Sunday, June 23, 2013

Modern Homes & Gardens, Volume 1, No. 8, April 1934

The "Modern" house was beginning to garner attention and capture the imagination of the middle class home buyer in the midst of the Great Depression in the early to mid-1930s. This is amply evidenced by the publication of mass-market magazines such as "Modern Homes & Gardens" published out of Chicago beginning in 1934 (see below) and the publication of Catherine Bauer's influential Modern Housing the same year.

This particular issue featured Southern California architect Winchton L. Risley's "gold medal" house for Miss Stella Smith across the street from the Palos Verdes golf course (see below). The house had previously won the gold medal for the best single-story house built in the United States between 1926 and 1930 in the Homes in America Small House Architectural Competition for 1932.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Schindlers and Westons and the Walt Whitman School and Connections to Sarah Bixby Smith and Paul Jordan-Smith

(Click on images to enlarge).
Brochure for The Opening Ceremonies of the Walt Whitman School, February 29, 1920. From The Southern California Library, Box 44, Folder 15.  

Architect Rudolph Schindler and his activist wife Pauline met photographer Edward Weston at the progressive Walt Whitman School in the immigrant community of Boyle Heights in East Los Angeles where she taught Weston's two oldest sons, Chandler and Brett shortly after their 1920 arrival from Chicago. Paul Jordan-Smith, later the literary critic for the Los Angeles Times and then the Whitman School's educational director, was also the husband of Weston's cousin, Sarah Bixby Smith. In this article I will attempt to weave a story around these individuals and their interacting modernist and anarchist circles in the context of a rapidly developing and evolving Los Angeles. I will also touch on period progressive and radical themes such as the Modern SchoolSettlement, Anti-War and Labor Movements with which many of the individuals discussed herein were deeply involved.
Sarah Bixby Smith, ca. 1919. Edward Weston photograph. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library Sarah Bixby Smith Collection.
The saga of the prominent early California pioneering Bixby family is genealogically intertwined with that of noted photographer Edward Weston's family as both had  roots in Maine dating back to the 17th century. The families were first connected by marriage when Amasa Bixby wed Fanny Weston, descendant of Revolutionary War casualty Joseph C. Weston on December 22, 1819. Joseph died from exposure on Benedict Arnold's arduous expedition to Quebec. Sarah Bixby Smith (see above) reminisced about her ancestry in great detail  in her well-received, and still in print, Adobe Days first published in 1925. Also a direct descendant of Joseph C. Weston, Edward Weston connected with cousin Sarah Bixby Smith and her second husband Paul Jordan-Smith (see below) not too long after their 1916 move from Berkeley back to Sarah's Southern California Claremont home discussed later below. (For much more on the Smith's earlier life I recommend Paul Jordan-Smith's autobiography The Road I Came, Caxton Printers, Caldwell, Idaho, 1960 and for Weston's beginnings I recommend Artful Lives: Edward Weston, Margrethe Mather, and the Bohemians of Los Angeles by Beth Gates Warren, J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011). 

Paul Jordan-Smith, 1918. Collection Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents.

Punahou Preparatory School, Honolulu, 1909 postcard from Wikipedia. 

  Pauahi Hall, Oahu College, 1896, Charles William Dickey, architect. Frontispiece from Oahu College Catalogue, 1898-99  

From one of the wealthiest land-owning families of Southern California, Sarah Hathaway Bixby graduated from Wellesley College in 1894, the same year her first husband Arthur Maxson Smith graduated from the inaugural class of Pomona College. The two were married in 1896 and after Sarah financed Arthur's graduate divinity school studies at the University of Chicago and Harvard they spent 1900-1902 in Hawaii after Unitarian minister Arthur was appointed to head Honolulu's Oahu College and Punahou School. Arthur most likely obtained the appointment to the Oahu College presidency through Hathaway-Bixby family genealogical connections to the Hawaiian Missionary Dole family dating back to 1840's Maine. (Thanks go to Stephen Dudley, grandson of Sarah Bixby Smith's brother Llewellyn Bixby for bringing this to my attention).

Scandalous liaisons with Oahu College coeds prompted a hasty return to Claremont and Pomona College where Arthur served on the faculty from 1904 through 1909. (Material Dreams: Southern California Through the 1920s by Kevin Starr, Oxford University Press, 1990 , p. 316). Sarah's father's first cousin Nathan Weston Blanchard and her cousin George Bixby were both serving as trustees of the college upon her and Arthur's return to Claremont and Sarah's brother Llewellyn would also become a trustee in 1909. Shortly after their return Arthur and Sarah commissioned noted architect Arthur B. Benton to design and construct a fourteen room stone mansion in Claremont directly across the street from the fledgling Pomona College campus which was described in the student newsletter, "...on the north wash there promises to be a 'pretentious' building belonging to Professor A. M. Smith" (see below). (Student Life, Pomona College, October 12, 1906).

  Arthur Maxson Smith, Sarah Bixby Smith and children Bradford, Roger, Llewellyn and Arthur at their recently completed residence in Claremont ca. 1907. (See below). Courtesy Stephen Dudley, grandson of Sarah's brother Llewellyn Bixby.

Bixby Smith Residence, backyard, rear and side elevations. Eighth St. and Claremont Ave., Claremont, ca. 1910, (destroyed ca. 1970). Arthur B. Benton, architect, 1906. Courtesy Stephen Dudley, grandson of Sarah's brother Llewellyn Bixby.

  Bixby Smith Residence "Erewhon," Claremont, front elevation. Eighth St. and Claremont Ave., Claremont, n.d.. Arthur B. Benton, architect, 1906. From Claremont Colleges Digital Library, Wheeler Scrapbook Collection, p. 214.  

Upon her 1909 discovery of Reverend Smith's next affair with the children's au pair, Sarah "maneuvered" him north into a position heading the First Unitarian Church in Berkeley. (Starr, p. 316). Unbeknownst to Sarah at the time, Arthur was also having an affair with a young Pomona coed named Alice Giffen who was boarding in the Smith's home during 1908-9. ("Says Minister Led Dual Life," Los Angeles Times, January 22, 1915, p. II-9). The unrepentant Arthur moved Giffen to Berkeley where he continued what would become a six-year double life with the much younger lady "parishioner" who accompanied him as he traveled around the country lecturing and squandering Sarah's family fortune. Arthur's philanderous activities were finally uncovered in early 1915 by a private detective hired by Sarah and again provided scandalous fodder for the press in both San Francisco and Los Angeles. ("Pastor Cought by Cameraman," Los Angeles Times, January 23, 1915, p. II-5 and "Minister's Wife Get's Final Decree," Los Angeles Times, March 28, 1916, p. I-4).

Deeply interested in the church (see below) and its new lecturer, Sarah became involved with the coincidentally surnamed Paul Jordan Smith, the former substitute, and now permanent, minister in her estranged husband's church and an up-and-coming Berkeley faculty member. Feminist Sarah collaborated with, and provided the inspiration for the feminist manifesto, The Soul of Woman, An Interpretation of the Philosophy of Feminism published in 1916 under Paul's byline by the Paul Elder Company of San Francisco. ("His Place is Doubly Taken," Los Angeles Times, March 31, 1916, p. II-8). (Author's note: In The Soul of Woman Jordan-Smith heavily cited the writings of Walt Whitman who also provided much inspiration to the Modern School Movement discussed later below).

First Unitarian Church, 2401 Bancroft Way, Berkeley, ca. 1915. A. C. Schweinfurth, Architect. From Bancroft Library.
Their scandalous relationship, complicated by the existence of yet another Reverend Paul Smith in the pulpit of the First Methodist Church in San Francisco, whose views on feminism were diametrically opposed to Jordan Smith's, confused the press as the scandalous love quadrangle played out in the headlines of the San Francisco and Los Angeles newspapers. The mess prompted Jordan-Smith to hyphenate his name in a futile attempt at obfuscating the transgression of his affair with the unyet divorced Sarah. Thus Jordan-Smith's ardently hoped for academic career was nipped in the bud as the Berkeley English Department faculty voted not to renew his fellowship. (Starr, p. 316 and Warren, p. 115). 

As with Edward Weston and Pauline and Rudolph Schindler, Jordan-Smith's formative beginnings had strong Chicago connections. Jordan-Smith graduated from Ryder Divinity School in Galesburg, Illinois and after a brief, scandalous ministerial stint at a church in Missouri landed a similar appointment in Chicago around 1910 where he also found time to actively lecture on religious topics throughout the Midwest and run the Humanist Lyceum Bureau (see below brochure).

"Paul Jordan Smith, Lecturer" brochure, ca. 1913. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library Sarah Bixby Smith Collection.
Jordan-Smith also enrolled in graduate classes at the University of Chicago and befriended the likes of Clarence Darrow, Maurice Browne, Floyd Dell, John Cowper Powys, Emma Goldman, Parker H. SercombeMargaret Anderson and bookseller George Millard and found his passion for book-collecting and a life of letters. Jordan-Smith was exposed to the beginnings of the Chicago Literary Renaissance and Chicago-style anarchism and labor unrest which he did not always share sympathies with. Like Rudolph Schindler after his 1914 arrival, Jordan-Smith also found great solace within the walls of the Art Institute of Chicago (see below), but took exception to the traveling Armory Show exhibition in 1913 which was the beginning of his break with the left wingers in art. (The Road I Came, p. 220). 

Art Institute of Chicago, Shepley, Rutan & Coolidge, Architects, 1893. Edward Weston photograph, 1906. From Edward Weston in Los Angeles edited by Susan Danly and Weston J. Naef, Huntington Library and J. Paul Getty Museum, 1986, p. 11.
 Art Institute of Chicago on the right, Shepley, Rutan & Coolidge, Architects, 1893. R. M. Schindler photograph, ca. 1916. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.

In late 1913 while going through his divorce from Ethel Sloan Park, another scandalous, heavily publicized affair, Paul decided it was time to move on. ("Minister's Wife Gets Decree on Cruelty Plea," Chicago Examiner, November, 18, 1913, p. 3). It was through his University of Chicago faculty connections that he found a position at Berkeley and was provided a letter of introduction to Sarah. (The Road I Came, p. 235). After Paul's hopes for an academic career at Berkeley were dashed, the couple felt compelled to retreat with Sarah's children to her home in Claremont which in the meantime had been converted to a school for boys (see ad below). This brings us full-circle back to Southern California in 1916 where the scandal-plagued Jordan-Smith and Sarah were married as soon as her divorce from Arthur was final. ("Divorced Wife of Pastor Weds Successor in Pulpit," Los Angeles Times, May 31, 1916, p. II-8).

Ad for Claremont School for Boys with likeness of the Bixby-Smith Residence, Los Angeles Times, July 25, 1915.  

While in Berkeley Sarah and Arthur leased their substantial 14-room stone mansion and its 20-acre spread to Dr. W. E. Garrison where he opened his Claremont School for Boys in 1913.  Garrison made good marketing use of the house's imposing swimming pool as an educational tool in the evolution of a boy's development into young manhood (see article below for example and later Weston pool images below). 
"New School at Claremont," Los Angeles Times, August 10, 1913, p. I-11.

Wilbur and Ralph Jordan-Smith, Claremont, 1919. Edward Weston photo. I am grateful to Jonathan Guyot Smith, son of Ralph and grandson of Paul Jordan-Smith for corroboration of identification of the boys. See also discussion at Oakland Museum of California.    

Ad for Claremont School for Boys, Los Angeles Times, December 21, 1913, p. V-14.

