Evarts I. Blake.

Greater Oakland, 1911, a volume dealing with the big metropolis on the shores of San Francisco Bay .. online

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Mr. Orr is strongly in favor of extending
tlie Play Ground System, and giving the
Play Ground Commission full control. He
believes they should be properly equipped and
supervised, holding that playgrounds without
adequate supervision, looking to the safety and
healthful enjoyment of children, are worse
than no playgrounds at all.

He also believes in increased school facil-
ities, and more school buildings, particularly
in a first class Polytechnic High School, lo-
cated on large enough acreage, so that there
will be no question of ample ground facilities
in the future, thus keeping pace with Los An-
geles and other Southern cities that are using
from sixteen to forty acres for their Poly

Mr. Orr is a native of Iowa, born in Ottum-
wa, on June 18, 1868, and received his edu-
cation in the public schools of his native city.
After completing his education he was asso-

ciated for a number of years with John Mor-
rell & Company, of Ottumwa. In 1897 he es-
tablished the business of Orr & Breedlove, at
1.375-77 Broadway, Oakland. One year be-
fore the earthquake the firm moved to its
present location at 651-53-55 Webster Street,
which property has recently been purchased by
them. The firm of Orr & Breedlove are Gen-
eral Commission Merchants, their main ac-
count being John Morrell & Company's Iowa
hams, bacon, canned meats and lard. The
concern also handle San Juan olive oil and
olives, and Zoller's New York cheese. The
business has been eminently successful, and
the firm expects soon to erect a new building
with larger accommodations.

Mr. Orr's marriage to Miss Harriett Breed-
love, the sister of his partner, occurred in
Chillicothe, Mo., in 1889. He has one daugh-
ter. Miss Irene L. Orr, a social favorite, and
an accomplished young lady. She is a grad
uate of the high school, and later attended
Miss Gamble's finishing school at Santa Bar-
bara. Mr. Orr's father. Dr. William L. Orr,
was a distinguished man of his time, born in
Washington, Pa., in 1823, and a graduate of
Washington and Jefferson College, where he
was a schoolmate and personal friend of
James G. Blaine. During the Civil War he
served as surgeon of the 21st Iowa Regiment.
He was Mayor of Ottumwa before the War,
and held public office after the War from
1866 until 1897. His death occurred in 1907.


Greater Oakland, 1911

Miss Annie Florence Brown

Member of the Board of Education

BROWN, the newly elected
School Director, is a decid-
edly interesting young
woman, not merely because
she enjoys the distinction of being the only
woman holding an elective office in Oak-
land, but for the better reason that she is
devoting her exceptional intelligence to
something worth while.

Miss Brown was born in Yokohama,
Japan, in which city she spent her early
childhood. As a girl she went through the
Oakland grammar schools and High School,
and later entered the University of Califor-
nia, from which institution she graduated
with the degree of Bachelor of Letters.
For a time, she taught in the High School
of this city.

As an adjunct to a thorough practical and
classical education, she has traveled broadly,
having made two trips to Europe, visiting
the principal cities as far east as Alexan-
dria, Egypt, and has given close study to
educational methods and social conditions.
In addition to these unusual advantages,
she has demonstrated that she can think as
clearly and logically as any member of the
board, in dealing with business matters
coming before that body, and her sugges-
tions have always been to the point.

When asked by the interviewer as to just
how she happened to be projected into
politics, she stated that the women of Oak-
land were very anxious to be represented
on the Board of Education, by one of their
own sex, who had an understanding of the
educational needs of Oakland's rising gen-
eration, and could spare the time that the
responsibilities of the position demanded.
Miss Brown consented to have her name
placed on the ticket, and, without any
speeches or electioneering on her part, was
nominated by direct primary vote and sub-
sequently elected by a handsome majority.

Miss Brown believes that the classical
education of pupils should by no means be
neglected, but thinks that, in conjunction
with this, their education should include a
training of a practical sort to meet the re-
quirements of our present social conditions
and of real help in the work of today. She
believes in equal suffrage, because it will
help to develop the highest qualities in
women and will mean a great deal toward
bringing about "clean" politics. She is
thoroughly feminine, and there is not the
slightest trace of the "new woman" about
her; she looks upon the world as one big
family, and holds that women should do
their share with men, working side by side
with them, and have the same voice in
deciding the broader civic questions con-
fronting the commonwealth as the mothers
should in deciding family problems.

