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Practical Idealism: The Musical Patronage of Phoebe Apperson Hearst

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 October 2016

Abstract

Phoebe Apperson Hearst, called “California's greatest woman” at her death in 1919, was very rich—and very philanthropic. Despite attending school in rural Missouri only a year or so past the eighth grade, Hearst directed her most influential benefactions toward education, particularly for women. She became a prime mover in the kindergarten movement and PTA, established women's scholarships at UC Berkeley, and was UC's first female regent.

This article, drawing on Hearst's extensive archive, describes music's role in her philanthropy. She supported individual artists and ensembles, staged elaborate musicales at her various homes, funded music performing spaces, patronized renowned singers and instrumentalists, provided musical performances for college students and the general public, and encouraged the formation of an opera school.

As a female patron championing women's education, Hearst was caught between the conservative ideology of male–female “spheres” and the New Woman movement of the early twentieth century. Her wealth allowed her to transcend old models; yet she was also conditioned by them, as shown in her attitudes toward women's suffrage and “proper” female behaviors. By bolstering the traditional view of women as the culture-bearers in U.S. society, Hearst's philanthropy functioned as both retrospective reinforcement and progressive idealism.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Society for American Music 2016 

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References

References

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Conger-Kaneko, Josephine. “Women at the National Socialist Convention.” The Progressive Woman 6, no. 61 (July 1912), 1.Google Scholar
Fuller, Sophie. The Pandora Guide to Women Composers: Britain and the United States 1629–Present. London: Pandora, 1994.Google Scholar
Gibbs, Jason. “‘The Best Music at the Lowest Price’: People's Music in San Francisco.” MLA Northern California Newsletter 17, no. 1 (Fall 2002).Google Scholar
Ginzberg, Lori. Women and the Work of Benevolence: Morality, Politics and Class in the Nineteenth Century United States. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1990.Google Scholar
Glackens, Ira. Yankee Diva: Lillian Nordica and the Golden Days of Opera. New York: Coleridge Press, 1963.Google Scholar
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McCarthy, Kathleen. Noblesse Oblige: Charity and Cultural Philanthropy in Chicago, 1849–1929. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982.Google Scholar
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Nickliss, Alexandra M. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst: Most Powerful Woman in California,” Ph.D. diss., University of California, Davis, 1994.Google Scholar
Nickliss, Alexandra M.. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst's ‘Gospel of Wealth,’ 1883–1901.” Pacific Historical Review 71, no. 4 (November 2002): 575605.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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Peterson, Richard H.. “The Philanthropist and the Artist: The Letters of Phoebe A. Hearst to Orrin M. Peck.” California History 66, no. 4 (December 1987): 278–85.Google Scholar
Plato. The Republic. Translated by Allan Bloom. New York: Basic Books, 1968.Google Scholar
Redhouse, J. W., trans. The Diary of H. M. the Shah of Persia during His Tour Through Europe in A.D. 1873: A Verbatim Translation. London: John Murray, 1874.Google Scholar
Robinson, Judith. The Hearsts: An American Dynasty. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 1991.Google Scholar
Roland, Carol Marie. “The California Kindergarten Movement: A Study in Class and Social Feminism.” Ph.D. diss., University of California, Riverside, 1980.Google Scholar
Scott, Anne Firor. Natural Allies: Women's Associations in American History. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993.Google Scholar
Simpson, Anna Pratt. Problems Women Solved, Being the Story of the Woman's Board of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition. . .. San Francisco: The Woman's Board, 1915.Google Scholar