The school remained until the lease expired in February 1917 when Sarah and Paul began restoring the structure to residential use.
"Sarah and I expected to restore the Claremont house which had been so long rented to Dr. Garrison's Claremont School for Boys that it bore within and without scars of juvenile exuberance, as well as the damaging marks of a flood the winter before. The fourteen-room stone house (see below) seemed a bit too grand for us under the circumstances, and I believed that if the grounds were attractively landscaped, the house redecorated, and its twenty acres planted, it could be sold to some wealthy Easterner. To that end I set to work on the grounds, with some neighbors to assist me, while painters and floor scrapers and furnace men toiled within. I laid out the roads and bordered them myself with heavy granite stones, assisted with the planting, and thus kept my mind off of the recent disappointments." (The Road I Came, p. 314).
Bixby Smith Residence "Erewhon," Claremont, ca. 1920. From Claremont Colleges Digital Library, Wheeler Scrapbook Collection, p. 212.  

When done with the restoration the following year Sarah and Paul christened the house "Erewhon" at a gathering of friends. Paul wrote of the occasion,
"Edward Weston, noted photographer, sent along for that occasion a small bottle of absinthe when he heard that the name we had chosen was Erewhon, and on that little bottle he had affixed a label with a quotation from The Way of All Flesh and these were the words: "Filter it sir, it'll come quite clean." The allusion was to the baptism of Grandfather Pontifex's grandson, Ernest. Grandpa had visited the Holy Land and he had brought back from there a bottle of the sacred water from the River Jordan in the hope that he would have a grandson to be consecrated in baptism with this water. But the day after Ernest was born, when Grandpa and his butler went down mto the cellar to find and fetch the magic water, Grandpa dropped the bottle which was smashed on the stone floor, and while he raved, the more practical butler calmly advised filtering the water in words that I have quoted. And since 1918 was the year of prohibition and absinthe was very rare and even forbidden in this country, Weston advised us to filter the liquor after we smashed the bottle in the christening ceremony. We broke the bottle and words were said about Samuel Butler and Erewhon but we did not try to filter the liquor." (The Road I Came, pp. 193-4).
Thanks to Sarah's family wealth, Jordan-Smith was able to assume the life of a country squire and avidly pursue his book-collecting passion. Distance from Berkeley, the passage of some time and possibly with an assist from Sarah's connections, Paul was soon lecturing at local women's clubs such as The Friday Morning Club, which Sarah would later head, and teaching courses on the English and American novel at the recently opened southern branch of the University of California Extension program in Los Angeles. Coincidentally, Paul's first controversial lecture at the Friday Morning Club (see below), entitled "The Message of the Radical Woman" took place on March 31, 1916, just three days after the finalization of Sarah's divorce was announced in the Los Angeles Times and the day after the couple's wedding. ("Minister's Wife Get's Final Decree," Los Angeles Times, March 28, 1916, p. I-4 and "Romance of a Pastor; The Rev. Arthur Maxson Smith Weds Miss Giffen at Santa Ana," Los Angeles Times, June 5, 1916, p. I-3).

Friday Morning Club, 940 S. Figueroa St., ca. 1900. Arthur B. Benton, architect, 1900. Photographer unknown. Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection.  

Paul and Sarah's marriage before the ink was dry on the final decree was facetiously announced in a lengthy review of his extraordinarily well-attended lecture. "Mrs. Seward Simons mentioned in introducing [Jordan-Smith] that, as a bridegroom of about five minutes standing, Mrs. Smith was thoroughly prepared to be shocked." ("Women's Work, Women's Clubs; Friday Morning Club," Los Angeles Times, April 1, 1916, p. II-3). Making a rather big initial splash on the Los Angeles lecture circuit, Paul addressed the Ebell Club (see below) two days later on the topic, "The Spirit of Russia" as interpreted by Russian literature. (Johnston, Dorothy B., "Women's Work, Women's Clubs," Los Angeles Times, April 2, 1916, p. II-10).

Ebell Club of Los Angeles, Seventh and  Figueroa St., ca. 1910. Sumner P. Hunt, architect, 1904. C. C. Pierce photograph. USC Digital Library.  

Among those attending Jordan-Smith's lectures at UC Extension were Mrs. Clara A. Packard, Mrs. Walter H. Fisher, and Kate Crane Gartz, all local philanthropists and peace activists who were members of the recently formed "People's Council of America for Peace and Democracy," an organization violently opposed to America's involvement in the war. (The Road I Came, p. 315). Packard was the wife of prominent Midwestern attorney Samuel W. Packard and, before migrating to Los Angeles, resided in Oak Park with their five children including John C. Packard, a future client of architect Rudolph Schindler. She also served as the 1907-09 president of Oak Park's Nineteenth Century Club, one of the founding members of which was Frank Lloyd Wright's mother Anna. After moving to Pasadena Packard became chairwoman of the Settlement Committee of Pasadena Associated Charities.

Hull-House Year Book, 1916. Page 8 lists Pauline Gibling as teacher of elementary English and Music Appreciation and lifelong friend and later Kings Road tenant Edith Gutterson as teacher of elementary English and p. 5 lists both as residents. See also Pauline Gibling Schindler: Vagabond Agent for Modernism (PGS) for more details.

Hull-House, 800 S. Halstead St., Chicago, ca. 1915. From Wikipedia.

Jane Addams, July 22, 1915. From Wikipedia.

Like Pauline Schindler, plumbing heiress Kate Crane Gartz was formerly a volunteer at Jane AddamsHull-House, a settlement house on Halstead St. in Chicago for which she and her family, especially her industrialist father Richard T. Crane, provided much financial support. The Crane family was prominent in Chicago educational circles with Richard being president of the Board of Education and his son Charles contributing much patronage for the University of Chicago and educational reformer John Dewey.

Charles R. Crane House, 2559 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago. "Social Agencies: The Chicago School Rally In Its New Home," The Survey, June 19, 1915, p. 283.

Kate's brother Charles R. Crane, later an ambassador to China under Woodrow Wilson, donated his mansion on Michigan Ave. (see above) for use as the Chicago School for Civics and Philanthropy just months before Pauline Schindler's arrival in Chicago. Pauline attended graduate classes in social work here during the fall and winter terms in 1915-16 while living and teaching English and music at Jane Addams' Hull-House. (Sophie Pauline Gibling Transcript, Student Files, Chicago School of Civics and Philanthropy Records, Box 6, Folder 4, Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library). A later patron of the Walt Whitman School, Gartz was also a lifelong member of the Friday Morning Club and one of the founders of the the Pasadena Playhouse, Pasadena Civic League, and the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union.
Clara Packard was impressed enough by Jordan-Smith's speaking ability that shortly after the U.S. entered the war she, along with ex-California Senator John Downey Works, and possibly Gartz, asked him to organize and lead the Southern California Chapter of the People's Council and offered him offices in the Douglas Building (see below) at Third and Spring Streets in downtown Los Angeles. (The Road I Came, p. 316 and Warren, p. 116).

Douglas Building, 257 S. Spring St., ca. 1910-15. James and Merritt Reid, architects. Photographer unknown. Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection.    

Sarah's and Edward's cousin Fanny Weston Bixby (later Spencer), another soon-to-be benefactress of the Walt Whitman School, was also extremely vocal in opposition to the war and likely had a hand in encouraging Jordan-Smith to accept the People's Council position. Fanny had previously worked at Denison House, a Hull House-like settlement house in Boston, after leaving Wellesley where she studied sociology under Denison's founder, Nobel Prize Winner Emily Greene Balch. She was also prominent in Los Angeles settlement work, mainly among the Russian immigrants settling in Boyle Heights, soon-to-be-site of the Walt Whitman School. (Author's note: Pauline Gibling Schindler possibly spent some time at Denison, or was at least aware of it's work, while a student at Smith College in Northampton, Mass. During her time at Smith her soon-to-be mentor, Jane Addams and Emily Greene Balch founded the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom for which both, on separate occasions, were to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. Pauline's mother Sophie became the Treasurer of the League in 1919.)

Fanny maintained a lifelong opposition to any aspect of militarism evidenced by her threat to sue over the City of Long Beach granting a permit for a ROTC training camp in a city park for which the Bixby family's Alamitos Land Company had donated the land. She also filed a protest with the State Superintendent of Schools against the practice of saluting the flag on the grounds that "it was an act of applied war" and on religious grounds "as a form of idol worship." ("Long Beach Army Camp Causes Row," Los Angeles Times, November 14, 1925, p. I-6, and "Protesting Salute of Flag in Schools," Los Angeles Times, March 14, 1924, p. 11). She later wrote and produced an anti-war play, "The Jazz of Patriotism," which opened at the Egan Theatre in October 1928. ("Anti-War Play Presented at Egan Theater," Los Angeles Times, October 17, 1928, p. I-11). After her death of cancer in 1930, Fanny left in her will money for a library in Newport Beach and a park in Costa Mesa with the proviso that they "must never be used for meetings of boy scouts, veteran's orginazations of any description in or for any purpose favoring the military." ("Cities Profit by Will," Los Angeles Times, April 9, 19208, p. I-8). 

Bored with the renovation and landscaping of the family's Claremont residence and feeling that "nothing seemed so important as keeping America free of foreign entanglements," Paul agreed to represent the People's Council in Southern California, hired an assistant, Berta Marie Gage, who would marry his future collaborator Floyd Dell in 1919, and began lecturing from Santa Barbara to San Diego. The movement grew rapidly until government forces started to clamp down under the umbrella of the recently passed Espionage Act. It soon became impossible to rent halls for organization meetings and by the time of the National Convention in Minneapolis in early September, Federal troops were mobilized and Marshall Law reigned. (For more on the Floyd Dell and Jordan-Smith collaboration see my Edward Weston, R. M. Schindler, Anushka Zacsek and Their Los Angeles Dramatic Circles, 1915-1928).

The People's Council anti-war movement quickly fizzled out as its leaders came under attack which generated much work for Clara Packard's activist attorney son John, who, along with his mother, Kate Crane Gartz and many others, would later become involved with the founding of a Southern California branch of the American Civil Liberties Union in the aftermath of the Red Scare-induced Palmer Raids. He would also defend Upton Sinclair against charges stemming from the 1923 I.W.W. longshoremen's strike in San Pedro.  To get Justice Department agents off his back Jordan-Smith promised them that the movement was dead, that he would make no more speeches, and that he had no German affiliations or friends. (The Road I Came, pp. 315-322). Fanny Weston Bixby and Kate Crane Gartz used family connections their wealth availed to avoid legal trouble with the authorities.

John Cowper Powys, 1918. Edward Weston photograph. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library.
It is unclear whether Jordan-Smith reconnected with fellow literary lecturer John Cowper Powys (see above), during his first Southern California lecture tour in the spring of 1917. Paul wrote about finding Powys at the Alexandria Hotel in 1918 (The Road I Came, p. 329) and persuading him to stay at Erewhon but period correspondence indicates that the 1918 stay at Claremont was preplanned thus it may have been 1917 when they first reconnected. (Letter from Powys to Sarah Bixby Smith, April 12, 1918, Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library, Sarah Bixby Smith Archive). At the time Jordan-Smith was deeply involved in the restoration of the Sarah's Claremont home after the February departure of Garrison's boy's school. 

