Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The Hyde Family Tradition of Reform Christian Values

"The first casualty when war comes is truth."
Quote from California Governor Hiram W. Johnson

(Read Part I and Part II, PART III)

Part IV
The Big Picture
By Linda Minor

Reform Politics in Palo Alto

Good Government League banquet in 1909
During his childhood and college years, William Avery Hyde was inculcated with values learned from his father, a seemingly honest and dedicated businessman who practiced the virtues of self-government for the benefit of his entire community. As manager of the Stanford bookstore, he took an avid interest, not only in selling books, but in operating free libraries. As president of the Palo Alto Civic League, as well as chief executive of the commission government of the city, he also helped his city build and run its own public power and electric plant, to the considerable ire of Pacific Gas & Electric, a corporation which desired to add the city to its own profit base. He served on the legislative standing committee of the statewide League of California Municipalities (1910-11).

All these events transpired within the context of the "reform" administration of President Theodore Roosevelt, who took office after William McKinley's assassination and left reluctantly in 1913 as Woodrow Wilson was inaugurated.

W.F. Hyde's name appeared in local newspapers in association with other civic leaders. In August 1906 the San Francisco Call announced:
A new Republican club was organized here last night. Judge S. W. Charles acted as temporary chairman and W. R. Allen as secretary-treasurer. A committee of six was named to prepare a ticket of prospective delegates for the primaries. This committee consisted of B. P. Oakford, Marshall Black. W. F. Hyde, F. B. Simpson, John D. Boyd, F. L. Crandall and S. W. Charles. The ticket, that this body brought before the meeting was made up as follows: Delegates to the State Convention. Marshall Black and W. F. Hyde; delegates to the Congressional Convention, John D. Boyd and Dr. John C. Spencer. The delegates to the County Convention are: Precinct I— W. D. Cashel, W. B. Allen, Professor H. W. Rolfe, B. P. Oakford, A. N. Umphreys; Precinct 2— F. A. Marriot, F. B. Simpson, Dr. C. W. Decker, E. E. Peck and Professor R. E. Swain.
Another announcement appeared in the November 3, 1906, San Francisco Call:
 PALO ALTO, Nov. 2.— Citizens interested in good government met in Fraternity Hall annex last evening and formed the Civic League of Palo Alto. The meeting followed a preliminary conference, at which W. F. Hyde, W. E. K. Vail and Dr. C. W. Decker were authorized to draft a set of by-laws and issue a call for a meeting. The league's object is purely civic and it will not engage in furthering the interests of any religious sect or political organization. The constitution among other things provides that the league is formed to insure a more perfect administration of municipal affairs; to promote the general welfare and prosperity of the city, to secure such State legislation, as the interests of the city may from time to time require and to arouse a more widely extended interest in local municipal legislation and administration. A committee of nine will compose the active working body of the league five of whom were appointed at the meeting last night. They are W. F. Hyde, Professor Elmore, Walter E. Vail, Dr. C. W. Decker and Fred B. Simpson.
Almost a year later, the new Civic League would experience an incident that was written up into the Call as though a major scandal had occurred:
San Francisco Call - November 24, 1907
Suspicion That There Is Something Wrong Exists in Minds
     PALO ALTO, Nov. 23.— Scantily clothed insinuations of graft stuck their ugly heads out of the ruck of discussion at a mass meeting of the city fathers— and mothers— held in the old Presbyterian church here last night. One other thing also noticeably protruded, the unpopularity of Edward P. E. Troy of San Francisco.
     One of the speakers suggested the reading of an open letter from Troy to the president of the Civic league and the very mention of the hated name brought out such a storm of protest that the presiding officer, W.F. Hyde, took refuge in compromise and promised not to read the letter, but to give it to the press. 
     For the best part of two hours those present sat with their hands to their ears figuratively speaking, while they attempted to learn from the successive speakers exactly what the financial condition for the city is at present. Out of the turmoil and talk came the conviction that the city's system of book keeping is in sad need of fixing.
     The Palo Alto Civic league was hard at work and President Hyde made plain that rapid action was imperative in view of the financial report filed by Town Clerk [John D.] Boyd. Things are very much awry in Palo Alto. The city owns its own water works and lighting plant, and the terrors of municipal ownership stare it in the face. These are the main points in the president's talk. Then he introduced A. A. Young, professor of economics at Stanford university.
     "System, always system, and lots of book keeping, coupled with constant watchfulness, is the price a city has to pay for owning its own public utilities," said Professor Young. He added that only the most, careful book keeping , and strict attention to details would serve to scare graft away from such a city.
     "Where is that surplus the present board started with?" cried Trustee William Dean, when he secured the attention of the chairman. "There were $75,000 in hand then. Where is it? What has become of the $200,000 the city has spent in the last 18 months?"
     "There is nothing to show for it save debts," he went on. He also demanded the cause of the order issued by some of the members of the present board forbidding the trustees to sell electric current outside of the city. 
     "It looks like protection of private interests to me," he finished.
     Then came the incident of the Troy letter which nearly caused the gathering to break up in confusion. Dr. C. W. Decker, started it by asking that the letter, which contained strictures on the present board, be read in meeting. J.F. Bixbee jumped to his feet, shouting a protest against it. 
     "It would be an insult to this assemblage to read that letter. If Troy came into my office, I'd kick him out. No I won't ---he's too little— but I would get rid of him somehow." Bixbee said.
Through the above excerpts William Fletcher Hyde is revealed as a hard-working reformer in the mold of liberal Christians of that era. Edward P.E. Troy was just such a man. A Californian, Troy advocated the passage of the single tax program proposed much earlier by Henry George's Christian Socialist movement. Whether or not he wrote the open letter to President Hyde of the Palo Alto Civic League because they were acquainted with each other or not, what is notable is how much vehemence was expressed in the objection to his letter's being read at that meeting.

