Making History Blog

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

The Appeal of Apples Part II

The Appeal of Apples Part II
By Martha Davis Wagner And, now on to Caspar; supposedly among the most historic apples in that area were those planted by the Canadian, John Simpson Ross who became well known as a traveling North Coast minister.  Reverend Ross served frequently in Eliza Kelley’s Baptist Church in Mendocino. He purchased acreage in Caspar in 1870 north of town on the west side of the then Coast Road.  After laborious land clearing, a family home was built and an orchard was planted.[... see full page]

The Appeal of Apples, Part I

The Appeal of Apples, Part I
By Martha Davis Wagner (Note: Long time Kelley House supporter and patron, Martha wrote this article in 2006 for a newsletter. We re-print it here in conjunction with our current museum exhibit, “When Farm to Table was Everyday.”) Apples have been growing throughout Mendocino County since the 1800’s, both commercially and as family sustenance. About 1847 good-named varieties became available. Mendocino as well as its closest neighboring areas of Caspar, East Mendocino and Littleriver (spelling used at that time) all have their apple[... see full page]

When Farm to Table was Everyday

When Farm to Table was Everyday

Products & Producers of the Mendocino Coast

  • Friday August 26 through Monday November 21, 2016
  • Members Preview Reception, Thursday, August 25, 4:30-6:00PM
  • The museum is open Friday through Monday, 11AM - 3PM
There are few things as delicious, and generally healthful, as something you grew yourself, cared for and labored over, and then brought to the table to enjoy with family and friends!  If it was a good year there was abundance, and if it wasn't you made do with what was[... see full page]

“When Farm to Table was Everyday” Exhibit Opens

“When Farm to Table was Everyday” Exhibit Opens
The Kelley House Museum’s new exhibit “When Farm to Table Was Every Day” presents the history of agriculture on the Mendocino coast, from the perspective of putting food on the table.  The exhibit may first be viewed at a “Members Only” reception, Thursday evening, August 25th, from 4:30 to 6:00 p.m. at the Kelley House.  The exhibit will be open to the public on the following day, Friday, August 26th, and will continue during regular museum hours through November 21st. With[... see full page]

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]