ndrew Jackson Hart, a general practitioner and obstetrician, re-established his medical practice in Pacific Grove soon after his arrival in 1890. Beginning on June 13, 1891, he began publishing the following weekly advertisement in the local newspaper, the Pacific Grove Review:
A. J. Hart, M.D. Physician and Accoucheur
Diseases of women and children his specialty. Office and Residence on Sixteenth street between Grove and Union.
A dictionary of that time defines the word “accoucheur” as “one who attends women in childbirth.” The ad ran in every weekly issue of Pacific Grove Review at a cost of $7 per year. We know from the ad that, upon his arrival in Pacific Grove, Hart rented and office and residence somewhere on 16th Street between Grove and Union streets. However, before leaving Modesto, Dr. Hart acquired the large lot on the corner of Lighthouse road and 19th Street—Lot 1, Block 43 of the Second Addition to the Pacific Grove Retreat—and laid plans for a Queen Ann-style, Victorian mansion. The Queen Anne style has been called the culmination of all other Victorian architectural styles, which included the Gothic, Italianate, Second Empire, Stick, Shingle, and the Queen Anne styles. Displaying the entire panorama of Victorian decorations, the Queen Anne-style is often identified by steeply pitched roofs, irregular shapes, front facing gables, patterned shingles (often called fish scales), multiple projections from walls, including cut-away bay windows with large panes one over one with the upper panel having smaller set in panes, partial or full width porch, some with spindlework ornamentation, patterned masonry and other decorative elements, towers, turrets, and surging chimneys. Houses were often painted in bright clear colors with contrasting trim. One architectural historian commented that the “sheer exuberance of it all can astound, amuse, and fascinate the delighted observer.” The Queen Anne style was named and popularized by a group of 19th century English architects, led by Richard Norman Shaw (1831-1912). Many American architects became familiar with Shaw's work from a book of sketches he published in 1858 and a series of his drawings that were published in 1874 in The American Architect and Building News.Shaw's work was first put to practice in the U.S. by American architect H. H. Richardson, who in 1875 built William Watt's Sherman house in Newport, Rhode Island. The house is considered to be the first American building to be called “Queen Anne.” The Queen Anne style was to receive its first significant exposure at the 1876 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, where the British government constructed several buildings displaying the style. This occurred just as the industrial revolution was picking up steam. The ensuing economic boom inspired many businessmen and professionals to celebrate their success by building monuments to reflect their financial achievements and increased standing in the community. Architects arrived upon the Queen Anne style as the perfect complement to the demands of their clients. As a result, the Queen Anne style became the architectural vogue in the 1880s and 1890s. To design his Pacific Grove mansion, Dr. Hart turned to a 50-year old architect named Julien Mourot of Modesto, California. We know little of Mr. Mourot beyond what was preserved in the following biographical sketch of him published in History of Central California: A Memorial and Biographical History of the Counties of Merced, Stanislaus, Calaveras, Tuolumne, Mariposa, California (1892, pp. 276-277):
Julien Mourot.—Among the leading architects of Stanislaus County, the name of this gentleman stands prominent. He has designed and built a number of handsome residences and business blocks in Modesto, among which may be mentioned the residences of Henry Voight, Willis Bledsoe, I.E. Gilbert, Dr. C. W. Evans, etc., and the blocks of Wood & Turner, William Grant, H. Christ, etc. He made important changes in the original plans of the Tynan block, and is the designer of the Stanislaus County Hospital and Almshouse, a magnificent two-story frame edifice, now completed at Modesto, at a cost of $15,000. In making the design and specifications for the structure, Mr. Mourot was thrown in competition with fourteen of the leading architects of the State, and the fact that his design was accepted over all others speaks well in his favor. Mr. Mourot was born in Randolph County, Illinois, June 15, 1841, and was reared in his native State, receiving his education in the public schools. His parents were Julian and Mary O. (Dannie) Mourot, the former a native of France and the latter of Illinois, her people going thence from Canada. In their family of six children he was the oldest. Having finished his education, he soon decided on his profession and entered the office of a leading firm and began the study of architecture, which he completed in the office of Hodges & Mason, of Belleville. In 1864 he went to Idaho, crossing the plains, and followed his profession in Idaho city, at the same time being deeply engaged in placer mining, which consisted of extensive hydraulic and underground mines and ditches, until 1877, when he came to California. The first year after coming to the State he was engaged in building quarts mills in Calaveras county.He went to Merced in 1878, and the following year located in Modesto, where he soon built up and has since enjoyed a good business. June 26, 1881, he was joined in marriage with Miss Jennie James, a native of California and a daughter of James W. James, a pioneer of 1850. In political matters, Mr. Mourot is an active Democrat. Socially, he affiliates with Stanislaus Lodge No. 206, F. & A. M.; Wildey Lodge, No. 149, I.O.O.F; Modesto Encampment, No. 48; Modesto Lodge, No. 81, K. of P., and Modesto Grove, No. 34, U. A. O. D., all of Modesto, and No. 16, Heroes of Mesopotamia, San Francisco. He has passed the chairs in all these orders save the first named.
