OCR Interpretation

The San Francisco call. (San Francisco [Calif.]) 1895-1913, May 10, 1896, Image 17

Image and text provided by University of California, Riverside; Riverside, CA

Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85066387/1896-05-10/ed-1/seq-17/

What is OCR?

Thumbnail for 17

SEVEN young women of Monterey,
all of them bachelor maids, and
every bachelor maid of them a
school-teacher, have in a pic
turesque manner brought the
modern reform movement into associa
tion with the quaintness of the old Califor
nia capital.
They have brought the bloomer into the
old adobe dwelling pla
These girls, for they are not long out of
the Normal School, are self-reliant. Not
only are they able to ignore the sterner
sex, but they go In advance of their gen
eration so far that they can bid defiance
to the boarding-house keeper and do their
own work. They live in an ancient adobe
house, running a home oi their own, and
in a domestic way are as independent of
the world as ever new young women can
be. Their unique home establishment
grew out of di.-^atisfaction with boarding
houses and boarding-house keepers.
The young women are known as "Trie
Pleiades." They are Normal School grad
uates, and tueir exceptional self-reliance
may be ascribed to the circumstance that
they are all Californians. When they
This Pleiad Is a Crack Pistol Shot.
[From a photograph.)
went to Monterey to teach school they
encountered the inconvenience of hotel
and ■ boarding-house life. They agreed
that reform was needed, and so they held
a formpj convention i>nd resolved to bring
about a reform.
Educational subjects were not consid
ered at that teachers' meeting. On the
contrary, the entire discussion was about
the home— about the home that they
should establish for themselves.
A result of the conference was that the
teachers decided to lease an' old adobe
house, a picturesque old structure with
walls three feet thick, and with deep ver
andas on two sides of the many-roomed,
two-storied building. The adobe that
they obtained is the Thomas O. Larkin
This house, in which dignitaries now
One of the Pleiades on a Hunting j
[from a photograph.]
historical were entertained in the days of
Mexican dominion, stands at the corner
of California and Alvarado streets. It is
a typical adobe building, long, low and
rambling. The tiled roof, nearly all
covered with green mos3, is in pretty con
trast to the whitewashed walls.
The old structure I ad been for years
without occupants, but in two or three
weeks the carpenters, painters and fur
nishers made it bright, homelike and
The unique home of the girls, which
comes so near being "ideal," stands prom
inent among the historic adobes of old
The house was built by Thomas O. Lar
kin, in 1848. Mr. Larkin was then Ameri
can Consul at Monterey. It was the finest
structure that the adobe city could then
boa^t of. It is two-storied," with a wide
veranda running around two sides. The
courtyard in the rear is surrounded with
a high, tile-covered wall. In thisinclosure
ihe old time quadrilles were held.
In establishing their nome in the his
toric structure, the bachelor maids did not
have to entirely refurnish the building.
They found that the upper story was
quite well titled out with furniture of
Deautiful, antique design. This was all
imported by Larkin from China, and cost
thousands of dollars.
The furniture i? entirely of iron, wood
and onyx, put together without nail or
screw. Some of the tables, of which there
are several, weigh as much as 400 pounds
each. The value of each of the tables is
not less than $500.
There are lounges and divans of odd and
marvelous design. These are fifteen feet
in length and four in breadth. They have
hieh backs and ends and are covered with
. There are wide drawers that pul!
out from the front, with carved dragon
heads for knobs.
All the chairs are unwieldy, but are
handsomely carved.
One of the rocking-chairs is six feet high
and is so heavy that it cannot readily be
moved. The rockers are six or seven' feet
in length and are made of iron or steel,
bent in the shape of a wagon spring.
Men yet living remember the piano of
the Thomas O. Larkin days. That was an
imported cottage piano, in frame of rose
wood. It still is in the old adobe, and is
the special delight of the bachelor maids.
Though the keys have somewhat turned
in color and are wo.-n considerably, the
tone is yet clear and sweet. This was tiie
second piano brought to this coast. The
first also is in Monterey and is owned by
Mrs. Abrego, a sister of the present owner
of the adobe mansion.
In 1850 this Larkin house, with sll its
furniture, was bought by Jacob P. Leese,
a prominent pioneer of San Francisco, and
has since fallen to his heirs. Mr. Leese
occupied the Louse up to the time of his
death in 1830.
As is well known, the house was the
scene of great festivity in the early days.'
Jacob Leese Jr., who resides in Monterey,
tells many interesting narratives of tile
old-time hospitality.
Captain Swasey of this City spent many
of his pioneer days there, as he was asso
ciated with Larkin. General Sntter was
on several occasions a guest within the
adobe wails.
All the court balls were held there, and
when any foreign officer was at Monterey
he was entertained by Larkin.
On the street, at the corner of the adobe,
is a hitching-post. This is a cannon,
which is planted muzzle downward. This
