Henry Warren Johnson was a retired doctor who traveled around California and the Pacific Northwest in his automobile during the 1920s with his sister Harriet "Hattie" L. Johnson. He was born in 1854 and raised in Berlin, New Hampshire and graduated from Harvard University in 1879 with a bachelor's degree. From there, he entered Boston University where he graduated in 1888 with an MD. He traveled to Europe in order to do his residency in a Dublin hospital. By 1901, he returned to Berlin and became the Chairman of the City's Board of Education, with Hattie as the city librarian. Afterwards, he and his sister moved to Pasadena, California from Berlin. They began to travel during the 1920s, while Johnson worked for the Department of Agriculture under the authority of the Biological Survey making regular reports about the number and types of birds he branded. He also held permits from the State Fish and Game Commission and the State Ornithological Club. Towards the end of his life, he took a class by Loye Miller at the University of California, Los Angeles about birds. He also began several manuscripts about literature and California history, publishing "A collection of genealogical tables of the reigning houses of Europe from the 10th century to the present time" through a local press in 1940. He died at the age of 88 on October 19, 1942.
Scope and Content
This collection is divided into two main parts, both arranged alphabetically. The documents relate to various aspects of Henry Warren Johnson's life and work. The bulk of the documents are notes for his manuscript, "The Story of Placerville Road." This manuscript, along with the accompanying notes and documents, chronicles his experiences traveling around California, while narrating the history of California's modernization. Other documents in the collection relate to his other book projects, his bird-banding expeditions, and his version of the history of the Post Office's entrance into California. The correspondence is largely Henry Warren Johnson's accounts of his automobile trips in California and the Pacific Northwest. According to his letters, he and his sister travelled to Morro Bay, Monterey, San Diego, Mammoth Lake, Bouquet Canyon, and Sequoia Park, all of which are in California. He also vacationed near the Columbia River in Oregon. The collection also includes several letters between Johnson and J.J. Brockliss about the Brockliss Bridge in Nevada. The last bit of correspondence relates to his political views about democracy, Roosevelt, and the economic state of the world. There are also two ephemera folders, one containing sketch maps for a manuscript and the other comprising of various printed material such as tourists' maps and newspaper clippings.