In July of 1909 at the California Republic Convention, W.F. Hyde was one of the delegates who voted unanimously in favor of the following:
Resolved, that we pledge the Lincoln-Roosevelt league delegates to the several conventions to nominate an able and conscientious republican to represent the people of the the Fifth congressional district of the state of California in the United States congress, a candidate free from the control of the Southern Pacific railroad, or any other special interest, and pledged to represent the people of California; also to nominate as a candidate to the legislature such a man as can be relied upon to vote and work for the election as United States senator of a clean republican, not controlled by or affiliated with the Southern Pacific railroad, or any other special interest, and in full sympathy and accord with the principles of this league and the policies of President Roosevelt;  ...
Among the other speakers who pointed out the aims and ideals of the organization were State Senator Marshall Black and Richard Keating. The balloting for delegates at the various conventions resulted as follows: For the county convention — Charles Baker, J. T. Coulthard. W. F. Hyde. Richard Keating, Fernando Sanford. H. W. Simkins W. H. Sloan, John C. Spencer. A. N. Humphreys. A. G. Walker. C. B. Wing: for the congressional convention — E. D. Mosher, B. P. Oakford; for the state convention— E. P. Cashel, Edward Ackley.
Hyde's politics seems in alignment with the Republican governor of that era, reformer Hiram W. Johnson, a supporter of the Progressive wing of Republicans who, by bolting from the Repubican convention in 1912, played a part in electing Democrat Woodrow Wilson rather than the Bonesman, William Howard Taft, who had been TR's chosen vice president and successor, to the Presidency. Taft's father, Alphonso, had in fact co-founded Skull and Bones at Yale in 1823, along with William H. Russell, while the son had spent years on the Philippine Commission with W. Cameron Forbes, overseeing America's colonial empire.
Hiram Warren Johnson was born in Sacramento, September 2, 1866, the son of Grove and Annie (De Montfredy) Johnson. He was educated in the Sacramento public schools and attended the University of California at Berkeley. He left in 1886, in his junior year, to marry Minnie L. McNeal. He studied law in his father's law office, was admitted to the bar in 1888, and practiced in Sacramento. In 1894 he and his brother, Albert, managed their father's first congressional campaign. However, they opposed him in his bid for re-election and backed a reform group. The political rivalry estranged father and sons for many years.

In 1902 Johnson went to San Francisco to practice law. In 1908 he was selected to take the place of Francis Heney, after the latter was shot during the prosecution of the graft trials, and secured a conviction against Abraham Reuf [sic] for bribery. At this time Johnson came to the attention of the state reform element and enhanced his anti-machine reputation by his dynamic speeches before the Lincoln-Roosevelt Republican League.

By 1910 he was the acknowledged leader of the progressive movement in the state, and in November he was elected Governor. In 1912, he led the California delegation to the Republican convention in Chicago, and, with Theodore Roosevelt and other Progressives, bolted the convention after the renomination of President William H. Taft. Johnson then became the vice-presidential nominee of the newly formed Progressive Party. In 1914, he was re-elected Governor and in November 1916, he was elected to the U.S. Senate. On March 17, 1917, he resigned his state office and went to Washington.

Johnson served as a U.S. Senator from California for five terms, 1917-1945. During this time he maintained his image as a progressive reformer by his sponsorship of the Boulder Dam project, through investigations into the labor conditions in the West Virginia coal mines, by his attack on the power of private utilities, and through his strong support of the public works projects in the New Deal era. In the field of foreign relations, Johnson's stands were always highlighted by a vigorous nationalistic spirit, and he was popularly termed an "isolationist".

The coming of World War II brought Johnson into a headlong clash with Franklin Roosevelt and the New Deal. The disintegration of American neutrality alarmed Johnson and led him into a bitter losing battle from which he never recovered. Once the war began he gave it full support, but his failing health kept him more and more from the active business of the Senate. He died in Bethesda Naval Hospital on August 6, 1945.
At this point it should be mentioned, with reference to Skull and Bones, that Stanford University was linked to that secret society from inception as a result of Leland and Jane Stanfords' consultation with Cornell president Andrew Dickson White, who advised them to select David Starr Jordan as the first president of their university.  Jordan, in his eulogy at the death of Jane Stanford, stated:
I first saw the Governor and Mrs. Stanford at Bloomington, Indiana, in March 1891. At that time, Governor Stanford, under the advice of Andrew D. White, the President of Cornell, asked me to come to California to take charge of the new institution he was soon to open.
The Bibles about Skull and Bones
Readers were first made aware of the role Andrew Dickson White played in expanding the influence of the order of Skull and Bones by Antony C. Sutton in his book America's Secret Establishment. Kris Millegan reprinted Sutton's book and also published his own research into the Order--Fleshing Out Skull and Bones. According to Corey Earle's "The Secret Life of A.D. White," published in the Cornell Daily Sun, February 28, 2007:
Andrew Dickson White, the co-founder of Cornell, had graduated from Yale in 1853, where he edited the Yale Literary Magazine, rowed on the crew team, joined multiple fraternities and won numerous oratory and literary awards. At the conclusion of his junior year, he was one of fifteen students tapped for Skull and Bones, an organization surrounded with intrigue and mystery.
White was crucial in developing the educational ideals upon which Cornell was based. It was White who convinced Ezra Cornell not to donate his wealth to an already existing upstate New York college, and White who proposed the State Senate bill for Cornell University’s establishment. He was elected the school’s first president, serving from 1866 [at age 31!] to 1885. After his resignation, he remained involved in the University, participating as a trustee and adviser until his death in 1918.