Powys and Jordan-Smith first met in Chicago in 1912 when Paul helped arrange Powy's University of Chicago lecture series. He also accompanied Powys to his numerous other lectures around town. Powys introduced countryman Maurice Browne to Jordan-Smith upon his arrival from England where he began the Chicago Little Theatre with Ellen Van Volkenburg in 1912. (The Road I Came, p. ). (For much more on Maurice Browne and his relationship to the Schindler's see my "Schindlers-Westons-Kashevaroff-Cage"). Browne booked Powys for a series of lectures at the Little Theatre each time he passed through Chicago on his frequent national lecture tours and he also lectured at Hull-House on numerous occasions and likely during Pauline Schindler's 1915-17 residency. (For much more on the relationship between Pauline and Maurice Browne see my Schindlers-Westons-Kashevaroff-Cage).

Powys fondly reminisced of Browne in his autobiography,
"I spent long enough in Chicago to become the only privileged outsider in this remarkable Little Theatre group. Maurice Browne became my intimate friend, and my impressario (sic) too, for he used to trick out his Little Theatre in the Fine Art(s) Building with consummate skill for my orations and according to my subject, and as he himself chose these subjects, they were sufficiently startling; and here, for the one and only time in my life, I was destined to play the Intellectual Pierrot against an appropriate Yellow-Book background. ... How well I can now see Maurice's expressive physiognomy quivering with vibrant reciprocity as it responded to my sallies, until, like a holy stag in a mediaeval tapestry when the wind shakes the arras, he would toss his Mephistophelean baton into the air and dissolve the enchantment he had called up."
And Maurice Browne remembered:
"Our three intimates, Mary Wood, (Arthur Davison) Ficke and Powys, had been given the freedom of the theatre; in Chicago it was the two men's home....Whatever brought Powys to Chicago brought Ficke. To us three men, lifelong, the gods gave rock-like friendship. Powys was my antithesis: a corrective and a challenge; no man whom I have known has influenced me more deeply, and always towards kindness, humility, consideration for others. Ficke was my twin; we wandered at will through each other's thoughts without need of speech, protesting irritably when we recognised ourselves in the other's mirror. (Too Late to Lament: An Autobiography, by Maurice Browne, Indiana University Press, 1956,p. 150. For more on Browne and Arthur Davison Ficke see my Schindlers-Westons-Kasevaroff-Cage).
Sarah and Paul became much better acquainted with Powys during his later visits to the West Coast. In any event, in the spring of 1917 Powys spoke at the Friday Morning Club, where Jordan-Smith's wife Sarah and Kate Crane Gartz were prominent members, and numerous other venues, headlined by three "performances" at the 2300-seat Trinity Auditorium booked by impresario L. E. Behymer (see ad below).

John Cowper Powys lecture ad, Los Angeles Times, April 26, 1917.

Trinity Auditorium, 855 S. Grand Ave., Charles F. Whittlesey, architect, 1906. 
Like Jordan-Smith, Powys enjoyed shocking his audiences and admonished The Friday Morning Club ladies on the perils of contemporary fiction with, "Yes, I find you women, especially you club women guilty; guilty of fostering that perfervid and rabid orgy of sex psychology, sociology, hygiene, morbid neurotics that characterizes the work of those dreadful best sellers." He continued by describing their authors as "...plebian rats of literature, that exhibited the traits of a gutter child, the petty antagonisms, the paltry vindictiveness, the fawning on the public, the cadging of publishers, the greed, the vulgarity of their board school educations, so vulgar that they could not respect their own art." (Whitaker, Alma, "Women's Work; Women's Clubs," Los Angeles Times, April 28, 1917, p. II-2).   

 During Powy's return visit the following year, Jordan-Smith and Sarah proudly invited him to stay for a few weeks in the recently restored and Weston absinthe-christened "Erewhon" where he was still recovering from his "People's Council" ordeal. Powys referenced Paul's considerable recent "troubles" while making arrangements to stay in Claremont. "I do pray you have not been harassed by any evil reverberations from public events. Good luck to the both of you." (John Cowper Powys, letter to Paul Jordan-Smith, January 14, 1918. Paul Jordan-Smith Papers, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA).   

In his autobiography Jordan-Smith reminisced about showing Powys the sights such as Laguna Beach, San Juan Capistrano and, at Powys special request, Palm Springs, where they hooked up with fellow Cambridge man and soon-to-be lover of Beatrice WoodReginald Pole, with whom Powys had been corresponding. He wrote to Sarah, "I have had a nice letter from Mrs. Reginald Pole [Helen Taggart, later wife of Lloyd Wright who designed a house (see below) for her mother Martha in 1922] asking me to pay them a visit at a cottage they have got at Palm Springs. Reginald seems just now to be alternating between that & Pomona where he has some producing work." (Letter from Powys to Sarah Bixby Smith, April 12, 1918, Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library, Sarah Bixby Smith Archive). (Author's notes: Pole and Jordan-Smith became fast friends evidenced by Jordan-Smith appearing as Iago in a Pole production of "Othello" the following year alongside Florence Deshon and Frayne Williams. R. M. Schindler would in 1928 design stage sets for a Pole-Powys adaptation of Ibsen's "The Idiot" starring Pole and his then wife Frances, Beatrice Wood, Boris Karloff and mutual lover with Weston and future client and divorce attorney, Anna Zacsek. For much more on this see my "Edward Weston, R. M. Schindler, Anna Zacsek, Lloyd Wright and Reginald Pole and Their Dramatic Circles").  
Reginald Pole and son Rupert, later lover of Anais Nin, at the Martha Taggart House, ca. 1923. Lloyd Wright, architect, 1922. From The Anais Nin Blog.

John Cowper Powys and Paul Jordan-Smith, at "Erewhon," Claremont, 1918. Edward Weston photograph. Courtesy George Eastman House and Edward Weston Collection, Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents.  

It was during Powys' 1918 visit that Weston was invited to Claremont to do portraits of both him and Jordan-Smith (see above) and was the beginning of another lifelong friendship with his cousin Sarah and Paul. It was also around this time that novice photographer Johan Hagemeyer met Mather and Weston at his Tropico studio and soon moved in for a brief period of apprenticeship. Sharing the anarchist views of Mather and anti-war views of Jordan-Smith, Hagemeyer's outspokenness on these topics soon gave pause to Weston who asked him to move out, fearing for his family's safety because of the earlier-mentioned Federal government Red Scare radical roundup activities. ("Johan Hagemeyer, Photographer," interview by Corinne L. Gilb, transcript May and July 1955. Regional Oral History Office, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, pp. 28-9).
Desiring to remain a friend and mentor to Johan, Weston wrote a friendly letter explaining Flora's new role as the studio receptionist which would allow them "... all the more time to study and think." Having recently heard John Cowper Powys speak at the Trinity Auditorium on the menace of German "Kultur" in  his lecture titled "France and War" and knowing of Johan's then pro-German stance, Weston continued, "... I wish you could have heard John Cowper Powys (see above) - his talks have almost - perhaps have - changed my ideas on current events! And you know that must be hard to do." (Edward Weston Letter to Johan Hagemeyer, May 12, 1918, Courtesy Getty Research Institute Special Collections, Beaumont and Nancy Newhall Papers, Box 126 and "Says Teuton Rule is Death to Humanity; Famous English Essayist Reveals Menace of German Kultur," Los Angeles Times, May 8, 1918, p. I-11. See also Warren, pp. 135-9 for more on the Hagemeyer-Weston meeting.)

  John Cowper Powys, 1918. Edward Weston photograph. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library.  

Emma Goldman ca. 1915. Photo attributed to Margrethe Mather. Digital Public Library of America.

It is uncertain how the initial Weston, Powys, Jordan-Smith meeting came about but it could have happened via Margrethe Mather's connections with Emma Goldman (see above) and Margaret Anderson (see below), publisher of The Little Review. (Author's note: Whenever Goldman and people from her circle such as Anderson, Max Eastman, William Thurston Brown and Powys passed through Los Angeles they could count on Mather to host a fund-raiser in her studio. See Warren, p. 44 for example.). Powys was a frequent contributor whom Anderson described, "though quite unconscious of it, [Powys] was one of the main inspirations behind the coming-to-be of this magazine" and later referring to him as "the Little Review's godfather." (See below issue for example). (Warren, pp. 99-102, 115 and Anderson, Margaret, "Editorials and Announcements: On Criticism," Little Review, March 1915, p. 26).

Margaret Anderson, ca. 1930. Man Ray photograph. From My Thirty Years War: An Autobiography by Margaret Anderson, Covici, Friede, New York, 1930, frontispiece.

The Little Review, March 1915. (Note articles on 1925 Kings Road lecturer and life-long friend of Pauline, "Maurice Browne and the Little Theatre' by John Cowper Powys and "My Friend, the Incurable" by frequent contributor Alexander S. Kaun, later Kings Road tenant, Schindler client and portrait sitter for Weston compatriot Johan Hagemeyer. For much more on Browne, Kaun, Weston and the Schindlers see PGS).

It is almost a certainty that Pauline Schindler, like Edward Weston and Margrethe Mather, was an avid reader of The Little Review as later events at Kings Road suggest. (Warren, p. 99). The above issue featured life-long friend and 1925 Kings Road lecturer Maurice Browne in the piece "Maurice Browne and the Little Theatre' by John Cowper Powys and "My Friend, the Incurable" by frequent contributor Alexander S. Kaun (see below), a future Kings Road tenant, RMS client, Dune Forum (under Pauline's co-editorship) contributor and portrait sitter for Weston compatriot Johan Hagemeyer

Kings Road tenant, lecturer and later Schindler client, Dr. Alexander Kaun. Portrait by Johan Hagemeyer, April 5, 1932. Photo courtesy OAC and U.C. Berkeley Bancroft Library, Johan Hagemeyer Photo Collection.

Kaun Beach House, Richmond, 1934, R. M. Schindler. Uncredited photo. From "A beach house for Dr. and Mrs. Alexander Kaun, Richmond, Calif. R. M. Schindler, Architect", California Arts & Architecture, May, 1937, p. 26.  

R. M. Schindler and Theodore Dreiser, Thomas Jefferson Art Gallery, Santa Monica, 1945. Courtesy Archives of American Art.

The below issue features pieces on future Kings Road neighbor Theodore Dreiser (see above) by Powys and Browne intimate, Arthur Davison Ficke and another contribution by Kaun. (For more on Browne and Ficke see my Schindlers-Westons-Kasevaroff-Cage). Pauline's keen interest in Browne's and Van Volkenburg's work was likely heightened by her close exposure to, and possible participation in the Hull House Theatre with its Hull House Players whom Browne credited as being the founder of the Little Theatre Movement in the U.S. As mentioned earlier, she also undoubtedly heard Powys lecture at Hull-House and Browne's Little Theatre on numerous occasions and his early 1920s Los Angeles lectures with RMS, Weston and Paul Jordan-Smith, et al. (See PGS and Schindlers-Westons-Kashevaroff-Cage  for much more on these personalities).

The Little Review, November 1915. (Note articles on 1926 Kings Road lecturer and life-long friend of Pauline, "Portrait of Theodore Dreiser' by Arthur Davison Ficke and "Choleric Comments" by frequent contributor Alexander S. Kaun, later Kings Road tenant, Schindler client and portrait sitter for Weston compatriot Johan Hagemeyer. For much more on Browne, Kaun, Weston and the Schindlers see PGS).  