Later in life, Mr. Mourot served as a court appointed expert in the case of Watkins v. Glas, 5 Cal.App. 68, 72 (decided February 23, 1907) to oversee the erection of a party wall between two neighbors.
No doubt Julien Mourot was well acquainted with the work of Richard Norman Shaw and was energized by the ornate and elaborate possibilities of the Queen Anne-style. The quality of the structures Mr. Mourot built in Modesto must have impressed Dr. Hart must have been sufficiently impressed Dr. Hart sufficiently to engage the architect for his project in Pacific Grove. The two were also probably members of the same Lodges. Molly Mahaney, writing in Architecture of the Monterey Peninsula (Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art, 1976), described Julien Mourot’s creation as a “very elaborately decorated and distinguished structure of the Queen Anne Style.”
Although it does not display all details that may be found in the houses of this style, it embodies the most appropriate ones in keeping with the house’s style and beauty. Gables point in all four directions joined by a sloping turret. The most fascinating aspects of the house are the extraordinary stenciled windows. Appearing frequently and in many different forms, these windows add light and drama as well as beauty. The elaborate balustrade on the porch is intricately carved with a matching overhead canopy. The little porch projection from the upper wall is matched with the balustrade below.
The City of Pacific Grove Historic Resources Inventory describes the Hart Mansion as follows:
This is a two and a half storystructure, Queen Anne Style, displaying a round turret with witch’s cap, diamond and oval windows and weather vane atop turret, gable dormer with sunburst, gable roof with pedimented boxed cornice, spindle work above door, shingles below gable, triangular stained glass window, stickwork, and elaborate brackets, pendants, two story slanted bay with brackets, elaborate paneling and molding, transom with “Dr. Hart” written in stained glass above front door, porch and balustrade with elaborate stick-work above front doorway, decorative triangular panels between stories.
It would have been interesting to compare any pre-existing buildings in Modesto that may have served as a model for the Hart Mansion. Unfortunately, through the insouciance of the Modesto city planners, nearly all of the buildings erected there during the late 19th century no longer exist, save for the McHenry Mansion, an Italianate-style Victorian building rescued from destruction by the Julio Gallo Foundation in 1976. The architect of the McHenry Mansion is unknown, but its Italianate blueprint is an unlikely basis for the towering Queen Anne that Mr. Mourot designed for Dr. Hart. The construction of the Hart Mansion is estimated to have begun at least as early as the summer of 1892. The turned porch posts, moldings, and other trim were probably shipped from Vermont woodworking mills which had begun mass-producing such items to meet the demand for Victorian finishings during the 1890s. Several months before the completion of the building, however, a minor scandal touched the Hart family. It didn’t affect construction, but it must have shaken, at least for a couple of weeks, the foundation of goodwill the Harts were trying to establish in their newly-chosen community. The disturbance arose from a New Year’s Eve prank conducted by their 17-year old son Charles and a schoolmate of his. The prank earned Charles and his friend a misdemeanor charge to which the boys plead guilty. Apparently, the boys didn’t think much of it—except for the fine they had to pay—but the reaction of their parents was another matter. Being quite incensed by the way the investigation, arrest, and trial was conducted, and equally concerned about the affect of the conviction on the boys’ personal reputations, the boys’ parents insisted that the boys write a letter explaining the entire circumstances. That letter, which contains some obvious emendations by one or more outraged mothers, was printed in its entirety in the January 14, 1897 issue of the Pacific Grove Review:
An Explanation From the Boys
We, the undersigned, having been asked by some of the citizens of PG in order to take the doubt from the mines at some of our people, that we had anything to do with the damaging of the Public Schoolhouse lock on New Year’s evening, to draw up this brief sketch of our whereabouts on that evening. First, we met on the corner of Sixteenth and Lighthouse road, and adjourned to the Public Schoolhouse, where Hart and Rogers climbed into and unfastened window of that building and rang the bell at precisely 12 o’clock, but for a short time. The bell was rang after that time, but we know nothing of that as we were not there. After ringing the bell a short time, and not thinking we had done anything wrong we came up by the Fire House where we met Mr. Ritch, the Marshal. He talked as if we had rung the fire-bell. We told him that we had not, but had rang the schoolhouse bell. He said, “That’s all right; just as long as you don’t ring the fire-bell;” so we supposed it was all right. Then we went to the beach for a short time, and before 1 o’clock we were all tucked close in our cozy little beds. But on the evening of the 6th, ‘93, Mr. Hart was arrested and brought before the Judge Patrick on a charge of breaking the schoolhouse lock, which was a serious charge. Mr. Hart pleaded not guilty, and was put under bonds of $20, and trial set for the following day, the 7th, at 2 p.m. Mr. Hart was then asked if he had any witnesses; he