Both White and Cornell were good friends with an Ithaca native and Skull and Bones member (or Bonesman), Francis Miles Finch. Upon Cornell’s founding, Finch became a charter trustee, legal adviser, lecturer and later, dean of the Cornell Law School. Was Finch’s involvement in Cornell’s founding related to his common allegiance with White? Or, was it simply due to his residence in Ithaca? But the plot thickens as Yale alumni joined the fledgling Cornell faculty.…

In 1867, as Cornell’s trustees attempted to gather a faculty, the first name proposed by White was Evan W. Evans, another Bonesman. Evans would become the first official faculty member of Cornell University. Shortly thereafter, the first Cornell professor of physics was appointed, Bonesman Eli W. Blake. This pattern would continue for the remainder of White’s reign.

In 1870, the professor of Latin was fired for drunkenness, and Bonesman Tracy Peck was hired. In 1881, Bonesman Moses Coit Tyler was hired by the University as the country’s first chair of American history. Tyler’s biography reveals that he met White at a Skull and Bones meeting when Tyler was a senior and White was a graduate student. According to correspondence, White offered Tyler a professorship as early as 1871, and even asked if he would consider being Cornell’s president in 1880.

Daniel H. Chamberlain, Bonesman and former governor of South Carolina, was hired to the law faculty in 1883. When Cornell’s School of Philosophy was created in 1890, the first person hired was a local Ithacan and Bonesman, Charles M. Tyler. History indicates that he was first considered for the faculty in 1881, when White was still president.

Oliver H. Payne
With the founding of Cornell Medical College in New York City in 1898, four Bonesmen physicians were hired nearly simultaneously. Coincidence? A further look reveals that the medical school was endowed by Oliver H. Payne, a Yale alumnus who left school early to enlist in the Civil War. However, Payne’s brother-in-law [William Collins Whitney] was a Bonesman whose two sons would also become Bonesmen. The founding faculty also included Lewis A. Stimson (father of Henry L. Stimson, a Bonesman who would become Secretary of War and Secretary of State) and W. Gilman Thompson, a nephew of Bonesman Daniel Coit Gilman.

Gilman was actually one of President White’s closest associates at Yale. When Johns Hopkins University was founded in the 1870s, its trustees approached White for help in finding a university president. Correspondence between White and Gilman shows that they discussed the matter, calling it the “Baltimore scheme” since the Hopkins trustees were based in that city. The “scheme” was successful, and Gilman served as Johns Hopkins University’s first president from 1875 to 1901. Gilman did his part by hiring Bonesman William Henry Welch to the faculty in 1884 and appointing him first dean of the School of Medicine in 1893.

Interestingly, White was publicly silent about his membership in Skull and Bones. His voluminous autobiography fails to mention it, despite a full chapter on his activities at Yale. White’s own diary, spread across sixty-nine volumes, disappeared after his death. It wasn’t until 1951 that a Cornell librarian discovered it locked in a suitcase and hidden in the library stacks, surrounded by books. Concealed with the diaries was an especially unique item: White’s personal Skull and Bones membership book. Was the Bones book hidden by White himself?

White’s experiences with Yale’s oldest and most prestigious secret society clearly influenced him heavily. While a professor at Michigan, he allegedly founded a similar organization called The Owls, and he encouraged the creation of a society system at Cornell University. He would later serve as U.S. ambassador to Germany and Russia, both popular positions for Skull and Bones members. Bones founder, Alphonso Taft, was ambassador to Russia less than a decade before White.
Was Andrew Dickson White acting in the interests of Skull and Bones while serving as president of Cornell University?

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Segment in the Life of William Fletcher Hyde

"History is not a succession of events but a segment of human life," 
quoted by David Starr Jordan in reference to his mentor, 
Andrew Dickson White

(Read Part I and Part II)
The Big Picture
By Linda Minor

Ruth Hyde Paine's Grandfather
William Fletcher Hyde

Martha Constance Smith Hyde, described more fully in the previous segment, arrived in Palo Alto, California, in 1898 from Chicago. Although she had a Ph.D. and did additional graduate study at the University of California at Berkeley and at Stanford, she seems to have sacrificed all those years of education when she married William F. Hyde in 1900. Only a year after they married William Avery Hyde was born, and before long, another son, Theodore, undoubtedly named for President Theodore Roosevelt, who spent time in California. Sylvia Alden Hyde, the third child, was born in 1907.

Although W.F. Hyde seems to have tried to become a miner in 1896, it was short-lived, since he never completed an engineering degree. Instead, he relocated to Palo Alto, evidenced by a letter written to Mrs. Leland Stanford in 1898, as manager of the Stanford bookstore. He held a similar position at University of the Pacific before his attempt at mining. His move to Palo Alto occurred three years after future U.S. President Herbert Hoover had been in Stanford's first graduating class (1894).
W.P. Hyde moved to Lincoln Ave. residence in 1899.

Census records of William Fletcher Hyde family in Palo Alto: 1900, 1910, 1920 and 1930.

The Birth of Stanford and Palo Alto

Although George Washington had admonished his countrymen to "steer clear of permanent alliances with any portion of the foreign world," when he left office in 1796, he also advised that "just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated." Herbert Hoover, a member of Leland Stanford Junior University's first graduating class of 1894, embodied those feelings during his career. He studied geology under John Casper Branner, who was destined to become Stanford's second president in 1917.

