Mendocino High Arts & Crafts Class

Mendocino High School Faculty, from “The Cardinal Clarion” published by Mendocino High School students, 1937. (Gift of Linda Mechling, The Nicholson-Ellison Family Collection, Kelley House Books)

October 3, 1934 – An afternoon Arts and Crafts class for adults began at Mendocino High School. Mrs. Anne Valentine, the high school’s Art teacher, offered the class to any member of the community interested in studying Arts and Crafts.

Eight ladies attended the first meeting, and several decided to take up leather tooling, one of Anne’s favorite hobbies. Others chose to work on individual art or craft projects that they had in mind.

Born in Oakland in 1907, Anne graduated from the University of California and arrived in Mendocino in August 1930 as a new teacher at Mendocino High School. Her first residence in town was with the other new teachers staying at Dr. Preston’s mansion. Anne married Frank Valentine, a local Mendocino carpenter, in 1933.

In a 1938 Mendocino Beacon article, her high school students described her fondly, “She is also seen riding in her ’35 Plymouth coupe a great deal of the time. Mrs. Valentine is 5 feet 1 inch tall, has blonde hair and blue eyes. Lucky are the students who get to take Home Economics or Art from her.” Over the course of her teaching career, Anne taught in Mendocino, Albion, and Point Arena schools.

Anne and Frank owned and operated Valentine’s Motel (later Valentine’s Lodge) just north of town from 1959 to 1979.

Anne died in 1981 while on board a cruise ship in the Caribbean Sea after a short illness.

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