Possibly in an attempt to ingratiate himself with the wealthy Sarah, with whom he was as yet unaware of their familial relationship, Weston soon began exhibiting his portraits of her husband and Powys at various venues in Los Angeles, around the country and overseas. In 1919, for example, they were hung in the Sixth Annual Pittsburgh Salon of Photography in March, The Friday Morning Club in Los Angeles during May-June, Powys home turf at the International Exhibition of the London Salon of Photography in September-October, and the Twelfth Scottish National Photographic Salon in December-January 1920, and in a solo exhibition at the State Normal School in Los Angeles in May 1920 and likely others. (Warren, pp. 347-8). The strategy paid off evidenced by Antony Anderson's glowing review of the Friday Morning Club show, in particular the portraits of Powys and Jordan-Smith. (Anderson, Antony, "Of Art and Artists: Weston's Pictorial Photographs," Los Angeles Times, June 1, 1919, p. III-26). An invitation to come back out to Claremont to take more family portraits of Sarah and Paul and their children around the Erewhon pool quickly followed. Edward wrote to "Mrs. Smith" regarding the prints from this session,
"Dear Mrs. Smith, You must think me very slow for not getting any prints done yet, but I have been short of platinum paper and have orders sticking around two months old. Since you never gave any definite number to print I had intended on going ahead and making up a number for you. However it would be much better to know which ones you wish the most from and how many - for I might guess wrong! Yes - the sooner I can get at the work before my rush starts the better. I expect a shipment of paper soon. My best to you all - especially the little lady! Edward Weston - 8-19-19 I have a couple of the "bathing pool" pictures ready now. Shall I finish the one of Janet on silver or can you wait for my platinum? Better wait if you can." (Edward Weston Collection, Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents).  

Unidentified children (one possibly Neil Weston). Pool, Bixby-Smith Residence, Claremont, 1919. Photograph attributed to Edward Weston. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library, Sarah Bixby Smith Archive.      

Weston's salutation to Sarah in a letter written three months later indicates that they had become much friendlier in the interim and had obviously shared their genealogical connections.
"Dear Cousin Sarah,
The check safe here - and - to say the least - appreciated! I had intended letting all go to the account of "friendship" - "cousinly love" - and appreciation of the many nice things both you and Paul Jordan have done for us. However - again - thank you!
I have made an improved edition of "Bathing Pool" picture and will give you a copy when it returns from several eastern trips. One is in London now - perhaps I told you. As to the exhibit of my work for Claremont - I should be most pleased to cooperate. Could you wait until my Xmas rush is over? I am swamped with work - and too - have several exhibits away at present. The boys? Yes - we are able to suppress all individuality in them with the help of a little chloroform and birch-rod. No name settled on baby [Cole] yet! Sister [Mary] did not stay long but is coming next year. She's a dandy girl and I hope you and she become better acquainted. she wanted that painting of mine - perhaps if you do not care I will send it out at Xmas time.
Greetings! from all of us - to the Smith family.
Edward W. 11-19-19" (Edward Weston Collection, Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents). 

"Bathers," (Either Wilbur and Ralph Bixby-Smith or Ralph and Chandler or Brett Weston, Claremont), 1919. From Edward Weston in Los Angeles, Susan Danly and Weston J. Naef, J. Paul Getty Museum, 1986, p. 10.
Powys would again stay at Erewhon during his 1919, 1922 and 1923 West Coast lecture tours. There is much correspondence from Powys to Sarah and Paul in her archive at Rancho Los Cerritos and his at UCLA thanking them for their gracious hospitality at Erewhon, various travel arrangements, and literary and political gossip. Powys would also pen the introduction for Tina Modotti's 1923 limited edition memorial compilation of her deceased husband Robaix de l'Abrie Richey's poems, The Book of Robo (see below), months before she left with Weston and his son Chandler for an extended sojourn in Mexico. Powys' intro likely came about during his 1922 Los Angeles tour and stay at Erewhon and connections with the Weston-Modotti-Robo-Mather-McGehee-Katz circle dating back to 1918. (For much more on this see Tina Modotti: Photographer and Revolutionary by Margaret Hooks, HarperCollins, 1995, pp. 42-43).
The Book of Robo, Being a Collection of Verses and Prose Writings by Robaix de L'Abrie Richey edited by Tina Modotti with introduction by John Cowper Powys, 1923. From the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. 
Ulysses by James Joyce, Paris: Shakespeare and Co., 1922. Image from The Manhattan Rare Book Company.
The 1922 visit is also noteworthy in that Powys prodded Jordan-Smith into buying an extremely scarce copy of James Joyce's Ulysses which the two men then devoured in 12-hour shifts. (Lock, Charles, "John Cowper Powys and James Joyce" in In the Spirit of Powys: New Essays edited by Denis Lane, Associated University Presses, 1990, p. 26-29). Jordan-Smith financed the $100 purchase by arranging a lecture on the meaning of Joyce's masterpiece at Kate Crane Gartz's residence where, much to Jordan-Smith's delight, Powys succeeded in shocking the audience when Gartz asked to comment on Paul's talk. Jordan-Smith reminisced,
"John was accustomed to getting big fees for his talks and he didn't like to be used for free entertainment, especially not by the rich. ... then he spoke as if here at last, he had found exactly what was fitting for the occasion. Said Mr. Powys: ... Hah, yes," John shouted, "here we are, here we are." And then still louder and with forceful clarity he quoted: "'Snot, Snot, the snotgreen sea, the scrotum-tightening sea.' You see, my friends, Stephan Dedalus' mother had died. And at her deathbed Stephan had refused to pray. But his mother had been sick and had puked into the chamber pot which was showing at the edge of the bed, and there Stephan saw the green slime his mother had puked up, and it reminded him of the slime of the sea which is the mother of us all." There was a shocked, a horrified silence. White-faced and with blazing eyes, Mrs. Gartz sprang to her feet. "A little of that goes a very long way, Mr. Powys," she said. John looked rather bored, removed his spectacles, gathered his papers together, put them back in his pocket. Slowly he rose to his feet and with great dignity turned. "You are quite right, Mrs. Gartz, it goes a long way." (The Road I Came, p. 370). 
Kate Crane Gartz, ca. 1919. Photographer unknown. From The Parlor Provocateur or From Salon to Soap-Box: The letters of Kate Crane Gartz, Mary Craig Sinclair, Pasadena 1930, frontispiece.  

Despite Jordan-Smith's recollection that Powys was never again invited to the Gartz residence, he had made such an impression that she eagerly booked him for a return engagement at her Altadena mansion the following year. (John Cowper Powys, letter to Paul Jordan-Smith, January 31, 1923. Paul Jordan-Smith Papers, Charles E. Young Research Library, UCLA). Jordan-Smith would later publish A Key to the Ulysses of James Joyce, one of the first books written on Joyce and the first book dedicated to Powys. In remembrance of his bonding with Powys over the sharing of his prized first edition and the laughs they had over Powys shocking Gartz and her guests, he dedicated it thusly,

"To John Cowper Powys
whose sly macchiavellian taunts set me
about the making of this book."
(In the Spirit of Powys: New Essays by Denis Lane, Associated University Presses, 1990, p. 40).

In 1919, Around the time Weston was taking the above bathing pool photos in Claremont and the Schindlers were getting married and moving to Taliesin, William Thurston Brown (see below) was on a national lecture tour promoting the Modern School Association of North America, the official successor of the Francisco Ferrer Association, formed in the U.S. upon the 1909 martyrdom of anarchist educator Francisco Ferrer in Barcelona, Spain. The Ferrer Modern Schools were an integral part of the anarchist, socialist, and labor movements in the U.S., intended to educate the working-classes from a secularclass-conscious perspective. They provided an alternative, progressive learning environment for children, and some also had night-time adult-education programs. 

William Thurston Brown lectures announcement, 1921. From The Southern California Library, Box 44, Folder 15.

The New York City Ferrer Center Modern School, ca. 1911–1912, Principal Will Durant and pupils. This photograph was the cover of the first issue of The Modern School magazine. From Wikepedia.  

One of the first "Modern" schools in the U.S., the Modern School was founded in New York City in 1911 with much impetus provided by the tireless Emma Goldman and was soon headed by Will Durant (see above). Shortly after its creation, New York's Modern School and its adjunct, the Ferrer Center, became the gathering place for a number of New York's most celebrated cultural and political radicals, avant-garde writers and painters, feminists and bohemian intelligenstia including Leonard Abbott, Harry Kelly, Joseph Cohen, Alexander Berkman, Emma Goldman, Margaret Sanger, Upton Sinclair, Lincoln Steffens, Hutchins Hapgood, Sadakichi Hartmann (see below), Hippolyte Havel, Carl Zigrosser, Manuel Komroff and a host of others - each of whom either lectured or offered courses at the school. Hartmann, in particular, would also later become a central figure among the Los Angeles bohemian circles of Edward Weston and Margrethe Mather and after the Schindler's move to Los Angeles he made frequent poetry reading appearances at their now iconic Kings Road House (see below examples).

Announcement for Sadakichi Hartmann reciting Whitman at the Ferrer Center, New York, November 14, 1915. Caricature by Lillian Bonham Hartmann.  (From The Modern School Movement by Paul Avrich, AK Press, Edinburgh, 2006, p. 148). 

Sadakichi Hartmann, 1917. Edward Weston photograph. J. Paul Getty Museum, 85.XM.170.5. (From Artful Lives: Edward Weston, Margrethe Mather, and the Bohemians of Los Angeles by Beth Gates Warren, p. 131).

Announcement for "A Walt Whitman Evening," featuring Sadakichi Hartmann reading Whitman's works at Kings Road, May 31, 1929. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.
Formerly a Unitarian minister like Sarah Bixby's husbands Arthur and Paul and drummed out of the church for his too radical views, William Thurston Brown, a long-time disciple of Emma Goldman, had been involved with the development of modern schools across the U.S. since the formation of the Ferrer Association in 1911. Before coming to Los Angeles on his lecture tour, Brown had been teaching at the Stelton School since 1916 after the NYC Modern School separated itself from the Ferrer Center and relocated to Stelton, New Jersey in 1914. Brown met a group of activists while lecturing and organizing a branch of the association in Los Angeles and, finding much to like about Southern California, agreed to leave Stelton and head a day school there as soon as it could be established. (Avrich, p. 273). 

Brown lectured on "Education for the New Citizenship" at the Krotona Institute on February 26, 1919. The local Hollywood weekly, Holly Leaves reported, "Mr. Brown's methods have attracted widespread attention among educators and he has established the first elementary school of constructive democratic citizenship in America, in which he aims to develop individual character in his pupils." ("Doings at Krotona," Holly Leaves, February 22, 1919, p. 12). (Author's note: Coincidentally, just two weeks earlier Holly Leaves reported on Krotona's School of the Open Gate securing the services of Leah Press, future wife of Schindler and Neutra client and Edward Weston patron Philip Lovell. "Notes from Krotona Institute," Holly Leaves, February 8, 1919, p. 16. Press also lectured on "My Work with Angelo Patri" at Krotona four months later. "Notes from Krotona Institute," Holly Leaves, June 20, 1919, p. 16). 

Brown, William Thurston, Walt Whitman: Poet of the Human Whole, The Modern School, Portland, Oregon, 1917. From Internet Archive.