Miss Brown finds little time for "Society"
in the narrow sense of the term, but has
been active in philanthropic work. She is
an officer of the Alameda County Society
for the Study and Prevention of Tubercu-
losis and a member of the Home Club and
Collegiate Alumnae. She has also given
talks to the children on several occasions
on the interesting things she has seen in
Europe and foreign lands. Her mother,
Mrs. Matilda Brown, has become well
known through her charitable work, and is
president of King's Daughters' Home for
Incurables. She is a sister of Everett J.
Brown, Judge of the Superior Court of
Alameda County.

The editors apologize for the absence of
Miss Brown's portrait in connection with
this article, as we believe it would be as
welcome to the reader as an "oasis in a
desert," but she remained deaf to all the
arguments of the interviewer on this point
and insisted that we would have to get
along without it, hence we resort to the
Latin phrase, "Caetero desunt."

Frank B. Cook


Frank B. Cook

Member of the Board of Education

WIDELY known and respected
man, who has been identified
with public life in Oakland
for some years, is Mr. Frank
B. Cook, a member of the
present Board of Education.

Mr. Cook is of English descent, born in
Nova Scotia on May 6, 1864. He has an
excellent education, having attended the
public schools and the University of Acadia
in his native city. While a student at the
universit}', like the rest of its five hundred

Member Board of Education

students, he became acquainted with most
of the two hundred young ladies of Acadia
Seminary; ere long he claimed the charm-
ing, accomplished and most lovable Miss
Annie Maude Thomas in marriage, in the
year 1888, and his subsequent home and
social life has been all that could be de-
sired. Their son, Frank B. Cook, Jr., at-
tends the University of California, and their

daughter, Madeline Thomas Cook, the
Franklin Grammar School.

As a young man, Mr. Cook was associ-
ated with his father in the general merchan-
dise business. Believing that the West of-
fered a broader field and better opportuni-
ties for success, he came to California,
working for a time with E. C. Peart, and
it was not long before he acquired an inter-
est in the business. He was a partner in
the firm of Peart, McLean & Company, of
Colusa, for three years, and then sold his
interest at a good figure.

Eighteen years ago he began business in
Oakland, and has been successful from the
start. Mr. Cook has always taken an active
interest in public afifairs, particularly in
matters pertaining to education. He was
one of the members of the first Fremont
High School Board, and it was largely
through his influence that the system of
selecting teachers through political patron-
age has been done away with. He believes
in the best schools and the best teachers
for the rising generation in Oakland, and
further believes that good salaries should be
paid in order to secure the best talent and
ability available.

Mr. Cook's work has been so satisfactory
as a School Director that he was nominated
by direct primary vote and subsequently
elected by a large majority, in May, 1911.
In the present Board, he acts as chairman
of the Committee on Grounds. Buildings
and Equipment, and is a member of the
Committee on High Schools, and of the
Finance and Revenue Committee.

Mr. Cook may feel a just pride in his
ancestry. His father, Thomas Cook, was
United States Consul to Nova Scotia for
about thirty-five years, and Francis Cook,
from whom he is a direct lineal descendant,
came to America on the "Mayflower" and
was a prominent figure in the early history
of Massachusetts.

He has a wide circle of friends in Ala-
meda County and is well known in fraternal
circles, being a member of the Masons,
Woodmen. Oddfellows, Moose and several
other fraternities and clubs.


Greater Oakland, 1911

Member Board of Education

Alexander Simpson Kelly

Member of the Board of Education

KELLY, one of the members
of the Board of Education
of Oakland, has made a really
remarkable showing for his
years; though barely out of his twenties,
he has won for himself a high place in his
chosen profession, and has become an im-
portant factor in the government of the

Dr. Kelly is a native of Canada, born in
the Province of Ontario, on January 15,
1879. He came to California when a boy

of fourteen and lived in Yolo County for
several years. Coming to Oakland in 1896,
he entered the high school here and gradu-
ated with honors. Early in his career he
decided to take up the medical profession
as his particular field of usefulness and en-
tered the Cooper Medical Institute, of San
Francisco. His natural aptitude for his
chosen profession and his deep interest in
his studies enabled him to pass a creditable
examination for his physician's certificate.
Since taking up his practice in Oakland, he
has built up a lucrative business and enjoys

