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World Association of International Studies

Post History of the Hesperides
Created by John Eipper on 01/14/13 2:21 AM

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History of the Hesperides (Randy Black, USA, 01/14/13 2:21 am)

After a brief Web search, I found that Ronald Hilton’s beloved Hesperides, 766 Santa Ynez Street home, had an earlier name. (See David Pike's post of 13 January.)

It was known by its first owner, Dr. Clelia Duel Mosher, professor of hygiene at Stanford, as Casa Iseo after Lake Iseo in northern Italy, according to writer Elisbeth Newfield. Dr. Mosher was born in 1863 and built the home when she was 63. Dr. Mosher, who earned her medical degree from Johns Hopkins in 1900 and worked in France during WWI, died in 1940. Her life was extremely interesting.  See the photos and the description at:


The author of the above story says the following: Ronald Hilton. Hilton and his wife, Mary, arrived at Stanford from Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1941. He was professor of Romanic languages until he retired, in 1976. In 1944, he founded the Hispanic American Studies and Luso-Brazilian Studies programs, for which he established Bolivar House as the administrative center. Today (per the 2006 article), Bolivar House is the center for the interdisciplinary program in Latin American Studies.

Hilton was born in July 1911 in Torquay, England, and received a B.A. in 1933 and M.A. in 1936 from Oxford. He studied at the Sorbonne (1933–34), University of Perugia (1935–36), and the University of California at Berkeley (1937–39). From 1931 to 1936, he spent a great deal of time in Madrid as the Spanish Civil War unfolded.

He married Mary Bowie in May 1939, and from 1939 to 1942 was professor of modern languages at the University of British Columbia. Hilton resigned from Stanford’s Hispanic American Studies program in 1964 and the following year founded the World Association of International Studies (WAIS), an international network of scholars, journalists, business people, and others interested in world affairs. Today he serves as president of the Web-based organization, which publishes online articles and holds periodic conferences. Hilton has published widely in the area of Hispanic studies, history, and literature.

With enthusiasm, the Hiltons took on the long process of restoring the house and improving the grounds. They raised their daughter, Mary Alice, here. Although Hilton has not taught since 1976, the house is still full of work, projects, and pleasures. It also houses the operations of WAIS. It is unusual for a house 80 years old to have been home to only two owners. And it is very fortunate that the second owners have loved and continued to enhance the Mediterranean look and feel so beloved by the original owner, designer, and builder.

JE comments:  Dr. Mosher, as a woman MD in 1900 and a veteran of the Great War, must have had every bit as extraordinary a life as Prof. Hilton.  If only the walls of the Hesperides could talk...

It just so happens that Mary Hilton Huyck has sent an update on the home where she grew up. Mary's post is next in the queue.


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