Brown had no trouble in coming up with a name for the Los Angeles school as anarchists, socialists, and the labor and Modern School movements found great inspiration in the writings of Walt Whitman. Just a few years earlier Brown published an analysis of Whitman and his work titled Walt Whitman: Poet and the Human Whole. (See above). Whitman's poems were frequently reprinted in anarchist periodicals such as Emma Goldman's Mother Earth (see below) and Max Eastman's The Masses and The Liberator. (See two and three below). The below, and other issues of Mother Earth featured covers designed by Man Ray while an art student at the Ferrer Center under Robert Henri and George Bellows. During the earlier-mentioned anti-radical Red Scare hysteria of 1919 The Modern School (see three below for example) devoted a special issue to Whitman. All five of these important "little literary magazines" plus Margaret Anderson's earlier-mentioned Little Review out of Chicago were well-respected among the bohemian intelligentsia and had strong connections with the Ferrer School coterie. 

Man Ray cover design, Mother Earth, Vol. IX, No. 6, August 1914. From Newberry Library web site.

Pauline Schindler's Hull House years coupled with her mother's deep involvement with Jane Addams' Women's International League for Peace and Freedom placed her at ground-zero of Chicago's anarchist community which strongly participated in a national and international debate about the nature of state power in modern society. (For more on period Chicago anarchist activism see the exhibition Outspoken: Chicago's Free Speech Tradition). The above cover of Mother Earth magazine, drawn by Ferrer Center artist Man Ray, depicts humanity being torn apart by capitalism and government, each a different manifestation of the same monstrous reality. Although published in New York City, Mother Earth reported regularly on the activities of Chicago anarchists. Goldman spent a good deal of time lecturing in the city with Pauline Schindler, Paul Jordan-Smith and John Cowper Powys likely among the regular attendees. (Author's note: The versatile Man Ray would make the iconic photograph of Kings Road regular and Neutra apprentice Harwell Hamilton Harris's masterpiece Havens House in Berkeley in 1940. See my California Arts & Architecture: A Steppingstone to Fame for more details).

The Masses, June 1914. (From Wikipedia).
Cover of the first issue of The Liberator, March 1918. Art by Hugo Gellert.

The Modern School, Vol. IV, No. 3 September 1917.
The above issue of The Modern School featured articles by Will Durant, an early principal of the Ferrer Modern School in New York, soon-to-be head of the Walt Whitman School in Los Angeles and 1916-17 editor of the magazine, William Thurston Brown, on "The Work of a Libertarian School" and a book review by Carl Zigrosser who edited the magazine after Brown and before becoming the first director of the Weyhe Gallery in 1919. One of Zigrosser's 1917 pamphlet covers featured a Rockwell Kent woodblock print which soon became the logo for the Modern School Association of North America.(See below). It was under Zigrosser's tenure that the magazine became one of the most interesting little reviews in the country featuring work by the likes of Hart Crane, Wallace Stevens, Witter Bynner, Rockwell Kent, Man Ray, Max Weber, Raoul Dufy, Konrad Bercovici, Padraic Colum and others. (Avrich, p. 172).

The Modern School cover designed by Rockwell Kent, 1917. (Avrich, p. 171).
"Walt Whitman School Anniversary Souvenir," verso, ca. 1921.  (Photographs by Edward Weston?). From The Southern California Library, Box 44, Folder 15.  
The Walt Whitman School (see above) was created in 1919 by a group of progressive families who were dissatisfied with what they considered the the stultifying teaching methods of the public school system within the context of the Red Scare era of post-war social ferment and government oppression. The school's founders were mostly anarchists who sought to abolish all forms of educational and political authority. "The first proletarian school in the West," as the Walt Whitman School deemed itself, was located at 517 South Boyle Avenue in the immigrant community of Boyle Heights in East Los Angeles. The school catered mostly to Russian Jewish and Mexican children of radical, blue-collar parents, including the grandson of Ricardo Flores Magon, then serving time in prison, as was Eugene Debs, both arrested under the 1917 Espionage Act and swept up in the Palmer Raids. Kate Crane Gartz corresponded regularly with Debs and Magon during their incarceration. (See below for example and The Parlor Provocateur or From Salon to Soap-Box: The letters of Kate Crane GartzMary Craig Sinclair, Pasadena 1923, p. 33-5).

Kate Crane Gartz, letter to Eugene Debs, February 25, 1921. From Wabash Valley Visons & Voices Digital Memory Project

(Author's note: In 1920 Upton Sinclair published a compilation of poems and tributes to Debs who was then serving time in the Federal penitentiary in Atlanta. Debs and the Poets edited by Ruth Le Prade, was referenced in the above letter from Gartz to Debs, which included work by John Cowper Powys and many others. Pauline Schindler also wrote to the incarcerated Debs in 1920. See my "Pauline Gibling Schindler, Taliesin, to Eugene Debs, Atlanta Federal Penitentiary, August 22, 1920.")
Program for "The Opening Ceremonies of The Walt Whitman School," February 29, [1920], pp. 2-3. From the Southern California Library, Walt Whitman School collection, Box 44, Folder 15.
Assisting William Thurston Brown were his wife Elsie Pratt and a number of well-known Los Angeles anarchists, including Thomas H. Bell, Joseph Spivak, and Jules Scarceriaux, a Belgian anarchist who taught pottery at Stelton in 1917. (Avrich, p. 273). The "educational advisor" was Paul Jordan-Smith, later literary critic of the Los Angeles Times, who was one of the speakers at the school's formal dedication ceremony on February 29, 1920 (see program above). Jordan-Smith's early involvement with the school possibly came about through a direct request from Brown or through Brown's solicitation for financial support for the school from Jordan-Smith's radical philanthropic circle including, in addition to his wife, her cousin Fanny Weston Bixby Spender, Clara A. Packard, Kate Crane Gartz, Mary E. Garbutt, Dr. and Mrs. Percival Gerson, Bertha Fiske and others (see below for example).

Program for benefit concert for the Walt Whitman School at the Philharmonic Auditorium, March 19, 1922. From the Southern California Library, Walt Whitman School collection, Box 44, Folder 15.
By now close family friends with Sarah Bixby and Paul Jordan-Smith, Edward and Flora Weston most likely learned of the formation of the Walt Whitman School through Paul. They could also have learned of the school directly from the headmaster Brown who was also in the Mather-Hagemeyer-Weston circle, at least by the summer of 1920, evidenced by Hagemeyer's July 3, 1920 diary entry, "Party at studio at night with William Thurston Brown, Elsie Pratt, (his wife) & Lula [Boyd]." (Courtesy Center for Creative Photography, Hagemeyer Collection).
The promise of an unstructured environment offered by the Whitman School appealed to the Westons so they enrolled their unruly sons Chandler and Brett who encountered troubles in the much stricter classroom environments at their previous schools. Edward likely bartered the boys' tuition for photography work for the school as he had done for Chandler's dancing lessons from Norma Gould around the same time. (See my "Bertha Wardell Dances in Silence").

Edward's negative attitude towards formal education created in all four of his sons, and especially Brett, a hatred of being in school which also contributed to disciplinary problems between the boys and mother Flora and added discord in the Weston's failing marriage. Of this situation Brett recalled,
"My father hated schools, so he married a schoolteacher. He was making up for his hatred of the schools [through his hostility towards Flora]. He sent us to half a dozen different schools. I went from one school to another. To me it was a miracle that they stayed together as long as they did. It's amazing that Cole was even born." (From A Restless Eye: A Biography of Photographer Brett Weston, by John Charles Woods, Erica Weston Editions, 2011, p. 27).  
Despite their mother's profession, the brothers all reminisce about schools being "dreary wastelands." (Woods, p.31). Even personalized attention and the freedom provided at the Whitman School could not motivate Brett and every moment at the school felt like torture. A letter from the principal, William Thurston Brown, to the Westons on April 17, 1920  indicates that the teachers at the Walt Whitman School realized they had reached the limits of their abilities in coping with Brett in particular. (Woods, p. 32 and Warren, p. 337n32).
"My Dear Mr. Weston,  
I thank you for your kind letter and your sympathetic understanding of what is in my mind. I am enclosing the letter I wrote, but which the boys forgot to take home with them.  Let me add to it this: that I should be heartily ashamed of myself if my actions in asking that Brett be retained at home a few days meant that I feel at all differently toward him from what I feel toward every other child. On the contrary, I find loveable qualities in him, and I declare frankly that the only justification for asking you to keep him away for a few days lies in our own extremely embarrassing handicaps: lack of adequate teaching staff and of sufficient equipment. More the former than the latter. Let me say also that Chandler is perhaps the most individual of all my pupils - in some respects the most responsive in my entire class to the finest things (for example, in literature). Brett needs better facilities for concrete expression and not so much merely academic exercise. In fact, all of them have exactly that. But our friends will have to be patient if we make progress slowly.  
Yours cordially, 
William T. Brown" (Woods, p. 32).
Brett Weston, 1918. Edward Weston photograph. From Edward Weston: A Photographer's Love of Life, The Dayton Art Institute, 2004, p. 119.

 Chandler Weston, 1919. Edward Weston photograph. From Edward Weston: A Photographer's Love of Life, The Dayton Art Institute, 2004, p. 121.
"The Garment Workers' Strike," International Socialist Review, November 1915, No. 5, p. 260.
Pauline Schindler was arrested alongside Kate Crane Gartz's sister, Mrs. Frances Crane Lillie, for her participation in the 1915 Chicago Garment Workers' Strike (see above) while working at Jane Addam's Hull-House. ("Rich Woman Now Socialist," New York Times, December 8, 1915, p. 10). She and her by then indoctrinated husband Rudolph, brought their penchant for radicalism from Chicago and plunged headlong into the Los Angeles anarchist scene shortly after their 1920 arrival from Frank Lloyd Wright's Taliesin.

"New Residence Tract Opening," Los Angeles Times, March 13, 1921, p. 4. Courtesy Architecture and Design Collection, University Art Museum, UC-Santa Barbara.
Schindler was sent to Los Angeles by Wright to oversee construction of kindred radical and peace activist Aline Barnsdall's Hollyhock House on Olive Hill (see above) while he was engaged with construction of the Imperial Hotel in Japan. Pauline wrote of their early whirlwind of extremist activities in Los Angeles,
"We are so far and so deeply "in" the radical movement these days that we never have an evening at home any more ... Committee meetings for the Worker's Defence [sic] league, for the Walt Whitman School, - conferences large and small, - supping in odd places with folk who tell us news impossible to get except ''from hand to mouth ", - lectures; meetings at which we stop only long enough to make an announcement before going on to the next; visits to the printer to read proofs for the school; trips with the car for a committee of a doctor, a lawyer, and an alienist, to the hospital to visit an I. W. W. who has been a month in jail waiting for trial, and so violently and brutally treated by the authorities that in addition to serious bodily injuries he seems to suffer mentally, and is in the observation ward of the psychopathic, suspected of insanity .. Then on top of it all today ... we speed out to Pasadena ... to a meeting at the private residence of a wealthy radical [Kate Crane Gartz's "The Cloister" (see below)] ... to hear Max Eastman (see below) ... Everybody was there, - and we had awfully good talk afterwards ... Upton Sinclair introduced me to his wife [Mary] ... Eastman was delightful ... And a good time was had by all ... Really a much better time than I have found possible in Chicago, in general ...." (Pauline Schindler, letter to "People", n.d. [June 1921]. From Sweeney, p. 91).

Gartz Residence, "The Cloister," Mariposa St. and Santa Rosa Ave., aka "Christmas Tree Lane," Altadena, W. Carbys Zimmerman, architect, 1908. Lazear, From M. H., "The Evolution of the Bungalow," House Beautiful, The Bungalow Number, June 1914, pp. 2-5.

