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Author: Sean Bressie

SCHS Board Vice President, Jeff Tobes dies of cancer at 68

Jeff Tobes, 1947-2015Sean Bressie
Jeff Tobes has left us at age 68, but he has also left us with a wonderful legacy.

Jeff had more energy than most of us could have ever imagined, and used it to make good things happen.

For many years, he was a key figure in building the History Day program in Sonoma County. He inspired his students to do research, work extra hard and even find financial sources to keep the program alive. Because of Jeff and others like him, Sonoma County's History Day people have left their mark at every level, from the local school to the national competitions.

When Jeff decided 10 years ago to take his loyal youngsters on long walks, they, and perhaps he, were not sure what they were getting into. More and more people joined up for 25-mile jaunts in Sonoma County and around San Francisco, starting in the very early morning and ending deep into the evening. More and more people got their exercise, learned their history and had a great time as Jeff set the pace. He even threw in an extra muscle-bender in 2011 in honor of Fred Wiseman, our favorite daring ex-pilot of the early 20th century.

Jeff was a fine teacher, a great treasurer for the Sonoma County Historical Society (the books are balanced), and a real contributor to the world in which we live. Read more

2015 Picnic at the amazing Castelli Ranch Sept 13th

The Sonoma County Historical Society invites you to come visit the amazing Castelli Collection with us!

Castelli's Ranch

Castelli's Ranch

Steve and Glenda Castelli have been collecting just about everything they ever saw over the past half century, and what they’ve got will take you on a long journey deep into the American past.

What have they got? —classic autos and trucks, old tractors and gas station signs and pumps, games and toys of every description, Lionel Trains and Schwinns and Flexy Racers, kitchen kitsch from the sublime to the outrageous, and much, much more than all that.

Here’s your chance to wander through their private museum during the Sonoma County Historical Society Annual Picnic, from 11 to 2 on Sunday, September 13th. The Castelli Ranch is located at 420 Grapevine Lane in Healdsburg, off Eastside Road, just west of Highway 101. We’ll provide free hot dogs and sausages, as long as you bring a salad or dessert to share. Nonmembers are welcome, so bring your friends— there’s no charge, but reservations are required to make sure there’ll be enough food. Call Joann Mitchell at (707) 545-5094 or Marjorie Torliatt at (707) 545-7507 to tell us you’re coming.

Washoe House north of Petaluma sold

The popular watering hole and restaurant at Stony Point and Roblar roads have new owners.
Covered in a layer of road dust, the red Old West building with white trim has stood along the country-road thoroughfare between Petaluma and Santa Rosa since 1859, first as a stagecoach stop then as a watering hole.
Source: Press Democrat - Washoe House north of Petaluma being sold

Petaluma's historic Washoe House restaurant sold

The new owners will tidy up the joint and renovate/repair as needed, but likely the key elements will remain, such as the bar ceiling thickly papered with business cards, photographs, and lots and lots of dollar bills. Source: SFgate.com  Petaluma's historic Washoe House restaurant sold

Gaye LeBaron: Old Courthouse Square has divided Santa | The Press Democrat

Old Courthouse Square, known as a plaza before the mall usurped the name, has long been a contentious place. It is still the object of not only disagreement but also widespread misunderstanding.
Source: Gaye LeBaron: Old Courthouse Square has divided Santa | The Press Democrat

Restoration effort resumed for 132-year-old Daniels School in | The Press Democrat

It’s been 78 years since Florence Nylander Bates attended a one-room schoolhouse
Source: Restoration effort resumed for 132-year-old Daniels School in | The Press Democrat

Fate of historic Kenwood home continues to be debated

Carlo Figliolini didn’t learn about the rich history of the his white stucco Kenwood home until the walls started to crumble. Peter Maroni — one of the four Italian stonemasons who built St. Rose Church, the Western Hotel and La Rose Hotel in Santa Rosa constructed the two-bedroom house on Shaw and Clyde avenues more than a century ago.   Read more in The Press Democrat

History Walk Update #3 - Exercise Edition

4/7/2015

Dear Walkers,

I told you that I would be emphasizing "walking" before the walk so that you can enjoy the experience even more.  Ray Johnson, one of the organizers this year, has written an article specific to our walk.  He is an experienced walker and his advice is good.  He and his wife, Cecilia have gone on Jeff's "25 Mile Walks" for 8 years.  He knows what he is talking about, so read, enjoy and take his advice. Read more

Filmmaker honored for ‘Camp Windsor’ documentary

Camp Windsor

Camp Windsor

Santa Rosa filmmaker Robyn Kasper has been a finalist in three film competitions since 2012 but never won an award. In January, the spell was broken.

Kasper was honored by the Sonoma County Historical Society for “Camp Windsor,” her 27-minute documentary about the German prisoner of war camp that housed 250 captives during World War II. It was a branch of the Army’s Camp Beale in Marysville.  Read More

2015 20 Mile Historical Walk - Update #2

_MG_3474Sean Bressie | Sonoma County Historical Society

The 11th Annual Sonoma County 20 Mile Historical Walk in San Francisco commemorating the anniversary of the Panama-Pacific International Expo is June 6, 2015

FILL OUT YOUR ENROLLMENT FORM TODAY!

So far we have a total of 23 official walkers for June 6th. Please spread the word to family, friends, coworkers and whoever else you can think of who might enjoy walking with us.

Read more
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