Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Henry Newby -- Ford Place, Pasadena

Ford Place Ad 1903

It was 1905 and sales at the exclusive subdivision Ford Place (with entry posts and chains to denote the private street within) were heating up.  An ad from 1903's Pasadena Star noted:


"Destined to be the most desirable and exclusive residence portion of Pasadena. A perfect park in itself. From nowhere within our city limits can such a view of the glorious mountains be obtained. There is a building restriction on each lot, which is a guarantee of elegant surroundings. But five minutes walk from the business center, and within 400 feet of the car line. Ford Place is connected with water, gas, electric lights and every other convenience. Prices no higher than surrounding property."

Ford Place--Herkimer (Union) St. Entrance ca. 1908
B.O. Kendall was well known for his realty services in Pasadena, and Henry H. Newby (1868-1928?) was ready to make a move to something grand, now that he was President of the Pasadena National Bank. Life was good.  He'd come to Pasadena in 1887, and went to work at the First National Bank of Pasadena, staying there until 1900, working his way up to Cashier for the bank.  Brother Luther and sister Alberta came out from Indiana too, and all resided in Pasadena. Living in Ford Place with his wife Pearl (1868- ) and daughter Marjorie (1897- ), the new house turned out to be a brief stopping point in a multitude of Pasadena addresses over the next 25 years.

The  Newbys moved in to their beautiful new house at 95 Ford Place, from only a few blocks away at 397 N. Marengo. Note the entry pillars in the new house photo below as their lot bordered the north edge of the private subdivision.
95 Ford Place in 1906
At the right rear of the photo a large building appears--it was labeled as Pasadena High School in the 1905 Sanford maps--LAPL has a photo but calls it John Muir High. It was located on Walnut between Los Robles and Euclid and was demolished by 1951.
They didn't stay long. In 1913 the Newbys moved to 946 S. Madison. They were probably renting as they awaited the completion of the new, very grand home being built at 1015 Prospect in the new west side addition overlooking the arroyo. This Prospect addressed home still exists, and is a registered Pasadena Landmark.  Here's a quick peek at that house ca. 1915.

Newby Residence in Prospect Park
The 6,000+ sq. ft. house was even part of the Pasadena Craftsman Weekend in 2010. Life was still good in 1915, it appeared. Newby even joined the board of directors for the Tournament of Roses with our old friend B.O. Kendall.

In 1914 J.B. Coulston, owner of two other Pasadena banks, leads a takeover of Pasadena National, resulting in a merger creating one bank named National Bank of Pasadena. Coulston is named president of the bank. E.J. Pyle, who has followed Newby in his career, is named Vice President, and Herbert Holt (Newby's brother-in-law) is named Assistant Cashier. Newby seemed to have no active, day-to-day role in the bank, being named president of the board of trustees.  The article noted that "Newby eventually sold his interests to Coulston and retired from the banking business—with a host of well wishers and a rare personal popularity behind him."

Newby in the hotel business

But even if Newby was well-liked, his personal life took a significant turn. In February, 1919, the announcement at right showed up in the New York based Financier publication. It seems a rare change of career to move from bank president to hotel assistant manager, but that is what the article quoted.

By 1920 Newby, Pearl, and Marjorie are all living with sister Alberta and brother-in-law Herbert.  Henry's occupation in the census is listed as "Mgr. Hotel".

In 1922, Pearl and Marjorie have moved to 491 Center St. without Henry. Later in 1924 the family all show up at 2930 N. Holliston in Altadena. The next year a financial advertisement proclaims Henry as director of the Pasadena Building and Loan Association. Next year Henry is shown on the Annandale Golf Club course with the president of the Pasadena Golf Club. (J.B. Coulston was a member at Pasadena--I'm betting Henry belonged to Annandale).

By 1926 Henry is now living at the Huntington Hotel, working there as assistant manager for his former business associate J. B. Coulston, while Pearl and Marjorie reside at 20 Ford Place. Henry's last reference is at the Huntington Hotel in 1928, while Pearl and Marjorie are at 619 S. Los Robles (which was on the same block with Alberta and Herbert).

The 1930 census shows Pearl and Marjorie (now age 34) renting at 619 S. Los Robles for $60/month. They did have a housekeeper in the house with them.

And what happened to 95 Ford Place? Well in the late '20s it changed addresses to 175 Oakland, and has ended up as part of the Fuller Theological Seminary campus. The building on the lot appears to be a commercial building used for rental businesses--it has a new address--490 East Walnut. Today (thanks to Google):
Today's 95 Ford Place

Link to Google

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