tracts: “What is the Purpose of the Kindergarten?” “Froebel and the Kindergarten System.” “The Genesis of Froebelism.”  “The Medical Profession Recommend the Kindergarten,”  “Froebel’s First Gift for Babies.”  Also extracts from [Edouard] Seguin’s Report of Education and Methods of Teaching, and Philosophical training of Children.

 

Discussion of various topics followed the reading.

 

The second meeting of the class was a quiz on the readings of the previous meeting.  The following is the list of the questions used:

 

1.         How does the ideal of the perfect man affect education of a people?

2.         Give a brief account of French pedagogy.

3.         German.

4.         What causes fluctuation in educational systems?

5.         Mention some things which affect educational systems.

6.         Mention distinctive features of Hindoo system.

7.         Buddhist.

8.         Israelites.

9.         Romans.

10.       Athenian.

11.       Spartan.

12.       How did Renan think probably Christ learned to read?

13.       What place did Aristotle and Plato accord to music?

14.       How were the laws of Greece promulgated?

15.       Mention some of the peculiarities of Socrates’ method of teaching.

16.       What place in the education of the individual did Plato give to the soul?

17.       What did St. Jerome say regarding the education of girls?

18.       What did Charlemagne give to education?

19.       Give history of the founding of the Kindergarten by Froebel.

20.       When does education begin?

21.       Do the medical authorities recommend the Kindergarten?

22.       Mention some special action of the Medical Society.

 

The third meeting is to be a review of the last from the notes taken by the class.  Extracts will be read from “The Laws of Childhood” and “The Child,” also a talk on the use of the ball (the first gift).

 

Much interest was manifested by the members.  Great stress was laid upon the thought that education for children should be physiologically obtained.  The mother’s training should be the beginning of this application of physiological principles, then she must desire it to continue when she places her child in the school, and will therefore work for the physiological training of teachers.  Seguin says: “When the school shall be taught by women and controlled by physiologists, a child will not enter it like cattle a corral; only, being counted in again, do not touch these unknown quantities of vital activity, called children, before you have taken the bilan of the forces of each, so that what can be spent and what spared of his vitality of caloric during the combustive process of educational labors, might be measured as mathematically as the quantity of coal to run an engine.”

 

“To defend their countries the Austrian the Frenchman, the Prussian, the Russian, keep under arms in idleness 500,000 or more young men.  To protect ours against its only enemy, bigoted ignorance, we must have an army of 500,000 young girls, teaching our children in squads of twenty and preparing themselves for the duties of motherhood, so much higher than those of paternity.”

 

“To Salvandy belongs the honor of having officially said that the teaching of the people needs to be organized.”  Why should not the W.C.T.U., the grandest organization of women in the world, step at once into its right place in the American educational system.  Its members are students of heredity and of hygiene, and are fitting themselves to understand the practical application of their knowledge, and the next place where duty naturally follows is in the development of the child as taught by the Kindergarten; why may they not be the school and home physiologists?

 

 

ESSENTIAL EDUCATION FOR WOMEN

(From The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents, May, 1888, pp. 83-85)

 

Miss Peabody rightly says, “To be a Kindergartner is the perfect development of womanliness—-a working with God at the very fountain of artistic and intellectual power and moral character.  It is therefore the highest finish that can be given to a woman’s education to be educated for a Kindergartner.”  What a responsibility rests upon the Kindergartner, and how great the significance of her office—-“a working with God.”

 

What an advance this marks in the education of women.  The Kindergartner herself must possess this development of womanliness, this “finish,” this “all around” education.  She must not only understand the manipulation of the Gifts, have a full knowledge of the history of education, and Froebel’s principles, but this “development” which she would bring to the child must be hers, as well.  Would she attract other young women to this work and have them share with her the blessedness, she must become all that it is “to be a Kindergartner.”

 

I like Miss Peabody’s definition, there is nothing exclusive about it. It seems to mean, whosoever will, let him come.  I am so glad it does not say, that no one can possess it who has not been through a college course, and that it also means that the most thorough course of education needs just this finish.  Nor does it imply that this education is confined to sex, but whosoever, whether man or woman possesses it has gained a fitting work, “the very fountain of artistic and intellectual power and moral character.”

