Historic Old Courthouse Square building for sale

2014, Architecture, Historic Landmark, Historic Site, In The News, Press Democrat, Santa Rosa

Empire Building – Photo © Sean Bressie

Change is coming to the historic, clock-capped Empire Building on Santa Rosa’s Old Courthouse Square. It is up for sale and its primary tenant — …

…read more

Source:: PressDemo – Local News

Image courtesy of Sean Bressie ©

‘Day of the Dead’ at Sonoma Barracks

2014, In The News

California State Parks, in cooperation with Sonoma/Petaluma State Historic Parks Association, proudly announces, Dia De Los Muertos, Day of the Dead, on Saturday, November 1 from noon to 4 pm. Come to Mission San Francisco Solano to help celebrate Dia De Los Muertos, the historic holiday of Mexico, Latin America, and Spain. This celebration is designed to honor the dead who, it is believed, return to their earthly homes on the evening of October 31. In recognition of this holiday, the Mission will have an altar in the Chapel honoring General Mariano Guadalupe Vallejo and his wife Benicia. The altar … …read more

Source:: Sonoma Valley Sun

Lest We Forget – Samuel Cassiday

2014, In The News, Petaluma, Petaluma Argus-Courier

Samuel Cassiday – c1880

The lead sentence states that, “Petaluma owes a debt to Argus Editor Sam Cassiday that has never been paid. Only his gravestone in Cypress Hill Cemetery commemorates his name. The forgetful city long ago should have done the right thing by at least naming a street in his honor.” His collection of newspaper files dating back to 1855 is one of the most complete and “priceless” collections in the West. They may be found in the public library. He also authored a book about Sonoma County history, “An Illustrated History of Sonoma County, 1889.” An article in his file stated that, “he received the bitterest blow when the Chicago publisher of his history failed to credit him as author.”

Cassiday was born near Reedsburgh, Wayne County, Ohio in 1830, and spent most of his boyhood near the Sac and Fox Indian hunting grounds of the Iowa Territory. Over time, he worked on a farm nine months out of the year and also learned the printers trade, as well as serving as an assistant teacher in a private academy. Cassiday came overland in 1850 to Sacramento and got involved with various mining operations in Nevada and Yuba counties. He moved to Sonoma County in 1854 and farmed until 1860. He spent a brief period of time publishing the Petaluma Republican before becoming one of the owners and editors of the Argus in 1861. After he sold the Argus in 1869, he moved to Monterey County where he studied law and was admitted to the bar. Later, when offered a United State consulship, he declined. This article closes with, “A few men gave to their community more than they received in return. Petaluma could change the name of Main Street to Cassiday Avenue and still not come out even.”

Cassiday married Cynthia Francis Denman in 1864 and they had five children. His funeral was held April 6, 1904 with E.S. Lippitt, H.L. Weston, G.W. Lamoreaux, C. Temple, C. Poehlmann and Charles Dillion serving as pallbearers.

Source:: Petaluma – Our River Town

Related Links:
California Biographies – RootsWeb
1898 Sonoma County Atlas – Rumsey Collection
History of Sonoma County – Google Books
Find a Grave

Image courtesy of USGenWeb

Charlie Siebenthal presents expanded talk on the Sonoma Valley Railroad

Announcement, Days of Yesteryear, Glen Ellen, Lectures, Northwestern Pacific Railroad Historical Society, Railroads, Santa Rosa, Sonoma

WHISTLESTOP NORTH — SANTA ROSA

The next program will be on Monday October 27, 2014

THE RAILROADS OF SONOMA VALLEY.
NWPRRHS President Charlie Siebenthal will present a much expanded talk on the Sonoma Valley Railroad, its successor as the Sonoma Valley Branch of the NWP and the Sonoma Valley Branch of the Southern Pacific. Field work plus recently discovered maps and newspaper articles will be used to answer the many questions asked during his first talk on the railroads of Sonoma Valley.

Monroe Hall, 1400 West College Avenue, Santa Rosa. Parking in the rear of the building.
Take 101 to the College Avenue exit. Turn west onto College Avenue. Monroe Hall is on the left just past the G&G Shopping Center.
For further information please contact Charlie Siebenthal at 707-838-8882 or vandtrr@cs.com
Please mark this date on your calendars.
If you wish to receive an email reminder of each program please send an email entitled “WN list” to Charlie Siebenthal at vandtrr@cs.com your email address will be held confidential.

Image courtesy of Elmore Powell

Windsor barn preserved by Strawn instead of burned for practice

2014, In The News, Preservation, Relocate, Windsor

Milo Strawn, a carpenter and millwright by trade, was not one to discard the old or broken for the new and different. He was from the generation that never threw anything away. When it broke, you fixed it.

So when the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department decided  to use a 100-year-old, open dairy barn in east Windsor for training burns,  Milo, the Fire Chief,  offered to take it apart instead. He bought it for $1 in 1985 from a contractor, who planned to develop the land where the Mattie Washburn School and Pleasant Oak Park now stand.   …read more

Source: Press Democrat

The little engine that could, just can’t anymore – Support the Howarth Park Train

2014, Announcement, Fundraiser, Preservation, Santa Rosa

Howarth Park Train

Help Keep the Howarth Park Train in Motion

Santa Rosa Parks Foundation’s 1st annual Family Fun Night is on October 10th at Howarth Park from 5-9pm. All proceeds from the night will go towards the purchase of a new ADA compliant Howarth Park Train.