Alexander Simpson Kelly


the confidence and patronage of many of the
first citizens of the city. He is a member
of the County Medical Association, of which
he is president, the California Medical Asso-
ciation, and the American Medical Associa-
tion. He is assistant professor in the Oak-
land Medical College in the Department of
Surgery. He also has been a member of
the medical staff of St. Luke's Hospital,
.San Francisco, and of the Alameda County

In April, 1907, he accepted the nomina-
tion on the Republican ticket for member
■of the Board of Education of the City of
Oakland, from the first ward, and was
elected by a handsome majority. He has
been an active and conscientious worker in
the department of education. He was largely
instrumental in introducing the regular med-
ical inspection in the public schools by
having a competent physician devote his
entire time to the hygienic welfare of the
school children. It is now the duty of this
physician to examine not only the general
sanitary condition of the schools, but to
give particular attention to sickly or back-
ward children and give them every assist-
ance in the power of modern medical

He has also taken a strong stand against
secret societies and clubs in the high
schools, which have been a menace to the
-democracy and equality of the schools,
which are the very foundation of American
educational institutions.

In the direct primary election of 1911,
Mr. Kelly was again nominated and elected

School Director. He is a member of the
Grounds, Buildings and Equipment Com-
mittee on the present Board, a member of
the Elementary Schools Committee, and
chairman of the High Schools Committee.

Dr. Kelly comes from English and
Scotch parentage, his father, Mr. A. W.
Kelly, having been born in England, im-
migrated to America, and was a prominent
citizen of Yolo County, where he conducted
a large general mercantile business for six-
teen years. His mother was a native of

The success that has come to Dr. Kelly
is entirely due to his own individual efforts.
It was only through tenacity of purpose,
self-denial, and close application that he
has won his present position. When he
arrived in Oakland in 1896, his only capital
was good health, energy, and an ambition
to amount to something in the world. At
times he worked for his board, and took
any odd job he could get on Saturdays and
holidays to assist him in securing his edu-
cation. He supported himself during the
entire time he was attending high school,
and earned his way through medical college.
He has a pleasing personality, a sympa-
thetic nature, and altogether is a likable
young man. His equipment seems to be
complete for a brilliant future career.

Dr. Kelly has a broad acquaintance
throughout the city and is a member of the
Elks, the Nile Club and the University
Club; he has passed through all the Ma-
sonic degrees and is a Shriner.


Greater Oakland, 1911

Harry L. Boyle

Member Board of Education

ARRY L. BOYLE, who received
the nomination by direct pri-
mary vote for School Director,
' and was subsequently elected
by a goodly majority, in the
summer of 1911, has taken an active interest
in educational matters for a good many years
past. At this election, he ran second highest
on the ticket.

In 1906 he was School Director of one of
the outlying districts, serving four years in
all, until he was legislated out at the time
the district was annexed to the City of Oak-

As a director of schools he strongly sup-
ported and encouraged the organization of
the brass band in the Lockwood School,
which has the distinction of being the only
school in the county having its own band,
and a good one at that. He believes that
the Oakland schools should have the best
teachers that can be secured, and political
patronage should have no place or bearing on
the selection of teachers, but that ability and
fitness for the position should be the im-
portant considerations.

He also believes the school house should
be made the civic and social center of the
district in which it is located, where debates,
literary clubs, and organizations for civic im-
provements, etc., may meet and discuss mat-
ters of educational and public interest. Mr.
Boyle sees great opportunities in the intro-
duction of moving pictures in the schools as

an aid to education, and there is no doubt
that pupils can learn more in fifteen min-
utes about iron rolling, the fishing industry,
or, in fact, any of the industries and sci-
ences, than they can learn in a much longer
time in the study of a dry printed treatise
on the subject. He believes school buildings
should be limited to one story in height,
wherever practicable, as they may be kept
in a better sanitary condition, are safer in
case of fire or other unlooked-for calamities,
and more convenient and accessible in every