Hoover family in 1917
As the Hoovers settled themselves into Palo Alto life, Herbert Hoover was contacted by President Wilson's Ambassador to the Court of St. James in London, Walter Hines Page, to assist Europe in finding gold to finance the war. He took his family with him briefly until Germany invaded Belgium in August 1914. Then the boys returned to school in Palo Alto (the 1920 census shows them living on Cabrillo Avenue, near Dolores Street, close to where they contracted to build their mansion at 623 Mirada).

South of the Stanford Quad, the Hoover home was about two miles from the new Palo Alto High School, which opened in 1918. Channing grammar school was less than a mile from the Hyde residence on Lincoln Avenue. Since these were the only public schools, it is impossible that William Avery Hyde, Ruth's father, eldest of the children of W.F. and Martha Smith Hyde, was not acquainted with both Herbert Hoover, Jr. and his younger brother, Allan H. Hoover, born in 1903 and 1907 respectively.

President Jordan
As the United States had grown, it experienced one financial panic after another--the result of not having a central bank in charge of monetary policy. Both the Bank of the U.S. and the Second Bank of the U.S., envisioned by Alexander Hamilton, had been killed by policies instigated by Andrew Jackson before the civil war. Hope had been renewed by discovery of gold in California and Colorado, but still investment in infrastructure required money, much of which was sought from Europeans who bought stocks and bonds issued by American banking houses.

Leland Stanford, one the "Big Four," who built Abraham Lincoln's Central Pacific Railroad, had become wealthy in California by the time his son died in 1884. He and his wife decided to create Leland Stanford Junior University in his memory and consulted Andrew Dickson White, who had built Cornell in Ithaca, New York, staffed with elite Skull and Bones graduates of Yale, White's alma mater. White highly recommended that the Stanfords offer the job as Stanford's first president to David Starr Jordan.

Leland Stanford did not live to see the first graduating class cross the podium. He died in 1893, and the endowment continued to be controlled by his wife, the former Jane Lathrop, with whom Jordan worked very closely to ensure the university would survive during the difficult years resulting from the financial panic of 1893. Working with them was Timothy Hopkins, appointed a trustee in 1885; he was the adopted son of Mrs. Mark Hopkins, wife of Stanford's former partner in the Southern Pacific Railroad, though he received no inheritance from her when she died in 1891.

Only in the new century did the assurance come that the university would survive, at the time of Jane's death (1905), when the endowment received the anticipated funds from her estate:
In June 1903, Jane transferred control of the university’s endowment to the Board of Trustees, and she urged the board to increase graduate enrollment and support research and teaching. However, it was only with her death in February 1905 in Honolulu [allegedly from strychnine poisoning]# that the transfer of powers was legalized, and funds continued to flow to the construction of several significant buildings through 1905.
Stanford's "World View"

Jordan was a young man of 40 when he assumed the presidency. An ichthyologist (student of fish), he had studied at Cornell before assuming presidency of Indiana University at the age of 34.

Some of Jordan's papers, labeled "Peace Collection," note that he was president of the World Peace Foundation from 1910 to 1914 and president of the World Peace Conference in 1915; these papers were donated to the Quaker college at Swarthmore, Pennsylvania. Jordan retired from Stanford in 1916, remain in the public eye until 1925. His death in Palo Alto occurred in 1931, while his friend Herbert Hoover was U.S. President. An obituary referred to him as the "chief director" of the World Peace Conference. In 1922 Jordan dedicated his selected essays entitled War and the Breed: the Relation of War to the Downfall of Nations to Andrew Dickson White, "who taught me to see in history, not a succession of events but a segment of human life."
The World Peace Foundation was the American section of a broader movement for international peace at that time, one goal being the expansion of the league of nations and the Hague Permanent Court of Arbitration to settle international disputes. One advocate of this Court was the grandfather of John Foster Dulles and Allen Dulles--John Watson Foster--who was on the Advisory Council of the World Peace Foundation with David Starr Jordan. As Foster related in his history of the Hague Peace Conference, among the Americans present in 1899 was Jordan's mentor, Andrew D. White.

White, as first president of Cornell University, also acted as a behind-the-scenes mentor of the man given credit for putting together the coalition that in 1912 elected President Woodrow Wilson--"Colonel" Edward M. House of Texas, who attended Cornell in the mid 1870's but never graduated.

By the time Ruth Paine's grandfather moved to Palo Alto in 1897, Hoover had jumped into his mining career on the international stage, and was determined to assist his somewhat older brother, Tad, in completing his degree in mining engineering at the same college.

As his biographer Will Irwin reported, in 1899 Herbert married Lou Henry, and together they set out to the Far East, where they found themselves at Tianjin in the midst of the Boxer Rebellion in China. From there they would move to London where two sons would be born. By 1909 the Hoovers were able to return at least several months a year to the United States, much of it in Palo Alto, especially by 1912. As Europe became more involved in war, requiring gold as payment for arms, munitions and other necessities, Herbert Hoover remained on call for globe-trotting assignments in search of such gold, although in 1912 he became one of Stanford's trustees. The Hoover sons were enrolled in school in Palo Alto, undoubtedly the same school as the children of W.F. Hyde.+

Theodore Jesse (Tad) Hoover entered Stanford in the same class with W.F. Hyde's younger brother, James McDonald Hyde in 1897, and they not only graduated together in the class of 1901, but in 1919  both were named Stanford professors. They had spent the intervening years, much as Herbert Hoover had, traversing the world in search of gold and other precious metals. Dr. Branner continued to head the geology department until President Jordan's retirement in 1918, succeeding him in that position the following year. Tad Hoover got his place heading the geology department, with James Hyde as his chief associate.

