About the Mendocino County Historical Society

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The Mendocino County Historical Society was established because of the determination and insistence of Miss Marion Marvin. She contacted George Ward and on February 26, 1956 they met at the Ukiah Public Library with others to explore the idea of establishing a county wide historical society.

It was determined that there was sufficient interest to go forward and contact others who might be interested in the establishment of such an organization. A notice was published in the Ukiah Daily Journal to notify the public of a meeting to see if enough support could be mustered amongst the public.

This meeting was held May 6th, 1956 at the Palace Hotel. At this meeting the Mendocino County Historical Society was officially established. The following officers were elected: George Ward, President, Mark Carpenter of Ukiah, vice-president, Miss Marion Marvin, secretary, and Richard Mazzoni, treasurer. By-laws were proposed and adopted with some revisions. Directors to represent each supervisorial district of the county were appointed by the board. They were Judge Hale McCowen of Ukiah, John Philbrick of Laytonville and Mrs. Joan Stornetta of Point Arena. The other two directors were appointed later.

In 1961 the Mendocino County Historical Society filed articles of incorporation with the State of California.

In 1963 the historical society took on the project of restoring and dedicating the Little Red Schoolhouse on highway 20 between Willits and Fort Bragg.

In 1969 the family of Judge William D.L. Held donated the family's house, on the corner of Perkins and Dora streets, to the society to use as their headquarters and library. After much work the house was dedicated April 5, 1970.

In 1972 the society built and turned over to Mendocino County the Mendocino County Museum in Willits. The museum was dedicated on June 11, 1972.

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