  Gartz Residence drawing-room where Max Eastman lectured. From Seventh Book by Kate Crane Gartz, Mary Craig Sinclair, Pasadena, 1932. (See also: Apostol, Jane, "From Salon to Soap-Box: Kate Crane Gartz, Parlor Provacateur," Southern California Quarterly, p. 376).  
"Max Eastman Heard in Informal Talk," newspaper and date unknown, ca. June 1921. From The Parlor Provocateur or From Salon to Soap-Box: The letters of Kate Crane Gartz, Mary Craig Sinclair, Pasadena 1923, p. 30. (Author's note: The Eastman book referred to was "The Sense of Humor" which he dedicated to his then lover Florence Deshon. (See later below).

"Max Eastman Seated on Railing", 1921. Margarethe Mather and Edward Weston photograph. From Margrethe Mather & Edward Weston: A Passionate Collaboration, by Beth Gates Warren, p. 31.
The Schindlers were either already acquainted with Gartz through her patronage of the Walt Whitman School or became friendly with her at her Eastman event evidenced by a letter from Schindler to Frank Lloyd Wright as work on Aline Barnsdall's Hollyhock House was nearing completion advising him of a potential commission from Gartz.
"...Tomorrow I shall introduce a lady from Pasadena Mrs. Garts [sic] to M. B. [Miss Barnsdall] - who wants to built [sic] a large home (in fact a group of houses) on the hill. Of course you are to be the architect - but it will be some job to manage her. Lots of many and - twice as much idiosyncrasies." (RMS letter to FLW, September 5, 1921. From Frank Lloyd Wright correspondence with R.M. Schindler, 1914-1929, Getty Research Institute).
An architectural patron like Barnsdall, Gartz had recently commissioned Irving Gill to design her "Little Cloister" duplex in Pasadena and would soon hire Myron Hunt and Elmer Grey to design her Gartz Court in Pasadena and Wallace Neff to design her a vacation residence in Palos Verdes. Gartz had possibly selected Gill for "Little Cloister" through a recommendation from Chauncey and Marie Rankin Clarke who had recently moved into their Gill-designed house in Santa Fe Springs or Schindler who was also a fan of Gill's work. His friend from Chicago, building contractor Clyde Chace was at the time also living with, and working for Gill on his Horatio West Court in Santa Monica. Clyde and his wife Marian Da Camara Chace, Pauline Schindler's close friend from Smith College and fellow teacher at a progressive school in Ravinia near Chicago, had followed the Schindlers to Los Angeles in the summer of 1921 and would shortly partner with them on the Schindler-Chace House on Kings Road in West Hollywood.

Five years earlier Pauline's father had unsuccessfully tried to tame her impulsive radical tendencies with the following admonishment:
"It is unfortunate that you should have repeated at Hull House the mistake you made at Smith of attempting too many things, as a result of which you seem to be continually rushing from one thing to another and apparently have little time for reflection ... you jump into active work ... concerning which you cannot possibly be really well posted ... you seem anxious to delve into the darkest and unclear things of social life ... you identify yourself in an official way with a collection of "Hoboes", on the impulse of the moment." (Edmung Gibling, letter to Pauline, November 25, 1915. From Sweeney, p. 88). (Author's note: The hobo reference likely pertains to Pauline's involvement with James Eads How's IBWA, a mutual aid society for hobos which resulted in "comrade" How commissioning her husband to design a house completed in Los Angeles in 1925). (See below).
James Eads How Residence, Los Angeles, 1925. Viroque Baker photograph. Courtesy Architecture and Design Collection, University Art Museum, UC-Santa Barbara.  

The Schindlers likely first met the Westons and Paul Jordan and Sarah Bixby Smith and their radical circles at the Walt Whitman School. They also were all likely in attendance at the Max Eastman (see above) lecture in Pasadena with his radical Los Angeles coterie including his lover Florence Deshon (see below) and her close friends Charlie Chaplin, Margrethe Mather, Edward Weston and their constant companions, Betty Katz, Ramiel McGehee, and Tina Modotti. (Author's notes: Betty Katz notified Pauline Schindler of Deshon's death via a March 1922 letter which indicates the Schindler's membership in this circle. See Warren, note 9, p. 337. Paul Jordan-Smith would appear as Iago in a 1919 Reginald Pole production of Othello alongside Florence Deshon and Frayne Williams. For much more on Deshon and Eastman see my "Edward Weston, R. M. Schindler, Anna Zacsek, Lloyd Wright, Reginald Pole and Their Dramatic Circles").

Florence Deshon, 1921. Margrethe Mather photo. (From Warren, p. 93).  

Charlie Chaplin and Max Eastman in Hollywood, 1919. Photographer unknown. (From Wikipedia).   

Pauline described the Whitman School as the:
" very real thing which I have found here, ... a very crude undertaking, - but done in so fine a spirit that I have promised to give a part of my energies to the creating of a satisfactory physical environment there .... I have found our aristocracy ... among the proletariat ... My comrade and I have recently plunged into their activities, - for instance a school originated by libertarians who rejected the idiotic slavery of the public school system ... The Walt Whitman School ... gives each child such complete freedom, that one walks about the buildings and gardens wondering where the school is, for there are no formal classes! No assigned lessons, no rewards, no punishments, no authority, and no discipline! The parents, of course, are radicals ... and are giving the children at home something of the feeling that is needed for the revolution." (Pauline Schindler, letter to various friends, February 12, 1921 to January 9, 1922. From Sweeney, p. 91).
Pauline recalled an incident while teaching at the school sometime in 1921 involving the Weston boys in a 1928 issue of The Carmelite in which she announced Edward's impending move to Carmel,
"... As for his son Brett, this youth has already done brilliant work in the same field. He has, like his father, a genius for the composition of spaces. It is therefore totally irrelevant that we remember him as a youngster not many years ago, a pupil in the Walt Whitman School in Los Angeles. The children were out in the garden, digging and planting. As it was a modern school, there was no teacher about at their elbows, and they were working freely and alone. Suddenly Brett's younger brother gave a shout of rage. Tears coursed down his cheeks. "Why, what it is? What is it?" "I was looking for my onion to plant in my garden ... my own onion ... and Brett is eating it!" (Schindler, Pauline, "Edward Weston on the Way," The Carmelite, December 26, 1928, p. 2. See also Pauline Gibling Schindler: Vagabond Agent for Modernism (PGS) for more details on her editorship of The Carmelite).
Walt Whitman School preliminary plan, R. M. Schindler, January 1921. Courtesy Architecture and Design Collection, University Art Museum, UC-Santa Barbara.  

The Schindlers were deeply active in school activities almost as soon as they arrived in Los Angeles evidenced by Schindler's preliminary plan for a new school building and notes for a lecture on the Modern School dated Januray 1921 in his papers at UC-Santa Barbara. (See above). Both were on the school's Board of Directors and RMS led the building committee. He designed and built minor renovations for the school, the most extensive being a new library to house a major donation of books and science equipment from Pryns Hopkins, an early major financial backer of the Ferrer Modern School in New York and founder of Boyland, a Santa Barbara school also based upon the principles of the Ferrer Modern School movement. Boyland was forced to close in 1918 after Hopkins, not as fortunate as Jordan-Smith, Clara Packard, Fanny Weston Bixby and Kate Crane Gartz, et al, became a victim of the Red Scare and was arrested and fined under the aforementioned Espionage Act for his strident anti-war views and pro-union activities.

Poster for an April 21, 1921 Walt Whitman School fund raising concert designed by Pauline Schindler. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.

While her husband was involved with building committee activities, Pauline was also designing and arranging for the printing of the school's promotional and fund-raising material such as the above poster for the 1921 spring benefit concert at the Los Angeles Philharmonic Auditorium (see below) and the second anniversary celebration announcement (see below) featuring keynote speaker Paul Jordan-Smith, both sporting Rockwell Kent's Modern School logo. Her graphic design skills, learned from Antonin Raymond's wife Noemi at Taliesin in 1919, would manifest themselves later during her stint editing The Carmelite in the late 1920s, teaching graphic design classes at UCLA, and curating exhibitions for the work of her estranged husband, Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Kem Weber, Jock Peters, and J. R. Davidson in the early 1930s. (For much more on this see PGS).

Philharmonic Auditorium ca. 1925. (From LAPL Photo Collection). Built in 1906, Architects Charles F. Whittlesey, Otto H. Neher and engineer E.R. Harris designed what was the first reinforced concrete building in Los Angeles and the largest theatre west of Chicago.

Program for the second anniversary celebration of the Walt Whitman School, May 29-30, 1921. From the Southern California Library, Walt Whitman School collection, Box 44, Folder 15.   

Program for the second anniversary celebration of the Walt Whitman School, May 29-30, 1921. From the Southern California Library, Walt Whitman School collection, Box 44, Folder 15. 

Walt Whitman School calendar, February 1922 announcing R. M. Schindler's lecture "Building Our Homes and Schools." From the Southern California Library, Walt Whitman School collection, Box 44, Folder 15. 

Still keeping a hand in Whitman School activities in the hope of landing a commission for the proposed new school building, Schindler lectured on "Building Our Homes and Schools," likely using his plans for his Kings Road House to illustrate the talk. His February 8th lecture took place a week before ground was actually broken in West Hollywood. Around this time the pregnant Pauline was serving out a three-month teaching contract in El Centro to help the cash-starved couple raise money for their new residence. (Schindler House by Kathryn Smith, Abrams, 2001, p. 24).
Walt Whitman School Spirit: The Children's Magazine, March 1922. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.

Walt Whitman Concert Poster, March 19, 1922. Featuring the Denishawn Dancers.

Having moved on from the Whitman School like the Schindlers by the spring of 1922, William Thurston Brown returned for the annual concert fund raiser at the Philharmonic Auditorium. Having photographed and befriended Ruth St. Denis and some of her dancers such as Martha Graham, it is possible that Edward Weston and/or Pauline Schindler played a part in landing the Denishawn dance troupe for the show.

Hollywood Scenic Tract, West Hollywood real estate ad, Holly Leaves, July 1, 1922, p. 32. 
West Hollywood, 1922. Spence photo. Los Angeles Public Library Photo Collection. Note Kings Road at right-center with the Schindler House at the southerly end on the west side of the street and further north on the east side of the street Irving Gill's 1916 Dodge House and grounds.

Schindler's work with Wright was winding down by the end of 1921 at which time he and Pauline took a much-needed vacation to Yosemite. Upon returning in November, they began planning in earnest their own home on a Kings Road lot in West Hollywood. (See above). With a loan from Pauline's parents, they purchased the lot jointly with building contractor Clyde Chace and his wife Marian (Da Camara), a very close friend of Pauline's from Smith College and roommate and fellow teacher at a progressive school in Ravinia north of Chicago. The two couples moved into the completed house by June 1922 (see below).

Kings Road House, summer 1922. Courtesy Architecture and Design Collection, University Art Museum, UC-Santa Barbara. 
With the house complete and both couples having recently given birth, the Schindler's sphere of social activities naturally gravitated to Hollywood. The Schindlers quickly became involved with the Hollywood Arts Association, again with the hope of obtaining a commission for a proposed art museum under the group's auspices and making contacts which were more likely to result in commissions than the radical proletariat at the Whitman School. Pauline wrote her mother of RMS's committee work, "Except that they are rather fun, they would be a waste of time if they did not also mean interesting contacts." (Pauline Gibling Schindler, letter to Sophie Gibling, October 22, 1922, Sweeney, p. 91). Schindler served on future client and photographer Viroque Baker's Fiesta Mexicana and Pioneer Party Committees and was responsible for decorations and the design of an "old Spanish village" for a 1923 fund-raiser. (Various articles in Holly Leaves, 1922-3). 

