In Memory

Clara "Margaret" Lyman (Langsdorf) - Class Of 1931 VIEW PROFILE

Clara Margaret Lyman (Langsdorf)

The following information was gathered by Chet Fenton ( in the course of tracing his family history. His father was friends with Margaret Lyman in the mid-30's.

 A 1940 article in the Berkeley Daily Gazette reports her engagement to Gordon Langsdorf. The article says that Margaret was a gradate of Pomona and the Claremont Colleges Gradate schools and was on the faculty of the Emerson School (a Berkeley public elementary school). Gordon is described as doctor serving as “assistant resident” at the county hospital.

Here’s the link:
According to the Social Security Death Index, Margaret was born 5/24/1913 and died 6/5/2007 in La Jolla, CA.
Her parents were Ralph (1883-1954) and Fannie (1883-1953) Lyman. Ralph was a Professor of Music at Pomona College from 1917 to 1948 and apparently  prominent in his field. Both Ralph and Fannie are buried in Claremont’s Oak Park Cemetery.  You’ll find numerous references to Ralph Lyman if you do a Google search on his name in conjunction with “Pomona College”. Also, I imagine the Pomona College library or archives would have a lot of material relating to him.
The U.S Censuses for 1920 and 1930 have listings for the Lyman family in Claremont and show their house at 357 W. 10th St (across from the park). Also the 1920 Census has Margaret’s name as “Clara M. Lyman”, and in 1930 she is listed as “C. Margaret Lyman”. So the Clara name was on well on the way to being jettisoned by that time. Also, the Censuses list Margaret’s birthplace as Iowa. But, I haven’t yet tried to trace the Lymans back there. I do know that prior to the move to Claremont in 1917, the Lyman’s were living in Eugene, Oregon, where Ralph was Professor of Music at the University of Oregon.
Robert Gordon Langsdorf, 1942, Alameda County, CA
Kathryn Gaynor Langsdorf, 1943, San Francisco County, CA
Lawrence Lyman Langsdorf, 1948, San Diego County, CA
Source: State of California. California Birth Index, 1905-1995. State of California Department of Health Services, Center for Health Statistics.
California Death Index shows that Gordon Langsdorf died on 10/25/1965 in San Diego. This record also gives his birthdate as 11/24/1912
Source: State of California. California Death Index, 1940-1997. State of California Department of Health Services, Center for Health Statistics
Also, Margaret had siblings Ernest (older) and David (younger), who presumably also attended Claremont HS. Ernest is mentioned in the above newspaper article as “Dr. Ernest Lyman . . . formerly associated the the University of California physics department.”


Click here to see Clara "Margaret"'s last Profile entry.