Mendocino High School Band

Mendocino High School Band marching up Main Street, 1936-1937. Gordon Dixon was the director of the band at that time. They are near the intersection of Kasten and Main Street, in front of Chet Bishop’s General Merchandise Store. In the background is the Bank Building. (Kelley House Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

Look Tin Eli: The Mendocino Visionary Who Helped Shape the Chinese-American Experience by Robert S. Becker and Jane Tillis – The life of Mendocino-born visionary Look Tin Eli was one of national significance. As a teenager returning home from China in 1884, his illegal detention instigated a court battle, culminating in the state’s legal precedent granting full citizenship for all native-born Californians. After the 1906 earthquake in San Francisco, he was instrumental in establishing Chinatown as a business center and tourist destination. He founded the first Chinese-owned bank, the Canton Bank of San Francisco, and he started the China Mail steamship company. With almost fifty historic images, this first book-length profile of Look Tin Eli brings to life the cultural and commercial achievements of this remarkable trailblazer. $25.