Women Trailblazers of California: Pioneers to the Present

Truly awful book about a fantastic topic. I plowed through as best I could, as far as I could, holding my nose at the poorly documented facts and oversimplified stories, gritting my teeth over the notes section (couched as “Bilbiography”)’s over-reliance on web documentation as a source. For example, the life of Lillie Hitchcock Coit was constructed from what is listed as “www.sfmuseum.org/hist1/h-coit.html” and “www.sfmuseum.org/hist1/h-coit2.html” in the notes. After visiting those webpages, I need to add plagarism to the list of crimes committed by this wretched book, with many sections of text from the website reprinted verbatim without attribution or quotes in the book.
But I may have been able to stumble blindly through the fog of a poorly written, poorly researched book had I not tripped over the typo of a name, Ina Coolbrith referred to as Ina “Coolbirth” in this poor excuse for a history book, published by an outfit called The History Press. If they cannot get Coolbrith’s name correct, the first Poet Laureate of California, what hope do they have in getting anything in this rag correct?
After that incredible mistake, I flipped through the rest of the book and nearly gagged on the reductive, assumptive, dumbed down history that does a true disservice to the phenomenal history of women in California. Julia Morgan was known to have climbed scaffoldings in her skirt? Well I’ll be gobsmacked to hell! “Apparently the hostility to women that was commonplace in the professions of layers and doctors was not as deeply ingrained in the fields of architectural design and urban planning.” Excuse me, WHAT?
Silver lining in this shit-storm of a book is my increased curiosity about:
* Lilli H. Coit
* Laura de Force Gordon
* Josephine C. McCrackin
* “Dame Shirley”