 

What a source of power, and how every true Kindergartner ought to desire it for young women, and not only desire it but work to bring a knowledge of the system to them.  There needs to be a real bond of womanhood between those who understand what this work means for women and children; what it means for home and society; what it means for the young women.  To them it is life’s richest boon; all true Kindergartners know what this work has done for them —- what a revelation of themselves they have received as they have studied the child.  What an immense power this education would be if possessed by all who work in any way for childhood.  The mother-heart of the world is stirred, the life-work of woman is claiming a large share of her thought.  Here is the one sphere which is so clearly indicated by nature that no one has arisen to dispute woman’s right to it —- her illimitable influence in the character-forming of childhood.  This is more and more apparent.  Heredity has discovered the effect of ignorance of the simplest laws of life upon the health and character of the race.   It has passed into a proverb, that whatever we would have appear in the character, must be built into it.  Thus since woman’s work is largely dealing with character-building, how very important it is, then that all things connected with the care and trainng of children should receive attention.  The Kindergarten not only qualifies for early child training, but also prepares the parent to assume the whole training, with the help of the teacher during a few hours of the day; the remaining hours being so arranged that the life, in and out of school, forms one harmonious whole.  Here the elder sister also finds ample scope for using her Kindergarten training, and in the Primary Sunday-school class, where she may wisely deal with the spiritual natures of the little ones which now so largely dominates their life.  For in those early days the image of the Father shines out most clearly and she carefully strengthens this budding grace of childhood that it may in time grow into a consciousness of the grand truth that ‘In Him we live and move and have our being.’  The primal days of life are becoming the most dearly prized, the golden opportunity, the rooting time for principles.  Oh, girls, with time and talent who can choose your life work,-- would you set it far away from childhood?  Nay, build no palaces where the merry laughter of children shall not be heard.  Come with us and learn all that this blessed gospel of education holds for you.

 

If I am able to read the prophecy manifest on every hand, it is, that the time is ripe for a step forward in this work, a real shoulder to shoulder onward march.

 

This century will place the early education of the child where it belongs, and woman will take her place as the acknowledged educator.  This necessary training for her natural vocation will be considered an essential part of every woman’s education.  Whatever may be left out of education, this greatest of sciences will receive attention, and be deemed essential not only to all women, but to all men.  We shall require no less of physiology, of mental and moral science or of philosophy; nothing less of botany, of rhetoric, of all that intellect or heart can bring; only added to this will be education child-ward.  Only let this love which cradles infant life be more wise, and set forth more truly the type of the Divine.

 

Let the early, delicate, helpless days of life be guarded from inexperienced care-takers, and let all who come to this sacred trust have special training for their work.  Let them learn the secret of true education, which is preserving the harmonious balance of the faculties, and also that right beginnings are of immeasurable importance.  Hence no effort should be spared to bring the knowledge of the Kindergarten to young women; it belongs to them, it is their heritage; their profession.  I would ask no better dower for any young woman than this training.  What a safeguard from trials incident to ignorance, what a meaning it gives to human life, what a responsibility in shaping and controlling human forces.  How the training and teaching of children would deepen in importance; how the mother’s mission would be elevated into a sacred trust; how noble would be laid the foundation of family life; how the purity of social life would admust itself.  There would indeed be “Sermons in stones and books in running brooks.”  The harmonies of life could set about the soul at its coming-— and no rude, base passion would control the destinies of man.  There are scores of young women ready for this training.  But a few practical questions always confront them.  The expense? The leaving home: Is there lack of employment when trained?

 

The value of this education is such, that as rapidly as possible the way ought to be made very plain for those who desire to take the training.  To arouse more interest in this education and thus create a demand for Kindergartners is an excellent way to solve the question, “What shall we do with our daughters?”  Woman holds the solution of this question in her hands to-day.  To her kingdom belong those subjects over which church and state had bitter controversy.  How little do we appreciate our power to form the characters of the world.  Horace Mann says: “I have no firmer belief than that a wise womanhood could take the race in its arms as a mother takes her babe, and shield it from harm, nurse it into immortal strength and beauty, and train it into such a glorious manhood as should be worthy [of] its nature and its Author.”