said that he had, and was asked by Marshall Rich [sic] who they were, and he would see that they were at the trial at 2 o’clock. But before two o’clock Hart’s witnesses were arrested, and Mr. Hart’s first arrest was withdrawn, and he and his witnesses were arrested under a new charge, of disturbing the peace. He would like to say here that probably the parties who did the arresting, didn’t stop to think how an arrest of such a crime as disturbing the peace always clings to a person. The boys were brought before Judge Patrick, and after asking the judge whether or not it was disturbing the peace, and as he said it was, the boys supposed that he ought to know whether ringing a bell on New Year’s night was a crime or not, plead guilty and were fined $5.45 apiece. Another piece of business relating to the officers of our city which we and our parents think very funny, was that in all with the exception of one, are minors, and that our parents were not notified of the proceedings of the court until after we were fined. One of the officers called at the house of one of the undersigned, and asked his mother if he was at home. The woman said “yes,” and asked “what is the matter; has my boy got into any trouble, etc.” The officer answered “Oh, no; we just want him for a few minutes.” Signed,C. C. Hart Mac Cole T. Edner G. Rogers
One of the untidy details with which historians are forced to grapple, from time to time, are the typographical errors that all too frequently sprinkle the pages produced by 19th Century technology. Charles Babbage may have invented the first computer in 1834, but that was still well over a century before the advent of electronic word processing and spell checking. In those days, newspapers were typeset much the way they were in Gutenberg’s time: by hand, one letter at a time, through the tedious insertion of movable type—little pieces of lead bearing the representation of letters and punctuation—into wooden frames. The newsprint would be produced by applying ink to the completed frame of type; then, paper to the frame. Typesetters became quite proficient at setting the type and some could perform the task with an alacrity that would astound even the fastest typists of our own century. Yet, haste, in any century, still makes waste. Mistakes were made, as few typesetters kept historians in mind when plying their trade. According to the Pacific Grove Review, the boys’ letter was signed by a “C. C. Hart.” Given that Charles’s middle name was “Edwin,” it is likely that the typesetter misread a stylized, handwritten “E” as a “C.” Alternatively, he could simply have used the wrong piece of lead when preparing the text. In the preparation of this history, care was taken to assure that no person by the name of “C. C. Hart,” or any similar name (other than “Charles Edwin Hart”) was living in Pacific Grove at the time. In addition, since Charles was born on November 29, 1875, he would have been 17-years old at the time of the incident, which would be consistent with letter’s declaration that Charles was a minor. The foregoing disclosure is made so that the reader, through his own research or trust in the author, may judge the matter for himself. The Hart Mansion was completed during the summer of 1893. Shortly thereafter, the Pacific Grove Review published an extensive appraisal of Dr. Hart’s new residence, which appeared in the newspaper on Saturday, August 12, 1893 reproduced here, in its entirety:
Dr. A. J. Hart’s New Residence
A beautiful and costly home has been added to the Grove's attractions. It is the property of Dr. A.J. Hart, one of our loyal physicians, and lately erected from plans drawn by Mr. J. Mourot of Modesto. The elevations are picturesque and the interior arrangements complete. The underpinning is substantially constructed of stone and the building of wood, the tower to the left of main entrance being shingled and left to weather finish. In dimensions and height of ceilings, general build, and finish it ranks among the first houses in the Grove. The rooms are ample in number and size.The main hall is wainscoted with oak and elaborately paneled, the broad sweeping stairway being similarly fashioned and lighted by stained-glass windows. Each room presents a revelation in ornamental plate glass windows, outlined by stained corrugated glass which throws over the interior a soft warm glow of color and tints, very beautiful. There are in the dining room china cabinets built in with doors of beveled plate glass, the fireplaces throughout are finished with ornamental tiles and hardwood mantels. Our attention was held particularly by one of the latter in the sitting room with its unique finishings of statuary. The Dr’s study is a secluded room in the second story and is a genuine den “fearfully and wonderfully made;” suffice it to say we didn’t linger here being sufficiently awed from the threshold by the formidable array of drugs, chemicals, instruments of torture, and mechanical and scientific appliances generally, to accept without protest his assurance that it was a den. The upper chambers are airy, large, and commodious, opening into a large hall way, and are treated in their furnishings with delicate warm tints. The laundry, bath and toilet have received the same care that is demonstrated throughout the house. It is a model modern home all summed up. The grounds are being improved and beautified upon the completion of which the residence stands a monument of merit to the owner, the architect, Mr. Mourot, the builder our local contractor, Mr. W. Hoyt and the painters, Messrs. Baker and Stockard.