cannon was one of the three original puns
taken from the frigate Savannah to fortify
Fort Halleck.
When the enterprising young school
teachers secured a lease of the mansion,
they quickly dispelled the gloom which
long had hung about the place. In the
lower story the floors were all covered with
Japanese matting and skins. As some of
The Principal Living- Room in the Adobe Occupied by the Bachelor Maids. The Footstool Made From
the Vertebra of a Whale Is to Be Seen on the Floor. On the Table Are the Rare Old Candlesticks.
the doors connecting the rooms had to be i
fastened up to make the different suites,
the deep recesses left in the thick walls
were used as china closets, bookcases and
cabinets, and v.iih th«'ir blue embroidered
portieres and draperies one would never
dream that they were designed for any
other purpose.
Ail rooms facing upon the verandas are
immense, for in the olden times they had
quadrilles, and all the dons and ladies of
the old times in Monterey danced there.
These large Jront rooms have been util
ized by the girls as living-rooms, and the
visitor never fancies, when seeing the low.
wide divans, covered with tapestries of
artistic design and adorned with tlonncfd
pillows, that these luxurious siesta ar
rangements can be transformed into com
fortable beds. While the divans look neat
and pretty, they are useful and save room.
Screens hide the dressing tables.
A little discovery resulting from linger
ing traces of the old-fashioned feminine
curiosity added to the interest of the
Pleiades' early occupancy of the adobe.
In one of the walls was detected a little
secret recess, which in the olden days may
have been the hiding-place for the family
plate and jewels. Stowed away in that
place were found two pairs of antique
candlesticks, carved in curious design.
The young iadies have a footstool of the
vertebra of a whale, which they picked up
while on a ramble along the coast. They
are always on the alert for relics, and their
rooms are filled with rare old curiosities.
The large "living-rooms" open into a
cozy little dining-room. Where the win
dows face "upon the garden in the rear,
which used to be the pride of the Spanish
grandees, is now an inclosure with high
adobe walls where- honeysuckles, palm
trees and sweetbriars grow.
Within the adobe walls the bachelor
maids think they have an ideal home. It
is no boarding-place. There they can dis
cuss, entirely away from the world, their
own ideas. The walls have no ears, and it
would be pretty hard to hear through
three feet of adobe. One of their dearest
principles is dress reform.
They all wear tneir reform suits in the
schoolroom, and, although at first the
children stared instead of studied, they
are now used to the sight and behave as
well as they did before the innovation
which proves, the teachers say, the falsity
of the assertion that short skirts, bloomers
and leggins detract from a woman's dig
The first appearance of the bloomers
upon the streets of Monterey caused the
descendants of the men and women of the
Alcalde days to pause and ponder and
shake their heads. Not a word of ap
proval have they for the latter-day Ameri
can women who walk or ride through the
streets without the ancient and orthodox
style of skirts.
All forms of open-air exercise available
for young women are popular with the
teachers. The seventeen-mile walk or
bicycle run on Cypress drive Is frequently
indulged in. Other Monterey girls often
join the Pleiades on the pedestrian excur
sions, which include the trips to Point
Pines and the lighthouse, and sometimes
as many as twenty-rive of the "bloomer
girls" are seen together on the roads about
Monterey or Pacific Grove.
The Pleiades have distinguished them
selves in fishing and boating and at times
have interested the inhabitants of the
adobe town by their exciting boat races.
I'.luomer costumes are not worn exclu
sively. In walkins some of the girls wear
skirt's which reach to the knee?. When
they go bicvele riding, however, they woar
the unmodified bloomer?.
The bloomer suit of the Pleiad is tailor
made and graceful. It has pockets at the
sides and straps for the belt and resembles
knickerbockers, with the exception of
■rreater width. The goods is a heavy blue
blnck serge.
The wearer also has a Scotch cap with a
large mother-of-pearl ornament and a blacK
A Pleiad Who Handles a Gun Like a
[From a photograph.]
feather at the side. Her leggins are of
mole-colored corduroy and button, instead
of buckle, up the side. A light shirt waist
and patent-leather boots complete a very
comfortable and durable outing outfit, with
a belt of Mexican-stamped leather, so much
worn in the South.
All the girls are early risers, and every
morning they may be seen, tramping,
bicycling, bathing, searching the rocks for
curious shells or having a lively bout on
the tennis courts.
They have a romantic, delightful home,
and they are happy in it.
Hard to Tell Apart.
Among the many representatives that
have come on from the Indian Territory
this winter to aid Congress in legislating
for that region are two young lawyers,
both citizens of the flourishing town of
Ardmore, bearing the names of Douglass
and Ledbetter. They are both bright men
and successful in their profession, good
friends and have offices in the same build
ing. Though not at all related, they bear to
each other the most wonderful resem
blance in form and features.