Skelton, Geoffrey. Wagner at Bayreuth: Experiment and Tradition. London: Barrie and Rockliff, 1965. Reprint, New York: Da Capo Press, 1983.Google Scholar
Smallwood, Eleanor Stanley. “Reminiscences of Phoebe Apperson Hearst.” BANC MSS 73/122 c:55-100 [ca. 1930], Bancroft Library UC Berkeley.Google Scholar
Smith-Rosenberg, Carroll. “The Female World of Love and Ritual: Relations between Women in Nineteenth-Century America.” Signs 1 (1975): 129. Reprinted as chapter 2 of her book Disorderly Conduct: Visions of Gender in Victorian America. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985.Google Scholar
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“Donor's Son to Rebuild Hearst Hall.” San Francisco Examiner, 25 June 1922, N3.Google Scholar
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“Hearst Hall Is Dedicated; Magnificent Gymnasium Becomes Part of State University.” San Francisco Call, 10 February 1901.Google Scholar
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“Homestake Theatre Opening.” Lead Daily Call, 1 September, 1914.Google Scholar
Hother Wismer Will Appear in Concert. . .; Pupil of Ysaye Returns from Europe to Play Most Difficult Program.” San Francisco Call, 17 December 1908, 4.Google Scholar
In Appreciation.” San Francisco Examiner, 14 April 1919, 2.Google Scholar
In Memoriam” (editorial). San Francisco Examiner, 16 April 1919, 20.Google Scholar
Last Cabinet Dinner. . .. Mlle. Nordica Sings for Society in Mrs. Hearst's Spacious Parlors.” Washington Post, 20 February 1895, 7.Google Scholar
Library Opens Tomorrow.” Lead Evening Call, 18 June 1896.Google Scholar
Lillian Nordica Sings for Women.” San Francisco Chronicle, 10 October 1911, 1.Google Scholar
Local Mention.” Lead Evening Call, 11 February 1895.Google Scholar
Mason, Redfern. “$1,000,000 Opera School in S. F. Looms as Reality.” San Francisco Examiner, 1 November 1916, 11.Google Scholar
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More Music Needed, Declares Professor.” San Francisco Bulletin, 16 November 1912, 4.Google Scholar
Mr. Hearst to Replace University Buildings.” San Francisco Examiner, 25 June 1922, N3.Google Scholar
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Mrs. Hearst's Munificent Gift.” Lead Evening Call, 26 December 1894.Google Scholar
Mrs. Hearst's Work Praised; Mrs. R. J. Burdette Pays Tribute to Achievements at Federation of Women's Clubs.” San Francisco Examiner, 30 May 1919, 4.Google Scholar
Musicale Given by Mrs. Hearst at Pleasanton.” San Francisco Examiner, 15 March 1914, 69.Google Scholar
Noted Speakers Ask for Ballot.” San Francisco Chronicle, 6 October 1911, 8.Google Scholar
Plays a New Version of Omar's ‘Rubaiyat’; Cecil Cowles Gives Initial Presentation of Her Interpretation of Classic.” San Francisco Chronicle, 23 November 1910, 9.Google Scholar
Student Guests of Mrs. Hearst.” San Francisco Examiner, 19 January 1903, 11.Google Scholar
Students Rude or Ignorant; President Dorety Roasts Collegians; Charges Them with Ingratitude and Bad Manners toward Mrs. Hearst.” San Francisco Chronicle, 22 February 1900, 9.Google Scholar
Students Use Bogus Tickets.” Clipping in the PAH papers box 45, folder 18.Google Scholar
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Orrin M. Peck Papers, 1878–1951. Huntington Library, San Marino, CA.Google Scholar
Peck Papers. Bancroft Library. University of California, Berkeley.Google Scholar
San Francisco Performing Arts Library and Museum.Google Scholar
San Francisco Symphony Archives.Google Scholar
William Carey Jones Papers, 1834–1923. Bancroft Library. University of California, Berkeley.Google Scholar
Annals of the Metropolitan Opera: The Complete Chronicle of Performances and Artists . New York: Metropolitan Opera Guild, 1989.Google Scholar
Barr, Cyrilla. Elizabeth Sprague Coolidge: American Patron of Music. New York: Schirmer, 1998.Google Scholar
Bennett, Shelley M. The Huntingtons in the Gilded Age. San Marino, CA: Huntington Library, 2013.Google Scholar
Blair, Karen J. The Clubwoman as Feminist: True Womanhood Redefined, 1868–1914. New York: Holmes and Meier, 1980.Google Scholar
Boisseau, T. J., and Markwyn, Abigail M.. Gendering the Fair: Histories of Women and Gender at World's Fairs. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2010.Google Scholar
