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May 2024 - History Corner

Once Upon a Hillside: 25, 50, 75, 100, and 125 years ago

May 1899

May 16: The Hillside Club will hold its regular meeting on Tuesday at 4 p.m. at the home

of Mrs. V. D. Moody, 1725 Le Roy Avenue [Weltevreden].

May 24: The Hillside Club met last evening at the residence of Mr. and Mrs. John Finn in

North Berkeley. About sixty members and friends were present. Mrs. Finn presided.

Several members spoke on the improvement of the Scenic Tract. The proposition is to

change the grades of the streets on the hillsides to conform with the contour of the hills. If

such changes are not possible to have the new streets built accordingly. Among those

present were President Marston of the Board of Trustees, and Trustees Turner, Frame and

Staats, Town Clerk Hamscom and Town Engineer Huggins. Mr. Huggins said he would

draw plans for new streets in the Scenic Trace and submit them to the Club. During the

evening Mrs. J. M. Pierce sang two beautiful solos, much to the delight of the listeners.

May 1924

[The Hillside Clubhouse was destroyed in the Berkeley Fire of 17 September 1923]

Business Meeting, May 5: Professor Shaw made a brief plea for helpfulness in stamping

out the foot and mouth disease, mention of which had been made in the current calendar.

[The only known outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease (FMD) in wildlife in the US

occurred in mule deer in California in 1924-25. The outbreak led to the slaughter of

22,000 deer but also of 109,000 farm animals.]

Director’s Meeting, May 12: A report was made by Mr. McFarlan on the progress of the

new building and his preparations for the ceremonial pertaining to the hearthstone laying.

Social Meeting, May 19: The social meeting was a most interesting and entertaining one.

Mrs. Frank Morton Todd as chairman happily introduced the new members of the year to

the Club by means of a laughable series of numbers contributed by a musical

organization made up of members of her committee for the evening, and the membership

class of 1923-24. Orchestral contributions by the group, solos and duets all exhibited

thorough and understanding practice highly deserved the lusty and lengthy applause

given by the audience. This particularly worthy example of Hillside Club willingness to

be merry was followed by installation of the new officers, led by Mrs. Todd. This group

presented itself before the audience and each new officer made a brief explanation of his

duties and his trials. Then the directors and new members formed a reception line that

each member might shake hands with all. It was interesting to know that every member

who had joined during the year was present to take part in the entertainment and the


May 1949

Spring Reception, May 16: This, the last social evening of the Club year, will be in

charge of Mrs. James F. Hamilton who will be assisted by the present Board Members

and their spouses. This year’s new members will be introduced, and the Officers and

Board Members for the ensuing club year will be presented with the usual fanfare. Mr.

Denis L. Hennessey, Historian, will review the Club activities for the past year. Musical

numbers by the Hillside Chorus, under the direction of Mrs. Bernice Hendricksen, will

add to the enjoyment of the evening.

Labor Day, May 21: Springtime is clean-up time, so we ask that you “roll up your

sleeves” and be present. Jim Hamilton and Burrows Emery will be Straw Bosses. Carl

Fox will need a crew for repairs to the building. John Gregg and his assistants will take

care of the grounds. Marion Alexander will need help in the Club House proper. Anne

Dick Campbell and the Stage Costume Committee will be working below decks. Max

Thomas, Newell Nelson, Victoria Kimball, and their assistants will be on the stage.

Florence Burrell will see that our stage make-up supplies are in good order for next year.

Sandwiches and coffee will be on the house at lunchtime. Dinner will be served in the

evening, not on the house.

May 1974

Assembly Dance, May 11: Concluding the regular scheduled season of dinners and

dances, this evening’s Assembly, featuring the Yachtsmen’s Orchestra, will not be the

last. So successful has been the Assembly season that funds are available to pay for a

bonus dance, to be held Saturday June 8. The Hawaiian theme, so popular this season,

will carry over to the June Assembly, with Zeke Nuez and his son providing the vocal

and instrumental music.

Annual Dinner and Aloha Night, May 13: Hawaiian décor, food, and entertainment will

feature this evening’s annual dinner and aloha festivities. Frances Hanna and Lois

Tomlinson have prepared a program of music and dancing of the Islands, and the

committee has arranged for a catered dinner featuring steak teriyaki and other goodies of

oriental cuisine. The program includes a demonstration of “Gestures of the Hula” by

Frances Hanna, will also dance the Hawaiian “Wedding Song” to the singing of her

husband Warren, and dance to the theme of “I Left My Heart in San Francisco,” an act

that has won wide acclaim. Carol Tomlinson, who recently completed a long visit to

Hawaii where she studied the music and dance of the Islands, will perform several

singing and dancing routines, and Jean McKibben will give a specialty dance. A surprise

comic version of the Hukilau will add a bit of levity to the program, and audience

participation in singing Hawaiian songs will conclude the evening’s entertainment.

May 1999

Fireside Meeting, May 3: Our speaker will be Colonel James Harvey Short, U.S. Army,

Retired. He is a Berkeley native and a former member of the Hillside Club. His subject

will be “A Memorial Day Tribute,” a timely topic for the month of May.

President’s Message: At the close of my year, I look back with pleasure remembering the

variety of activities that were offered. I am grateful to the dedicated chairmen of the

social events, the committee chairmen who kept things organized, and the members who

came forth with so much help and cooperation—with smiles! What a wonderful board I

had! We are surely a unique group, with our varied interests and talents, and enjoyment

in being together. Every occasion is special! May we keep our many opportunities for

further pleasure in our beautiful Hillside Clubhouse. – Eleanor Weigand, President

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