Group of girls standing and sitting outdoors

Campfire Girls on Big River Beach in various states of dress, from uniforms to bloomers to swim suits, 1926. Standing, L. to R.: Eva Walton, Harvena Davies, Gleneice Silvia, Irene Granskog, Evelyn Bowman, Merna Brown, Mary Silvia. Sitting, L. to R.: Helen Tyrrell, Edna Freathy, Jane Cleary, Ruby Carvalho.

April 8, 1958 – Gleneice Silvia died at the age of 45. She suffered a heart attack while at work as a teacher at the Abraham Lincoln High School in San Francisco. Her brother, Everett, who also taught at a nearby school, was summoned to her side, but by the time the ambulance arrived, she had passed away.

Their mother, Mrs. Mary Silvia, had been in ill-health for some time. Tragically, she “could not rally from the shock when she was told of her daughter’s death” and passed away early the following morning.

The Silvia family was well-known in Mendocino. Gleneice’s father, Frank J. Silvia, was born in Mendocino, attended Mendocino schools, and worked for the Mendocino Lumber Company. In 1908, Frank married Mary, the daughter of Mark Curtis. Mary was born in 1888 on a timber claim owned by her father along State Highway #20, near Chamberlain Creek.

In 1895, Mary’s father traded the timber claim for 30 acres on the south side of Big River at the Highway 1 and Comptche-Ukiah Road intersection and had F. E. Sherwood build a bungalow on the property. A second home was built in 1912 for Frank, Mary, and their children. “The children were born and raised in Mendocino and all graduated from the local schools. Mrs. Silvia was a devoted mother and worked to send the children on to schools for a higher education. All went to college, and both Gleneice and Everett are well thought of in the teaching profession.” Although the Silvia family had moved to San Francisco more than 25 years earlier, they continued to own the home on Comptche-Ukiah Road and frequently visited family and friends in Mendocino.

Mary’s survivors included her sister Leona Carlisle, brother Grover Curtis, daughter Thelma McKinley, and son Everett Silvia. Her husband Frank had passed away from a heart attack in 1943.

Walking Tours of Historic Mendocino – Join our expert docents for a stroll and lively commentary. You’ll pass by early pioneer homes, historic meeting places, and buildings that make up the the Mendocino Historic District.