Submitted by edawson on Tue, 01/05/2021 - 11:18

Keeping Current with History

“The past is a foreign country… they do things differently there”. L.P Hartley

While most of us are keeping our eyes on the new year, it’s always worth a look back to see just how far we’ve come. Last year began with hope and optimism for many on-site events and presentations, each requiring a shift to the technology that would work its best magic.

The Petaluma History Room collaborated with John Sheehy and the Petaluma Historical Library and Museum as well as the American Association of University Women to present two l look-backs at Petaluma history with women the link to them both. You can view these at the Library Youtube channel – they are well worth the visit.

Grab a cup of coffee or cocoa and sit back to enjoy:

Another enjoyable peek into the past is seeing how folks fared then; and gathering wisdom from their actions. I’ve put together a short slide timeline of Argus Courier articles on the use of masks during the 1918-1919 Flu pandemic. It began in 1918 as World War I was coming to a close. As the flu ramped up all over the world, mask restrictions were put in place, dances halted, and schools closed. Sound familiar? When the war ended; in November, things were looking up – it seemed that the flu was abating. But a second wave came with a power no one expected. Click here to see the timeline and how the Argus presented the situation 1918-Masks-in-Petaluma.pdf

And that… it’s time to look forward. Listening to the stories from the past is a good way to understand what’s happening today. Petaluma is blessed with historians who are willing to share their interest through blogs, newsletters and community organizations. Here are some you should know about and … Take a moment to visit their sites and read through the stories. You may find yourself walking through downtown and mentioning to your friends: “did you there was once a hotel on this site?”. You’ll never see this town in the same way again; you’ll see its rich history in every shop you visit. Enjoy!!

John Sheehy’s Blog: The Petaluma Historian:

John grew up in here the heart of Petaluma. In his blog he shares colorful stories of interesting individuals and events across a wide-range of topics and eras. Who knew Petaluma was so rich with characters?!

Jeff Elliott’s Blog: Santa Rosa History:

Providing a wealth of stories about Sonoma County, Elliott brings a veteran journalist’s expertise to his writings and research. Check in often. There are hundreds of posts and you can jumpstart your own research.

Katherine Rinehart’s Blog:

Author of the book Petaluma: A History in Architecture, and former manager of the Sonoma County History and Genealogy Library and Sonoma County Archives, her blog includes stories behind many local buildings and landscapes. This exploring of events as they occurred offers us a unique perspective about things we may have wondered about the places we pass by every day.

The Sonoma County Library’s History and Genealogy Library Newsletter and Blog:

Written by H & G Library staff members, the newsletter includes top notch interviews, a look at library services and acquisitions, and in-depth stories about materials at the library.

The Petaluma Historical Library and Museum:

While access to the newsletter is through membership, note the museum’s website. It provides online news of events and includes many virtual events that you can access.