 

Froebel says: “Many a young man would have known how to be useful, would not have lost his power in the bloom of his youth, if his parents or teachers had followed in his education the principles laid down in my book for mothers.”

 

The beautiful, healthy young wife of Froebel gave her whole soul, her efforts and her money, to assist him in his work for the Kindergarten, into which he entered with almost unparalleled zeal and devotion, bringing to it all his knowledge of the sciences, of several languages, and of education.  His life was spent in search for a better education for childhood, over whose temple he read, “Of such is the Kingdom of heaven,” an education, which would give to the child from the start, the riches of this Kingdom, which are his due.

 

This is the education which he leaves as a legacy to the young men and women who are ready to enter into possession.  The appeal which more than fifty years ago Froebel sent out to the women of Germany, has gathered more force with the years, and comes to the women of America with more of hope than to any other people.

 

The universal educating power of women is recognized, and there remains the duty of bringing to all a knowledge of the first principles of education.  This task demands the attention of every woman.

 

 

THE KINDERGARTEN AND THE SUNDAY SCHOOL

(From The Kindergarten for Teachers and Parents, October, 1888, pp. 180-182)

 

The Kindergarten is the most adequate system for the religious nurture of childhood, therefore it can readily attach itself to every work which deals with the spiritual nature of the child.  It is eminently adapted to the Sunday-school and should go hand in hand with it.

 

The child is a growing human plant, possessed of a God-likeness, capable of development.

 

Educators are the gardeners to whom is entrusted the culture of this priceless immortal being.  At the very outset it is essential that the conditions to be met shall be fully recognized, the first of which is orderly doing for the child and by the child.

 

Order is the key-stone of character, “the sanity of the mind, the health of the body, the peace of the city, the security of the state.’  Second, there must be continuity of effort.  Third, and all-embracing, there must be unity. These requirements are the foundations upon which education should rest in home, church, school and state.

 

The threefold nature of the child must be trained into equipoise.  The health of the body, the vigor of the intellect, the spontaneity of the soul must together govern the conduct.

 

This is the work of the Kindergarten, and it looks hopefully toward the Sunday-school, as a co-worker in this complete education.  In many respects union between these two forces is already practicable, but much study and co-operative effort is still needed before a desirable fusion an be obtained.

 

The Sunday-school holds the golden opportunity for the spiritual culture of the child, which there brings to the teacher its best self, seeking nourishment.  A willingness, nay, a desire to be led into ways of pleasantness and paths of peace characterizes these early days. The child believes in the Sunday-school. Its teachings and its loving influence are to him the law and the gospel regulating life.  The Bible is the treasured book.  The stories of Joseph, of David, of Samuel, of Esther, of the little Syrian maid, charm the imagination and move the heart.

 

The Sunday-school relates itself to the child more tenderly, takes it more lovingly by the hand, draws it more closely to the heart, and holds it nearer and dearer, than any institution outside of the home.  Thus it wins the little soul, nestling restfully in this peace-giving shelter, and life bids fair to set in at its best.  The love of the parent, the love of the church, the love of the Sunday-school, foreshadow and personate to the child the love of the Heavenly Father, of which we desire him to become conscious in order that he may strive to become Godlike.  Our love must manifest itself not alone in words, not along in song and story, but in an endeavor to know and meet the wants of child nature.

 

Character has stages of development.  In workng with the childish mind the perceptive faculties must be the medium for approach.  Every sense is on the alert.  The lessons must appeal to these, and over against every truth must be placed suggestive and practical applications, mindful of the laws of spiritual and intellectual growth.

 

Remembering that we both learn and grow by the doing, we would turn their activities into the leverage of good works, we would aid them in gaining their redeemed estate, and give to their whole natures free play, that the wounds of ancestral poison may be healed, and evil eliminated from their lives.

 

We would unload poor little humanity of its burden of sins, in His name who purchased their freedom and bind it with golden chains close to the heart of God.

