Making History Blog

Many of these articles have been published in the Mendocino Beacon’s Kelley House Calendar.

Greenwood Creek River Drive

Greenwood Creek River Drive
By Katy Tahja In a recent Kelley House Calendar column on the book “Big River Was Dammed” by Francis Jackson, I wrote a bit about river drives of logs on Big River.  Reading Mendocino County Remembered: An Oral History, which is a collection of oral history interviews of county residents born before 1900 and compiled by Bruce Levene, William Bradd, Lana Krasner, Gloria Petrykowski and Rosalie Zucker, I found a description of such an event on Greenwood Creek.  This is a[... see full page]

Big River Was Dammed

Big River Was Dammed
By Katy Tahja If you didn’t know any better and were not noticing the spelling, you might think “Big River Was Dammed” is about the local watershed’s dark, disturbing history.  But this book is about the 27 water-control structures erected by loggers on the river back in the boom days.  The dam closest to the mill on the Big River flat was 11 miles upstream; the most distant one was 48 miles away.  Why all this dam building? The first men to[... see full page]

Levene’s Final 1970s Revue to Show at Kelley House

Levene’s Final 1970s Revue to Show at Kelley House
On Sunday July 31st, at 3 p.m. the Kelley House Museum will present a reprise of Bruce Levene’s digital scrapbook of music, photographs, graphics, spoken voice and poetry from Mendocino in the 1970s. The revised two hour presentation, now titled “Good Hope,” contains works by 25 musicians, six poets, five interview excerpts, six Mendocino News Service/KMFB excerpts, 17 known photographers and artists plus numerous graphics. Due to the presentation’s length, the program will begin at 3:00 p.m. (instead of the usual 4:00[... see full page]

When the 1920s Roared in Mendocino

When the 1920s Roared in Mendocino
Recently, while researching something else, we came across a catalog record with a photograph of Elmer Strauss’ goggles, reportedly from his racing days at the Mendocino Race Track, built on what had been Heeser’s Ranch.  Mr. Elmer Strauss was no stranger to vehicles of many types.  Early in his career, he and George Daniels, both “town boys” were reported as having made the choice to work in San Francisco on the Market Street Railroad, in 1925 (Mendocino Beacon, August 29,[... see full page]

Tales of the Mendocino Music Festival

Tales of the Mendocino Music Festival
Sunday, July 17th, 2016, the Kelley House Museum will host "A Sunday Afternoon With . . . Marcia Lotter."  The Mendocino Music Festival celebrates its thirtieth year in 2016, and Marcia's presentation "Tales of the Festival" is offered in conjunction with an exhibit of Mendocino Music Festival programs, posters and memorabilia to be displayed at the Kelley House from July 9th through the 23rd.  Ms. Lotter lives in Gualala, but earned a seat in the Santa Rosa Symphony in 1978,[... see full page]

Marcia Lotter to Speak on Music Festival History

Marcia Lotter to Speak on Music Festival History
by Katy Tahja The local community has had thirty years to amass their favorite Mendocino Music Festival memories. That memory could be of a musician, an orchestral performance, a child watching opera for the first time, or an impromptu gathering of chamber musicians on a lawn in town, just making music. The Kelley House Museum will host “Tales of the Festival - A Sunday Afternoon With…Marcia Lotter” during this year’s Festival on July 17, 2016 at 4:00 p.m. Lotter has been a[... see full page]