Bomberger, E. Douglas. MacDowell. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Brooks, Adele S. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst: A Life and Some Letters.” Incomplete book manuscript, ca. 1926. Phoebe Apperson Hearst Papers, UC Berkeley, box 82.Google Scholar
Burton, Nigel. “Mary Grant Carmichael.” The Norton/Grove Dictionary of Women Composers, edited by Sadie, Julie Anne and Samuel, Rhian. New York: W. W. Norton, 1994.Google Scholar
California Composers: Biographical Notes . San Francisco: California Federation of Music Clubs, 1934.Google Scholar
Cardwell, Kenneth H. Bernard Maybeck: Artisan, Architect, Artist. Santa Barbara, CA: Peregrine Smith, Inc., 1977.Google Scholar
Carson, Mina. Settlement Folk: Social Thought and the American Settlement Movement, 1885–1930. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1990.Google Scholar
Cherney, Robert W., Irwin, Mary Ann, and Wilson, Ann Marie, eds. California Women and Politics: From the Gold Rush to the Great Depression. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2011.Google Scholar
Conger-Kaneko, Josephine. “Women at the National Socialist Convention.” The Progressive Woman 6, no. 61 (July 1912), 1.Google Scholar
Fuller, Sophie. The Pandora Guide to Women Composers: Britain and the United States 1629–Present. London: Pandora, 1994.Google Scholar
Gibbs, Jason. “‘The Best Music at the Lowest Price’: People's Music in San Francisco.” MLA Northern California Newsletter 17, no. 1 (Fall 2002).Google Scholar
Ginzberg, Lori. Women and the Work of Benevolence: Morality, Politics and Class in the Nineteenth Century United States. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1990.Google Scholar
Glackens, Ira. Yankee Diva: Lillian Nordica and the Golden Days of Opera. New York: Coleridge Press, 1963.Google Scholar
Gordon, Lynn D. Gender and Higher Education in the Progressive Era. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1990.Google Scholar
Grier, William M. Jr. The Griers: Pioneers in America and Canada, 1816–1991. Denver: Grier and Company, 1991.Google Scholar
Hamilton, Mildred Nichols. “‘Continually Doing Good’: The Philanthropic Career of Phoebe Apperson Hearst.” M.A. thesis, San Francisco State University, 1995.Google Scholar
Hamilton, Mildred Nichols.‘Continually Doing Good’: The Philanthropy of Phoebe Apperson Hearst, 1862–1919.” In California Women and Politics: From the Gold Rush to the Great Depression, edited by Cherney, Robert W., Irwin, Mary Ann, and Wilson, Ann Marie, 7796. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2011.Google Scholar
Hartford, Robert. Bayreuth: The Early Years. London: Victor Gollancz, 1980.Google Scholar
Hayes, Margaret Calder. “Weekend in the Country.” California Monthly 91 (October 1980), 25.Google Scholar
Hearst, Kathryn. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst.” Ph.D. diss., Columbia University, 2005.Google Scholar
A Handbook of San Francisco Composers . History of Music in San Francisco. Vol. 8. Works Progress Administration, 1940.Google Scholar
Irwin, Mary Ann.‘Going About and Doing Good’: The Lady Managers of San Francisco, 1850–1880.” In California Women and Politics: From the Gold Rush to the Great Depression, edited by Cherney, Robert W., Irwin, Mary Ann, and Wilson, Ann Marie, 2757. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2011.Google Scholar
Locke, Ralph P., and Barr, Cyrilla, eds. Cultivating Music in America: Women Patrons and Activists Since 1860. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.Google Scholar
Locke, Ralph P.Living with Music: Isabella Stewart Gardner.” In Cultivating Music in America: Women Patrons and Activists Since 1860, edited by Locke, Ralph P. and Barr, Cyrilla, 90121. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.Google Scholar
Martin, George. Verdi at the Golden Gate: Opera and San Francisco in the Gold Rush Years. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1993.Google Scholar
McCarthy, Kathleen. Noblesse Oblige: Charity and Cultural Philanthropy in Chicago, 1849–1929. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1982.Google Scholar
McCarthy, Kathleen. Women's Culture: American Philanthropy and Art, 1830–1930. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1991.Google Scholar
Mead, Rebecca. How the Vote was Won: Woman Suffrage in the Western United States, 1868–1914. New York: New York University Press, 2004.Google Scholar
