Detail from book cover of Miss Chase Santa Barbara’s Trailblazer

Miss Chase: Santa Barbara’s Trailblazer’ Book Talk + Archive Discussion with Simon Kerry and Erin Graffy

Thu, 02/08/2024 - 5:00pm to 6:30pm
Special Research Collections

In partnership with Santa Barbara Beautiful, join us for a special evening with British historian Simon Kerry as he discusses his new book, Miss Chase: Santa Barbara’s Trailblazer. Simon will also share his experience reviewing materials from The Community Development and Conservation Collection (CDCC), also known as the Pearl Chase Collection, donated by Ms. Chase to UCSB Library’s Special Research Collections, and used in Simon’s research. Moderated by local Santa Barbara historian and author, Erin Graffy. 

Books will be available for purchasing and signing, courtesy of Chaucer's.


Pearl Chase (1888-1979) was a longtime activist in local community affairs, as well as at the state and national level. As secretary and later chair of the Plans and Planting Committee, she encouraged the city's rebuilding in the graceful Spanish style after the 1925 Santa Barbara earthquake. She was the city's unofficial ombudsman in matters of natural beauty and public welfare, suggesting health and building codes and encouraging sign ordinances, saving trees and creating and enhancing parks. Her legacy continues to live on at UCSB through her collection and awards established in her name. 

Simon KerryAbout the Author 

Simon Kerry was born in 1970 and is an author and business owner. He is the great-grandnephew of Pearl Chase and the 11th Earl of Kerry. He was educated at Eton College and at Cambridge University where he was awarded an MA in Archaeology. He has an MBA from Hult Ashridge, an MSc in Rural Land and Business Management from the University of Reading and a PhD in History from the University of East Anglia. He is married and has one child. He lives at Bowood in Wiltshire. His first book Lansdowne: The Last Great Whig was published by Unicorn Publishing Group in 2017.

About the Moderator__alt__

Erin Graffy is an award-winning author of more than 150 books, monographs, features and articles, on the history, social culture, people, and delightful peculiarities of Santa Barbara. She has written the society column for every paper in Santa Barbara, and her former radio show “Talk of the Town” is now the name of her column featured on-line in Noozhawk.

__alt__Co-Sponsor: Santa Barbara Beautiful