They are as much alike probably as any
twins ever were, even to height and weight.
People of the town get them mixed up
constantly, and clients who get into
the wrong office take Douglass for
Ledbetter, ana vice versa. The
children of each have no more
than one occasion called the wrong man
papa. Douglass is a stanch Republican,
ami his friend is equally as stalwart a Dem
ocrat. The former is not only learned in
the law, but is a writer of capital dialect
verse.— Washington Post.
Mark Twain's Hospitality.
In his article on Mark Twain in the May
Harper, the llev. Joseph T. Twitchell re
call-, an amusing story of Mr. Clemens'
marriage. His bride's father bought and
furnished a handsome house for the young
pair, ami Mark knew nothing of it until
am-r the wedding, when it was shown him
in all its completeness by a party of his
wife's relatives, and of course his wife,
who at length broke out : "It's our house,
yours and mine, a present from father."
Everybody came to hear what he would
say. He choked up, and, with tears in his
eyes, stammered out to his lather-in-law
"Mr. Langdon, whenever you are in Buf
falo, if it's twice a year, come right up
here and bring your bag with you. You
may stay over night if you want to. It
shan't cost you a cent-"
. • — m • —
••Clean" Money.
A clerk in the redemption division of
the Treasury Department says that t!.e
"cleanest" paper money in circulation is
that which circulates in Washington,
while the dirtiest is that which comes in
from Chicago for redemption. St. Louis
is a close second to Chicago, and Cincin
nati next. New York is next to Washing
ton in the record for clean money, Phila
delphia next, while Baltimore ranks next
to Cincinnati for having dirty money. The
money that comes in from Chicago, be
sides being dirty, is always much muti
lated, so much so, he said, that there is
twice as much time consumed in patching
it up prior to cancellation as there is in
counting it. — Washington Star.
[From a photograph. \
THE old stage that is at present
running between San Jose and
Alviso is probably the most
ancient vehicle in use in Califor
nia to-day. Just when it was made
or by whom is a fact of which there is no
record. Judging from a careful examina
tion, however, it is likely that it is the
identical American stagecoach exhibited
at the Crystal Palace in London in 1851, a
description of which was published in the
Art Journal at the time.
The old coach is battered and worn, but j
not enough to obliterate the fine work that j
was put on it. This work is of such a
degree of excellence as to indicate that the
coach was intended for show purposes as
well as hard use. The way the paint and
varnish has lasted also indicates that an
extra quality of material was used.
All that ia known of the old coach for
certain is that it came to San Francisco in
1554, having been brought around the
Horn in a Bailing vessel. It was sold at
once and for ten years did service ia differ
ent parts of the State.
The present owner of the coach is Ed
Marlatt. He bought it about the year
1^34 and put it on the road between San
Jose and Alviso, where it has been running
ever since without any repairs except to
the wheels. It made regular connections
with the steamers that ran between this
city and Alviso and transferred all of the
passengers to San Jose. In the early days
the coaoh returned a good income and the
driver, Ed Marlatt. did a line business. He
soon acquired considerable property about
Alviso, the most valuable of all being the
big brick warehouse in which the San
Jose freight was stored until Ed's teams
could transport it to its destination. Ed
was the king of that section of the coun
try in those days and could have been a
Senator had he wanted to.
The broad-gauge railroad made the first
cut at the business of the old stage, and
Alviso began to lose some of its import
ance. But when the narrow gauge went
directly through the little town that settled
it. The wharves began to rot away and
the idle warehouses to fall to pieces. But
there was always a little business until the
steamboat line put on its own stage to San
But Ed never for a moment thought of
going away. Not much. He and his old
coach hadhelped to make the town and
he intended to stick to it even though he
didn't mane a cent. And he has stuck to
it. in spite of the fact thru things kept get
ting worse every day. As Ed had no use
for the warehouse he concluded to use it
for a stable instead of paying rent else
where. Somewhat later he decided to
move into the warehouse himself and save
that much more. And there he has been
domiciled for several years.
Ed's business is at present confined al
most entirely to the transportation of
Chit.ese. He has a corner on this busi
ness, as he curries them between San Jose
and Alviso for 10 cents. On such days as
the boat makes cheap trips to San Fran
cisco Ed has all he ca:i carry, and the
co^ch certainly looks picturesque with its
motley loud and tired horses. Ed and his
old coach are inseparable. Even though
he wants to go to a certain place only a
few miles away he will "hitch up" and go
in the coach nil by himself.
People in San Jose have become so used
to the coach that they pay no attention to
it when it pas.-es along the streets, but if
it should drop into any other city it would
be sure to draw large crowds. There is
certainly no more picturesque vehicle in
