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Imperial County









            For twelve years Mrs. Mary E. Mayfield has resided in El Centro and during much of that period has been closely identified with public affairs as clerk of the justice court.  She is a native of Manchester, England, and a daughter of Thomas Jones, who was born in 1845 and passed away in 1926 at the age of eighty-one years.  He was well known as a mechanical engineer, science teacher and geometrician.  A brilliant student, he was gold medalist for geometry at the age of twenty-one.  He was a member of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers and for a number of years lectured on engineering at the Municipal School of Technology in Manchester, England.  He was the author of books on machine drawing and the inventor of mechanical and geometrical working models for students, used by science teachers in English-speaking countries, particularly England, the United States, India and Australia.  He married Mary McCulloch, a daughter of Gilbert McCulloch, who emigrated from England to America.  In 1849 Mr. McCulloch went to the gold fields of California and eventually settled in Pennsylvania.  Because of his mechanical skill and ingenuity he was retained by the Pennsylvania Railroad Company as their inventor and made several improvements in the locomotive engine.  Of the children born to Mr. and Mrs. Jones, six are now living, namely:  two daughters, Mary E. and Maud, and four sons.  The eldest son, T. Gilbert Jones, became a Whitworth scholar at the age of twenty-one and received the Master of Science degree from Victoria University.  He was made an associate member of the Institute of Civil Engineering and also of the Institute of Electrical Engineering.  He became principal and head of the engineering department of the Technical College at Swansea, Wales, a position which he still holds.  He is examiner of science examination papers for the Lancashire and Cheshire Institute, and with his father was co-author of books on machine drawing.  Garth Jones is an artist and book illustrator of international repute.  The winner of a three years’ scholarship in art, he pursued his studies at the Julian Academy in Paris, France.  His illustrations ornament many famous books, including Queen Marie of Roumania’s “Book of Fairy Tales.”  In pre-war days, while working for a studio in Chicago, he drew pictorial representations for Harper’s and Scribner’s magazines and is now illustrating “The Palaces of England” for Good Housekeeping, an English publication.  Ernest Jones, the third son, is engaged in engineering work in Holland.  Robert H. Jones, the winner of a national scholarship, specialized in the study of physics and chemistry and holds the Master of Science degree.  At one time he taught at Heidelberg University and is now a lecturer at the Harris Institute of Preston, England.  He is the author of a book of domestic science.

            Mary E. Jones was reared in her native country and made the most of the liberal educational advantages accorded her.  Passing the Queen’s Scholarship Examination with high marks in 1888, she entered Edge Hill Training College in 1889 where she spent two years, passing all examinations with high honors.  In 1891 she married Charles H. Smith and resided with her husband in the Bahama Islands for a period of three and a half years.  Mr. Smith was sent by England to organize at Nassau, Bahamas, a training college for colored teachers.  He had marked literary ability, publishing a book of his own poems and writing several plays, some of which were acted in Nassau before large audiences including Sir Ambrose Shea, Governor of the Bahamas.  Charles H. Smith died in 1895 on the West Coast of Africa where he was attempting a similar organization.

            Returning to her native land, Mrs. Smith lectured from 1904 to 1916 in the north of England on metaphysical subjects and also taught in one of the evening schools of Manchester for a period of seven years, taking classes in English, needlework and household arithmetic.  She came to El Centro in 1921 to visit her daughter and in 1924 was married to Judge Isaac Mayfield, whose biographical record is given elsewhere in this work.  Mrs. Mayfield was naturalized in 1925, in which year she became clerk of the justice court, presided over by her husband, and in recognition of her efficient, conscientious work she has been continued in the office to the present time, serving for a period of eight years.  She also finds time for literary work and is the author of a booklet entitled “Gems of Truth from Bailey’s ‘Festus,’” published in 1932.  It received some good reviews in the Imperial Valley Press, a local paper; the Manchester City News of England; and occult magazines in Hollywood, California, and Wheaton, Illinois.  The booklet has gone out into the United States, Mexico, England, Holland, India and South Africa.

            By her first marriage, Mrs. Mayfield became the mother of a daughter, Dorothy B., who was born in the Bahamas.  Early in life, the daughter manifested marked talent in instrumental music, when but fourteen winning a scholarship to Trinity College, London, for violin playing, and at the age of eighteen received a teacher’s diploma from that institution.  She came to California in 1920 and to El Centro in 1921.  A solo violinist of note, she has delighted large audiences with her playing and is also considered a very competent teacher of both the violin and piano.  In 1915 she was married to Horace Williams, a native of England and also an accomplished musician, well known in southern California as the organizer and conductor of El Centro Municipal Band and the Brawley Band.  He is also a violinist, an instructor in all band instruments, including the oboe, and teacher of both string and wind instruments in several grammar and high schools in Imperial County.  Mr. and Mrs. Williams are the parents of three sons, namely:  Basil, Brian and Bruce.




Transcribed by V. Gerald Iaquinta.

Source: California of the South Vol. IV, by John Steven McGroarty, Pages 369-372, Clarke Publ., Chicago, Los Angeles, Indianapolis.  1933.

© 2012  V. Gerald Iaquinta.




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