James M. Hyde remained in that position until one year before Herbert Hoover's election to the Presidency. During that time he and his wife and daughter lived on Churchill Avenue near the high school. He relocated to Hollywood and became vice president of the the Board of Public Works in Los Angeles. Before long he was elected a city councilman, and served off and on until he finally lost that position in 1939 when the mayor asked for his "purge," along with others. He switched to the Democratic Party in 1935. He died in 1943.

Good Government and Career Changes

William Fletcher Hyde, father of W.A. Hyde

William Fletcher Hyde was in Palo Alto, California during the above events, though he remained quite invisible to historians. 

In addition to working with library and bookseller groups (see clipping to left), W.F. also was involved as a delegate to local and state Republican Party conventions as early as August, 1906, when he and Marshall Black were elected to attend the California state Republican convention. Black, head of Palo Alto Mutual Building and Loan Association, served as state senator, and was so wealthy by 1903 he built the historic mansion in nearby Menlo Park recently purchased by Mark Zuckerberg. By 1912, however, Black was accused of irregularities that led to his conviction and imprisonment. We can only wonder whether W.F. Hyde, who served on five grand juries over the years, had a role in seeing this associate sent to jail.

As elections rolled around in November 1906, Hyde helped to write a constitution for the Palo Alto "Good Government League" with several men with strong business connections--Dr. Jefferson Elmore (Stanford Latin professor), Walter E. Vail (life insurance agent), Dr. C. W. Decker (physician), and Constable Fred B. Simpson. Various Hyde family members are listed on page 62 of the 1915 city directory, with W.F. Hyde being conspicuously absent at that time. We do, however, find him listed in 1918 as an employee of Underwood & Underwood in Los Altos under the heading "stereoscopic views." According to Taylor & Francis:
By 1900, Underwood and Underwood, the largest company in the United States, was turning out 35,000 stereograph cards daily and 10 million yearly (Darrah 1977, 47). The large-scale production and distribution of stereographs enabled them to become a mass-distributed visual source of information consumed for a variety of purposes, such as entertainment, education and propaganda (Speer 1989, 301).
1922 ad
In about 1913, however, the Hyde Book Store in Palo Alto was operated by his brother, Edward L. Hyde and his wife, the former Lauretta Coe Foster. By 1920 William Fletcher had become an insurance agent and began to sell real estate as well. In fact, when the Hoover family in 1930 gave up their 15-room residence at Stanford's "San Juan Hill," the realtor who listed it for rent was none other than W.F. Hyde.

Carol Hyde Meets W.F. Hyde

As mentioned in Part I, Carol was descended from the original Hyde ancestor as William Avery, but from a different branch. Her parents entered the ministry when Charles Ludlow Hyde, her father, was 35 and graduated from Oberlin College in Ohio. By 1916, however, after being sent to churches in Colorado and California, he had seemingly tired of the ministry. According to an item that appeared in several United Press news carriers in July 1916:
Another strange case is that of Rev. Charles L. Hyde of Niles, Cal., who wants to give up his pastorate at the First Congregational church there and go to work as a farm hand or on a poultry ranch.
Nevertheless, Rev. Hyde had the last laugh on the press, since the 1920 census finds him employed as the secretary of a poultry association in Palo Alto, California. As the item to the right shows, once they moved to the Palo Alto area, the Charles L. Hydes became acquainted with the W.F. Hydes at the local Congregational Church. Carol's mother played the organ, while Charles and William Fletcher sang bass in the choir. Carol was an alto, but William Avery was nowhere to be found. Most likely it was Carol Hyde Hyde who encouraged her youngest daughter Ruth to take up folk singing and dancing, where as it turned out she would meet her husband, Michael Ralph Paine in Philadelphia prior to their marriage in 1957.

Like his son's new father-in-law, William Fletcher Hyde would also experience an abrupt change in his career during the years prior to or during WWI, at a time the couple had three young children ranging in age from six to ten years old. He had served as president and trustee of the Palo Alto Public Library for many years, and his sisters were librarians, Mary  at the San Francisco public library and Lillian at Stanford. W.F. also was a trustee for the California state library association. Though he could not have known then that Herbert Hoover would become U.S. President in 1928, he most likely knew that Herbert Clark Hoover was his younger brother's employer, and it is possible that, through that connection, W.F. felt greener pastures were in store for him.

James McDonald Hyde, had graduated from Stanford in 1901, and by 1903 had a teaching job at the University of Oregon. Then in 1910 he went to London to work for Herbert Hoover's brother Tad, whom James had known in college. Tad, actually Theodore Jesse Hoover, had been manager of Minerals Separation, Ltd., since 1907, but left soon after installing James at the company. While there, James had a disagreement with another Stanford geologist named Edward Nutter, but left within a year to work in Montana. Minerals Separated, Ltd. then sued James for infringing one of its patents. When the case came to trial in Montana in 1912, the Hoover brothers were the chief witnesses on James' behalf. The case went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court on appeal in 1915. A portion of James' testimony is excerpted to the left.

The 1920 census record shown above indicates the W.F. Hyde family lived in Los Altos, Santa Clara County, that year, with W.F. engaged in insurance and real estate. He had also become involved with the Los Altos Improvement Club. The eldest child, William Avery, was 17 and looking forward to attending Stanford University soon--almost at the same time his father starting selling insurance and real estate. While he was a student, his mother died at the young age of 53.

In 1932 William Avery Hyde's aunt, Sylvia Hyde, was an art instructor at San Jose State College. She and Theodore Hyde, neither of whom had married, continued, after their mother's death, to live in the three-story residence at 334 Lincoln, even after their father's death in 1939. Sylvia most likely developed her interest in art from her aunt, Bessie Hyde Kennedy, who also lived in the large residence until her own death in 1944.