Schindler, R. M.,  "Who Will Save Hollywood," Holly Leaves, November 3, 1922, p. 32. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection. (Author's note: The bottom photo is of the Martha Taggart Residence, mother of Reginald Pole's wife Helen, designed by Lloyd Wright. Helen would divorce Reginald and marry Lloyd in 1926. For much more on this see my "Edward Weston, R. M. Schindler and Anushka Zacsek: The Vamp With a Goulash Name").
Schindler also published and lectured under the auspices of the Association on numerous occasions, above for example on the destruction by developers of the ridge-lines of the Hollywood Hills. Edith Gutterson Howenstein, former lover of Schindler in Chicago and then Kings Road tenant and designer of his magnetic, unconventional clothes (see below), lectured on "Dress as an art and medium for human expression" possibly using RMS as a model. ("Art Association Meets," Holly Leaves, December 8, 1922, pp. 42-3). Carol Aronovici, noted city planner and future Schindler Architetcural Group for Commerce and Industry partner (with Richard Neutra),  lectured on "New Cities for Old." ("Art Lunhceon Program," Holly Leaves, October 20, 1922, p. 24).

R. M. Schindler, 1927. Edward Weston photograph. Shirt design by Edith Gutterson Howenstein. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.
Edward Weston Studio, Brand Blvd., Glendale, ca. 1920. Image from Warren, p. 12. Original courtesy J. Paul Getty Museum, 84.XM.229.30. 

One of the first of L.A.'s bohemian avant-garde to visit the Schindlers in their now-iconic abode was none other than Edward Weston who was most likely accompanied by some combination of his inseparable companions during this period, Johan Hagemeyer, Ramiel McGehee, Margrethe Mather, Betty Katz and/or Tina Modotti. Having a lifelong passion for avant-garde piano music composition and its performers, an eight-month pregnant Pauline excitedly wrote of the traveling party from Weston's Glendale studio (see above) to Kings Road,
"On Sunday we stole some time for a lark, - and went off to call on Mr. Weston, an artist of whom we had heard much, and whose personality we liked through having heard him lecture, and seen his work. He was exceedingly interesting - showed us things, responded, of course, to R.M.S. - and when the evening was ripe, took us over to the house of a brilliant pianist [Deardorff-Shaw (see below)], who happened to be among his guests. Jolly, the way we all drifted over to her studio from his, and all sat on the floor to listen. She really was very brilliant, - said to be the finest player of modern French literature upon the Pacific coast ... and to out-Ornstein [Leo] Ornstein. Shortly before midnight I suggested we all motor over to our house, to try our Steinway ... Mr. Weston, of course, very much excited about the house, and wanting to see it by daylight. All of it a fearfully stimulating evening ... R.M.S. and I couldn't sleep, with the stimulus of the music and Mr. Weston's pictures." (Warren, p. 253, Pauline Gibling Schindler, letter to Mr. and Mrs. Edmund J. Gibling, July 16, 1922). (Author's note: Weston photographed Ornstein in 1918. Author's note: Pauline gave birth to son Mark four days later).
Ruth Deardorff-Shaw, 1922. Edward Weston portrait. From Weston's Westons: Portraits and Nudes by Theodore E. Stubbins, Jr., Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1989, p. 47). Collection Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents.  

Fueled by the success of their spur-of-the-moment inaugural salon, Pauline soon began to regularly plan similar get togethers of their rapidly expanding circle. It is evident that the Weston, Mather, McGehee, Hagemeyer crowd were in attendance at an early event as Johan's former employer, date-grower Paul Popenoe, soon commissioned Schindler and his contractor housemate Clyde Chace to build a house for his family in the Coachella Valley (see below).

Popenoe Cabin, Coachella Valley, 1922. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.  

Popenoe led a varied and interesting life, the early focus of which was the date industry. He traveled the world with his brother collecting rootstock for the family's Coachella Valley date farm and authored numerous articles and books on the industry including Date Growing in the Old World and the NewPopenoe was obviously quite impressed by Schindler's Kings Road design and immediately commissioned him to build the above cabin near the village of Coachella on a ranch he and his new bride purchased shortly after returning to California from a post-war stint in New York as Executive Secretary of the American Social Hygiene Association. Completed in 1922 just months after Kings Road, the Popenoe Cabin's similarities are quite apparent. ("Remembering My Father, Paul Popenoe: An Intellectual Portrait of the Man Who Saved Marriages" by David Popenoe). Popenoe would later become a renowned expert in eugenics and marriage counselling, ironically something the Schindler's would soon have a great need for. Coincidentally, a recent feature article on Popenoe in The New Yorker deemed him the "Father of Marriage Counseling." (See "Fixed," by Jill Lepore, The New Yorker, March 29, 2010).

During the time John Cowper Powys was staying at Erewhon on his 1922 West Coast lecture tour, Weston wrote Sarah Bixby Smith thanking her for the numerous concert tickets she continued to send him and Flora. Sarah was apparently not as yet privy to Weston's failing marriage and his ongoing affairs with Margrethe Mather and Tina Modotti.
"Dear Cousin Sarah, Flora and I cannot always take our pleasures together. So I was the one to benefit from your last tickets - but she has taken a new lease on life and goes out about three to my one these daays! Well you are a fine giver of surprises - and the music we have been able to hear through your tickets has been appreciated, especially Prihoda. I believe I told you about him. Am working hard - mostly exhibition work - but it keeps me out of mischief! I am writing this letter at 5:30 A.M. to show you how early I get here sometimes these days. I often wonder how the novel [Adobe Days] is coming out? Next time I come to Claremont I want to bring McGehee. I feel sure you will both enjoy him - but this must be of course when we are all in a more leisurely frame of mind. My best to all of you. E. W. 4-24-[1922]" (Author's note: Weston took the 22-year old virtuoso violinist Vasa Prihoda's portrait after meeting him at the February 28, 1922 Philharmonic Auditorium concert.).
Tina and Edward on the boat to Mexico, 1923. Photo likely by Chandler Weston. From Tina Modotti: Photographer and Revolutionary by Margaret Hooks, p. 70
Weston finally left for Mexico with Tina Modotti and son Chandler in July 1923 (see above) and was soon joined by cousin Sarah's son by her first marriage, Llewellyn. In anticipation of the hefty rent and "tuition" Llewelleyn would be contributing to the cause, Weston eagerly wrote "Llewellyn is here, at last...." (Daybooks, Vol. 1, August 23, 1923, p. 17 and Tina Modotti: Photographer and Revolutionary by Margaret Hooks, HarperCollins, 1995, p. 73. Author's note: Weston and Modotti had visited the Smiths in Claremont on February 11, 1923. During this visit they possibly discussed the particulars of Llewellyn's stay in Mexico with them. Edward Weston to Ramiel McGehee, February 7, 1923.).

Llewellyn was one of the boys captured in Weston's 1919 series of Erewhon pool photos at the Bixby Smith estate "Erewhon" in Claremont (see below). Having just graduated from Pomona College, the avid amateur photographer Llewellyn was hoping to learn more about the business from Weston and was also naively on the lookout for business opportunities to make his life's fortune.

"Untitled," (Llewellyn Bixby Smith and Chandler Weston), Pool, Bixby-Smith Residence, "Erewhon," Claremont, 1919. Edward Weston photograph. From Parallels & Contrasts: Photographs from the Stephen White Collection co-curated by Nancy Barrett and Stephen White, New Orleans Museum of Art, 1988, p. 127.
Writing on Edward Weston letterhead in first letter from Mexico to Sarah, who was then accompanying Paul on his second trip to England researching his eventual book on Robert Burton, "...One good thing about Mexico is that if photography fails I can make lots of money with my various partial accomplishments. Capable Americans are in great demand." He also described his purchase of a German Shepherd puppy which he named Panurge, the train trip to Mexico City, the hacienda in which Weston had set up his studio, and his search for a grand piano. (Llewellyn Bixby Smith, letter to Sara Bixby Smith, ca. August 23, 1923, Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Special Collections). Weston wrote of the piano's arrival at his studio, "Llewellyn's piano just came, he plays, trying it out. I have wanted music; I find it hurts. I feel singularly like an exile at times, as though I were here not altogether voluntarily..." (DBI, August 29, 1923, p. 19).
Llewellyn's next letter a couple weeks later discussed his first portrait customer, a poster he designed for street car advertising, and Weston's upcoming exhibition at Aztec Land. He suggested that she and "P. J." visit him in Mexico when they return from England but that P. J. wouldn't like it "because Thomas Hardy didn't live there." (Llewellyn Bixby Smith, letter to Sara Bixby Smith, September 12, 1923, Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Special Collections). (Author's note: Jordan-Smith had made extensive arrangements with John Cowper Powys for an introduction to Hardy for both his 1920 and 1923 research trips to England.).

Llewellyn Bixby Smith, Mexico, September 1923. Edward Weston photograph. Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Special Collections.  

Weston wrote the next day that he had taken portraits of Lewellyn (see above), Chandler, Tina and Elisa. (DBI, September 13, 1923, p. 21). The following week Edward and crew decamped their suburban location "El Buen Retiro" (see below) at Avenida del Hipodromo 3, Colonia Napoles, in Tacabuya for more centrally located digs at Lucerna 12, Colonia Juarez, Mexico D.F. "within walking distance from the heart of Mexico City." Weston wrote of the move, "Fairly well established on Calle Lucerna. Best of all, the printing room is ready for use thanks to Llewellyn." (DBI, September 23, 1923, pp. 15, 22). Llewellyn's take on his handicraft related to his mother was, "I have been spending most of my time doing those little things which are seemingly impossible to the unimaginative minds of Tina and Edward and the defective brain of Chandler Weston."  (Llewellyn Bixby Smith, letter to Sara Bixby Smith, September 22, 1923, Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Special Collections).
"El Buen Retiro" at Avenida de Hipodromo3, Colonia Napoles, Tacabuya, Mexico, D. F. From the Metropolitan Museum of Art.. Edward Weston Collection, Center for Creative Photography. ©1981 Arizona Board of Regents.

Xochimilco, 1923. Chandler Weston photograph. Verso inscription, Xochimilco - Llewellyn [Bixby Smith] says, "More beautiful than Italy."
Over the next couple months Edward, Chandler, Tina and Llewellyn went on photo-excursions to such places as Xochimilco (see above), the Plaza de Toros, and Pyramids of the Sun and Moon. In letters to his mother during this period Llewellyn was all over the map speculating about prospects for a career in photography and other schemes such as land development, importing Mexican arts and crafts to the U.S., and filmmaking, all the while requesting large sums of money to explore what he thought were fantastic opportunities. Wisely, Sarah turned a deaf ear and with his photography career apparently at a standstill, Llewellyn decided to return to Claremont. Weston wrote upon a somewhat disillusioned and undoubtedly homesick Llewellyn's departure,
"Llewellyn left this morning. I watched the train pull out with much sadness. He has been a delightful and lovable friend. Though his piano, at times, was sorely distracting and his dog a damned nuisance. Llewellyn has been much help to us, but, for his own sake, he should have just been coming instead of leaving. I am afraid he has not learned much photography with all the confusion of getting established and the exhibit." (DBI, November 24, 1923, p. 32-3).
"L. Bixby-Smith," ad, California Southland, February 1925, p. 29.

