Items of Interest
Forum Bulletin - #1

Although some Californians may proclaim that they are the 4th or 5th generation of their family to live in this fair state, if each of us goes back far enough, one of our progenitors was the first of us to step on California soil. In a larger sense, we Californians are either immigrants or their children - whether our antecedents crossed the Berring land bridge or came by Amtrak. Nor have we all arrived here legally. Some of us might find a bit of irony in the fact that our forebearers may have been Yankee sailors who jumped ship when they reached the California coast, and became legal Mexican citizens only by marrying Caifornio women. From history's perspective when we search out our family roots, we often learn that despite differences in perhaps race, ethnicity or culture, we have a lot in common with others who sought a new home or life west of the Sierra crest. The mission of the California History Forum is to help build a better community by sharing this - our common history.

Sheldon C. Bachus
CHF Founder
Community Perspectives - Exhibits

San Francisco 1906 Earthquake & Fire

These photographs were reproduced from an album commemorating the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire. The album included photographs taken by a local professional photographer, Frederick A. Webster. Seventeen of Webster's photographs are shown in this exhibit. They were scanned from an original copy of the album, which was part of the estate of Glady Munroe Sheldon, who witnessed the earthquake and fire as a 16 year-old San Francisco resident.

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Marin County's Great Divide

This exhibit looks at Marin County, California, from the perspective of its geography, and how that geography shaped the County's development from Sir Francis Drake to the current era. Since it was first explored, Marin County watersheds draining directly into the Pacific Ocean and Tomales Bay have typically remained less developed and rural. Conversely, eastern draining watersheds flowing into San Pablo Bay and San Francisco Bay have become far more developed and urbanized. The photographs in this exhibit show how this pattern has endured from colonial exploration to the present day.

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Inwood: An Early Sonoma County Inn

In the closing two decades of the 19th century the Sheldon family expanded their small rural Sonoma County farm to include an inn, which they called "Inwood", and to which they hoped to attract vacationers from San Francisco, many of whom would journey up the North Pacific Coast Railroad which passed through nearby Freestone on its route to the Russian River recreation area. Unfortunately, most travelers continued on to the River, and subsequently both the inn and farm failed. This exhibit, comprised of many photographs taken by Frederick Sheldon, provides a historical perspective of both the inn, farm and Sheldon family.

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San Rafael High School Over The Years

This exhibit includes a large selection of photographs chronicling over125 years of San Rafael High School history. Originally presented in 2013, the 125th year since the high school's founding -- previously classes were taught in a common building with the elementary grades -- this exhibit provides an interesting look into how both the school and surrounding community changed over the years.

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