Sylvia worked from home as an artist and also worked in her father's insurance/real estate office, and at 310 University Avenue, Menlo Park. This address was the same as the University Realty Co., just a few doors from the Hyde Bookstore of Edward L. Hyde at 362 University (either the location or the street numbering changed). Edward's wife, Lauretta was the daughter of Harrison Streeter Coe, a 1903 Stanford mining graduate, who filed a patent for an invention like the one J.M. Hyde had been sued for infringing.

By 1943, she was hired as a teacher at Grant Union High School and had moved to Del Paso Heights north of Sacramento. Sylvia later married Otto V. [von Thulen] Rhoades at some point after he divorced in the 1930's, and she continued to correspond with her nephew and visit with him on infrequent visits in California; she only recalled meeting Ruth on two occasions. Theodore Hyde died in Walnut Creek, California in 1991. Nothing else about these siblings of William Avery Hyde has been discovered.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

A whole new meaning to the term "elite class".

The following research is for a short presentation to be delivered at the JFK ASSASSINATION CONFERENCE NOV 22-23-24 Dallas/Arlington. Although that final talk will be much shorter than the full story allows, I will present the research here first and then winnow it down in a condensed version that can be more easily followed by listeners.
Linda Minor

(Read Part I)
The Big Picture
By Linda Minor

My project to tear down the veil that separates Ruth Hyde Paine from the mysterious array of skeletons in her past began in Part I with a trail that took us back to a group of America's first settlers. Surprisingly, both of Ruth's parents were discovered to have stemmed from Christopher Hyde, who stepped foot on American soil in 1630. We tracked the life of William Penn Hyde, a minister in the Methodist Episcopal Church during the civil war years until he left his Rhode Island pastorate to move to California in 1881. They initially settled near the University of the Pacific in Santa Clara.
William Penn Hyde move to California in 1881
At first I thought William Fletcher Hyde could not possibly have received a college education given these circumstances. Why, I wondered, did Martha Constance Smith, with all her degrees from Berlin, Paris, Chicago and Stanford marry him. Upon further research, it was discovered that in 1891, ten years after relocating to Santa Clara, California, not only did W.F. Hyde attend the University of the Pacific, but that he operated its bookstore as well.

Mrs. Leland Stanford's Hyde ancestry
Then I realized that Leland Stanford, who owned thousands of acres of land in Santa Clara County in 1881, had studied law at Cazenovia Methodist seminary, where Martha's grandfather had taught mathematics before he left there in 1831 to help establish the Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. Was there a connection? After a year in Cazenovia Seminary, Leland Stanford served a legal apprenticeship in Albany, where he met and married Jane Lathrop.

Incredibly enough, Jane Lathop Stanford's heritage takes us back to Norwich, Connecticut. What a small world indeed!

So far it seems that everyone connected to Ruth Hyde Paine is a member of the Hyde extended family The list below, modified from an Ancestry.com family tree gives a whole new meaning to the term "elite class"!

Four Branches of Samuel Hyde Family
So what does all this mean in terms of the murder of John F. Kennedy, an upstart Irishman born into an immigrant Catholic family in Boston? Who REALLY wanted him dead in 1963?

How do we proceed at this point? I always remember the first rule of research, taught to me from repeatedly watching the movie "All the President's Men." Remember how Hal Holbrook's character "Deep Throat" whispered to Robert Redford through a haze of cigarette smoke: "Follow the money!"

Thus, I backed up the research to discover how Leland Stanford became such a wealthy man in only twenty years. One website succinctly summarized:
Stanford had joined with Huntington, Hopkins and Crocker to found the Central Pacific Railroad Company on June 28, 1861. Stanford was elected president of the company and used his position as Governor of California to further the railroad's interests. President Lincoln supported the concept of a transcontinental railroad as being another important link between the Union and California and important Federal assistance was made available. Construction of the line commenced in Sacramento on January 8, 1863. Charles Crocker directed the actual construction, C.P. Huntington handled relations with the Federal Government in Washington D.C. and with the Eastern financial community, and Mark Hopkins kept an eye on the company's finances. As president, Stanford was the public face of the company in California and usually took the lead in dealing with state politics.
C.P Huntington on railroad bonds
Who was this C.P. Huntington, who handled the land grants from the federal government, leveraged with investments from the "Eastern financial community?" I wondered. I learned that Collis Potter Huntington had been born to Henry Edward Huntington, whose ancestry tracks back to where else but Norwich, Connecticut, where Samuel Huntington had been born in 1665 to the first American in the tree, Deacon Simon Huntington who arrived from England in 1629. On a whim, based on years of research on Skull and Bones, I decided to check further back to determine whether William Huntington Russell had any connection to Deacon Simon.

William H. Russell was born in 1809 in Middletown, Connecticut to Matthew Talcott Russell and Mary Huntington, daughter of Rev. Enoch Huntington. Enoch was the son of Nathaniel (born 1691), grandson of Joseph Huntington (born in Norwich in 1661), who was son of this same Deacon Simon Huntington! The world is absolutely microscopic.