Though it is clear from the foregoing newspaper account that the doctor moved his equipment, and perhaps his family, into the building in July or August, the weekly advertisement he had been running was not revised to reflect the new location of his office and the family residence until November 11, 1893, when the following appeared in the Pacific Grove Review:
A. J. Hart, M.D. Physician and Accoucheur
Diseases of women and children a specialty. Office and Residence on corner Nineteenth street and Light House avenue.
A building described as ranking “among the first houses of the Grove” and “a model modern home” that stands as “a monument of merit to the owner,” must have propelled the Harts to new heights of social standing in the community. Such public praise for the new home certainly couldn’t have harmed his medical practice either. Perhaps a busy medical practice, perhaps the stress of acclimatizing to a new home, or perhaps the result of any number of irritations, Dr. Hart contracted an illness which had apparently become so acute it warranted the attention of the local newspaper which printed the following on Saturday, January 27, 1894:
Dr. A. J. Hart is convalescing.
Three weeks later, on Saturday, February 17, 1894, the Review reported:
Dr. A. J. Hart is still wrestling with la grippe, but confident.
The grippe was the French term used at the time for the flu. It is not clear how persistent his illness may have been, but if the doctor’s work had been adversely affected, Mrs. Hart picked up the slack by keeping herself busy, too. She placed the following advertisement beginning in the March 2, 1895 issue of the Pacific Grove Review:
MRS. A. J. HART
Superfluous hair removed from the face without danger or pain. Consultation free. Lighthouse avenue and Nineteenth street, Pacific Grove.
Within a year, however, Dr. Hart realized he was afflicted with something much more serious than the flu or common repertory problems. It was becoming increasingly apparent that he was suffering from a cancer was developing on the right side of his mouth. Concern turned to pain; then, pain to torture. Then death. Andrew Jackson Hart passed away on the morning of Sunday, May 7, 1899. The Pacific Grove Review printed the following obituary on Saturday, May 13, 1899 as follows:
Dr. Hart Laid to Rest
Sunday morning at one o'clock Dr. Andrew Jackson Hart entered into rest. Trustingly, confidingly, as only a true christian can he folded his hands and passed into sleep. For two years his life has been one long agony occasioned by a cancer which developed in the right cheek and spread rapidly to the eye, completely destroying it. The agonizing torture continually endured by him, coupled with the knowledge that not the faintest hope could ever be cherished of his ultimate recovery, reconciles his loved ones to their irreparable loss. He had made the Grove his home for ten years past, coming here for the benefit of his health from Modesto, where he had an immense practice as a physician. A lovely residence here indicates the quiet home love which marked his life and drew him the immense circle of friends who now deplore his absence. The funeral was held from the M. E. church, under the auspices of Monterey Lodge No. 182, I. O. O. F., of which he was a member., Rev. A. C. Bane, pastor of the church, officiating. Mr. Hart was also a member of Pacific Grove Lodge No. 280, A. O. U. W., a large number of the brothers following him to the grave. The floral offerings at the church were of a superb order and bore in their abundance, mute testimony of the high esteem in which the departed was held. He leaves a wife and three sons; Archie C. Hart, D. D. S., of San Francisco; Chas. E. Hart, D. D. S., and Frank Hart a student of the Grove high school. He was in his 67th year and a native of Maine. Loving hands laid him to rest beneath a mass of choice blossoms.