Mr. Boyle is a native of Washington, born
in Walla Walla on May 23rd, 1870. He re-
ceived a practical education in the Oakland
public schools, and started his career in the
business of manufacturing sanitary appli-
ances. For the last fifteen years he has been
with the Oakland Traction Company and Key
Route as timekeeper. His marriage to Miss
Maude E. Gooby took place in Oakland on
September 28th, 1894. They have four chil-
dren — Miss Alma, fifteen years of age; Les-
ter, thirteen ; Harry, ifive, and little Jack,
eleven months. Mr. Boyle is a brother-in-
law of Barney Oldfield, the celebrated auto-
mobile racer.

On the present Board of Education he
acts as Chairman of the Committee on Rules
and Regulations, and is member of the Ele-
mentary School Committee and Finance and
Revenue Committee.

J. W. McClymonds


Secretary Board of Education and Superintend-
ent City Schools

J. W. McClymonds

City Superintendent of Schools

F we are to believe the old
maxim that "experience is the
best teacher," then assuredly
Mr. J. W. McClymonds, City

Superintendent of Schools,

should know his profession, for he has been
engaged prominently as an educator and
teacher continuously for the past forty odd


Mr. McClymonds is a native of the Key-
stone State, born in Portersville, Pennsyl-

vania, on December 28th, 1848. After a prac-
tical education in the public schools of
Pennsylvania he entered Westminster College,
of which he is a graduate. He came West
in 1871, and save for a year and a half spent
in Kansas, has lived in California _ ever since.
In 1873 he accepted an appointment as
teacher in one of the county schools in
Sonoma Countv. He then took a position
as Principal of the Healdsburg Grammar
School; following this, was Principal in the


Greater Oakland, 1911

Petaluma High f^chool for three years ; Prin-
cipal of the San Leandro School for six
years ; Principal of the Lincoln School of
Oakland for three years, and as a fitting and
just climax to his useful career as an edu-
cator, was elected Superintendent of the City
Schools of Oakland in 1888.

Mr. McClymonds is progressive in his
ideas. Wonderful changes have come to pass,
not only in relation to the remarkable
growth of the city and increased importance
of his office, since his installation twenty-two
years ago, but also in the matter of im-
proved methods and plan of procedure, in
"Teaching the young idea how to shoot."
Mr. McClymonds has kept pace with the
times, and has always been willing to give
up an old idea for a new one, when given
adequate proof that a real benefit is derived
by the change.

When pressed by the interviewer for a
few words on the general subject of educa-
tion, he said : "I have seen many changes
in the methods pursued along educational
lines since entering upon my life's work ;
time was when little attention was given to
the individuality of the student, but today
the characteristics and peculiarities of the
child are studied carefully. The teacher is
as much concerned as to how a pupil lives
and how he acts, as to how well he pro-

gresses in his studies. More attention is
given to his moral and physical education.
We now have physical examiners in the
schools, and it is a part of the work of the
department of education to watch for any
physical defects in a child and remedy them,
if possible. The State's right in the child
(luring certain hours of the day is now
recognized as superior to the parent's right ;
in other words, compulsory education, the
juvenile court and all similar measures guar-
antee the child's rights in its relation to the
State, as against the rights of incompetent

The responsibilities of Mr. McClymond's
office in the supervision of educating and
training the minds, and looking after the
physical welfare of the rising generation who
will soon take the reins of the city's gov-
ernment and the commercial interests of the
commonwealth in hand, are by no means
small or insignificant. The city is fortunate
in having at the head of this department a
man of broad and progressive ideas, who
has most efficiently performed the duties im-
posed upon him.

Mr. McClymond's marriage to Miss Vir-
ginia M. Smith took place in San Francisco
in 1873. He has one married daughter, Mrs.
W. Kinsell, and one son, Mr. Vance A. Mc-
Clymonds, one of Oakland's rising young

Robert B. S. York



AssT. Sec. Board of Education and Deputy

SuPT. OF Schools

Robert B. S. York

Deputy Superintendent of City Schools

present Deputj^ City Superin-
tendent of City Schools, is a
native of Indianapohs, Indiana.
As a boy he worked on a farm
near the city of his birth, and received his
education in the pubHc schools, concluding
his course in Purdy's College, of Indianapolis.
Mr. York began to take an active interest
in public affairs almost as soon as he was
able to vote. At the age of twenty-one he
received the appointment of Deputy Sheriff

of Marion County, Indiana, and continued in
office three years, when he resigned to accept
an appointment as Clerk of the Criminal
Court in that county, serving for two years.