Miller, Leta E. “‘The Multitude Listens with the Heart’: Orchestras, Urban Culture, and the Early Years of the San Francisco Symphony.” In Music, American Made, edited by Koegel, John, 161–90. Sterling Heights, MI: Harmonie Park Press, 2011.Google Scholar
Miller, Leta E.. Music and Politics in San Francisco: From the 1906 Quake to the Second World War. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2011.Google Scholar
Miller, Leta E.. “Opera as Politics: The Troubled History of San Francisco's War Memorial Opera House.” California History 92, no. 4 (November 2015): 423. http://music.ucsc.edu/faculty_works/opera-politics-troubled-history-san-francisco%E2%80%99s-war-memorial-opera-house.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nasaw, David. The Chief: The Life of William Randolph Hearst. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2000.Google Scholar
Nickliss, Alexandra M. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst: Most Powerful Woman in California,” Ph.D. diss., University of California, Davis, 1994.Google Scholar
Nickliss, Alexandra M.. “Phoebe Apperson Hearst's ‘Gospel of Wealth,’ 1883–1901.” Pacific Historical Review 71, no. 4 (November 2002): 575605.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Older, Mr. and Fremont, Mrs.. The Life of George Hearst: California Pioneer. San Francisco: John Henry Nash, 1933.Google Scholar
Peterson, Richard H.Philanthropic Phoebe: The Educational Charity of Phoebe Apperson Hearst.” California History 64, no. 4 (Fall 1985): 284–89.Google Scholar
Peterson, Richard H.. “The Philanthropist and the Artist: The Letters of Phoebe A. Hearst to Orrin M. Peck.” California History 66, no. 4 (December 1987): 278–85.Google Scholar
Plato. The Republic. Translated by Allan Bloom. New York: Basic Books, 1968.Google Scholar
Redhouse, J. W., trans. The Diary of H. M. the Shah of Persia during His Tour Through Europe in A.D. 1873: A Verbatim Translation. London: John Murray, 1874.Google Scholar
Robinson, Judith. The Hearsts: An American Dynasty. Newark, DE: University of Delaware Press, 1991.Google Scholar
Roland, Carol Marie. “The California Kindergarten Movement: A Study in Class and Social Feminism.” Ph.D. diss., University of California, Riverside, 1980.Google Scholar
Scott, Anne Firor. Natural Allies: Women's Associations in American History. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1993.Google Scholar
Simpson, Anna Pratt. Problems Women Solved, Being the Story of the Woman's Board of the Panama-Pacific International Exposition. . .. San Francisco: The Woman's Board, 1915.Google Scholar
Skelton, Geoffrey. Wagner at Bayreuth: Experiment and Tradition. London: Barrie and Rockliff, 1965. Reprint, New York: Da Capo Press, 1983.Google Scholar
Smallwood, Eleanor Stanley. “Reminiscences of Phoebe Apperson Hearst.” BANC MSS 73/122 c:55-100 [ca. 1930], Bancroft Library UC Berkeley.Google Scholar
Smith-Rosenberg, Carroll. “The Female World of Love and Ritual: Relations between Women in Nineteenth-Century America.” Signs 1 (1975): 129. Reprinted as chapter 2 of her book Disorderly Conduct: Visions of Gender in Victorian America. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1985.Google Scholar
Stasz, Clarice. The Rockefeller Women: Dynasty of Piety, Privacy, and Service. New York: St. Martin's, 1995.Google Scholar
Stevens, Doris. Jailed for Freedom: American Women Win the Vote. New York: Liveright, 1929. Abridged version. Edited by Carol O'Hare. N.p.: NewSage Press, 1995.Google Scholar
Toms, Donald, Stone, William J., and Motchenbacher, Gretchen, eds. The Gold Belt Cities: Lead and Homestake, A Photographic History. Lead, SD: G.O.L.D. Unlimited, 1988.Google Scholar
Toms, Donald D. and Stone, William J.. The Homestake Opera House and Recreation Building: “The Jewel of the Black Hills.” Lead, SD: Lead City Fine Arts Association, 1985; 2nd ed., 2002.Google Scholar
Whitesitt, Linda. “‘The Most Potent Force’ in American Music: The Role of Women's Clubs in American Concert Life.” In The Musical Woman: An International Perspective, vol. 3, edited by Zaimont, Judith Lang, 663–81. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1991.Google Scholar
Whitesitt, Linda. “Women as ‘Keepers of Culture’: Music Clubs, Community Concert Series, and Symphony Orchestras.” In Cultivating Music in America: Women Patrons and Activists Since 1860, edited by Locke, Ralph P. and Barr, Cyrilla, 6586. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1997.Google Scholar
