Guide to the Chestnutwood Photo Album Collection (1888) – History

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The Chesnutwood Business College was founded by J.A. Chestnutwood on February 4th, 1884 in Santa Cruz. Located on Walnut and Pacific Avenue near what was then known as the Hihn Block, the college featured a large study hall and office for individual instruction for students interested in learning skills necessary for secretarial and other positions in business and commerce (131). The college was open to both women and men, who learned such skills as computing United States currency and that of foreign currencies (132). The Chesnutwood Business College was known for being up to date with the current operations of business and commerce of the time, teaching methods that were relevant to the establishment of a modern business (132). The college was praised for having two banks, one focusing on foreign exchange and one for domestic, and students were instructed in the handling of both currencies. Professor and Principal J.A. Chestnutwood, was also lauded for abandoning “rusty methods”, to teach based on his own ideals and goals for students (pg.132). He was also praised for teaching his students practical skills beneficial for business work and for immersing them in such work rather than focusing on “theory” and the teachings of textbooks (132). Chesnutwood Business College became a nationally renowned school, known for its well-prepared and high number of graduates. Graduates came from all over California, the Pacific Coast, from across the United States, and from as far away as England, Mexico and Central America. [Citation: pg.131-132 Santa Cruz County. A Faithful Reproduction in Print and Photography of its Climate, Capabilities and Beauties.H.S.Crocker Company, San Fracncisco, 1896.]

The following compilation was created by Stanley Stevens: Chesnutwood’s (.pdf) (30 May 2014).