Women posed in two rows facing camera

Sunday School Picnic at Big Hill, 1931. Photograph of women attending the Mendocino Presbyterian Church’s Sunday School picnic at Big Hill. Back row: Susie Walbridge, Molly Valentine, Laura Lammers, Catherine Swanson, ? Silver, ? Hamblin. Front row: ? Hanna, Vernice Brown, Mary Nichols.

June 18, 1948 – Mrs. Laura Lammers, cousin of Mendocino Beacon editor and proprietor Auggie Heeser, passed away shortly after midnight at the Redwood Coast Hospital in Fort Bragg at the age of 77. She had been in the hospital for just a few days, but her health had been declining for about six months.

Laura was born in Mendocino in 1871, the second of five daughters of Alfred and Catherine O’Meara Nelson. Growing up in town, she attended the local schools and eventually became a teacher herself. In 1892, Laura married George Lammers, a local banker and bookkeeper. Around 1900, Laura and George, along with their young daughter Catherine, relocated to San Francisco, where George worked for the Bass-Hueter Paint Company. They returned to the coast in 1907, initially residing in Elk, before settling in Mendocino the following year.

The Lammers family made their home with Auggie in the Kasten-Heeser House (now part of the Mendocino Hotel Garden Suites). This historic home, with the front entrance on Albion Street and the rear entrance on Ukiah Street across from the Beacon building, is the town’s oldest house, constructed from the first redwood lumber milled in Mendocino. In the words of Auggie, Laura “presided over the Heeser home” for the next 40 years. “She was as close as any sister and devoted herself to my welfare and that of the other members of her family.”

Laura was also active in Mendocino’s community. She was a co-founder of the Mendocino Study Club, a women’s club established in 1908 to promote the intellectual and spiritual development of its members through education and study, and she was a member of the Ladies Aid Society for many years.

Laura was survived by her daughter, Mrs. Catherine Swanson; two grandchildren, Mrs. Laura Bierly of Stockton, and Mrs. Edith Enochs of Mendocino; three nephews, Jesse E. Nichols of Piedmont, George A. Nichols of Fort Bragg, Francis Alfred Nichols of San Leandro, and five nieces, Mrs. Ardelle Harris of San Francisco; Mrs. Naomi Linney of Piedmont; Mrs. Grace Conelly of Manila; Mrs. Katy McLean of Caspar, and Miss Laura Jo Nichols of Healdsburg; three great-grandchildren, Robert, Michael, and Karen Enochs. Her funeral services were held at the Cannarr Chapel in Fort Bragg.

New Exhibit! “Water Tower Wonderland” Discover the beauty, ingenuity, and architecture of these iconic structures in the Kelley House Museum’s summer exhibit, “Water Tower Wonderland.” Using historic photographs, original pieces from local artists, and small-scale models, the exhibit explores the majesty and functionality of many well-known water towers, several still standing and some that aren’t. On display will be renderings of Mendocino water towers in several media, with serigraphs by Anne Kendall Foote and Bill Zacha, a quilt square by Dee Goodrich, and a linocut by Emmy Lou Packard. The Kelley House has also been working closely with Mendocino High School, and the exhibit includes pastels and architectural models made by students. 45007 Albion Street, Mendocino. Thursday-Monday, 11am – 3pm. Now until September 18.