Dr. Hart was fortunate to have lived to see two of his sons follow him into the health care profession: Archie C. Hart, who established a dentistry practice in San Francisco and Charles E. Hart, overcoming his earlier run in with the law, who practiced dentistry in the Hart Mansion from 1896 through June, 1898, when he moved to San Francisco. However, Dr. Hart did not live to see his son Frank Russell Hart graduate from Pacific Grove High School. According to Historical Notes of the Pacific Grove High School Alumni Association, Frank Hart was graduated in June 1899, just a few weeks after his father’s death. Pacific Grove High School was established by a bond issue passed on June 18, 1896. It was the first high school in Monterey County, and held classes on the second floor of the Pine Avenue School, the town’s public grammar school at the time. Frank Hart was a member of the first football team organized at the high school. He played half back. Within two years of its opening, the high school celebrated its first graduating class: two young woman, Ava Ken, class president, and Helen Wood, class secretary. On June 2, 1899, the graduates of the classes of ’88 and ’89 met at the house of Miss Kent and established the Alumni Association. Frank Hart was elected its Secretary. In the fall, Frank left for Stanford University and in preparation for a professional career he was duly graduated after a course in the Hannemann Hospital of the Pacific, after receiving the degree of Doctor of Medicine in 1903. On February 19, 1901, Charles E. Hart, then 26 years old, married Lizzie Louise Fifield in San Francisco. Just several weeks later, however, that happy news was followed hard by the passing of Archie C. Hart on May 29, 1901 at the young age of 32. The cause of death is unknown. Without her husband’s income, and with her surviving sons out on their own, Mrs. Hart made ends meet by renting out the three furnished rooms on the mansion’s third floor. One of her first boarders was Dr. Jarvis "J" Williams, who has been described as “the witty public spirited dentist and supporter of pioneer traditions and their memorials.” Her efforts were aided by the prominence of the mansion, which had become one of the key architectural landmarks of Pacific Grove, and the growing reputation of the seaside resort community. The Monterey and Pacific Grove Directory of 1905-1906 contained a full-page advertisement promoting “Cottage Life in Pacific Grove” which the ad described as “An ideal summer and winter residence locality at the sea shore. Among the pines. Moral and intellectual surroundings. Excellent public schools.” Notably, the advertisement contained three photographs, one of which depicted a northwest view of Dr. Hart mansion. In the spring of 1905, Frank Hart returned to Pacific Grove where he established his first medical practice. Like his father before him, he announced his services with a series of weekly advertisements in the Pacific Grove Review, beginning on March 31:
DR. FRANK R. HART
Physician and Surgeon
Late of City and County Hospital San Francisco Hours: 2 to 4 and 7 to 8 p.m. Office and Residence, Corner 19th Street and Lighthouse Avenue
However, Frank Hart was not to practice in Pacific Grove for very long. On November 10, 1905, at the age of 26, he married Miss Marie “Mollie” Scaroni, a native of Santa Cruz. The couple soon moved to Suisan (Solano County), California, where Frank opened a medical office. The town of Suisun, California was established in the 1850s during the Gold Rush as a link in a trading route between the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and the San Francisco Bay. With the introduction of the transcontinental railroad in 1869, the town became an important link between San Francisco and points east. Suisun was about __ miles from downtown San Francisco. On August 14, 1906, Frank and Mollie had their first son, Archie John Hart, who years later would become a prominent dentist practicing in Pacific Grove. On May 11, 1908, during a visit to Frank’s home in Suisan, Mrs. Sarah E. Hart passed away. The Pacific Grove Review reported her passing this way:
DEATH OF MRS. SARA HART
Passed away at the home of her son, Dr. Frank Hart, at Suisun. A telegram from Suisun announces the sad news of the death of Mrs. Sarah Hart of this city. Mrs. Hart left the Grove some weeks since for a visit with her sons one of whom lives in San Francisco and the other in Suisun, and she was at the hoe of the latter, Dr. Frank Hart when she passed away. Mrs. Hart was a woman of noble Christian character and the news of her death will be received with feelings of deep sorrow by her many friends in this city.
On ______, 1909, David Jacks passed away. … [get obit.]….Leaving his assets in Jacks Corporation, managed by his surviving family. His last surviving heir, Margaret Jack, died in 1962, bringing to an end the 112 year Jack family business. Her bequest to Stanford University was said to have been the largest since the University’s founding. Gifts to the city of Monterey included Casa del Oro, the Pacific House, Jacks Peak Park, and Don Dahvee Park (named after the how the Mexicans in Jacks’ employ and his close friends referred to him). Jacks’ papers and correspondence were left to the Huntington library.]
Some time after Sarah’s death, Frank and Mollie Hart moved to moved to Mollie’s home town, Santa Cruz, before eventually returning to Pacific Grove in 1916—this time, for good.