 

The harmony of song, touching the chords of being, and connecting the child with life about him, may be woven around, and about all, ever keeping the Father in the midst, and the loving tender Jesus who blessed little children and took them in his arms.

 

In order to carry out the purpose of the Sunday-school, and to make its work most effective in awakening the soul to the indwelling consciousness of God, we must set aside the thought that the Infant Class is a miniature Bible Class.

 

The great need is to prepare the mind for the reception of truth.  This done, we may wisely plant the seed and nourish it, watching its growth.  Let us come down to the simplicity of the little child, and then enter readily with him into the Kingdom of Heaven —- Christ himself, the great teacher, said, “Except ye become as little childen, ye cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”

 

The sacredness of the Sabbath can be infused into every occupation which we would give to a child that day.  The loving Father would not have us unduly check the liveliness and playful nature which he has implanted.  But he would have us train children to exercise on that day even more than usual of gentle, loving thought toward each other, and an uplifting of heart in their Heavenly Friend in whatever they do.  The Kindergarten Gifts are symbols of God’s truth expressed in form and color.  Their use is so well adapted to meet the growing nature of the child, to call out its faculties, to develop its physical, intellectual and spiritual nature, that it is only a question of time when the tiny tables and chairs of the Kindergarten will find their way into the Sunday-school, and well-directed play lessons will illustrate to the little ones the sacred truths for which the Sunday-school is instituted.

 

The parable of the sowers, and indeed all of the 13th chapter of Matthew are rich in lessons for this Christian work.

 

Christ said to his disciples, “Many prophets and righteous men have desired to see these things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear these things which ye hear, and have not heard them.”  In closing his lesson he asks, “Have ye understood these things?”

 

“Every scribe which is instructed into the Kingdom of Heaven is like unto a man which is a householder, which bringeth forth his treasures new and old.”

 

What we now need is not more study of new methods, but more study of the child; a better realization that we are God’s interpreters, not alone of truths held in words, but of those written from the beginning in our hearts and all around us.  Would that every Sunday-school worker be brought into contemplation of the child and his relation to it and to God!  Then we should see such a turning to the principles and methods of the Kindergarten, as would illumine the pathway from the cradle to the cross.

 

 

A SCHOOL HOUSE ON EVERY HILLTOP

(From the Daily Surf, Dec. 11, 1890)

 

Yes, and on every barren plain and lowly valley this child of progress will find its way.  Wherever the children are, there goes this college for rich and poor alike.  Who can imagine a city without its public schools, where boys only are gathered into the parish schools for instruction, and little girls, poor things, can neither read nor write?

 

Do we sufficiently esteem our glorious privileges?  Do we rally for our childrn’s sake, wherever the interests of education are conserved?  Do we value the factors which make up the sum of advantages for our children?  Do we encourage the teachers; do we show them that we desire the unity of school and home?  Do we cherish the interest of education as a part of the city’s advancement?

 

Verily the ring of the school bell opens the door of every household wherever the little six-year-old is found, the thought and good will follows the pupil; the household machinery is adjusted to run without friction in harmony with the schools; hand in hand the silent partner goes, day in and day out; wearily the mother toils, and the father, if needs be, wears the old coat, that the year at the high school may be accomplished.  We are proud of our public schools.  We may well be.  Will not the interest in this beloved institution fill the Congregational church tonight to hear what  Prof. Clark has to say on “The Home, the School, and the Nation?”

 

 

THE SCHOOL OF METHODS.  NOTES CONCERNING THE SUMMER SESSION FOR TEACHERS AND KINDERGARTNERS.

(From the Daily Surf, July 30, 1891)

 

The following items have been kindly furnished the SURF by Mrs. E. G. Greene, who was herself one of the corps of teachers at the Summer School of Methods.

 

The California Summer School of Methods for teachers and kindergartners was held in the State Normal School building, San Jose, from July 6th to the 26th.  The interest and enthusiasm of the teachers in the work of the school and their frequent expression of delight at the opportunities afforded, were evidence of the success of the school (in its second year).  There were thirty students enrolled, from fifteen counties reaching from Humboldt to Los Angeles -— teachers from all grades of public school work.