existence. The forty years oi service have
told on it in more ways than one, but it is
just as good for transportation purposes as
ever. Every bit Of wood in it is perfectly
sound, and if the broken windows were re
placed and the paint given a good washing
I it would stiil be presentable.
The decorations on the outside of the old
Ed Marlctt's Old Stage, Which Has Been in Constant Service Since 1 854.
[Drawn from a photograph.]
vehicle are worthy of admiration, and it
is sale to say it would bs hard to find a
coach-painter these days carable oi dupli
cating the woric. The body of the coach
is painted red, and in spite of its great age
the color is still brilliant if the dirt is
washed off. All over the sides below the
windows is some magnificent scroll work
in gold that is almost as bright as ever.
In the center panels of the doors there
are paintings of landscapes that are almost
works of art. They represent Eastern
scenery and are rich and brilliant in color.
Both o*f them are splendid in tone. They
were painted on the door by an artist and
are not the decalconian?a pictures used in
the same class of work to-day. A careful
examination of the joints in the body of
the coach fails to disclose any cracks, but
the general appearance is most dilapi
dated. Old rags and pieces of leather are
made to do duty as windows and several
signs in Chinese are pasted in different
places. The cushions on the inside have
nearly all disappeared. The floor is cot
ered with rubbish and a vile smell like to-
Ed .Marlatt, One of the Oldest Stage*
Drivers in California.
bacco and opium will almost paralyze the
nostrils of any one daring enough to poke
their head inside.
What It Means to Speed a Train Sixty
Mile!* per Hour.
To May Ladies' Home Journal John Qil
mer Speed contributes an article upon the
safety and coiuforts of railroad travel in
the United States, in which he says that
the highest type of American railroad is
to-day constructed with such skill and
sagacity that we travel in more luxury and
more security than any people in tne
In considering the locomotives and the
speed attained by them on pur railroads,
Mr. Speed says: * * At sixty miles an
hour tie resistance of a train is four times
as great as it is at thirty miles— that is,
the'fuH must be four times as great in the
one case as it is in thj other.
But at sixty miles an hour this fuel
must be exerted fora given distance in
half the time iliut it is in thirty miles, so
I that the amonn' of power exerted and
| fteam generated in a given period of time
| must be eight times as great as the faster
speed. This mean 3 that the capacity of
the boiler, cylinders and the other parts
must be greater with a corresponding ad
dition to the weight of the machine.
Obviously, therefore, if the weight per
wheel, on account of the limit of weight
that the rails will carry, is limited, we
soon reach a point when the driving
wheels and other parts cannot be further
enlarged, and then we reach the maximum
i of speed.
The nice adjustment necessary of the
various parts ot these immense engines
may be indicated by some figures as to the
work performed by these parts when the
locomotive is worked at high speed. Take
■ a passenger engine on any of the big rail
i roads.
At sixty miles an hour a driving-wheel
•V., feet in diameter revolve* live times
i every second ; now the reciprocating parts
I of each cylinder, including one piston,
piston-rod, crosshead and connecting
' rod, weighing about f>so pounds, must move
| back and forth a distance equal to the
i stroke, usually two feet, every time the
! wheel revolves, or in a fifth of a second. It
i starts from a state of rest at the end of
j each stroke of the piston, and must ac
i quire a velocity of thirty-two feet per sec
ond in one-twentieth of a second, and
must be brought to a state of rest in the
same period of time.
A piston eighteen inches in diameter
' has an area of 254U square inches. Steam
j of 150 pounds pressure per square inch
would, therefore, exert a force <>n the pis
ton equal to 38,170 pounds. This force is
applied alternately on each side of the
piston ten times in a second.
Pensive Penciling!.
Ie has been observed that the man who
likes to entertain his wife with remin
i iscences of his early love affairs seldom
i likes to have his wife reciprocate.
How gratifying it would be if the man
who had a fine voice thirty or forty years
ago would only be contented with the rec
Already the grass is beginning to be as
j green as a servant girl from the north end v
'of Aroostook County, Me. Flies and the
yachting season— but, happily, not Dun
raven — will soon be with us.
When a man takes a $100 bill to the bank
| to get it changed why should he try to
: look as if he was accustomed to doing the
! same thing every other day?
A Chicago girl is never so happy as when
i she is wearing a dress with a long train.
■ It is a delight to the observer to see bow
skillfully she draws it aronnd in front to
| cover up her feet.
Speaking of rules for letter-writing, one
good rule is never to write a letter when
you only need to write a note. — Somerville
Above Suspicion.
Mrs. Bigwad — It must be terribly em
barrassing to be as poor as the Joneses;
they never give anything to charity.
Mr. Bigwad— Bat we don't, either.
Mrs. Bigwad— Well, they can't say that
it is because we haven't got it to give.

xml | txt