Have you ever wondered where McLeod Lake, in downtown Stockton, got its name? I did. If you look at the Museum's earliest map of the Stockton area, which dates from the middle 1840s, you can see this very Scottish name right in the middle of what was then very Hispanic territory. How did this happen?
McLeod . . . → Read More: John McLeod: Overlooked Action Figure
My poor daughter. A lover of animals, she would often ask me as a child to make drawings of them for her. "Daddy," she would say, "draw me a cat." So I would grab my pencil and paper, sit down, and go to it. I don't remember her ever complaining, but her disappointment must have been . . . → Read More: Ralph O. Yardley
"The outlook wasn't brilliant for the Mudville nine that day…." So begins "Casey at the Bat," the most famous poem in baseball history. It's the bottom of the ninth as the story begins, with two outs and two runners on base. Then "mighty Casey" steps up to the plate. Will he pull it off? Will the . . . → Read More: Where’s Mudville?
Things that grandchildren of docents from the San Joaquin County Historical Museum—and other youngsters—will not do, recognize, or understand.
dialing a phone
a busy signal
a collect call
Lillian Gish, Clara Bow, Fatty Arbuckle, Jean Harlow, etc., etc., etc.
Buckwheat and Stymie
Spanky really spanked
Laurel and Hardy
Martin and Lewis
movie and popcorn under a dollar
Saturday afternoon double . . . → Read More: Grandma, What’s a Speakeasy?
Most Northern Californians probably know about a community in the San Francisco Bay Area named Vallejo. They may also be aware that its name honors General Mariano G. Vallejo, an early California landowner in the Sonoma area. What many people don't know is that a connection exists between Vallejo and San Joaquin County. In fact, the . . . → Read More: The Rise of Mariano G. Vallejo
It's hard to forget that Stockton is a seaport city, especially when towering oceangoing vessels regularly enter the port to load up with agricultural goods. But how many people currently remember the city's past as a major West Coast shipbuilding center? And how many can recall the influence that the U.S. Navy has had in San . . . → Read More: The Stockton Historic Maritime Museum
Sometimes it's easy to forget that history surrounds us. Look closely, though, and you can see it in structures, bridges, roadways, rivers, and other objects. Each has a story to tell, sometimes reaching back hundreds or thousands of years.
Inside Stockton’s Fox California Theatre, 1932.
San Joaquin County is no exception. Many people don't know that the . . . → Read More: History All Around
Did you know that Charles M. Weber, the founder of Stockton, was interested in gardening? Did you know that the tradition goes way back in time and that many of the nation's founders shared that interest? On February 27, 2013, New York Times Best Seller List author, Andrea Wulf, will visit the University of the Pacific . . . → Read More: Plants, Gardens, and the Founding Fathers
When Charles Weber's partner received a Mexican land grant for Rancho del Campo de los Franceses in what is now central San Joaquin County, he agreed to settle eleven families on the 48,000-acre property. In 1844, herders James Williams and Thomas Lindsay built tule huts and began living near what would later be called Stockton Slough.
Later . . . → Read More: Tragedy in Early San Joaquin County
Jedediah Strong Smith (1799–1831) and about fifteen trappers with the Rocky Mountain Fur Company entered California in November 1826. They were hoping to "find parts of the country as well stocked with Beaver as the waters of the Missouri." Smith and his party had crossed the Mojave Desert and the San Bernardino Mountains (a route later . . . → Read More: The Origins of French Camp, California