 

There were in all, twenty instructors.  Five of the classes went through the entire three weeks, namely: History of Education, Psychology, Primary Science, Kindergarten and Normal Training.  The other classes continued one week.  The majority of the instructors were from the Normal School, hence the classes had the great advantage of the use of apparatus and appliances under the guidance of teachers at home in the class rooms; every effort on the part of the several instructors was made to give the classes the most and the best possible in the short time allowed.  The aim of each was to give some practical work as well as teach the principles upon which it was founded.

 

In the “History of Education” Prof. McGrew dealt with some of the leading educators, whose influence is felt today in our educational work, Comenius, Pestolozzi [sic], Froebel, also a few of the educators in our own country, and the growth of education.  In Psychology he took the Human Intellect and its development, emphasizing how ideas are formed, the faculties acting to join ideas, the office of the will, sensation, memory imagination” [sic] in the growth of the mind.  Each member of the class received a blank, calling out their observations in the study of the child, inciting them to further study of children and the reflex study of themselves, thus this seemingly abstract study became a live study and was enjoyed.  Prof. Childs’ enthusiasm in the manual training department, met a hearty response, the class delighted in their home made apparatus, especially the solar microscope which they tested with microscopic work; they expect to do practical work in the school rooms with it.

 

Prof. Childs’ visit to the east put him into thorough sympathy with the “New Education.  We learn through doing,” speaks from every room in the building.  The plates used by him, with the home-made stereopticon in the study of history, were several of them from places of interest, which he had visited on his trip east.  Professors Randall, Holway, Kleeberger’s and Patton’s classes were full of interest, also Mesdames Busch, Wilson and Schollenberger’s, all leading towards the Manual Training Department in the way of requiring apparatus.

 

Mrs. Wilson and Schollenberger’s work illustrated the Kindergarten methods applied to primary work, and was an excellent illustration of the methods reading, observation lessons clay moulding and study of plant life, [sic] Miss Gilday did excellent work in physical culture.

 

The Kindergarten work was entered upon with much earnestness by a wide awake class who felt the necessity of understanding the principles and methods of the Kindergarten in order to apply them to the advance work.  They were unanimous in their decision that the Kindergarten should be the sub primary of the public school.  Many of the teachers are allowed Kindergarten material for busy work in their schools.  Practical work was done in language, number, form and color.  A study was made of the first four gifts and the corresponding occupations.  Work was developed from the solid to the plane -— plane to line —- line to point, and illustrated by the work of a class of children under Miss Bell McKenzie’s kindergarten.  Especial attention was given to principals [sic] and theory, “Froebel’s Mother—Play.”

 

The subject of color in the school room with the class of children was illustrated by the relation of the song and story, also the continuity of the work, running through the various lines of play, work, the preparation for school work, for life before the child and the development of life within the child, of the association of life about the child.

 

The sand table gathered up the work of the children into a little picture of Farm and Country life as an illustration of the song, “Come Little leaves, said the wind one day.”

 

The evening lectures by Mrs. Cooper, Prof. Dickinson, Barnard, Dr.’s Jordan and Sprague were of the highest order, very instructive and enjoyable, appreciated by the small audiences who listened to them, evidently San Jose’s literary people were at the sea side or mountains and a trip was made to Mount Hamilton and opportunity given for observation through the telescope.  The views along the route up the mountain side and returning just at the break of day, with the moonlight and the mist were beautiful beyond description.

 

The summer school closed with a delightful trip to the Stanford University, the Palo Alto farm, a drive about Senator Stanford’s grounds.

 

Dr. Jordan, President of the University, welcomed the school in person and explained the many interesting features of the various buildings and the institution, so full of promise and possibilities.  Every visitor can but feel an interest and a desire to bring its advantages to many of the young people of the coast.  Several of the teachers formed the resolution to return some time as pupils.

 

The farewells were spoken, the hand-shaking and expression of pleasure in this Summer School were given and each went their way, carrying the good will and pleasant memories, the stores of intellectual and social gains, the satisfaction of a vacation of recreation and work.