Aldrich, Richard. “Newcomers at the Metropolitan Soon Win Public Favor.” New York Times, 26 November 1911, X7.Google Scholar
Anthony, Walter. “Musician Rewrites Work Lost in Fire.” San Francisco Call, 4 July 1909, 33.Google Scholar
“Arrival of Steamer Sonora.” San Francisco Alta, 7 November 1862, 1.Google Scholar
“A Business Woman: Lessons for Young Women from the Life of Mrs. Hearst.” Undated article from the New York Herald . PAH Papers, box 83, folder 5.Google Scholar
“California Opera School as Part of U.C. Planned; President Wheeler Leads Meeting in Palace Hotel Which Mrs. Phoebe A. Hearst Had Called.” San Francisco Chronicle, 10 November 1916, 5.Google Scholar
“Curtis Describes Mrs. Hearst's Work.” Unidentified clipping in the PAH Papers, box 83, folder 16.Google Scholar
“Donor's Son to Rebuild Hearst Hall.” San Francisco Examiner, 25 June 1922, N3.Google Scholar
“Drops College Settlement: Mrs. Phebe Hearst Notifies Her Flourishing West Berkeley Charity of Her Plans.” San Francisco Chronicle, 1 June 1904, 13.Google Scholar
“Fashion Danced It Out; Mrs. Hearst's Cotillion Marked the End of the Season.” Washington Post, 27 February 1895, 7.Google Scholar
“Feminine Chit-Chat from England (by a Lady Correspondent). London, July 11.” The Argus (Melbourne), 8 September 1873.Google Scholar
“Gadski Sings at Berkeley; The Famous Diva Is Heard at the Hearst Concert.” San Francisco Chronicle, 19 March 1900, 7.Google Scholar
“Girls Greeted by Mrs. Hearst; Lux Industrial School Pupils Get Musical Treat and Barbecue Luncheon.” San Francisco Examiner, 3 June 1915, 6.Google Scholar
“Good Music Can Prevent Crime.” San Francisco Examiner, 16 November 1912, 4.Google Scholar
“Hearst Hall Is Dedicated; Magnificent Gymnasium Becomes Part of State University.” San Francisco Call, 10 February 1901.Google Scholar
“Homestake Theater.” Lead Daily Call, 31 August 1914.Google Scholar
“Homestake Theatre Opening.” Lead Daily Call, 1 September, 1914.Google Scholar
Hother Wismer Will Appear in Concert. . .; Pupil of Ysaye Returns from Europe to Play Most Difficult Program.” San Francisco Call, 17 December 1908, 4.Google Scholar
In Appreciation.” San Francisco Examiner, 14 April 1919, 2.Google Scholar
In Memoriam” (editorial). San Francisco Examiner, 16 April 1919, 20.Google Scholar
Last Cabinet Dinner. . .. Mlle. Nordica Sings for Society in Mrs. Hearst's Spacious Parlors.” Washington Post, 20 February 1895, 7.Google Scholar
Library Opens Tomorrow.” Lead Evening Call, 18 June 1896.Google Scholar
Lillian Nordica Sings for Women.” San Francisco Chronicle, 10 October 1911, 1.Google Scholar
Local Mention.” Lead Evening Call, 11 February 1895.Google Scholar
Mason, Redfern. “$1,000,000 Opera School in S. F. Looms as Reality.” San Francisco Examiner, 1 November 1916, 11.Google Scholar
Matignon, E. V. “What Mrs. Hearst Will Do in 1900.” San Francisco Chronicle, 31 December 1899, 31.Google Scholar
Metzger, Alfred. “Musical Season 1912–13 Opens with Italian Opera at Cort Theatre.” Pacific Coast Musical Review, 28 September 1912, 1.Google Scholar
More Music Needed, Declares Professor.” San Francisco Bulletin, 16 November 1912, 4.Google Scholar
Mr. Hearst to Replace University Buildings.” San Francisco Examiner, 25 June 1922, N3.Google Scholar
“Mrs. Hearst Withdraws Aid.” New York Times, 28 May 1904, 1.Google Scholar
Mrs. Hearst's Munificent Gift.” Lead Evening Call, 26 December 1894.Google Scholar
Mrs. Hearst's Work Praised; Mrs. R. J. Burdette Pays Tribute to Achievements at Federation of Women's Clubs.” San Francisco Examiner, 30 May 1919, 4.Google Scholar
Musicale Given by Mrs. Hearst at Pleasanton.” San Francisco Examiner, 15 March 1914, 69.Google Scholar
Noted Speakers Ask for Ballot.” San Francisco Chronicle, 6 October 1911, 8.Google Scholar
Plays a New Version of Omar's ‘Rubaiyat’; Cecil Cowles Gives Initial Presentation of Her Interpretation of Classic.” San Francisco Chronicle, 23 November 1910, 9.Google Scholar
Student Guests of Mrs. Hearst.” San Francisco Examiner, 19 January 1903, 11.Google Scholar
Students Rude or Ignorant; President Dorety Roasts Collegians; Charges Them with Ingratitude and Bad Manners toward Mrs. Hearst.” San Francisco Chronicle, 22 February 1900, 9.Google Scholar
Students Use Bogus Tickets.” Clipping in the PAH papers box 45, folder 18.Google Scholar
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