So let's return to Stanford.  The same website quoted above brings us up to date:
Stanford and his Central Pacific Railroad partners completed the construction of the Southern Pacific Railroad to Los Angeles in 1876 and linked it to New Orleans in 1883. Stanford was elected Senator in 1885 on the Republican ticket and he moved to Washington D.C. In 1885 the Central Pacific Railroad was leased to the Southern Pacific Railroad and the partners controlled a total of 4,711 miles of track from California through Arizona, New Mexico, Texas to Louisiana. During the 1870s and 1880s Stanford assembled a large estate south of San Francisco and began breeding horses. By the end of the 1880s the Palo Alto stock Farm amounted to more than 8,000 acres and was producing some of the very finest trotting horses in the nation. ... During this period Stanford also owned 55,000 acres of land in Vina, California where he unsuccessfully experimented in grape growing and champagne production.

The Stanfords' only son, Leland, Junior, died in Florence, Italy, on March 13, 1884, while the family was vacationing in Europe. The parents were heartbroken and decided to use their wealth to establish a university as a memorial to their son. On November 11, 1885, Mr. and Mrs. Stanford, established a board of trustees to govern the new university. Land from their Palo Alto Stock Farm and the Vina vineyard were deeded to the university and construction on the first buildings were begun in 1887. Stanford University opened in 1891 with David Starr Jordan serving as its first president. That same year Stanford was reelected to the Senate. Stanford's partner, C.P. Huntington, did not approve of Stanford's second candidacy having committed himself to support Aaron A. Sargent for the position. Relations between Huntington and Stanford deteriorated dramatically and resulted in a long bitter and very public fight between the two men.

Leland Stanford died in his sleep at home on June 20, 1893.
At this point we will resume with Part III.

Friday, October 17, 2014

The Hyde Famiy: from Connecticut to California

The following research is for a short presentation to be delivered at the JFK ASSASSINATION CONFERENCE NOV 22-23-24 Dallas/Arlington. Although that final talk will be much shorter than the full story allows, so I will present the research here first and then winnow it down in a condensed version that can be more easily followed by listeners.
Linda Minor
The Big Picture
By Linda Minor

Ruth Hyde Paine
Ruth Paine has often been referred to as "Marina Oswald’s babysitter” during the eight months preceding President Kennedy's assassination. She has been called other names as well, but mostly there has been a big question mark concerning (1) what role she really had  and (2) which organization, among the plethora of intelligence groups active in those months, assigned her that role.

Ruth clearly was someone’s tool. Was she merely an implement of care and compassion emanating from a woman who wanted to practice her Russian-speaking skills? Was she, as wife of Bell Helicopter design engineer, Michael Paine, working as an agent of death and deceit on behalf of her husband's employer?
Michael Paine

My goal as an objective researcher is not to find evidence that would answer those questions. Only you can answer them for yourself. My job as I see it is to explore whatever databases I have access to in order to make this woman a little less mysterious, to learn about her family dating back several generations, possibly discovering details she herself has never known, possibly some of which is irrelevant. However, when all the dots of her her life are pinpointed on her historical timeline, her place in history will fall into its proper context.

The HYDE family history

Sixty-one years before John Kennedy was murdered, Ruth Hyde’s father was born in Palo Alto, California, and given the name of William Avery Hyde. The ancestry of his grandfather, William Penn Hyde, a Methodist minister who had been born in Mystic, Connecticut, has been traced back to his first American ancestor, William Hyde, born in 1583, who, with wife Anne Bushnell, had a son named Samuel, born in Hartford, Connecticut in 1637. Samuel married Jane Lee, and from their union sprang several distinct branches of the family, two of which eventually spawned Ruth Hyde. 

Samuel Hyde's son Jabez, born 1677, descended through Phineas I, Phineas II, and John, down to William Penn Hyde. Jabez’s brother John descended through Captain James Hyde (wife Martha Nevins), Rev. Charles Hyde (wife Mary Ludlow), and Peter Ludlow Hyde (wife Harriet Clapp), down to Charles Ludlow Hyde, the father of Carol Elizabeth Hyde, who married William Avery Hyde. Small world, as they say!

There is a third distinct line, seemingly unrelated at this point, that descended through Samuel's son Thomas down to Henry Baldwin Hyde, who in 1859 founded the Equitable Life Assurance Society in the United States, leaving the company’s control in the hands of his son, James Hazen Hyde upon the older man’s death in 1899. We will talk about that branch later as the research continues.

Reuben Hyde Walworth's book is online.

William Penn Hyde in California

William Penn (W.P.) Hyde, suffering ill health from which he hoped to recover in California, retired from his Methodist ministry which had sent him to Rhode Island after a variety of pastorates in Massachusetts and Connecticut. In 1859 he had married Seraphine Smith Carr with whom he had eleven  children, and in 1881 the family moved to Santa Clara County, California, about 50 miles south of San Francisco. 

Leland Stanford was also a transplant to California, having previously been in business in Albany before moving to California after the 1849 gold rush. As a supporter of Abraham Lincoln in the Republican convention in 1860, he attended the new President's inauguration and supported his plans for the transcontinental railroad. That same year he was elected governor of California, and in 1863 president of the Central Pacific Railroad, subsequently renamed the Southern Pacific. Made land-rich by the federal grants made to finance the construction of the railroad, by 1881 Stanford owned thousands of acres of land in Santa Clara County where William Penn Hyde settled that year with his large family.

334 Lincoln - Hyde residence
Stanford's teenage son, Leland, Jr. died of typhoid fever in 1884, and his father, former governor and future Senator, as a memorial to his only child, began creating a university--and a new town to house it--out of his acreage. Even before construction was complete, the Hyde family moved within the same county, settling permanently in Palo Alto.

