Early women pioneers explored at Sonoma Valley Historical Society lecture
In honor of Women’s History Month, the Sonoma Valley Historical Society will dive into the work and lives of two early female pioneers in a March 16 lecture.
“In the early years of California’s statehood, Emily Brist Ketchum Bancroft (1834–1869) and Matilda Coley Griffing Bancroft (1848–1910) had front-row seats to the unfolding of the Golden State’s history,” the society shared. “The first and second wives of historian extraordinaire Hubert Howe Bancroft, these two women were deeply engaged members of society and perceptive chroniclers of their times, and they left behind extensive records of their lives and work.”
The lecture is presented by Kim Bancroft, Ph.D., author of “Writing Themselves into History” and the great-great granddaughter of Hubert Howe Bancroft, who founded the Bancroft Library at UC Berkeley.
The lecture will explore early 19th century life through Emily’s and Matilda’s experiences with “public life, motherhood and business against the backdrop of San Francisco’s high society and the state’s growth amidst the tumult of the American Civil War.”
The discussion will also highlight Matilda’s role in Hubert Howe’s trailblazing research on the history of the American West—including her work collecting oral histories from women members of the LDS Church—and her evocative descriptions of travels throughout the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
The lecture takes place Thursday, March 16, at 7 p.m. on Zoom.