History Mysteries

If you have information that will help solve these mysteries, contact us at 707-937-5791 or email info@KelleyHouseMuseum.org.

To view some solved mysteries, click here.

Fair-Haired Mystery

Fair-Haired Mystery
by Anne Cooper, Kelley House Museum Curator This photograph from our archives of a young woman wearing a plain blouse and looking at the camera with what seems to be unabashed honesty is one of our Kelley House Museum “history mysteries.”  Something about the style of the blouse, the way her hair has been pulled back and the clarity of the photograph made us think that it might be of sufficiently recent vintage that someone would be able to tell us[... see full page]

A Bit of A Switch on a 'History Mystery'

A Bit of A Switch on a 'History Mystery'
We recently received a request from the daughter of this handsome guy, and it represents a switch in that we know who the person is, but we don’t know for certain WHERE he is.  The WHEN is also somewhat undetermined, but she thinks the photograph was taken around 1930. This is Clifford Chapman, who attended Mendocino High School and worked in the Mendocino Mill.  Clifford’s daughter, Susan, would like to know if any of the Beacon’s readers can help identify this[... see full page]

Manchester School Steps – a History Mystery

Manchester School Steps – a History Mystery
[Note:  this mystery has been solved.  See this article.] By Anne Cooper, Curator We’re all familiar with the grade school photographs our parents have tucked away, and which sometimes come out for reunions. Our latest history mystery involves seven children, photographed on the steps of Manchester Union School, probably during the 1940s.  There are five boys, two girls; those in the second row are flanking their principal/teacher, Mrs. Alma Jacobs Mendosa.  The students appear to be of about the same age, perhaps[... see full page]

A Mystery Sverko Photograph

A Mystery Sverko Photograph
This photograph was part of the Eleanor Sverko Collection but has no identifying information. Eleanor Feodora Stolpe Sverko was born on August 20, 1920. She was the daughter of Finnish immigrants, Johannes (John) and Regina Stolpe who settled in Greenwood/Elk. Many Finnish settled there as well as Comptche to work in the mills. They probably all knew each other. Perhaps this photograph is of a family member or perhaps other Finnish friends. Every picture tells a story and we are[... see full page]

Mendocino Basketball Players

Mendocino Basketball Players
Yearbooks for schools are valuable research tools, containing names and photographs of young people from their freshman to senior year of high school. We can learn what clubs they belonged to and what sports they played.  We end up with a snapshot of time when  they were young, good-looking, healthy and hopeful. Although the first Mendocino High School graduating class was 1896, the first yearbook was published in 1907. This photograph pre-dates the first yearbook, although the early yearbooks often did[... see full page]