Llewellyn did indeed feel confident that he learned enough from the master to make a concerted effort to establish a photography career upon his return to Los Angeles evidenced by the above and below period ads in California Southland. Seemingly discouraged by the dedication and commitment needed to become successful, Llewellyn's ads ceased appearing in the latter part of 1925.

"L. Bixby-Smith," ad, California Southland,June 1925, p. 27.

Meanwhile, also back in Los Angeles, a crippling longshoremen's strike in San Pedro was making headlines. The Marine Transport Workers Industrial Union 510, a branch of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW), called a strike that immobilized 90 ships in the Los Angeles harbor. The union was protesting low wages, bad working conditions, and the imprisonment of union activists under California's Criminal Syndicalism Law. A delegation headed by Upton Sinclair which included Kate Crane Gartz, Fanny Weston Bixby Spencer, Gaylord Wilshire, Pryns Hopkins and John Packard met with Los Angeles Mayor Cryer to protest against the arrest of the strikers and request authority to hold a meeting at the harbor. After being denied a permit to read to the strikers from the American Constitution's Bill of Rights under which the right of free speech is guaranteed, Sinclair spoke to the group at San Pedro's Liberty Hill anyhow and was quickly arrested along with his brother-in-law Hunter Kimbrough, Pryns Hopkins, and Hugh Handyman. Also accompanying the group but not arrested was Kate Crane Gartz, described in the Times as a "wealthy follower of Sinclair." ("Upton Sinclair Arrested," Los Angeles Times, May 16, 1923, p. II-1).

Upton Sinclair, Los Angeles jail, 1923, photographer unknown. Courtesy of the San Francisco History Center, San Francisco Public Library.

The Liberty Hill incident spurred Sinclair, Kate Crane Gartz, Fanny Weston Bixby Spencer, Mary E. Garbutt, Clara and John Packard and their circle to quickly form a Southern California branch of the American Civil Liberties Union to provide more immediate support for their cause to protect freedom of speech. A week after their arrest, one of their first acts was to call for a Free Speech Meeting at Liberty Hill The same group obtained a permit from Mayor Cryer after promising that there would be no trouble. Over 2000 people attended the event with Schindlers likely among the crowd. ("Wobbly Gabfest is Tame," Los Angeles Times, May 24, 1923, p. II-22). The next day the group, headed by John Packard, called for investigation of police brutality of I.W.W. detainees in the Los Angeles jail. ("Want Charges Sifted," Los Angeles Times, May 25, 1923, p. II-22.). Having formed a strong bond through their kindred beliefs and likely having by then attended Pauline's radical Kings Road salons, Packard soon commissioned Schindler to design and build a singularly modern residence for him in Pasadena (see below).

John Cooper Packard Residence, 931 N. Gainsborough Dr., Pasadena, 1924. R. M. Schindler, Architect and photographer. Courtesy of the UC-Santa Barbara, University Art Museum, Architecture and Design Collections, R. M. Schindler Collection.
Morgrage, Louise, "Recent Books-Reviews," California Southland, May 1926, p. 14.

Weston remained in Mexico until January 1925 thus there was little, if any, contact between him and the Schindlers and/or the Smiths until his return. Jordan-Smith in the meantime busied himself working on his Burton and James Joyce books, and his Cables of Cobwebs (1923), and Nomad (1925) while Sarah was working on her family history Adobe Days (1925) and was also painting portraits and landscapes. Shortly after Weston's return, Paul had an acrimonious debate with him and Pomona College art professor Edward Kaminsky on various aspects of modern art. He had seen the traveling Armory Show, aka the International Exhibition of Modern Art in Chicago in 1913 and many of the same artists at the Panama Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco in 1915 and could find no form, beauty or meaning in the work of the new modernists. He offered to bet Weston that if he would submit some meaningless daubs under a strange foreign name that he could gain critical attention. (The Road I Came, p. 221).

"Yes, We Have No Bananas" exhibited under the title "Exaltation" by Pavel Jerdanovitch.
One thing led to another and Jordan-Smith, after hearing that Kaminsky requested that Sarah submit something in a more modernist vein than her previous efforts for the annual Pomona Valley Art Exhibition which he also chaired, decided to come up with his own "real modern." He borrowed some old brushes and oils from Sarah and
"...slapped out a picture of a savage woman with her arm lifted on high (see above). ... I placed a skull in the background, high on a pole to give a touch of cannibalism to it, and to help along the modernity of the creation I drew the woman a hut which appeared to be toppling over on one side. I made her eyes a ghastly Gauguinesque white..." (The Road I Came, p. 221).
Pavel Jerdanowitch, 1925. (Courtesy, Paul Jordan-Smith Papers, Charles Young Research Library, UCLA.

The family had a great chuckle over the piece and that was the end of it until Llewellyn brought over to the house a budding art critic from the college to proudly show off the family's recent "acquisition." When the young critic was totally taken in by the ruse, Paul was emboldened to submit his work to the Ninth Annual Exhibition of the Society of Independent Artists at New York's Waldorf Astoria Hotel in the spring of 1925. He renamed the 'Exaltation,' put a high price-tag on it, and submitted it under the pseudonym of Russian artist, Pavel Jerdanowitch (see above). The piece was featured in the French art journal Revue du Vrai et du Beau after Paul's interpretation and fabrictaed biographical information were submitted. Thus the legend began.

One thing led to another and over the next two years Paul gleefully submitted his Disambrationist paintings to an international selection of art journals and exhibitions including "Aspiration" (see below) to a no-jury exhibition at Marshall Fields in Chicago. Chicago Evening Post art critic Lena McCauley called "Aspiration" a "delightful jumble of Gauguin, Pop Hart and negro minstrelsy with a lot of Jerdanowitch individuality." (Whitaker, Alma, "International Art Hoax Bared by Los Angeles Author," Los Angeles Times, August 14, 1927).

"Aspiration" by "Pavel Jordanovitch, 1926. From Wet Canvas. 

McCauley, Lena, "No-Jury Show a Glowing Surprise," Chicago Evening Post, January 26, 1926, p. 5.  

The next year Jordan-Smith submitted two more pieces to the Waldorf Astoria show which again received critical acclaim and were praised in an article in the French art journal La Revue Moderne and elsewhere.
Sarah Bixby Smith and Paul Jordan-Smith Residence, 4800 Los Feliz Blvd. From Google Earth.  

By early 1927 Edward Weston was back for good from Mexico where he had returned with son Brett just after Paul's initiation of his Jerdanowitch hoax. Around the same time Paul and Sarah moved from Pomona  to Los Angeles into a sprawling mansion at 4800 Los Feliz Blvd. (see above) to facilitate Paul's literary activities and lectures (see below) through which he would soon be named the literary editor of the Los Angeles Times.
Paul Jordan-Smith lecture marketing brochure, ca. 1931. Johan Hagemeyer photograph, June 2, 1931.  Courtesy Rancho Los Cerritos Research Library.     

Paul couldn't wait to tell Edward "I told you so" while bringing him up to date on his Jerdanowitch antics. Weston wrote in his Daybooks,
"Sunday was spent with Paul Jordan and Cousin Sarah, - the first visit since my return: always, time spent with them is well spent. Paul has been painting! He always had contempt for "modern art," an undiscriminating contempt, but partly justified. So, with his sense of humour, and joy in ridicule, he set about to perpetrate a hoax. He painted, - he sent his work to independent exhibits under an assumed Russian name, - and - he was acclaimed, reviewed, his paintings reproduced! But the joke is partly on Paul. Painting in a really naive, childlike manner, he actually achieved in at least one canvas that which many contemporary painters consciously try to do. This canvas of a Negro woman at the scrubbing board (see above) is really a gay, spontaneous thing, not great of course, but much better than most "efforts" seen at modern exhibits. The literary element which he tries to put in each painting is happily almost lacking in this, though he can explain his allegory with many a chuckle. A hand reaching in from one side weakens by adding symbolism, - and distracts, but as a whole the canvas has much real merit. If he could paint along in this attitude, - gaining in technique, he might become important. Anyway the whole episode is delightfully amusing." (DBII, April 18, 1927, p. 16).
Whitaker, Alma, "International Art Hoax Bared by Los Angeles Author," Los Angeles Times, August 14, 1927.
By the summer of 1927 Jordan-Smith tired of the ruse and exposed the entire affair to the Time's Alma Whitaker (see above). (Author's note: This was right around the time that Schindler was exhibiting his work in Carmel at Johan Hagemeyer's studio, Weston was photographing Schindler's Lovell Beach House, Richard Neutra was being commissioned to design the Lovell's Health House, Galka Scheyer was living and exhibiting the work of The Blue Four at Kings Road and Pauline Schindler and son Mark left her philandering husband and Kings Road for Carmel).  Paul would reminisce in later years that he received more publicity and notoriety over his art than he did over all of his books and literary reviews combined. Some examples include Upton Sinclair devoting an entire chapter of his Money Writes to the Jerdanowitch hoax and Pauline Schindler publishing the saga in The Carmelite in 1929 while Jordan-Smith was in town for a visit and to meet Robinson Jeffers. (For much more on the extensive publicity the Jerdanowitch episode received see the Paul Jordan-Smith Papers at the UCLA Library of Special Collections, Paul Jordan-Smith Papers, Boxes 44-5).

"Putting Over Art," The Carmelite, May 3, 1929, p. 7.
The story continued to bring much amusement to Paul and his friends over the years as Weston related,
"... The evening [January 31, 1928] was spent with Paul and Cousin Sarah. Arthur Millier and wife were also there and a jolly time we had. A good laugh is cleansing! We screamed with laughter, - one always can with Paul, and the conversation [likely re: Pavel Jerdanovitch] was especially congenial last night." (DaybooksII, February 1, 1928, p. 48).
Paul Jordan-Smith, June 2, 1931. Johan Hagemeyer photograph. From Hagemeyer Collection, Bancroft Library, UC-Berkeley.


References to Paul and Sarah fade from Weston's Daybooks after his moves to San Francisco and Carmel in 1928-9. Sometime in 1930 Weston sent a print of Bertha Wardell to Jordan-Smith with the inscription,  "To Paul - "warm" greetings from - Edward, 1930." (For much more on Wardell see my "Bertha Wardell: Dances in Silence"). Sarah's youngest child, daughter Janet Hathaway Smith, would grow up to marry first Michel Pijoan, son of Pomona College art history professor Jose Pijoan in 1930 and later, fine press book publisher Ward Ritchie in 1934 about a year before Sarah's untimely death by trichinosis. Professor Pijoan was responsible for bringing Jose Clemente Orozco to Pomona College to create his famous fresco Prometheus in the school's Frary Dining Hall. (For more on this see my "Richard Neutra and the California Art Club"). Sarah met Ritchie at a party hosted by Weston gallerist Jake Zeitlin and was so taken by him that she called Jake and had him arrange another party and for Ritchie to accompany Janet. (Ward Ritchie Oral History, "Printing and Publishing in Los Angeles"). "Ritchie's Roadhouse" on Griffith Park Blvd., a piano practice hangout of Ritchie friend John Cage, was near the Bixby Smith Residence on Los Feliz Blvd. mentioned earlier. (See my "Schindlers-Westons-Kashevaroff-Cage" for more on the Ritchie-Cage friendship).

Selected books from my collection cited for this article.

The Road I Came by Paul Jordan-Smith, Caxton Printers, Caldwell, ID, 1960.

Adobe Days: A Book of California Memories by Sarah Bixby-Smith, Torch Press, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, 1926, Revised Edition.