Remember When Week of September 2
Sonoma stories from last century
88 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Sept. 1, 1923)
Doing business and giving good service to its customers in the midst of extensive alterations and improvements, the Central Bank is now nearing the completion of the work which will transform the former Sonoma Valley Bank’s headquarters into a beautiful and up-to-date banking house. The old vault has been torn out and a massive reinforced structure built by contractor P. Basaglia. … The Native Sons and Daughters of Sonoma County will feature the Bear Flag incident as the idea of a historic float to be entered Sept. 9 in the Admission Day Parade at San Francisco. The committees arranging Sonoma County’s participation decided that the raising of the famous flag on the Plaza here in 1845 was the most important and picturesque event which could be depicted n the parade of Californians. … Miss Sabina Sebastiani is in San Francisco this week, preparing for the wedding of her cousin, Miss Eleanor Mei, at which she will be one of four bridesmaids. … Mr. and Mrs. A. f. Hopke had a delightful trip to the Hawaiian Islands this summer. They encountered good weather on the steamer and had a three weeks stay. … Sonoma Valley experienced one of the heaviest and most spectacular thunder and lightning storms in years last Monday night and early Tuesday morning. The storm was accompanied by heavy showers. At Boyes Springs the lightning ran down the flag pole into the bath house and blew out a number of fuses, putting the bath house out of commission for business the following day. … Impressive ceremonies will attend the dedication of Sonoma’s new St. Francis church on Sunday morning, Sept. 9, at 11 o’clock. Archbishop Hanna will conduct the dedicatory services, assisted by prominent visiting clergymen and a male choir from St Patrick’s Seminary, Menlo Park. The new church is a handsome structure and in less than a year following the destruction of the frame church by fire, has been built and in use for services.
87 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Aug. 30, 1924)
The election Tuesday, while a quiet one in Sonoma Valley, was fraught with keen interest, owing to the fact that two Sonoma men were candidates for supervisor of the first district. The incumbent, F.A. Lowell, polled a handsome vote in every precinct, defeating R. R. Emparan by two and one-half to one. … The demonstration and lecture on culling given by W. Buster, Farm advisor, to the poultrymen of Sonoma Valley who assembled at the Captain Heinke place Monday proved of great interest and benefit to the 60 or more present. Through charts the lecture proved the results of culling properly and showed that in varied flocks of pullets some yielded a profit of $1.27 per bird and others showed a loss of 14 cents per bird. … Sonoma is to have a proud place in the beautiful Pageant of the Redwoods which takes place Monday, Sept. 1, at Armstrong Woods, Sonoma county’s wonderful redwood grove. The pageant, given by the club women of the county for the benefit of the Save the Redwoods League and for the founding of a tubercular hospital is one of the most ambitious out-of-door productions ever staged in Northern California. Hundreds of people from the various cities of Sonoma County will comprise the cast and produce different episodes. … The benefit ball to meet the indebtedness on the Valley Angel will be held tonight at Coney Island Pavilion. A five piece jazz orchestra from Santa Rosa will play. A dollar ticket for the fire department is insurance, the best kind. … The defunct State Farm for Delinquent Women at Buena Vista has been taken over by the Sonoma State Home and 35 men and boys from Eldridge are now quartered there. The patients are epileptics and in accordance with the new policy of Dr. Butler and the Board of Mangers no other class of patients will be admitted to the Bunea Vista unit of the big institution. … Emmet Mullen of El Verano has been delegated by County Clerk W. W. Felt Jr., to sell hunting and fishing licenses.
86 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Aug. 29, 1925)
One of the features of the beautiful Mission float to be entered by the Naïve Sons and Daughters of Sonoma in the Diamond Jubilee parade in San Francisco Sept. 9, will be real live California poppies. On the float designed by professional, are the flowers of our Golden State, and in their golden chalices little Carmen Vella and Thelma Flieger dressed in Spanish costume, will be enthroned. … The rehearing of the application of the Sonoma Water and Irrigation Company to purchase the properties of the Sonoma City Water Works, the Sonoma Vista Water Company and the Sonoma Valley Water, Light and Power Company, including the O’Brien ranch, was held at the Sonoma city hall Thursday morning before Commissioner Frankhauser of the State Railroad Commission. Upon the examination of witnesses it developed that the officers of the new company which would issue $100,000 preferred stock and $50,000 common stock are Otto Wagner, president; L. Osteye, secretary and R. R. Emparan, treasurer. … A worthy tribute to the stamping ground of distinguished pioneer Californians was the marker placed on the Gen. Persifer Smith ranch by the Native Sons of the Golden West last Sunday. The property, now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Melville Schweiter, of San Francisco, is among the most stately and beautiful in California and was once the home of Granville S. Swift, who built the mansion, walls and massive gateways of this fine old homestead and gave it the charm of an old world castle. … The city trustees and Native Sons combined this week in a general clean up of the Plaza. The dry grass and weeds were cut close to the ground and the area burned over. The beautiful lawn put in by the Native Sons around the Bear Flag Monument now looks much better with its neat surroundings. It is hoped that other organizations will also interest themselves in the Plaza with the ultimate aim of beautifying the entire square.