While still in his early twenties, having a
strong desire to see the new Western
country, and believing in its greater oppor-
tunities, he decided to make his future home
in California, arriving here in 1875.

Mr. York has a varied and broad business
experience that has proven valuable to him
as a public official. He was first engaged in


Greater Oakland, 1911

the wholesale butcher business, being asso-
ciated with H. M. Ames & Company, and
was connected with this concern for six
years. Subsequent to this he accepted an
appointment in the County Recorder's office
under Recorder F. D. Hines, remaining there
six years. Then he became Passenger Agent
for the Wabash Rail\va.v, occupying the office
two years. He resigned this position to take
a business trip to Eastern cities. Returning
to Oakland in 1891, he became engaged in
business as an expert accountant.

Mr. York received his present appointment
as Deputy City Superintendent of Schools in
1895. As an important factor in the depart-
ment of education for many years he lias
witnessed its steady growth to its present
magnitude. When he entered the office there
were but one hundred and ninty-one teachers
and principals, and an average daily attend-
ance of seven thousand five hundred and
ninety-four. At the present time there are
five hundred and thirty-nine teachers and
principals, and approximately fifteen thousand
pupils. The Franklin, Lincoln. Prescotn
Grant, Campbell, Longfellow and Wasliington
Schools have all been built since he went
into office.

Mr. York's duties in his present office re-
quire a man who is a thorough organizer and

systematizer, and tlie city is fortunate in se-
curing and retaining the services of a man
of his caliber in that office. His long busi-
ness experience wherein system, accuracy, and
a grasp of detail have .been of paramount
importance, has enabled him to handle the
greatly increased business of his office with-
out confusion and in a most praiseworthy

Mr. York married Miss Sarah A. Collier
in Indianapolis in 1871. While in most re-
spects his home life has been a happy one,
it has not been free from tragedy and sor-
row. His younger son, Harold, met with a
fatal accident three years ago at the age of
twenty-five, and his wife's death occurred
in this city in August, 1900. He has two
daughters— Mrs. B. M. Drake and Miss
Pauline A. York— both popular in social cir-
cles, and two remaining sons— B. L. York,
now manager of Idora Park, and Ralph
E. York, in the City Assessor's office.

Mr. York's home has been in Oakland
much of the time for the last thirty-five
years, and during that period he has gathered
around him many staunch friends. He is a
Mason, Mystic Tie, No. 398, Indianapolis,
and a member of the Oakland Lodge of Elks,
No. 17L

Samuel Augustus Wentworth



Ex-Member of Board of Education and Deputy

County Auditor

Cottriesy of A>-ro7Vsmilh Photo

Samuel Augustus Wentworth

Deputy County Auditor and Ex- Member Board of Education

WORTH, who has been prom-
inentl}^ identified with both the
city and count}' government for
some years past, enjoys a
broad experience in both the political and
business world.

He is a native of San Francisco, born on
March 22nd, 1860, and received a good prac-
tical education in the public schools of that
city, supplemented by a business course at
Heald's Business College. After completing
his education he was for a time associated
with the well-known law firm of Estee &

Boalt. of San Francisco, as clerk. As an
adjunct to his practical education he had
learned the art of telegraphy, and as a young
man secured a position as night operator
with the Southern Pacific Railway Company.
His promotions from agent to train dis-
patcher and train master are the best proofs
of his success as a railroad man. He left
the railway service for two years, during
which time he worked with Judge Coffey in
the Probate Court ; in the Tax Collector's
office, under Mr. Wadham, and in the Re-
corder's office, under Alexander Russell.
After this he again became associated with


Greater Oakland, 1911

the railroad company, starting in as operator
and working up to the position of train

Online LibraryEvarts I. BlakeGreater Oakland, 1911, a volume dealing with the big metropolis on the shores of San Francisco Bay .. → online text (page 22 of 30)