This event will include live musical performances by Pat Jordan Band, Bear’s Belly and Midnight Sun Massive, along with delicious provisions provided by The Wurst, Island Ice and Third Street Aleworks. Santa Rosa High School’s agricultural department is supplying pumpkins for a children’s pumpkin decorating booth and rides will run until sundown.

The train has been a part of the Santa Rosa community for 44 years, and as stated in a previous article by the Press Democrat, “The little engine that could, just can’t anymore.” Currently, the C.P. Huntington costs the city of Santa Rosa $30,000 a year in maintenance and sadly due to its datedness, the 1863 replica steam engine is broken down 1/3 of the time. We ask the community to come together for this special event so that the future generations of our city can enjoy 50 more years of wonderful memories. Tickets will be sold at the venue or you can purchase them now at http://tinyurl.com/n58fxep. Prices are $10 for adults and $5 for children: adult entry fees include an adult beverage and children entry fees include a train ride.

Image courtesy of http://www.srparksfoundation.com

E Clampus Vitus honors historical Cloverdale buildings

2014, Announcement, Cloverdale, Cloverdale Historical Society, Historic Landmark, In The News

Cloverdale, Shaw House Plaque, c2014

Plaques presented to Owl Cafe, Gould Shaw House

On Saturday, Sept. 13, E Clampus Vitus, came to Cloverdale and commemorated the placement of two plaques. Known to be a fun loving group of men with prankster-type antics, they are also known for researching and honoring places of historical significance. Two locations were commemorated. One plaque was placed in a large rock in front of the Owl Café. It was presented by the Yerba Buena Chapter 1. The other was placed at the Gould Shaw House, now the site of the Cloverdale Museum, by the Sam Brannan Chapter 1004. “Clampers” from both chapters were on hand to participate in the ceremonies. Wearing their red t-shirts, they were observed all over Cloverdale from Thursday through Saturday.

Source:: Cloverdale Reveille

Image courtesy of Sean Bressie | Sonoma County Historical Society

Nailing it down at Blue Wing

2014, Historic Landmark, In The News, Preservation, Sonoma

Sonoma, Blue Wing, c1906

Work continues at The Blue Wing Inn on East Spain Street — Lot 35 in Mariano Vallejo’s master plan of 1835 — as the historic adobe gets a seismic upgrade and new roof. The unreinforced masonry building was designated as potentially hazardous in 1990, and has been vacant since 2001. It is owned by the California State Parks, which paid for the ongoing repairs. More work will be needed to meet code requirements, a critical step towards the adaptive reuse model – including the possible rental of business space – promoted by the nonprofit Blue Wing Adobe Trust to fund … …read more

Source: Sonoma Valley Sun

Image courtesy of Sean Bressie | Sonoma County Historical Society

Guerneville Cemetery Tour – Oct 11, 2014

2014, Announcement, Days of Yesteryear, Guerneville, Russian River Historical Society

 Join us for the 5th Annual Guerneville Cemetery Tour.

Saturday, October 11th at 1 p.m. and 2:30 p.m.

Directions from Main Street, Guerneville:  Go north on Armstrong Woods Road two blocks, turn right at the  fire house and follow the signs uphill.

Image courtesy of Russian River Historical Society

What Is Historical Significance?

2014, Days of Yesteryear, In The News, Petaluma Argus-Courier

Some readers might ask, “How do we define historical significance?” One web site “Facing the Past-Shaping the Future” addresses that concern:

“Historical significance is the process used to evaluate what was significant about selected events, people, and developments in the past. Historians use different sets of criteria to help them make judgments about significance. Significance has been called the forgotten concept in history, no doubt because it can be challenging for both teacher and students.”

http://facingthepastshapingthefuture.com/teaching-learning-strategies/history/historical-significance

Another explanation of how to establish historical significance is: “The past is everything that has ever happened anywhere. The past is recorded as history, but there is too much history to remember it all. So how do we make choices about what is worth remembering? Significant events include those that resulted in great change over long periods of time for large numbers of people. In this sense, an event like World War II would pass the test for historical significance. But what could be significant about the life of a worker or a slave? What about my own ancestors, who are clearly significant to me but not necessarily significant to others? Significance depends upon one’s perspective and purpose. A historical person or event can acquire significance if we, the historians, can link it to larger trends and stories that reveal something important to us today. For example, the story of an individual worker in Winnipeg in 1918, which is seemingly insignificant compared to the story of World War II, may become significant if it is recounted in a way that makes it part of a larger history of workers’ struggles, economic development, or post-war adjustment and discontent. In that case, the “significant” life reveals something important to us, and thus becomes significant. Both ‘It is significant because it is in the history book’ and ‘It is significant because I am interested in it’ are inadequate explanations of historical significance.”

http://www.edu.gov.mb.ca/k12/cur/socstud/history_gr11/historicalsignificance.pdf

Source: Petaluma – Our River Town

Image courtesy of