70 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Aug. 29, 41)
The “Blue Wing,” famous landmark of Sonoma and one of the most picturesque of the adobe structures still standing here as reminders of the days of the Dons, the caballeros and covered wagon trains has been purchased by Elmer Awl of Sobre Vista who will restore the time scarred tavern, strengthened its foundation and protect it from the elements. The property 110 feet on Spain Street extends back 102 feet and as purchased from Mrs. Rose Pinelli. A 20-foot alley has been provided and old wooden sheds and barn in the rear will be leveled. … From Napa where a Home Guard has recently been organized came Lt. Col. Retzer, a reserve officer, who spoke to Kiwanians Tuesday on “Formation and Function of the Home Guard,” and urged Sonoma to organize as a protective preparedness step. He called to mind the fact that the National Guard has been inducted into the regular army and that the Home Guard must take its place. … A spectacular fire which started Sunday afternoon and was whipped to alarming proportion by the high wind prevailing that day burned until midnight. Its glare could be seen for miles up and down the Valley. Fire suppression crews of the state forestry department aided by boys from the Sonoma State Home fought the flames which were finally controlled at the fire break which had been designed for just such an emergency. … Thieves stole everything including the stove while Mrs. Parrish was in Oakland for two weeks. Upon her return she found her home looted and reports the loss of a bath tub, dining room chairs, electric globes and her kitchen range.
68 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Aug. 27, 1943)
The Twelfth District of Veterans of Foreign Wars, has passed a resolution urging a living memorial to our service men – the planting and beautification of the Black Point Cut-off. The drive would be made attractive and famous as the 17-mile drive near Monterey and the highway across the Petaluma River would be called Veterans Memorial Parkway. … All persons depositing cans in the receptacles at grocery stores provided for tin cans are reminded of the need for mashing the cans flat after cutting the tops and washing them. Remember that the handling of these cans is all by volunteer labor. Fred Thomsen donates his truck and the gasoline and tires that go with it to haul them to the warehouse in Petaluma. … Mrs. C. G. Murphy of Sonoma, author of “People of the Pueblo,” has been invited to speak to the Marin County Historical Society the coming year. … A large stubble fire which was purposely set during the day on the properties of the California Packing Corporation at Ignacio smoked up Sonoma Valley Tuesday. A large crew of men, according to word from San Rafael, was engage din the annual fall burning of the stubble and other field debris. … Postmaster Murphy was notified Monday that parcels for prisoners of war and civilian internees in the Philippines and elsewhere in the Far East should be mailed at once so as to be ready for the “Gripsholm” sailing Sept. 15 from New York. … Sam Sebastiani is having the grounds cleared for the construction of St. Francis Academy, the new Catholic school building which he is to present to the Sonoma parish. … Men who have had one year of experience operating boilers used in heating systems are qualified to take the civil service examination for stationary firemen to be given in September. Starting salary is $145 a month.
66 YEARS AGO
(From the Index-Tribune files of Aug. 31, 1945)
Through the generosity of the late Samuele Sebastiani, our city will see the opening of the new parochial school, St. Francis Solano, on Sept. 11. It will be the third parochial school in Sonoma County, the other two being St. Vincent’s in Petaluma and St. Rose in Santa Rosa. There are six classrooms in the beautify two-story building with a capacity of 240 pupils. … The contract has been let for the new bridge across the creek connecting up Patton Street. C. C. Bean will do the structural work with J. Zanzucci to put in the cement and stone work for the new span. The opening of Patton Street will be a long needed improvement and ill make possible some new residential sites in Sonoma. … Congressman and Mrs. C. F. Lea arrived in Santa Rosa Wednesday night for a brief stay during which the congressman will travel over his district to get in touch with its sentiments and needs in the post-war period. … The newest and brightest spot in El Verano, “Little Switzerland,” will open Sept. 9 with music and dancing. W. Reichmuth, the proprietor invites the public to the opening. Mr. Reichmuth is the well-known San Francisco and Sonoma property owner and purchased the pioneer Rossi resort which he has highly improved and hopes to make one of Sonoma Valley’s most popular recreation places. … The fall semester of the Sonoma Valley Union high school will open on Monday, Sept. 17. Coach Pyke announced this week that football practices will begin on Sept. 5. … The Swiss Hotel is being repainted and the historic structure presents a very neat appearance. The proprietors, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Marioni, are rightfully proud of the adobe which is on the north side of the Plaza.