Herbert Hoover, 1894
When Leland Stanford, Jr. University opened its doors in 1891, future president Herbert Hoover was among the ten or so students who would study geology and graduate in the class of 1894. The first campus bookstore was managed by William Fletcher (W.F.) Hyde, eldest son of W. P. Hyde, who would remain in that position for sixteen years. His sister, Bessie Hyde, had married in 1891 to a minister named William A. Kennedy, and moved to Denver. Rev. Kennedy did not live long, and Bessie and her daughter Laura eventually moved back to Palo Alto to live in the stately Lincoln Avenue residence with her maiden sisters, which they operated as a boarding house after W.P. died in 1919.

The Hydes lived in a three-story home at 334 Lincoln Avenue in the now historic area known as Professorville, where William Avery Hyde's uncle, James McDonald Hyde--thirteen years younger than W.F.--had grown up and where he lived while attending Stanford in the same class as Herbert Hoover's older brother Theodore, both of whom studied geology. James McD. Hyde later became a Stanford professor of metallurgy. Their sister, Mary Hyde, studied back east and became assistant librarian at Stanford, living with Lillian, a teacher, and Laura, who ran the boarding house. Their brother Edward L. Hyde, operated a stationery store at 160 University Avenue and lived with his wife, the former Lauretta Coe, at 381 Lincoln.

William Fletcher Hyde and Martha Smith

W.F. Hyde, who had been 20 when his family moved west, had not had the benefit of a formal college education, but he did well in business. He married Martha Constance Smith in 1900, and they proceeded to have three children--William Avery, Theodore, and Sylvia Alden Hyde, all born before 1910. In that year the census shows them living at 959 Bryant (also known as 301 Addison) in the Professorville section of Palo Alto, while W.F. managed the Stanford bookstore. Martha's mother, Elizabeth Avery Smith, widow of yet another clergyman, Rev. William Augustus Smith who died in 1887, lived in the same house.

It is not known how William Fletcher Hyde and Martha Smith met. Her family tree, surprisingly, also traces back to colonial Connecticut, her first American ancestor being Christopher Avery who arrived from Devon, England, to New London, Conn. in 1630 with his wife Margery Stephens of Exeter. The wife of John Foster Dulles (Janet Pomeroy Avery) was a member of that same Groton Avery clan, although the nearest common ancestor she shared with Martha was born around 1650, making them extremely distant cousins.

Nevetheless, there is another link through Martha's father which almost connects her to this other Groton branch. Her father's brother, Augustus Ledyard Smith (born 1833) was given the maiden name of his grandmother, Catherine Ledyard Childs, daughter of Benjamin Ledyard. Benjamin moved to the area now known as Aurora, New York  from Groton, Connecticut in 1793, becoming one of its founders, and, intriguingly, his mother, Mary Avery Ledyard, descended from the same Avery line as Janet Pomeroy Avery Dulles, mentioned earlier.

Martha's maternal grandfather, Addison Avery married Sylvia Moseley in 1834 in Wilbraham, Mass., where his father, Abraham Avery, a dedicated Methodist, had helped in founding the Wesleyan Academy. Abraham also was instrumental in the establishment of Wesleyan University at Middletown, Conn., where he served as a trustee. A dealer in leather goods as a tanner and saddle maker, he taught this skill to his grandson, Addison Avery, Jr., who operated a leather shop in Denver in 1892, according to a listing in a Denver directory of that year.

Augustus William Smith was, like Abraham Avery, one of a handful of the men involved in the creation of Wesleyan University in 1831. One of sons, William Augustus Smith, married Abraham Avery's granddaughter, Ann Elizabeth Avery, in 1862 in Philadelphia. The newlyweds soon departed for the wilds of Illinois, where Rev. W.A. Smith died in 1887. About her father-in-law we learn as follows:

Augustus William Smith was born in Newport, New York on May 12, 1802. He attended Hamilton College, from which he graduated in 1825, and went on to teach at Oneida Conference Seminary in Cazenovia (located southeast of Syracuse). In 1831, Smith was among the founding faculty of Wesleyan University. He taught astronomy and mathematics at Wesleyan for twenty years before his selection as Fifth President of the university in 1851. After eight years at the helm of Wesleyan, Smith accepted a position as Professor of Natural Philosophy at the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis. He remained in this post until his death on March 26, 1866.
Smith was an accomplished scholar. In 1860 he was selected by the U. S. government to be one of the corps of astronomers sent to Labrador to observe the annular eclipse of the sun. He was reputed to be an excellent mathematician, and authored of several textbooks, including an An Elementary Treatise on Mechanics (New York, 1846). He married Catherine Rachel Childs, by whom he had several children including a daughter, Katherine Louisa. A convert to the Methodist-Episcopal Church, Smith also held a life-long interest in denominational affairs and was active in that capacity.
Addison's sister, Martha's Aunt Julia Avery, married Rev. John Roper in Boston in 1842. After only four years of marriage, Rev. Roper died in Ohio, and Julia returned to Massachusetts, where she married George Curtis Rand, owner and operator of a large printing firm in Boston. Addison Avery, who had been educated first to be a minister and then a lawyer, gave up both professions to become a partner with his brother-in-law, creating Rand & Avery. Rand died in 1878, and Addison Avery in 1893. Five years after Rev. Smith's death, Ann Elizabeth Avery Smith obtained a passport for herself and Martha to travel abroad. Martha's biography at Northwestern states she studied in Berlin and Paris that year, then did graduate work at the University Chicago in 1894 while she also taught Latin and English. In 1898 she attended Stanford, followed by a year at UC Berkeley, before marrying W.F. Hyde in 1900.

Northwestern University Alumni Records

This was the family of William Avery Hyde's mother, Martha Constance Smith, another of whose paternal aunts was Helen Fairchild Smith, mentor to the wife of President Grover Cleveland.
Stay tuned for next section of Ruth Hyde Paine's family connections.