by Tonia Hurst

Every year since 1973, the Kelley House Museum, formerly Mendocino Historical Research, has published a Historical Review dealing with one facet or another of the history of the Mendocino Coast. The most recent release, From Maidens to Mavericks: Mendocino’s Women, is in the mail to museum members this week. The next volume in the series, From Byways to Highways, will cover the development of State Route 1 (the Shoreline Highway) in Mendocino County.

Starting at Dana Point in Orange County and ending in Leggett, Mendocino County, State Route 1 is the longest north-south highway in California and covers breathtaking coastal views for most of its 655-mile length. Known by various other names along its route (such as the Pacific Coast Highway, The Cabrillo Highway, and the Coast Highway), it is known locally as the Shoreline Highway. Incorporating previous sections of coastal road, the highway was built between the 1930s and the 1960s, with the Mendocino County terminus at Leggett as the final section completed.

The Kelley House Museum is looking for information from people who lived in the area during the time the Shoreline Highway was built. Our hope is to make this exciting piece of as yet uncovered local history a richer and more accurate story. Personal stories, documents, photographs, and comments are all welcomed and materials will be properly credited and returned to you. Please contact if you have something to contribute. Thank you.